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October 31 2020

Hungry Like The Wolf

Tags: Flower Profile

Allan Armitage, in his book Herbaceous Perennial Plants wrote: "Flowers any more perfect as those of the lupine hybrids are difficult to imagine." That perfection, and their local elusiveness, is why lupine makes Ellen hungry like the wolf.

Long before she became a florist, Ellen worked part-time at Breidenbauagh Farm in Carney, MD. She weeded, planted, and watered. There was some selling too. One of the plants she sold were baby lupine starters. They were just a tiny, nascent green sprig sprouting in a flimsy black temporary planter. Nothing about them seemed special, let alone perfect. However, the colorfully tantalizing picture of the mature lupine on the white plastic label skewered into the moist soil promised a beauty only poets, painters and Allan Armitage could imagine.

Lupine, Iím on the hunt/Iím after you.

It would be years before Ellen attempted to possess lupine for herself. As an established florist, Ellen was a presenter at Butterbee Farm's Blooms and Bouquets class for farmer/florists. Mimo, a farmer, of Urban Buds in St. Louis was also presenting. She taught growing on the shoulders to extend the season. Lupine in the greenhouse was a success for Mimo. Just as a risen full moon rouses the wolves, Ellen's lupine lust was rekindled. She wanted the flowers grown in Baltimore.

Lupine, I howl and I and whine/Iím after you.

When Laura Beth expanded her greenhouse capacity at Butterbee, Ellen's mouth was alive with juices like wine. Lupine was within reach. LB started with ten plants, but just one bloomed and it turned out to be the wrong variety - not the kind Mimo grew.

Lupine, You feel my heat/I'm just a moment behind.

Lupine remains elusive at LoCoFlo, for now. Is it the bloom or the chase? Either way, the hunger is insatiable.

Lupine, Iím after you.


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