MONTICELLO – When Leah George hands someone – anyone – a sunflower, it not only brightens her day, it brings joy to the receiver. It’s something she has witnessed numerous times, and it’s something she wants to do again and again.
That’s why after working in the corporate logistics field, this Monticello resident has chosen a new path for her life.
“I love transportation,” said George. “There’s a choreographed dance of getting things where they need to be … but, we moved too often. So, now, I want to grow flowers and I want to bring people joy.”
She is definitely accomplishing that these days. Opening Dragonfly Farms at 8595 East U.S. 24 in 2019, George has more than 11 acres of land with 3 acres dedicated to a wide range of wild flowers.
Customers are welcome to join her on the property to pick their own arrangements from 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. Friday, 5-8 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday. Additional times are available by appointment by calling 574-870-5066.
People are welcome to choose one of three sizes of arrangements. Using old coffee cans and lids, George has cut out small, medium, and large holes in the lids. Customers choose the size of lid and place it on a vibrantly decorated can. Then, they are free to wander the fields of flowers, clipping their selections using the provided snippers and then placing the flowers into the can for easy carrying.
“They can pack in as many flowers as they want,” said George, explaining that costs range from $5 to $25. Most people spend anywhere from 5 minutes to half an hour, with the average being 20 minutes per visit, she said.
Some of the choices include sunflowers, dahlia, delphinium, amaranth, gladiolus, Persian carpet zinnia, phlox, celosia, peony, and Bells of Ireland. Some are considered specialty flowers and these come with a small up-charge.
Once the flowers have been collected, customers can transfer their choices to a flower-safe protector bag for transport home, or they may purchase a “refurbished” vase. Each of the vases, she explained, has been donated or recycled. They are cleaned and sanitized before being sold.
Therefore, each trip offers customers a variety of options when it comes to choosing an arrangement, said George, adding that flowers will remain available until the first frost, probably around October or November.
The entire experience was something Monticello resident Patti Avers enjoyed. Finding a Facebook notice about Dragonfly Farm, Avers chose to discover exactly what Leah’s new business had to offer.
“We don’t have a lot of options for flowers” at other locations, she said, adding that she has always had a fondness for bright, cheery sunflowers. However, it was the possibility of picking the exact wild flowers that she wanted for her home that brought her to the new establishment.
And, that’s precisely why George is so excited to offer this kind of experience to the community. “One little flower can bring so much joy to someone,” she said. “I want to spread the joy.”