A Day at the Hamilton Dahlia Farm
When Andrew first proposed the idea of moving to Michigan I felt like the world was going to cave in on me. After only three months in Chicago, I was annoyed at having to pack up again. Michigan wasn’t where I imagined our home being and Michigan certainly didn’t offer me any conveniences or perks pertaining to my job. So I thought. We don’t have a nationally recognized floral market like San Fran, we’re not in the heart of a bustling, eccentric big city like New York, and we don’t have picturesque tree lined driveways leading up to gorgeous restored mansions just dripping in Southern Charm. Michigan felt like such a shot in the dark and I remember sulking like a miserable toddler the entire drive to our new apartment when we moved.
But I like so many others who fail to give credit to The Mitten, was so very wrong. We have so much to be blessed about here. Us as wedding vendors included. We have vintage barns, chic art galleries, and really rad museums. We have the northern part of our state where the shore kisses turqiouse waters and the beaches could be mistaken for somewhere south. We have four distinct seasons, each bringing completely different environments to the table. We have vendors who produce some of the most gorgeous work you’d ever seen, and then we have the Hamilton Dahlia Farm. Guys, we hit the jackpot on this one. This little gem deep in the heart of western Michigan is absolutely a must see if you’re ever around. It’s a private owned dahlia farm with rows and rows of gorgeous dahlias open to the public on a daily basis so the lovely Kelly Sweet and I took a morning trip out one day to cut our own goodies. Here, let me show you around a little, guys. You’re going to just love this sweet little space.
Dahlias, dahlias everywhere! It’s actually pretty incredible.
I never realized first off how tall the dahlia plants can grow and secondly, how thick the stalk is coming out from the ground. If you’re new to the whole dahlia scene no worries because Janet, the lovely owner of the farm (or her sweet daughter) will be able to show you how to cut the perfect dahlia and how to tell if the dahlia is alive or not. Sometimes a gorgeous dahlia from the top can actually be starting to die and will expose brown petals if you check out the back where the petals first sprout out.
I was sort of a hot mess that day so I’m not sharing too many of the photos of me here. But this next one made me laugh and I couldn’t leave it out. All morning while searching for dahlias to cut, I kept finding a bloom that I thought I loved and then I’d yell to Kelly “Oh my gosh look at THIS one!” or “This one is GORGEOUS” and I think by the end of our morning I had said this about every single bloom at the farm. They were seriously all so lovely and delicious. These peach ones were especially yummy. I mean look at my face! If you know me well you’ll know this is classic happy/laughing/amused Rhi at her best.
Our bucket of gorgeousness.
And then it was time to get serious.
Using the blooms that we picked that morning, I threw together a little bouquet. With just the dahlias, a little floral tape and some satin ribbon, the finished product reminded me of a brightly-hued bowl of sweet sherbet. Those colors in the dahlias were so brilliant and bold. A few adorable elderly ladies who had also stopped by the farm that day were standing back watching me make the bouquet and couldn’t stop proclaiming how gorgeous the florals were. Those dahlias are seriously out of this world and just so lovely. Local florists, wedding planners and even brides with their family and bridal party, come out to the farm on a daily basis to cut all of the dahlias they need for weddings, parties, special events, retail locations and more.
And more shots of the bouquet; which my mother in law lovingly unwrapped to display in a vase on her kitchen counter.
A giant thanks goes out to Janet and her family for allowing Kelly and I to visit the farm and have a little fun for a morning. If you’re ever in Hamilton, Michigan or near grand Rapids or Holland you need to stop by. You can check out their farm’s website here where information on the varieties, seasonability, hours and pricing can be found. If you have any questions at all shoot Janet a message and tell her Rhi sent you. She is such a doll and will help you with just about anything. And just for fun, tell me what you love most about Michigan below, regardless of if you live here or not :) Happy Thursday, loves xoxo