Submitted by Experience Olympia & Beyond

What began as a simple pastime during the confines of the pandemic has blossomed into a small but vibrant sanctuary for flower enthusiasts and nature lovers right here in Thurston County.

Cedar Flats Flower Fam, an intimate farm in West Olympia, is opening soon for this season’s U-Pick, starting with Sweet Peas in late June or early July, depending on weather. Visitors can visit Tuesdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. during the growing season. Additional U-Pick days are by appointment only.

In the spring of 2020, while navigating the challenges of lockdowns with her two young boys, Valerie Gerrits found comfort in gardening. “Originally, I knew I wanted to grow more flowers but had no idea where it would lead,” she said. “I started planting seeds with my sons and sharing the blooms with neighbors, friends, and locals. The overwhelming response and joy that flowers brought, ignited my vision for a space where everyone could revel in the beauty of fresh flowers. Because of this, this year we will have over 230 dahlia plants, a flower everyone loves.”

One of the key distinctions between locally grown flowers and those available in a store is that the majority of cut blooms purchased in the United States are imported and typically sprayed with harsh chemicals. When flowers are purchased from a grower such as Cedar Flats Flower Farm, you’re receiving flowers with no chemicals and harvested at their optimal moment, allowing the longest vase life possible, lasting seven to 14 days depending on the variety.

For more information about Cedar Flats Flower Farm, including hours of operation, directions, flower subscriptions, and additional information on the farm, please visit the Cedar Flower Flats Farm website and follow on Instagram @cedarflatsflowerfarm.

For additional information on what to do, see, and eat around Thurston County, please visit the Experience Olympia & Beyond website.

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