New York Flower Farm Products
The New York Flower Farm will specialize in growing organic high-value cut flowers and woody ornamentals, 100% native to the United States, and sold to directly from the farm to visits and for weddings, or sold remotely to event planners, designers, wedding and event venues, restaurants and institutions. We'll sell flowers during the summer and woody ornamentals during the winter and more specifically, for the holiday season.
On top of these speciality products, The New York Flower Farm will offer pick-your-own options to visitors. Our largest crop will be blueberries from a pre-existing 5 acre blueberries field. Over time there will also be raspberries, blackberries, mulberries, chokeberries, concord grapes, paw paws, persimmons and a small orchard of apples, plums, cherries, peaches, pears and apricots for guests to choose from.
To learn more about our cut flowers, woody ornamentals and the market sourrounding them, scroll down or click buttons below to skip a section.
In our first season we will focus on growing Helianthus anaulas (the common sunflower) in huge swaths of 40 acres or more. Incrementally we will then diversify, starting with "proven winners", other native plants whose flowers are highly desired and used widely in the industry. These include: Liatris spicata (Prairie Blazingstar, cultivar 'Callilepsis') Solidago canadensis (Goldenrod, cultivar 'Golden Baby') and Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Weed).
The University of Wyoming Extension publication indicated specialty cut flowers were some of the most profitable crops growers can produce, with yields as high as $25,000 or $30,000 per acre,
Flower details and value
Sunflowers / helianthus species
Helianthus anaulas, the common sunflower, have endless cultivars, many of which will make great cut flowers. They're annuals (hence the Latin name) so require crop rotation and replanting every year. Sunflowers can be a great pick-your-own option on the farm, sold wholesale or retail in bouquets. They can also be grown (like the image to the left) in masses for commercial oil pressing or to make bird seed. If you grew this many sunflowers for cut flowers, you'd have to cut them down before they fully flower, which would prevent the spectacular display. Even if a large field is grown for oil, it can generate spectacle capital. Money can be generated from visitation, photoshoots and weddings and is an organic add for the business.
Sunflowers should be planted when there is no more risk of frost in spring, and then incrementally every week until mid-summer, as to have continuous flowering plants till the first frost. Non-branching, single stem, single flower verities are the top choice flower for growers because they have long stems and require less time to mature and flower from seed. Growing them close together will help the plants create longer, sturdier stems that are more manageable in terms of dynamiter for bouquets.
There are many native perennial sunflowers that we will experiment with. These are multi-stemmed and produce dozens of small flowers. Once established they come back every year with no care and are highly beneficial to pollinators and birds like finches.
Harvest time: mid summer to late fall
Target Market: on site customers, retail to restaurants, floral designers, event planners and wholesalers as cut flowers or for oil production.
Value: wholesale $1.50-$2.00 a stem. Retail $3.00-$4,00 a stem. 3 stems for $8.00-$10.00 and a dozen at $36.00-$45.00
Prairie Blazingstar / Liatris spicata
Prairie Blazing Star (A.K.A. Liatris) is unique for its use as a cut flower and is relatively new but widely spread. We often use it in our landscaping jobs and find that it is very poplar as a native plant for pollinators. What is most striking about it is its color and form, bright purple and wand like. It is a great edition to any bouquet.
The number one used cultivar 'Callilepsis' has more consistent flower forms with longer stems. Liatris produces little tubers or corms which they can cultivated from. Corms are planted approximately 2.5 cm (1 inch) below the soil line. Spacing recommendations vary, but typically eight 8 to 10 cm corms are planted per square foot.
Inflorescences should be harvested when approximately 1 inch of the upper flowers have opened. If they are to be held or shipped long inflorescences, one-quarter inch of the upper flowers should be fine.
According to the most commonly used U.S. grading system, superior grade Liatris have a stem length of 26 to 30 inches, fancy grade A stem lengths are 22 to 25 inches, and utility grade have short stems of 18 to 21 inches.
Like the sunflower Liatris have many verities which over time we will experiment with and introduce to the market. Rocky Mountain Liatris as you can see to the left, are a favorite for Monarch Butterflies).
Harvest time: mid summer
Target Market: on site customers, retail to restaurants, floral designers, event planner and wholesale as cut flower.
Value: wholesale $1.50-$2.00 a stem. Retail bumble of five $12. bundle of 10 $21