A love of growing an abundance of lush flowers runs deep for Kristen Rubin, owner of Sweetwater Stem Co. In Gig Harbor, WA. Some of her fondest memories are of spending long afternoons with her family harvesting flowers and veggies in their multigenerational gardens.
As an adult, Kristen's gardening interest blossomed while living in Wenatchee, Washington. Kristen loved growing a variety of flowers which she shared with friends and family as well as the best vine ripe-tomatoes. Outside in nature and in the garden has always been a refuge for her, a place she could cultivate beauty and share her love of flowers with others.
Kristen and Allen relocated to Anchorage Alaska for a brief period where she continued to garden. In 2019 the opportunity arose to relocate back to Washington State and Kristen and Allen were overjoyed to make their dreams a reality by purchasing an 8 acre farm in the Ray Nash Valley of Gig Harbor. In preparation of this new adventure Kristen took online courses with Floret workshop and The Gardner’s Workshop to learn how to grow on a large scale.
At Sweetwater Stem Co., our mission is to sustainably grow a variety of seasonal flowers to provide joy to our community and bring awareness to the “farm to table” movement supporting local farmers.
“Grown not Flown”
The Rubins chose the name Sweetwater Stem Co. to honor Kristen's family legacy. Her great grandfather arrived in Idaho at the turn of the century as a pioneer and founded the town of Sweetwater.
Their location in the Ray Nash Valley became the idyllic spot to put into practice their philosophy of sustainable organic farming.
Together, through trial and error and hard work, they spent numerous hours each season amending beds with compost and organic fertilizers. They use minimal till practices and broadfork their beds to maintain healthy soil biome. Beneficial insects are released during the growing season to guard against pests and non-chemical methods are used to sustain plant health. They use fish fertilizer and brew compost tea to foliar feed by spraying plants weekly This helps create an ideal environment for healthy plants and to attract pollinators to their safe haven.
This is a true labor of love and Kristen and Allen are hoping their flowers will impact their community by bringing joy to all who cross paths with their farm and bring awareness of local farmers who are the true champions of sustainable agriculture.
They have many goals for 2022 and hope you watch Sweetwater Stem Co. grow!