Messages from the Garden RSS



The Perfection of Flower Messengers - Behind the Alchemy Flower Oracle

When I think about the things in my life that have always been constant it’s nature and flowers, and my connections to them. Flowers have always been important, an easy way to bring nature into my home especially when I lived in the city. Going to the flower market was a special occasion, like going to church, the church of flowers. I was, and still am, intoxicated by their colours, shapes, fragrances and ability to capture my heart and imagination. I’d go home, heart full, with a precious offering for my home. I was horrified, and devastated, to learn that the flowers I’d been buying every week at the flower market were grown, tens of thousands of miles from me, with...

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The Alchemy Flower Oracle - Becoming a Flower Apprentice for the Earth

When we started Alchemy Farm three years ago we had no big plan for a flower farm, or any other kind of farm. We both instantly fell in love with the property, with the energy of the land. Looking back on photos from our early days here it’s not hard to understand why some people thought we were completely crazy. The place was neglected, the house needed TLC, the trees, the outbuildings, the land, all needed TLC. We didn’t know any better. We joyously, for the most part, began to work…and work…and work. The first few weeks we lived in a tent on the sundeck as the house was being made liveable. During the first winter we enthusiastically fenced the...

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Liatris, Bees and Views from the Garden

    Bees are my early morning companions in the Liatris patch. Watching them buzz from flower to flower, digging into each blossom, fills my heart with deep happiness. There are hundreds of them at work here in the Liatris, and many thousands more in other areas of the farm. One of the reasons I started to grow flowers was to provide a haven for bees, butterflies and other pollinators – to walk my talk as an environmental artist. The wonderful byproduct is being able to share cut flowers, beautiful food for human souls. Since planting my very first, very small, flower patch nearly 3 years ago we have been welcoming different kinds of pollinators, most I've never seen before. Our entire 10 acre farm is buzzing from dawn...

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Finding My Way Back with Flower Guides

    Five Circle Project, site specific installation created as CBC ZeD’s first artist-in-residence, connecting TV, internet and natural materials gathered from sites in the City of Vancouver. When I first moved to Salt Spring Island—a decision made within 24 hours of stepping on her shores—I came with the intent of expanding and grounding my environmental art practice. I had spent the past few years travelling from exhibition to exhibition, holding workshops in conjunction with new artworks made in response to sites. I loved my work. I loved working with groups of students internationally and nationally. I was also a professor teaching nearly a full course load, an artist in residence with the Vancouver School Board, and I had three major public...

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What are local flowers, and why should you care?

The car is filled with a vibrant but foreign energy. I’ve just picked up locally grown flowers from a greenhouse grower and wholesaler, a short ferry ride from my home and farm on Salt Spring Island. For nearly two years I’ve been growing and designing with my own flowers at Alchemy Farm. I truly love my flowers. I spend hours planning and choosing flower varieties that I then raise from seed, or seedling. They become beautiful flower messengers that carry special wishes for people’s loved ones, for their special life events and celebrations, and they provide a tangible comfort for those who have lost a loved one. I am honoured to be doing this work. At the end of October,...

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