Newcastle Farm giving away thousands of free flower bouquets
Erica Berman runs Veggies to Table in Newcastle. She spreads hope and joy to members of the community by presenting them with bouquets of flowers from her one-acre farm.
NEWCASTLE, Maine — Veggies to Table is a Newcastle nonprofit farm that grows organic produce and flowers. Much of the produce from the farm is donated to food insecure community members.
Erica Berman runs the farm with her husband. So far this year, she has assembled and donated 634 bouquets of fresh flowers to different organizations and community members, all with the aim of spreading joy and hope. In 3 seasons, more than 2,500 bouquets.
“We have a lot to do, a lot of places for these flowers,” said volunteer Marion Mundy. “You know, if I can help a little, I’m very grateful that I can.”
Free flower bouquets go to local hospitals, stores, the YMCA, police and fire departments, churches, food pantries, schools and community members.
Berman grows all varieties of flowers on his one-acre farm.
“Dill, borage, calendula, garlic flowers, rudbeckia, different kinds of amaranth, ageratum, mint,” she said, listing some of the flower varieties on her farm.
Berman calls his volunteers “flower queens.”
“I mean, I’ve always loved flowers, and I started giving them even the first season. But especially last season, we gave to hospitals and all the different workers in the hospital; we’ve donated to the Veterans Hospital; we donated to the CDC; we went to all kinds of local businesses and schools,” Berman added.
“You’ll see how happy it makes people,” Berman said.
Volunteers say the impact the flowers have on people is worth it.
“It uplifts you, and it’s just a very zen thing. I’m a yoga teacher, so it kind of ties in with everything for me, and it nurtures me and others,” volunteer Susan Sproul, who puts together compositions floral, said. “It seemed like the perfect fit…and when that happens you usually have resistance.”
“We call it the joy of flowers,” Berman said.
The day NEWS CENTER Maine shut down, volunteers made 80 bouquets within hours and delivered them to the local hospital, YMCA and food pantry. Everyone who received them was very grateful.
Berman said she actually hands out more bouquets of flowers than she sells.
If you have a bouquet of fresh flowers and want it to last at least a week, Berman recommends changing the water for the flowers daily, putting them in the shade, and trimming the stems evenly. so that they all receive the same amount of water.
Berman told the NEWS CENTER Maine that his goal with the nonprofit farm was to help eradicate hunger in Maine. She donates thousands of pounds of product to families and local organizations in Maine.
Berman and her husband are hosting a one-time raffle that ends September 17. The grand prize is an event-filled week-long stay in Paris, France.
Click here for more information on this trip.
To learn more about Veggies to Table, click here.