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  • Writer's pictureBetsy Busche

What Do You Do in the Winter?

Updated: Apr 16, 2021

My answer to this question is alway "Clean my fridge." The mystique around flower farming is that we have months off and nothing to do in the winter. But really we are still working straight through, just behind the scenes. January was conference season, which is great for personal enrichments but also connecting with our flower community.

I figured out this year that I will never take the time to sew anything in the fall so if I want stockings available for the Christmas season, I must make them now.

Plus our gardens do not miraculously emerge in the spring, we do need to plan, and shop. This year was there was a crazy, frenzied rush on the seed houses. Please don't wait get seed! March will be the last minute this year!


Looking ahead, we are planning a series of classes for flower lovers of all abilities! Experiences make great gifts, even if they are on Zoom!

Rob is going to demystify purchasing machinery. He will help you understand everything from horsepower to implements and debating old vs new. This is will be a Friday well spent! Join us on Friday, February 26 at 1:00 pm. This session is for anyone who needs mechanical help to reach their growing goals!

When it is time to add mechanical help to your farm operation, the options can be daunting. Robert Cross, Assistant Professor of Agricultural Engineering Technology at SUNY Cobleskill will break down implement choices to get your job done efficiently, compare sized of tractors, discuss the difference between new and used, and help you understand the systems involved. Rob has 20 years of experience teaching agricultural systems. In the summer he makes hay for his family's sheep farm and sells to horse farms all the while cultivating the fields on his wife's flower farm. Sponsored by Watershed Agricultural Council and Cornell Cooperative Extension of Delaware County


We are building on Fast Track for Slow Flowers from last spring with a more advanced sessions focused on crop planning and the business of flower farmer. This will be more interactive and building on the ideology of community over competition. I have listened for the last six months and put together these topics to help us all over the common cut flower hurdles.

7 hours over 2 Days - March 5th and 12th, 1:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Join Betsy Busche of Spongetta's Garden for next-level topics in Flower Farming. This intensive is geared to new and seasoned producers with some experience raising and selling flowers or vegetables in Upstate NY.

  • Color Theory - Choosing the Right Palette for the Wow

  • What to Expect - Cut and Come Again vs. One Hit Wonders and Everything In Between

  • Cutting Perennials - What to Grow and How to Use it

  • Sunflowers All Summer - Creating a Succession Plan that is Easy to Execute

  • Succession Planting Tender Annuals, Practically Extending the Season

  • Planning 365 Days Ahead for June Flowers

  • Cool Flowers, the Upstate New York Edition

  • Crop Planning for Dried Flowers

  • Navigating Seed Catalogs and Websites

  • Culminating with Creating a Garden Plan and Seed List

  • Mother’s Day, What Can We Do?


Want to grow your own cut flowers? We expanded the Plan Your Own Cutting Garden class to two evenings with great information to determine where and how to grow plus even more profiles of cut flowers. This is perfect for a new gardener or a someone who wants to add cut flowers to existing gardens. Join us March 23 and March 30 at 6:00 pm online.

Grow your own seasonal cut flowers to enjoy in bouquets and arrangements all summer long. Learn the best varieties to plant that thrive in our conditions to yield long stems that last a week when cut. We will discuss how to choose the best location for your garden. Discover the top 10 cutting varieties plus a list of varieties you may never have heard of that flourish in Upstate New York. Each participant will create a small cutting garden plan to use at home.


Not least at all, I'm participating in Art in Bloom: Fine Art and Flowers at Munson William Proctor Art Institute April 16-18th! Really excited to interpret the parlor in Fountain Elms in flowers.

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