For the past 20 years, Lisa Bennett has been growing flowers on her one-acre garden, just a few miles north of Columbia. Growing up in Southwest Missouri, agriculture and the communities they form, have always been part of Lisa’s life. With the support of Lisa’s husband and daughters (through encouragement and labor), Lisa has been able to cultivate her own agricultural community at the Columbia Farmers Market.
With a little push from family and friends, who had been enjoying her flowers and dried wreaths, Lisa decided to join the Columbia Farmers Market in 2016. Lisa works three days a week as a Registered Dental Hygienist. While she loves her job, it keeps her inside. “Working with my flowers and my garden refreshes and recharges me. My garden days are every moment I can spend outside in the garden. I try to balance out daily planting, watering, and weeding.
Over the past two years, Lisa has been very well received by the market customers. They are, “like family” to Lisa. “You really get to know your regular customers and I enjoy hearing about their lives. They know they can ask me garden issues and I will share my failures and successes with them.”
Lisa strives to practice good stewardship on her one-acre flower garden. She uses principles of permaculture and tries to work with the natural resources she has. Having heavy clay soil, Lisa utilizes a variety of compost methods; worm composting, trench composting directly in raised beds and traditional compost bins. In addition, she incorporates rainwater harvesting to irrigate her flowers.Every Saturday Lisa brings cut flowers, arrangements, and dried floral wreaths to market. She grows a wide variety of flowers, though is partial to lilies. She typically starts out the market season with tulips and daffodils and transitions into irises, daisies, peonies, anemones, and ranunculus. She has lupines, foxgloves and baby’s breath, crocosmia, lavender and several varieties of hydrangeas. She grows annuals such as zinnias, sunflowers, dahlias, Sweet Annie, phlox, and herbs. In the fall season, you can find celosia, mums, goldenrod, several different black-eyed Susan varieties, asters, several varieties of coneflowers and ornamental grass on her table.
Make sure to stop by her booth this Saturday, it’ll be sure to brighten your day!