~ Our business is growing and we are looking for land to lease in the community ~
Bouquet Making Day!
We Are Urban Farmers
growing organic specialty cut flowers
We grow specialty cut flowers on our 1/4 acre Broadway Estates lot in Centennial, CO. We use organic, no-till growing practices and intensely plant our crops to make the most of our space. Our focus is on soil health - healthy soil = healthy plants. If pest issues arise, we use other beneficial insects, nematodes, and bacteria and fungi that are safe for people, animals, plants and other insects.
We sell our flowers primarily at farmer's markets and through our website for weddings and events. We are part of a burgeoning local food and flower movement, connecting communities with healthier, more climate-friendly agricultural products.
We are growing our business and hoping to expand into an additional back yard or other property near us in 2023. For details, read below and please share with anyone you think might be interested in leasing to us. Thank you for considering!
Near Broadway Estates, west side of Centennial
We are looking for a location close to our home and urban farm so that we can access the leased plot via foot or bike. We are also open to plots up to a ten minute drive from us (Littleton, Englewood, etc.), but probably not much beyond that. We will have to be at the plot daily during the growing season, so proximity is key. The map shows the ideal location in pink, but anywhere within this map boundary bordered by Belleview Ave on the North, Colorado on the East, C470 to the South, and Santa Fe on the West, shows where we hope to find space. If your property is within these boundaries, you might be the perfect land partner for us!
Map of area where we are looking for more space
Our urban farm in mid-summer
We can work with a lot - but these land features are ideal:
Relatively level, continuous space not broken up by hardscape, large trees or structures.
Must have access to water.
Free of landscape rock.
Trees and shrubs on the perimeter of the yard or none.
Receives 6 to 8 hours of direct sun per day.
A residential yard, empty lot, business property or church yard are all spaces we can work with.
Fenced and rabbit-proof a huge bonus!
At least 1/4 acre lot or more.
The less bindweed, the better!
We LOVE dogs - but they are not compatible with commercial growing - the space should be dog-free or fenced from dogs.
No restrictions on land use through an HOA, neighborhood covenants, zoning, or associations.
Meet the perfect land owner and secure a land lease
The ideal land owner for us, is an individual or group that share our values of respect for the land. We will sign a one-season lease to see if we are good fit for each other. If we both want to continue after the first season, we would like to sign a longer term lease - up to 5 years. We will put a lot of labor and resources into the soil, which is why we can only partner with property owners, rather than renters, and we cannot work on a plot that is only temporarily available.
Lease rates for urban farmers are highly variable in the metro area. We are open to negotiation. As a starting point, $1250/acre per season (May to October) are standard, with some farmers paying less or more depending on the amenities of the property and the goals of the land owner. We also meter our water usage and pay municipal rates and are willing to negotiate other trades such as free bouquets, a row of flowers or veggies to freely harvest, mowing, and/or other appropriate trades.
Our urban farm in late winter/early spring
The family :)
We are two introverts with pretty good social boundaries :)
Hello - we are Shannon and Matt - two average people, one creative, one pragmatic.
We both grew up growing and farming. We both have off-farm jobs.
I (Shannon) split my time between being a project manager at a landscape architecture firm and the farm. I work primarily with the National Park Service, which I am very passionate about. I love my work AND I really want to be a full-time farmer some day, which is why we are looking for more growing space to grow our business. I also work in the urban farm advocacy community mentoring new urban farmers and teaching farming classes in the off-season with a non-profit farm incubator and food access organization. I love good design, good spreadsheets, and a tidy farm. I have been growing professionally since 2014 and focused on cut-flower growing for five seasons.
Matt (my partner in farming and life) is a quiet, smart, mechanical engineer turned public high school engineering, math and computer science teacher. He can fix anything, thank goodness - partly because he grew up on a farm improvising the way so many farmers do. He is the hardest working person I know, and I know a lot of farmers. He prefers to do the infrastructure projects and non-flower related tasks on the farm. He loves to track data and reads books about math for fun.
We have two, recently-left-the-nest kids. The oldest is an artist, very hard working, and as curious as they come. The youngest is so creative, very hard working, and is studying mathematical economics off at college. They turned out alright and they are not into flower farming at all.
We are pretty quiet, easy going people. We will treat your space with care and respect. We work well with kind, direct people.
If you think you'd like a flower farm in your backyard, or know someone else who does, please reach out through email and we will be in touch with more details and to answer any questions you may have. We'd also ask you to visit our farm to see what a heavily used growing space looks like before we make any big moves. Thank you for reading this far! Hope to hear from you!