Duskblomster

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Duskblomster
Photo Rigetta Klint
HÅNDVÆRK bookazine

English translation: Dorte H Silver




As some of you may recall, I have previously written about my general antipathy towards dried flowers.

Something about having been there, done that, as it is when you reach my age – if you wait long enough, everything comes back into fashion eventually. In many contexts, I thoroughly enjoy the reruns. Not, however, when it comes to dried flowers! What’s worse, many of the dried flowers that are on offer this time around have been artificially dyed with all sorts of toxic substances.

At least, that was how I felt until I encountered Dusk – Danish for ‘posy’ – which produces dried organic flowers in natural colours. Until then, sure, I might include dried seed heads and hydrangeas from the garden in a bouquet of fresh flowers, a few grasses were fine too, but anything more than that, no thanks!

But now ...! I visited Dusk’s drying loft in Copenhagen’s Nørrebro district, breathing in the unique fragrance of drying flowers, and I am really taken with the beauty of their flowers. I might even put up a wreath of dried flowers in my home, provided it is of the Dusk variety.

Dusk is owned and run by the two horticulturists Jeppe Hellemann Worning and Louise Pape Thomsen. For two seasons now, they have been growing organic flowers for drying in a field in Lejre, 30 km outside Copenhagen. In the summer of 2020, they also produced cut flowers (you may have come across Dusk in connection with the exhibition Dahlman1807 x HÅNDVÆRK bookazine / Rigetta Klint during 3daysofdesign in September 2020). 2020 is also the year when the field was certified as organic.

Both Jeppe and Louise completed their training as gardeners in 2019 and have experience from Copenhagen’s Botanical Garden and the University of Copenhagen’s Horticultural Gardens, where their work included working with the collections of both perennials and annuals. They base their knowledge about growing flowers that are suitable for drying on a combination of training, research and experiments.

‘With DUSK we want to join the growing movement for environmentally friendly agriculture – in practice – and wish to create eco-friendly conditions for growing flowers commercially. We want to grow flowers locally, using growing methods that are beneficial for the soil and for the environment, so that we can offer environmentally friendly flowers that do not harm the environment and which provide an alternative to imported, conventionally grown flowers,’ they wrote me when I asked them to introduce themselves in preparation for the 3days event.

Before embarking on the gardening training programme and a life as flower growers, their respective fields of work were design and ethnology. Louise grew up in the countryside, in a house with a big garden, and as a child she had her own little patch of land, with carefully designed systems of flowers, and dreamed of becoming a gardener when she grew up. Both Jeppe and Louise have had allotments for years, growing their own vegetables and flowers.

When I visited the drying loft, they told me that when they created the company Instagram account last year, they expected interested customers to come pouring in. And although that did not happen then, it is happening now. For example, the day before my visit they had added three new retailers to their network. The previous weekend, they had held a wreath-making course, and their calendar is generelly packed with events, markets and fairs.

Dusk is not a full-time occupation for either of the two entrepreneurs, and that is fine with Jeppe, while Louise dreams of being able to devote all her time to the company. They are both surprised at the amount of work involved in running their own company, and what can I say but welcome to the club. I have been at it for more than 35 years, and it’s still demanding but also exciting and meaningful.



DUSK

Flere af jer kan sikkert huske, at jeg tidligere har skrevet om at have det stramt med tørrede blomster.

Noget med at have været der før, sådan går det, når man bliver gammel nok, det meste går i ring. I mange sammenhænge har jeg en fest med repetitionen. Bare ikke med ”evighedsblomsterne” som de hed, da jeg var barn. Læg dertil, at mange af de tørrede blomster, som man i denne bølge har været præsenteret for, har været tørrede blomster farvet ind i alskens giftige, kunstige kulører.

Sådan havde jeg det, indtil jeg mødte Dusk, som producerer økologiske tørrede blomster i naturlige farver. Det vil sige, jeg kunne sagtens selv finde på at blande de tørrede frøstande og hortensiablomster fra haven med friske blomster, og lidt græsser i en buket har jeg også haft det glimrende med, men mere end det, nej tak!

Men nu! Jeg har været på besøg på Dusks tørreloft på Nørrebro i København, hvor der dufter helt særligt og naturligt, og jeg er virkelig betaget af deres tørrede blomsters skønhed. Selv en blomsterkrans af tørrede blomster kunne i fremtiden tage bolig hos mig, hvis den vel at mærke var i Dusk aftapning

Dusk er et alias for gartnerne Jeppe Hellemann Worning og Louise Pape Thomsen. De har i to sæsoner dyrket blomster til tørring på en økologisk mark i Lejre 30 km fra København. I sommeren 2020 dyrkede de desuden friske snitblomster (du stødte måske på Dusk i forbindelse med udstillingen Dahlman1807 x HÅNDVÆRK bookazine / Rigetta Klint under 3daysofdesign i September 2020?). 2020 var også året, hvor marken blev certificeret økologisk.

Både Jeppe og Louise er uddannede gartnere i 2019 og har blandt andet arbejdet med blomster i Botanisk Have og i Landbohøjskolens Have, herunder i staude- og sommerblomst-samlingerne. Deres viden om dyrkning af blomster, som kan tørres, kommer fra en blanding af uddannelse, research og eksperimenter.

”Vi ønsker med DUSK at være en del af en gryende bevægelse, der arbejder for et miljøvenligt jordbrug - i praksis, samt at skabe mulighed for et miljøvenligt forbrug - af blomster. Vi ønsker at dyrke blomster lokalt og med dyrkningsmetoder, der gavner jord og miljø for herigennem at skabe adgang til miljøvenlige blomster, som ikke svækker miljøet, og som kan fungere som et alternativ til importerede og konventionelt dyrkede blomster”, skrev de til mig, da jeg bad dem præsentere sig forud for 3days.

Inden de kastede sig over gartneruddannelsen og over livet som blomsterbønder, arbejdede de henholdsvis som designer og som etnolog. Louise er opvokset på landet med en stor have og havde i sin barndom et lille stykke jord selv med sirlige blomstersystemer og en drøm om at blive gartner. Begge har de i flere år haft kolonihave, hvor de har dyrket grøntsager og blomster.

Da jeg var på besøg på tørreloftet, fortalte de, at da de åbnede deres Instagram konto sidste år, så troede de, at de ville blive bestormet af interesserede kunder, sådan gik det ikke, sådan går det til gengæld i år. Alene dagen inden, jeg var på besøg, havde de fået 3 nye forhandlere. Weekenden inden havde de afholdt bindekranskursus, og kalenderen er spækket med markedsaktiviteter.

Ingen af dem er fuldtidsbeskæftiget i Dusk, det er fint sådan, siger Jeppe, Louise derimod, hun drømmer om at kunne hellige sig virksomheden. Begge overraskes de over, hvor arbejdskrævende det er at være selvstændig, og ja, velkommen i klubben, jeg har været der i mere end 35 år, det er til stadighed arbejdskrævende, men dejligt og meningsfyldt!