Moldly flowers?

sherrym(TNzone7)July 10, 2006

When it rains during harvest, do you have problems with moldy flowers? Or do you just cut as usual and they dry (in the buckets)? What do you do?

Looks like it'll be raiing all week, including the Saturday market day, and I am unsure if the cut flowers will be OK if they are cut during the rain.

What can you guys tell me? Go on ahead?

Thanks for your help.

Sassy Stems

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Noni Morrison

I would go ahead and cut them and but not pack them too tightly in buckets. Set them in a dry place and perhaps run a fan on them for awhile. Seems like you are more likely to loose them from the rain then from picking. In fact, If it were me, I would cut as many as possible and take them into my work room and change their water every couple of days. Pull out any that are showing signs of mold or mildew. And be glad they are all getting watered. We could use some of that!

    Bookmark   July 10, 2006 at 12:02PM
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Since we are currently in a drought, could you please send some of that rain our way? We've been irrigating for weeks now. Not even sure we can remember the last time it has rained.

Anyway, yes, we harvest in all weather conditions. Isn't that why Tractor Supply sells that oh so attractive rain gear? We usually have heavy, heavy dew and end up getting soaking wet when we harvest in the morning.

You certainly won't need to hydrate those flowers since Mother Nature will have done that for you. We use a holding solution in our buckets of flowers. The buckets are packed fairly tight; however, we make sure we can get one hand easily down inside the bucket. You didn't mention whether you have a cooler; but, I'm assuming not. We harvest all day on Thursday and half of the day on Friday for our Saturday market. For our Wednesday market, we harvest all day on Tuesday. Flowers for the farmers market generally aren't held for more than two days unless we have an abundance of specialty flowers such as peonies, glads, lilies, etc.

So, if you don't have a cooler, an air conditioned room set at 60 degrees would work fine. A small fan set on low just to keep the air circulating would prevent mold and mildew. I wouldn't advise putting the fan directly on the flowers however.

And, FWIW, some of our best market days have been rainy days. Our markets are open-air; however, the structures are covered. Customers don't necessarily like getting wet.


    Bookmark   July 10, 2006 at 7:58PM
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