Susan Wright and Brent Cochran are the owners and operators of the High Country’s locally grown floral design business Shady Grove Gardens. SGG specializes in growing and distributing local flowers for events and weddings in a sustainable and conservation-conscious manner. Their flowers are grown organically and their selection focuses on offering flowers that flourish in the High Country climate. Susan and Brent provide a service that I’d never heard of before–bucketfuls of flowers. If your wedding is a DIY event, SGG offers the purchase of buckets of their beautiful blooms so that you can create your own designs. Additionally, Susan is the farms design guru and works with brides on styling for a full-service design experience. Not getting married, but love flowers? You can find Susan and Brent at the Watauga Farmer’s Market on Saturday mornings. Susan has arrangements and potted plants available on-site at the market for purchase.
Last month I had the opportunity to spend an afternoon at their farm and capture photos of not only the gorgeous property and landscape, but also of their flowers and staff. The most striking thing about SGG’s farm was just how much knowledge and respect for the land and history Susan and Brent have. Their farm rests on a hillside beneath the Peak in Ashe County and offer a view of Grayson Highlands, Mount Rogers and Pond Mountain. Brent shared the history of Pond Mountain and some insights into the Peak with me, which I’m always eager to learn!
While on the farm I spent time photographing their current blooms and jovial staff. As someone who grew up with a healthy respect for nature, I appreciated the way that SGG staff nurtured the flowers. Plants need love to grow!
My favorites were the poppies.