Life in Dundas is a lot simpler and quieter than in Warsaw. However, there's a charm that I find in the everyday happenings of this small town. The regular gentleman at the bank, the familiar faces at the grocery store, the smell of barley rising from Shawn & Ed's Lagershed, but also the weekly bustle around the municipal parking lot on Thursdays when the Dundas Farmers' Market is set up.
I've visited nearly every week and even with the seasonal harvest changes, the one stand that inevitably catches my attention every week is La Primavera Farms' floral display. Beautiful, rustic, with just the right amount of polished charm, these fresh blooms just call to me every week from their mason jar and barrel display.
Joanne Feddes, the "boss lady" as the girls that work here call her, has been selling flowers from her farm at the Dundas Farmer's Market since 1998. At first they only sold sunflowers, but eventually Joanne started planting other flowers in order to be able to craft beautiful bouquets. There arrangements look natural and seasonal, far from the blue stained daisies you can get at Metro or Fortino's. However, we both agreed that they had a lot more finesse and stylistic attributes than if I had just picked some wildflowers from a ditch beside the road.
La Primavera Farms, I learned, has more than just gorgeous flowers. The other half of the farm is the responsibility of Joanne's dad, Juan, who raises antibiotic-free chickens and amazing highland cows! Yeah, the ones with the cool horns!
The reason, Joanne says, that they even started planting flowers, was because her dad always loved them, and it's a passion that he infected her with. It also gave the kids responsibility and something to do during the summers. Let's say Juan had more luck with that than my parents who thought we would take over the veg plot in the yard.
And thank goodness for that!
Other than the Dundas Farmer's Market, La Primavera Farms regularly attends the Locke Street Farmers' Market, the Metro Hall market in Toronto, Humber Bay Shores Market, and the monthly Toronto Flower Market, spreading the joy that flowers give. They also stock a few local florists with a fresh supply of seasonal flowers, meaning their blooms make it into bouquets of local brides, are featured at events, and brighten up Hamiltonians' and Dundasians' (totally made that term up) days.
Businesses other than florists reap the benefits of working with Joanne and La Primavera Farms. You can sometimes see some bouquets for sale at the Lagershed and I recently heard that Joanne uses the barley waste from the brewing process as feed for her chickens. This symbiotic relationship is super sustainable and exciting, especially for me, as I love seeing businesses helping each other out while dealing with by-products in an environmentally and economically intelligent way.
Anyways, if you're ever in the area on a Thursday afternoon between 3 and 7, don't miss out on the opportunity to at least ogle the beautiful display that La Primavera Farms puts on every week. I love seeing different arrangements each week, as it reminds me of seasonality and the transition of time that we in cities often overlook.
Meanwhile, I'll be out scouring the town for other cool brands and initiatives that my new home has in place.
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