spring planted strawberry plants
Day in the Life - Flower Farming

Day in the Life of a First Year Flower Farmer {Spring}

Just for fun, I’m planning on doing a Day in the Life post for each season this first year of being a flower farmer. Not only will this help anyone reading to see the level of work that goes into managing even a micro scale flower farm operation (we’re only growing on about 1,000 square feet this year), but I’m hoping it will also be a valuable resource for me looking back.

I will note, this was done on the 31st of March 2020, and it was a slightly different day than usual because my daughter was on spring break rather than going to kindergarten in the afternoon for a few hours.

Note: There are affiliate links to products and services mentioned below, which means I may get a small commission on any purchases made at no extra cost to you.

7:15 a.m. The older two kids wander into our bedroom, wanting to snuggle in bed with us for a minute before we all get up for the day. A minor squabble is headed off when we make sure there’s enough pillow for both the kids to lay on.

7:30 a.m. Matt gets up to shower, and I sit up in bed to do the first thing I do every morning—check the weather. Last night was very cold (down in the low twenties), and it required that I covered all the beds of hardy annuals that I’ve already sown, just in case. I’m hoping that it was our last night at such a low temp for this season, but we’ll see. So far, the 10-day forecast ahead looks fantastic and like I’ll be able to go ahead with my plans to transplant out some of the hardy vegetables and flowers. Since it’s the last day of the month, I also check to see if the new Book of the Month selections have posted yet (they haven’t), so I guess it’s time to get up and get going. The first thing I do once I actually get up from bed every morning is to go downstairs to turn the grow lights back on, as the seedlings do best when they get 16 hours of light a day. (One of these days I’ll invest in a timed system, but for now this is what I have to do!)

7:45 a.m. I go downstairs to get Hyrum (my youngest) out of his crib, and I change his diaper and then Mathias’s (my two-year-old). On my way outside to the garbage after to dispose of them, I do a quick check of the tulip bed in front.

7:55 a.m. I let the chickens out and bring their water container inside to be filled up again.

8:05 a.m. I start this post, then head into the bathroom. I check my Book of the Month app again, and the new month’s books have posted! I might not have as much time for reading lately as usual, but books never fail to get me excited! I skip getting a box about half of the time for BOTM, but the last few months have been really good, especially because they’re getting into the early releases for summer titles. This time I picked Emily Henry’s latest release (People We Meet on Vacation) because I quite enjoyed her smash hit last summer (Beach Read). Romance is never a go-to genre for me, but if the story is about more than just the romance, I can find them enjoyable, especially in the warmer months when I’m looking for lighter reads. (P. S. If you’re interested in trying Book of the Month, you can get your first hardback book right now for just $9.99 if you sign up through my referral link.)

8:15 a.m. While I finish up going to the bathroom, Matt tells me he’s heading off to work early since he needs to make up some time because of our vaccine appointment later today, so he heads out after he gets the kids a quick breakfast of sliced bananas and Cheerios. I put on some makeup really quick (I almost never do a full face of makeup anymore other than on Sundays, but I pretty much always put on at least some concealer because my autoimmune disease has flared up again and made my skin really patchy and red in spots).

8:25 a.m. Hyrum is squawking because he finished his banana long ago and the (dry) Cheerios he was given, so I put in a slice of toast for him and start to load up the dishwasher. Tears ensue from Mathias because now HE wants a piece of toast too. This naturally means that Raven also wants toast, so I put in two more slices and then finish loading the dishwasher while I wait for their toast to pop up.

8:35 a.m. The dishwasher is going and the kids have toast in their hands, so I slice up my own banana into a bowl of Cheerios and eat alongside the kids.

8:45 a.m. I wash off the boys’ hands and clear the table, then send the older two downstairs to go get outfits for the day after telling them to take the strawberry plants back out to the porch for me (I had to bring them inside because of the cold night last night).

9:00 a.m. I head outside to take the floating row cover off the two sown beds, where I put them before the last two super cold nights. Some of the seedlings (like the bachelor’s button) probably would have been fine without the cover, but I was a little more nervous about some of the others. As I uncovered them, I made sure to check to see if everything survived (which it looks like they did!). I come inside to find the kids happily playing together in the front room in the playhouse they got for Christmas (and which has still been a big hit around here).

9:15 a.m. I come inside to update this post amidst constant interruptions from the kids. Mathias wants to watch the movie I promised the kids they could watch today, and Raven wants me to put on the necklace that her Aunt Hannah made for her. (A sweet moment ensues when Mathias gasps after I put it on and says, “You’re BEAUTIFUL!”)

9:30 a.m. The baby wanders in from the adjoining room, and I can definitely tell he’s poopy, so I pick him up and carry him downstairs to change his diaper. He’s super mad about it because I interrupted him playing in the pillows from my bed that are still on the floor, so he gives me a really hard time while I try to clean that up. I deposit him back upstairs, where he gleefully crawls away to go play again (and where I see that the older two are reenacting The Three Billy Goats Gruff together using the puppets Raven made in kindergarten), and I take the diaper out to the garbage. Being outside and feeling the warming temperatures reminds me that I need to grab about a dozen of the seedling trays from the grow room and bring them out to the porch.

9:40 a.m. I put on a movie for the kids, then I proceed to go up and down the stairs over and over again until all the seedlings that need to be hardened off are out on the porch (all while Hyrum is basically guarding the front door). Before I set them out, I have to make sure all the plants’ water levels are okay for the next several hours before I put them outside. I also rearrange the remaining plants in the grow room so that they get better light coverage.

10:20 a.m. Seedlings out, I can finally make my bed and get dressed for the day. Of course, while I’m doing that, Hyrum crawls into my bedroom a little too vigorously and face plants hard onto the floor, necessitating that I take a few minutes to snuggle and comfort him and get him a drink. He’s still super cranky and crying and following me around every time I try and put him down, so I give him a yogurt pouch and he’s all smiles again. Seriously—the answer to that kid’s grumpiness 95% of the time is to feed him. Little nugget.

10:40 a.m. I’ve got about an hour before I need to start thinking about lunch preparation, so I take care of some housekeeping things—I start filling out the monthly spreadsheets as it’s the last day of the month (I track our net worth monthly, my blog stats and expenses/income, and now I track seed and germination schedules and income and expenses for the flower farm). I also check my email to see if either of the two florists that I’ll likely be selling to this year have gotten back to me about some questions I had.

11:40 a.m. Time to start making lunch for the kidlets—since it’s the last day of the month (and I only do one big grocery shopping trip at the beginning of each new month and buy minimally the rest of it), we’re a little low on options. We go for quesadillas and applesauce pouches (well, the kids do—I can’t have flour tortillas because of the gluten, so I just have a few slices of cheese for my lunch as I’m still not that hungry).

12:00 p.m. I start cleaning up the food from lunch while the kids finish up eating. Once Hyrum is finished, I wash his hands and face off and put him down for his nap.

12:20 p.m. The older two kids and I head outside. While they pretend to be pirates and look for treasure, I water the direct-sown flower bed in back and plant out the strawberries, snap peas, and sweet peas. This takes an unexpectedly long time because I had to clear out some weeds first and prepare the beds.

2:00 p.m. We all go inside to wash off and then I go wake up Hyrum up from his nap so we can get him into the car and head off to my covid vaccine appointment.

2:15 p.m. We get in the vaccine line (they just give them to you while you stay in your car), and when it’s almost 2:30 and Matt still hasn’t showed up yet, I start to worry that he’s forgotten. Sure enough, after about the fourth call, he finally picks up his phone and hadn’t left work yet, so he gets in the car right away and heads over. Meanwhile, we’ve almost reached the front of the line, so I get permission to pull over for a few minutes while we wait for him to come (while the other cars go ahead of us). He finally gets there and we both get our shots (me with the second dose, him with the first).

3:00 p.m. Matt heads back to work, and I take the kids home and get them all snacks. I’m feeling a bit hungry myself, so I grab a protein bar and then eat that while I fill up the watering can. Once I finish my bar, I go and water the front beds and containers. I also bring in some of the planting stuff I’d left outside in the backyard.

3:30 p.m. The afternoon sleepies start to hit me bad, but I know I’m not going to have much of a chance to rest. I get on the computer to check out my to-do list and prioritize, then I figure out what I’m going to start for dinner in awhile. I also update this post while I’m at it.

3:45 p.m. I pull Hyrum away from the bookshelves (his favorite hobby lately is pulling all the books off of them), and I shut the door to that room so he can’t get back in. He putters around my ankles while I sow my weekly flat of sunflower seeds.

4:15 p.m. I start the rice in the rice cooker for dinner, and I start cleaning up the house a bit. I box up the rest of the vases that I bought at a thrift store yesterday (I got a couple dozen vases of all sizes and shapes for around $35!) and take them downstairs, and then I start to vacuum the main floor and pick up random clutter in the kitchen. I also send Raven and Mathias to the playroom/guest room to start picking up in there before my mom arrives to stay with us later that night.

5:00 p.m. I start on the rest of dinner (Swedish meatballs and a side dish of corn), which is ready after about 20 minutes (and right on time, as Matt walks through the door around 5:20).

5:25 p.m. We all sit down to eat. Mathias has to be told repeatedly not to bug Raven with his fork and climb on the table, but other than that, it’s a pretty calm meal.

6:00 p.m. Dinner is over, and we help the boys get cleaned up. I escape to the bathroom for awhile to take a few minutes to myself while Matt spends time with the kids.

6:20 p.m. We start to clean up the house to get it a little more presentable for when my mom comes to stay the night, particularly the room that she’ll be staying in (which is also the playroom, so it gets pretty scary sometimes). Matt puts Hyrum down for bed around 6:40, and I help direct the older two while I clean up the kitchen from dinner.

7:15 p.m. After a whirlwind hour of cleaning, everything looks much better, and we start the bedtime routine for Raven and Mathias (read two books and a scripture story, brush teeth, go potty, say prayers).

7:40 p.m. Kids are in bed, and I go downstairs to the grow room to water the seedlings and check on the state of things down there. When I come back up, I give my mom a call to see how close she is, and I also bring in a few of the more tender plants from the porch for the night since it’s supposed to be a little bit colder (28 degrees).

8:00 p.m. I see a new email that’s come in that’s about a specialty flower book I was inquiring about on eBay. It’s super hard to find and is often extremely expensive (like, over $100 or even up to crazy numbers like $500 expensive), so I was thrilled to see that this seller was willing to knock his price down to just $60 for me. Score!

8:20 p.m. My mom comes, and we spend some time settling in and catching up.

9:30 p.m. Start to get ready for bed. After I’ve washed my face and brushed my teeth and read my scriptures, I start doing some research on a few of the watering tools available from Johnny’s Seeds.

10:30 p.m. Turn off the grow lights downstairs. Get in bed and read a few pages in one of my flower farming books (The Flower Farmer).

10:40 p.m. Lights out.

And there you have it! A pretty typical day in my life right now in the spring. It’s pretty insanely busy, but there’s a lot of good stuff mixed in there too that helps make it all worth it.

P. S. If you’re starting a garden this year and could use some extra tips and suggestions to help you make it as successful and productive as possible, there’s a free webinar happening TODAY (4/8) and tomorrow all about how to maximize your garden’s space for the highest yield. Sign up for that HERE!

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