Juniper & Thyme Farm
“Planting a seed and watching it develop into a beautiful flower gives me a sense of accomplishment,” said Tammy Studer, owner and operator of Juniper & Thyme Farm, located at 2229 W Road, just outside of Sabetha.
Juniper & Thyme features slow-grown and foraged botanicals. Tammy, a Sabetha native, has owned and operated Juniper & Thyme for about three years.
The “seed” or idea for the flower farm came in July 2018, when Tammy started growing and harvesting different types of flowers to sell. Her and her husband Dennis planted many varieties of botanicals on various areas of their land.
“You might say we have a ‘patchwork garden’ — little spots here and there all over the farm!” Tammy said.
Juniper & Thyme has now blossomed into a business that includes a new niche — flower parties.
In the spring, tulips, daffodils, iris and peonies begin to bloom, creating a rainbow of colors in Tammy’s flower gardens. Summertime, which is usually the end of June, is when zinnias start to open, and yarrow, rudbeckia and alliums. Late spring and summer are the seasons for flower parties at Juniper & Thyme Farm. Sometimes, if weather permits, parties are held in the fall.
The colorful blooms create the perfect ambiance as friends gather for flower parties to create beautiful, unique arrangements of homegrown flowers.
Flower parties began after Tammy just wanted to thank a friend for doing something nice for her.
“I told her to come out to the farm and invite some friends and I would have a party with flowers,” she said. “They brought some vases and I had a nice assortment of my garden flowers displayed for them to create their own floral bouquets. It was a fun, relaxing evening of visiting and creating with flowers.”
After that first party, the suggestion was made that Tammy offer parties to people who wanted to learn how to make an arrangement or just get together for a special occasion with friends. From there, flower parties became a highlight of Juniper & Thyme.
“I was pleasantly overwhelmed with requests to have these little flower parties,” Tammy said.
How it works
Tammy schedules a date and time and then attendees arrive to the party ready to arrange their bouquets. She recommends attendees bring their own vases to the event.
“This helps keep the cost down. Everyone seems to have a vase or other container stored away in a cupboard,” Tammy said.
On the day of the party, Tammy prepares the flower selection table. She preselects the flowers and displays them in vases for party guests to choose.
“As I go through my gardens, I harvest what is ready and make sure they are fresh, then I can go ahead and deadhead the ones that are past their prime. It also gives me a chance to tend to weeds, bugs, staking, or whatever else needs to be done,” she said.
The flower farm is home to several flower varieties including asters, dahlias, amaranths, phlox, strawflower, gomphrena, rudbeckia, gerbera daisies, zinnias, lisianthus, sunflowers, celosia, bee balm, snapdragons, statice, yarrow, astilbe, liatris, lilies and alliums.
While some of these varieties have short seasons, Tammy said there seem to be plenty blooming at different times to have a nice variety to make flower bouquets.
“Lots of people have never arranged a vase of flowers and it’s amazing how unique and beautiful they all turn out,” she said.
“Tammy is so generous to share her beautiful and serene garden area. It’s a perfect escape from the bustling of life and for any size of group,” Sabethan Martha Montgomery said. “Tammy’s enjoyment of her flower garden overflows into a relaxed experience of creating beautiful floral arrangements.”
Tammy has hosted birthday parties, sister get-togethers, work groups and girlfriends gathering for a fun time.
Lisa Suhr of Sabetha said Juniper & Thyme was the perfect setting for the Fairview United Church of Christ Church women’s group to meet for a fun social activity.
“The whole garden area is so peaceful, and it was a special experience for our group to meet there,” Lisa said. “She even graciously let us stay and have our business meeting and devotional time in her beautiful gardens!”
Tammy enjoys preparing the flowers for a party.
“I think of the wonderful gathering that’s going to take place, and all the beautiful bouquets that will be made out of the flowers I have grown,” Tammy said. “I always hope there will be lots of memories made and that people will walk away feeling more relaxed and comfortable making an arrangement for themselves, and maybe even start a little cutting garden at their home.”
Along with hosting flower-arranging parties, Tammy also prepares fresh bouquets to sell — for a party or wedding. While she prefers to use her garden flowers for her business, she is able to order fresh flowers.
“I also welcome anybody to come out for flowers to fill a vase or if they want to order a bouquet,” she said.
Sabethan Vicki Edelman has attended a flower party and said she enjoyed learning from Tammy.
“Tammy has such a talent and a passion for her flowers. We loved visiting her adorable farm,” Vicki said.
Vicki also called Tammy one Sunday morning, an hour before church started when she remembered she needed flowers on the alter that day.
“I called Tammy and she saved me by putting together two beautiful arrangements in less than an hour,” Vicki said.
“Flowers are one of the most amazing things to work with — each one unique,” Tammy said. “There’s such a satisfying feeling to be able to pick everything out of the cutting gardens to make a bouquet.”
In all her arrangements, Tammy likes to add a touch of wilderness to them with grasses or pods that I have foraged from the fields and woods.
“Nature inspires me all the time and I want my style to represent that,” she said.
The fall and winter seasons bring fresh evergreen wreaths, Juniper berries, boxwood, pinecones and other assorted botanicals.
How it began
Being the daughter of greenhouse owners, flowers have been a part of Tammy’s life since she was young. Tammy’s parents operated a small greenhouse business in their backyard. As a young girl, she enjoyed exploring the beautiful flower garden paths.
“I have lots of memories of those times and enjoy hearing from people who went there to buy from their little business,” she said. “It was a great influence to help out with the work that needed to be done.”
Tammy started growing her own flowers back in the 1980s. She bought the house where her grandpa had lived and it just happened to already have a patch of land for a garden.
“I planted flowers like statice and strawflowers, which I dried and created bundles and wreaths to sell at the local craft shows,” Tammy said. “My dad was always happy to help me out with new plants to try out.”
Being surrounded by flowers for so long, starting her own flower business just seemed like a natural choice for Tammy. Coming up with a name for her business also seemed like a natural choice.
Walking through her flower gardens, she thought her business needed something botanical in the name. The first word that came to her mind was thyme.
“Along the brick paths in our first flower garden, there is the herb thyme growing. At times, I have to hoe it out because it likes to spread so much,” Tammy said. “It does soften the garden with its pretty pink blossoms and earthy scent. The bees love it!”
Juniper was inspired by all the pretty blue Juniper berries she would notice on the evergreens when she would take walks around the farm.
“They stand out against the greenery and especially with a winter snow,” Tammy said. “Every season has its own beauty.”
Her favorite things
“My favorite part about flower farming is being a part of the entire life cycle,” Tammy said. “From the seed, to plant to harvest and then to create with what I have grown. Seeing all that work come into fruition. My husband is such a big help with whatever needs done and I couldn’t do it without him.”
It is difficult for Tammy to pick just one favorite flower.
“I’d say the most dependable cut flower would be a zinnia,” Tammy said. “They are a true powerhouse in the garden. The more you cut them, the more they bloom.”
She said dahlias, another favorite, are a bit more work.
“They need to be dug up after a second frost and stored over the winter. I love all the varieties there are and how big the blooms can get,” she said.
Tammy also loves the flowers she can dry and create with later are strawflower, gomphrena, grasses, statice, yarrow and she also has used zinnias and dahlias.
“I love to make dried botanical wreaths for fall and am always foraging for anything wild from the field,” she said. “My favorite is holding a bundle of all flowers that I have grown and cut myself.”
In the future, Tammy said she would like to have a workshop area and a small greenhouse.
“This would allow me to have groups in fall and winter to make wreaths and other projects,” she said.
For the past two springs, Tammy has enjoyed working at the Sabetha Greenhouse and has learned a lot about starting seeds.
“Having a small greenhouse will help me get more seeds started earlier in order to have more flowers blooming sooner,” Tammy said.
The fourth annual Autumn Market will be held Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 2 and 3, at Juniper and Thyme.
Handmade wreaths, arrangements and other creations are available. Items from other area vendors, including Holly Wisdom of The Vintage Butterfly, also will be available.
Dennis also operates his own business —Studer Trenching and Backhoe.
For more information, follow Juniper & Thyme Farm on Facebook or email Tammy at [email protected]com.
“Dennis and I enjoy the beauty of our little farm, our own little spot of earth,” Tammy said