Omena Cut Flowers has been a love of our family for some time. We are blessed to live in Leelanau county on this 19th-centruy farmstead overlooking Grand Traverse Bay.
Carolyn Faught - There are few places I would rather be than out in the U-pick, pulling weeds, watching the garden grow and talking to the U-pickers who come by. I feel so fortunate to have beautiful Omena Bay as my backdrop and the big skies overhead. If I have a calling in life, the garden is it. While it is a nice little business, the real reason I do it can be found in the messages people leave in my guestbook. Knowing that this place brings families together and peace and joy to those in need of it on a given day is the garden's greatest reward. I do have a day job that I also love, working as the Communications Director for the Leelanau Conservancy Monday through Thursday. That's why I usually return calls in the evenings or weekends. I can't wait to see you here in the garden!
Dave Faught - The garden could not happen without Dave, who does most of the heavy work, from mowing to rototilling to digging up beds gone to the weeds. He is a CPA and works as a sole practitioner out of an office in our garage. I am grateful that he supports my flower obsession and is so good natured about all the work the garden brings. I get all the kudos for the garden but he is really the one behind so much of the beauty.
Sam Faught - Sam was nine when I quit my job as managing editor at Traverse, Northern Michigan's Magazine, and started the garden. Part of why I did it was to pull him out of daycare and be home. He grew up working summers in the garden and his favorite part of the job, he says, was driving all over beautiful Leelanau County, delivering flower subscriptions. Some of my fondest memories are of Sam giving Will math lessons as they cut flowers together, laying out bunches of ten on the grass. Today, Sam still remembers all the names of all the plants and is in medical school at the University of Cincinnati. He is shown here with Nadine Elmgren, my bouquet maker, who was Sam's Montessori preschool teacher!
Will Faught - When I quit my job in 1988 to start the garden, I had no idea that I was pregnant with Will. My first child, Sam, was an in vitro baby and so when Will came along 9 years later out of the blue (I was 43 when he was born) it was a surprising gift. The first six garden beds were dug and planted the summer I carried Will and I believe that his easy going, fun loving nature is due in part to his gestation experience. Will, too, has earned spending money by spreading leaves, helping to plant, and making bouquets. He's a really good bouquet maker!
Kathleen Cigan - I caught the gardening bug from my mom, who became an avid gardener in her 50s. When Dave and I bought our first house while living in Cincinnati, she brought down a flat of salmon colored impatiens and six hybrid rosebushes we planted around our patio. Later, when Sam was born, she moved north to help take care of him while I worked. I could not have built the business without her help watching the kids and sharing cuttings from her own garden for bouquets. Many of the plants here came from what she gave me or ordered for me, from "Bright Eyes" phlox to Veronica to "Alma Potschke" asters. Even into her 80s she loved, like me, being in the garden on her hands and knees, digging in the dirt.
Cheryl Cigan - My sister Chery built my first website and has helped me increase my business via social media and her search-engine optimization wizardry. She is one of my biggest garden cheerleaders and often stops by to see what's going on and to urge me to blog and post. Cheryl moved north when I was pregnant with Sam and lived with us for two years, caring for Sam while I worked. I am so glad she still lives nearby.