Flower Child Maysville
by Gillian Kelley
March 15, 2023
Flower Child Maysville is a small flower farm, run by mother-daughter team Gillian Kelley and LeAnn Richard, located in Maysville, Alabama. We specialize in loving our community through cut flowers, produce and plants. We started in the fall of 2020 because of a magazine article. I (Gillian) read an article about a large flower farm and decided that since we had a tractor and some land, we should start one. So I texted my mom (LeAnn) and she said, “Sure.” And just like that, we were flower farmers.
We both grew up in Maysville, right next to the land we’re farming today. Mr. Gillespie (the previous owner of our farm and our neighbor) ran a truck farm, or more accurately, a lawn mower farm. He would drive his lawn mower over to our house and drop off watermelons and whatever else he had growing on what is now our flower farm. We’re proud to carry on his legacy of growing and sharing with the people of Maysville.
We started with growing flowers because of their power to create memory and connection—just like our communities do. My favorite flower memory is the double row of zinnias my grandfather planted along our shared driveway every summer. I loved to chase butterflies in the flowers and put them into the homemade butterfly catchers my mom made for me. These zinnias were planted less than a stone’s throw from where we grow zinnias for our customers now.
My mom wrote about her granny’s garden for our monthly newsletter, saying, “I remember kneeling in the dirt beside the Sweet Williams, and the smell of the sweet shrub growing by the path. I can still smell it well over 50 years later, and I can walk to the exact place where it once perfumed the heavy summer air.” Flowers and gardens have a special ability to connect us to the land they’re grown on.
Neither of us have an agricultural background, and yet it is in our blood, just like our community is. We can’t help but grow things and share them, it just comes naturally. I love what we do, but it’s not really about the flowers for me. My motivation is bigger than a bouquet. It’s about stewardship, and doing what we can with what we have to bring joy and community into the lives of our customers. We’re thankful to be a small part of the long story of this place we call home.