Sienna + CORY wegehaupt
Six years ago, Cory toured our house for the first time while I Facetimed in from grad school. We agreed to place an offer and he bought the house the next day before I had ever stepped foot in it. The house is nice, but the land is what really stole our hearts. We just couldn’t pass it up.
We spent the past few years dreaming up projects and implementing them one by one – a large raised bed garden, a pollinator landscape, a fruit tree orchard, chicken coops, bee hives, planting new trees, integrating perennials, and renovating grasslands. As an Architect my natural inclination is to plan, plan, plan. And we luckily have incredible family and friends who have helped see everything to fruition.
Our neighbors enjoy the farm fresh eggs and garden produce but sometimes joke that they might come home to a dairy cow in the front yard. (Don’t rule it out!)
After enduring 2020, I had the urge to start dreaming up our next big thing.
I wanted something that I could create, design, and build but that could also inspire others. I strive to help others experience the joy I get through gardening- whether it’s through encouraging others to grow a patio herb garden, sharing stories of monarch butterflies on Instagram, or dropping off a basket of cherry tomatoes. I wanted to reach more people and the brainstorming landed on specialty cut flowers!
I ordered cut flower farm books, devoured blogs and online classes, and was consumed with planning. The excitement kept me up at night and helped us get through the short winter days. We rushed to plant thousands of tulip bulbs before the ground froze. Our garage was suddenly full of irrigation supplies, our basement glowed from grow lights over thousands of flower seedlings, and we were spending our evenings developing a business plan.
We enjoy being good stewards of the land and are lucky to have a little over an acre to work with. We are by no means a large scale operation – it’s just us – but we strive to do the most that we can within our small, somewhat urban setting. We think that local, sustainable, seasonal flowers will be a great addition to our community. (Everyone needs some floral beauty in their lives after 2020!) A majority of flowers are flown great distances and are grown using chemicals. We don’t want to handle synthetic chemicals and we don’t want our customers to either. Our chickens provide valuable fertilizer and our honey bees benefit from all the blooms. It’s more work to grow naturally, but it’s worth it in the long run. We celebrate the seasonality of the stems – tulips like the cool spring and zinnias like the heat of summer and we work with that instead of against it.
We grow more than 40 different varieties of seasonal flowers right in our own backyard and can’t wait to share the seasonal beauty that South Dakota has to offer.
Stems developed into something way more than our next “backyard project”, but we couldn’t be more excited to share this endeavor.
Welcome to Stems!