Sunday, June 25, 2006

Another of nature's mysteries.

This is another example of the strange things that can happen. The flower is supposed to be a yellow one - but was cloned from an orange one. Every now and then a flower appears to remind us of the power of nature. This plant on which this particular flower was grown does this on a regular basis.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Gerbera Cups

There are several ways that growers prepare gerbera flowers for the market. Some growers use cardboard cards to transport their flowers. The flowers are placed in the specially made "cards". It does take time to prepare the flowers and there is of course a cost for the cards. At Gough Hill Farm we have chosen to use "gerbera cups" - specially made plastic cups protect the flower in transit. Each flower is placed stem first into the cup, and the stem pulled through so that the cup sits around the flower. There is a machine that does the work, but our farm is not big enough to make that a viable option. All flowers are "cupped" by hand. The cups cost around 3 cents each. We prefer to use this method as despite the fact that it is hand done, we can do it very quickly now and it does certainly protect the flower during deliver.

An unusual flower

We have some strange flowers some times. This flower did not make it to the florists - leaves have chosen to grow out of the centre of the flowers. Sometimes they are small enough to "pinch out" and no one would know the difference. I like taking soem of our strange ones home.

Winter comes

The first day of winter has arrived. Unlike many places around the world our winter does not herald rain. In Brisbane it is usually a very dry period - though it can be cold. It was 3 degrees in the "hot house" yesterday as we picked flowers. My hands were freezing and painful with the cold. I wear light rubber gloves to pick, but they have no warmth in them at all.

What does happen to the flowers is that they slow down. Still lovely flowers but they take longer to mature. So we don't need to pick so often.

Florists at the moment are finding it difficult to get some flowers and as our production is down we have some disappointed customers. That's life.