Monday, July 19, 2021

Return to Windmill Meadow Farm

When Paul and Nancy Person invited me back to Windmill Meadow Farm in April, I jumped at the chance to see how the farm had changed in the two years since I last visited. The place has a magical quality about it, yet it is so absolutely Texan. It's surprising for me to realize it had been two years since I visited Windmill Meadow Farm, but then we did basically lose a a whole year in 2020. Come take a look at what my friend Melody and I experienced on our tour.

The old red pickup truck had been moved closer to the restored wooden windmill which serves as the farm logo and adds a nice welcome. If you follow their Instagram feed you'll also recognize this as the backdrop for photos of their guests with the stunning flower arrangements they create at the farm.




Native Live Oak trees were still recovering their foliage from the devastating freeze we experienced in February.

Since I last visited, they have added farm tours and floral workshops by appointment. Our first stop was the onsite shop where we inhaled the amazing fragrance of masses of fresh flowers.



Behind the workshop we checked out seedlings in progress like these Zinnias for summer arrangements. Since they grow most of their flowers from seed Paul keeps a detailed list of planting dates.





Then it was out to enjoy a tour of the flower fields which have been expanded since my last visit. Row cover protects plants in the winter so there are plenty of fresh flowers in spring.



So many blooms!



Melody enjoys growing plants from seed and Paul was ready with answers to her many questions. She's growing Dahlias this year which are also Nancy's favorite.






While Paul and Melody chatted I took some time to explore on my own and talk with Nancy while she worked.






An unusual variety of Snapdragon with open florets.





Ranunculus in soft colors









Poppies for Spring!


Rows and rows of Poppies!



They even have flowers with my name on them! Foxgloves are a favorite and a challenge to grow in San Antonio.  We treat them as annuals so it's wonderful to see them here. Fredericksburg stays a bit cooler in the summer, especially at night.



With all those flowers to arrange they need a few non-flowering fillers for color and contrast. My favorite is Bells of Ireland with its bright chartreuse color. 

 


Curly Willow leaves will be stripped leaving just the curvy stems to place in arrangements for interest and texture.




A pause to enjoy native Antelope Horn milkweed in bloom. Milkweed is an important food source for the Monarch Butterfly and essential to keeping the population healthy along their migration route.




We enjoyed a break in the new cedar gazebo and a nice chat with Paul and Nancy about their life with flowers.





Cedar Cobweb bracket adds a special artistic detail.




At the shop we relaxed and watched Paul made custom arrangements for us to take home. As he worked he talked about the language of flowers.



Windmill Meadow Farm offers flower deliveries to Fredericksburg and nearby towns by request or subscription. If you live in the area you can arrange to pick your own flowers at the farm. A new gazebo near the shop will be the site of floral design workshops.

With one last look at the beautifully restored wooden windmill we headed home with our flowers arranged by Paul.



Back home Melody placed her gorgeous flowers in her own vase on the kitchen island. So pretty from all sides that just one view won't do!







 


And of course I turned mine into a slide show/gif. Gorgeous!



Following Paul's instructions I changed the water daily and made fresh stem cuts every 2-3 days. I also inspected and removed any stems that turned mushy so most of the flowers looked beautiful for a week.

Thank you so much to Paul and Nancy for another wonderful visit to the farm and we especially enjoyed visiting with them and learning more about the business of locally grown, truly fresh flowers. 

Windmill Meadow Farm is open for tours and floral classes by appointment daily. You can find Paul and Nancy at the Farmer's Market in Fredericksburg every Thursday from 4-7 or at other events throughout the year. Follow on Instagram to see the beautiful floral arrangements either their visitors create or they deliver to the many B&Bs and other venues in beautiful historic Fredericksburg.

Saturday, January 30, 2021

Cedar Waxwings!

A huge flock of Cedar Waxwings swooped in for a drink at our birdbaths on their way north this morning.  They also searched the trees for berries but there isn't much left as we've had several visits from these very social birds already this year.

Distinguished by their bright red wing tips which are waxy secretions and those yellow tail tips look like they've been dipped in paint.

Their visits create quite a commotion.  If you've ever hear their high-pitched squeals in unison you won't be surprised to learn grouping of waxwings is called an "ear-full." 

So happy to accommodate these beauties on their journey.