10 stunning flower farms you can visit this summer across Canada
Bonus: You can pick your own beautiful blooms at many
Over the last few years, there's been growing interest in locally-grown flowers, and a growing number of sustainably minded "farmer-florists" have opened small-scale, cut flower farms offering unique blooms and swoon-worthy bouquets at urban markets, farmgate stands, and through Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) subscriptions.
And while most working flower farms are not open to the public, there are some across Canada that offer cut-flower sales, pick-your-own fields, and other opportunities to see the blooms in a picturesque country setting. A few farms also offer special events such as intimate flower-arranging workshops and interactive guided tours.
When you're planning a visit, just be sure to call ahead to avoid disappointment, as certain flowers may have very short growing seasons. Respect the farm's visitor rules, and don't leave without supporting the farm by bringing home an armful of freshly-cut blooms.
Here are 10 Canadian flower farms you can visit this summer.
Alchemy Farm, Salt Spring Island, BC
At this 10-acre farm in Salt Spring Island's Burgoyne Fulford Valley, the flowers are grown using organic and permaculture practices. There are flower arranging workshops and other programmes available, and through September 15, you can book an interactive garden tour online.
Birchwood Meadows, Sturgeon County, AB
Birchwood Meadows' fragrant u-pick flower garden opens July 20 this year, and in August there will be a scenic festival featuring the farm's 8 acres of sunflowers. You can find everything from sweet peas to cosmos and anemones, all individually priced per stem.
Eagle Creek Farms, Red Deer County, AB
No synthetic fertilizers or herbicides are used at this family-run vegetable and flower farm in Alberta. Starting August 7 this year, you can visit and pick your own flora at the farm: sunflowers, lilies, gladiolas, ornamental grasses, zinnias and more.
Black Fox Farm & Distillery, Saskatoon, SK
At Saskatoon's Black Fox Farm, you can stop by from late July until the first frost and fill up a bucket with colourful flowers for just $35. Depending on the week, there are zinnias, peonies, lilies, dahlias, sunflowers and more.
Andrews' Scenic Acres, Milton, ON
A popular farm for pick-your-own fruits, Andrews' Scenic Acres also offers a reasonably-priced pick-your-own option for flowers. Depending on the month, you can expect to find gladiolas, sunflowers, dahlias, lilies and peonies in the fields. There's an admission fee to visit the farm, which includes attractions such as wagon rides, a kids' playground and a farm animal corral.
Terre Bleu, Milton, ON
Ontario's largest lavender farm (and possibly its most photogenic), Terre Bleu offers guided walking tours, an apiary, and 9 different varieties of lavender at its Milton location. This summer, there's a second location open nearby; The Ruins will offer fields of crimson, chamomile, phacelia and sunflowers. Admission is not cheap, but you can save money by buying a timed ticket online in advance of your visit.
Country Cut Flowers, Newmarket, ON
From late July until September, this idyllic Newmarket flower farm offers tickets for cut-your-own visits (information available through the farm's Facebook and Instagram pages). You can also order bouquets and subscriptions, and there are workshops on botanical dyeing, peony arranging and more.
Garden Party, St. Agatha, ON
At Garden Party, you can pick your own organic flowers from the field on weekends between Mother's Day and Thanksgiving — $20 for whatever blooms you can hold in your hand or fit in a canning jar — or purchase ready-picked bouquets. The farm offers lesser-known flowers such as hollyhocks, hyssop and astilbe alongside delphinium, zinnias and peonies. There are seasonal workshops, and a bulb and perennial sale in the fall.
Dahlia May Flower Farm, Trenton, ON
The dreamy Dahlia May Flower Farm Instagram account boasts 71K followers, and you can find Melanie Harrington's fragrant, heirloom blooms — grown without chemicals — at the company's charming farm stand in Trenton, and at the Codrington Farmers' Market. There are floral-arranging workshops and, according to the farm's website, you are welcome to ask for tours from August–September.
Seafoam Lavender, Seafoam, NS
At this boutique lavender farm in Nova Scotia, you can visit the fragrant gardens from mid-May through mid-October. The farm shop offers a plethora of all-natural, handmade lavender beauty and food products.
Truc Nguyen is a Toronto-based writer, editor and stylist. Follow her at @trucnguyen.