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‘You bring smiles’: Hayfield family grows joy with local flower business

The Davises aim for local and handmade in every step of the process of their floral business, Our Farm Fresh, in Hayfield.

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Kathryn Davis and Craig Davis, owners of Our Farm Fresh, with their son Mason on Thursday, Jan. 12, 2023, in Rochester.
Rebecca Mitchell / Post Bulletin
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HAYFIELD — If you could smell the flowers at the Davis family farm they would sing of over 40 different varieties.

With their flowers grown as long as possible in the Minnesota growing season, Kathryn Davis, Craig Davis and their two young sons deliver fresh flowers all year-round. The Davises aim for local and handmade in every step of the process of their floral business, Our Farm Fresh , in Hayfield.

“One thing I really enjoy is being able to do this as a family,” Kathryn said. “I can have the boys right there helping me arrange flowers. They help Daddy deliver the flowers. When we start planting in the greenhouse, they’re going to be right there in that soil digging and getting all dirty and enjoying it.”

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The Davis' farming roots started young, with Kathryn enjoying gardening and Craig growing up on a farm. Kathryn began to arrange flowers in high school after sweet memories of walking through gardens with her grandma. She said this interest “stemmed” into the floral field.

When the COVID-19 pandemic led to a career change, the two jumped feet-first into full-time growing, first with a vegetable CSA program and then blossoming into a flower farm and florist business. In their fourth year open, they take requests and experiments with pleasure, such as making strawberry jam and adding jalapeños to it — despite the weird looks some customers give them at first.

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“A lot of times we’re asked what a certain plant is because they remember it being in grandma’s garden or they’ve seen it growing up or they’re like, ‘I’ve always wondered what that flower was.’ They ask, ‘Well, how do I grow it and can I grow it here?’ And maybe we’ll tell them yes, you can and give them information on that, it’s wonderful,” Kathryn said.

Though flowers aren’t grown on their property year-round, the flowers are from Minnesota. Craig and Kathryn said they keep products local and reduce their carbon footprint with wholesalers in the Twin Cities during the winter. A hoop house also lengthens the growing season, which brings more freshness to the Rochester and Austin farmers markets.

“We’re actually doubling our production this year based on how (hanging basket sales) went last year, so we’re super excited about that, oh my goodness,” Kathryn said.

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Kathryn Davis of Our Farm Fresh with a hanging basket at the Davis' farm in Hayfield.
Contributed / Kathryn Davis

Production starts in Kathryn’s head with questions. What colors look good together? Can these flowers grow next to each other? She considers what previous experiences have taught her. She said the process allows her to be creative and personalize the products from planting to cutting, preparing and arranging flowers. She chooses between hundreds of new varieties each year.

“Kind of like people, there’s a lot of different uniquenesses and beauty in (flowers) that you get to see and enjoy,” Craig said.

“I love what I do. I absolutely love what I do,” Kathryn said.

The farm also brings Craig back to strawberries, which his family started growing in high school after his dad retired. “It’s been fun bringing a fresh treat to the public,” Craig said.

With the goal of fresh products year-round, they added wedding flowers in 2022, a “wonderful” experience they plan to continue growing this year. Kathryn will also host porch pot, cut flower and wreath classes.

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As locals to the area, the Davis family enjoys working in the community. Craig delivers in the 30-mile radius around Hayfield from everyday arrangements to birthdays, anniversaries, funerals and weddings.

“There’s a lot of joy that gets given in flowers,” Craig said.

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Kathryn and Craig Davis with their sons Mason and Emerson in their flower fields at Our Farm Fresh in Hayfield.
Contributed / Kathryn Davis

He also runs the farmers market booths through the summer and fall. Craig said it feels good when customers return because they enjoy their products. He sees acts of kindness, too, like friends buying flowers for friends to cheer them on.

“Going and doing the farmers markets and working with the community, it’s awesome. Their support of us and being able to support them with quality products and freshness there,” Craig said.

Once the bedding plants hit the soil in March, Our Farm Fresh “(starts) growing everything up from there,” and the family shares another season of beauty with customers.

“It’s fun delivering flowers because flowers are a happy thing and it puts a smile (on people’s faces),” Craig said.

“You bring smiles,” Kathryn added.

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Craig Davis with their sons Mason and Emerson at Our Farm Fresh in Hayfield.
Contributed / Kathryn Davis
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A wedding floral arrangement by Kathryn Davis of Our Farm Fresh in Hayfield.
Contributed / Kathryn Davis

Rebecca Mitchell started as a Digital Content Producer for the Post Bulletin in August 2022. She specializes in enhancing online articles as well as education, feature and health reporting.
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