A handmade greenhouse with old windows gave Stacey the spark she needed to expand her cut flower beds and begin selling wholesale to local florists.
Summertime in Janesville, Minnesota. Stacey Weichert’s flower garden explodes in blossom and color and she can barely keep up with cutting, pruning and propagating. But lately, flowers have grown from a passion into a fledgling business. In the last few months, Stacey planted thousands of spring bulbs and also some perennials.
Anchoring it all is the sturdy green shed made with old windows, salvaged siding and polycarbonate roofing. Its rustic design and oneness with its surroundings won the shed a place in She Shed Living’s 2022 calendar for November. Over time, it became a comfortable space for Stacey to hone her skills as a gardener. A floral designer for more than 40 years, Stacey knew there was a need for more local and organic flower sources. “More florists are looking for organic product that is sustainably and organically grown,” Stacey explains.
Preparing for Winter
Now that it’s November, Stacey is still keeping very busy cleaning all of her gardening tools and sprucing up some of the beds for winter, when they will be blanketed for a couple of months in snow. The garden shed is also a perfect place to store pots, which can crack under particularly icy conditions if left outdoors.
Stacey began in earnest and so far has sown dozens of blooms that thrive in Zone 4. She counts them out loud: “We are growing tulips and trying to provide some more unique varieties; daffodils, both double and fragrant varieties; alliums of all types; fritillaria; zinnias; peony; astilbe; and sedums.”
To keep with the organic and sustainable mission, Stacey will minimize packaging in her deliveries. For example, she plans to deliver her flowers in buckets filled with water, then pick them up for reuse on the next round.
The greenhouse provides Stacey with a warm, well-lit spot to do seed sorting. But it is even more than that; a welcoming port in a storm. As she puts it, “A greenhouse in the winter; well now–it’s therapy!
“You can work outside while winter creeps in around you. Nothing like the smell of moist soil and garden dreaming!”