Author: Adele M Proctor. Field to Flower was formerly known as Mary Contrary (and still is on Facebook).
‘So, you want tatties with Pizazz’?
I’ll try and keep it short and tell you how our wee business came about. One day the farmer gave me some of his tatties, carrots and a mountain of kale to try. Being me, I thought ‘cheeky begger is trying to tell me something’.
Every other day he and Mrs Ramsay would produce some marvel they had grown in the poly-tunnels and fields around Loudoun Hill, and I thought, hold on, that actually tastes of something! From then on, my wee pile of mixed veg would be lying ready for me to try and also carrots for my horses.
I’d cut into these carrots and they’d smell amazing. No wonder the horses were desperate to get their fill!
Mrs Ramsay’s forte is definitely growing in the poly-tunnel and her produce gets placed, if not wins, every year at the local show. Meanwhile, Mr Ramsay and son Robert deal with the field growing.
Some of the vegetables didn’t always come out the way they were expected to and that really hot summer we had last year he was given turnips the size of a new born baby. They were hilarious! No supermarket would use those.
Our knowledgeable farmer also put me in touch with other growers in Scotland. Our Girvan growers are especially good as their soil is much better for our all-year-round fantastic produce. We also try and always source our ‘English’ Comice pears from our grower in Berwick. Mostly the rest of our fruit comes from our Spanish wholesaler who I’m still trying to twist their arm not to use plastic! They are getting better, helping us reduce our carbon footprint.
Sorry, but we just can’t manage them pineapples here on this hill!
Now anyone who knows me knows I like bright and colourful and ask why we can’t we do the veggies, fruits and flowers together like the good old days when Robert Struthers had a thriving florist and fruit village shop.
I was made redundant a few years back and kind of fell into the floristry industry getting a job first as a driver in Flowers from the Hart, Kilmarnock and then going onto Langside College to take up courses studying Floristry.
I’ve never been one for competitions but got persuaded by Billy (the farmer), into entering our flower show, that’s just not me I don’t do shows! But, yes, I entered and won my first ever cup and the year after too!
So, we decided to put our heads together to get some of farmers fab produce out to the public along with my colourful flower designs. We will be trying all sorts this year as I’ve got the farmer into my way of thinking we want nice looking things to eat from Loudoun Hill and fresh from the field. Yes, with that pizazz!
Me, well I’m just a local lass. Born and bred here. My own family are farmers in Orkney and Galston. My Killie family own McInnes the Ironmonger in Kilmarnock.
I am based at Newlands Farm and are on a working sheep and cattle farm, we are what we are, and I like it that way! What a bonnie but cold place to call work. Our wee hill looks different every day and I never tire looking at it.
If your new to Darvel you’ll find friendly folks. No pitchforks and torches here. Welcome everyone to our historical little village.