A Somerset woman grows herbs, makes salves and oils at Blue Rose Micro Farm

SOMERSET – She reaps what many of us choose to weed.

In two gardens covering about 4,000 square feet in her backyard, Denise Wolfe grows about 40 herbs. There are the well-known culinary herbs like peppermint and basil. And then there are the relatively more obscure herbs, like mugwort and calendula.

And just outside the grass field, growing wild in the yard, is the narrow-leaved plantain, a useful grass often mistaken for a weed.

Owner of Blue Rose Micro Farm, Wolfe knows his herbs the same way the produce manager at Auclair Market knows fruits and vegetables.

“Most of the herbs, at this point, I turn into extracts that are used as gifts for my friends and family,” Wolfe said on a recent Friday afternoon at his farm, 71 Pleasant St., “but for my company, I make a fair amount of home and body care products. And so I make a lot of salves. I pick the herbs, dry them, and infuse them into organic oils. And from there, they are made into ointments that can be used to heal the skin, can be used as gifts.

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She also makes bath salts, cleansing sprays, all with infusions of herbs grown on her farm.

The Blue Rose farm is not entirely botanical. Visit Wolfe in his backyard and expect to have visitors at your feet, the feathered but flightless feminine kind. She sells chicken and duck eggs, the product, surprise, of her own chickens and ducks.

Denise Wolfe at Blue Rose Micro Farm in Somerset.

Wolfe said she has been using herbal medicine since her late teens and gained extensive knowledge in the field while working in her twenties for a large company as an herbal buyer. She then worked in service and retail, laying all the foundations for her current business/passion.

The 1995 Somerset High School graduate said when her children were born she wanted to start making her own home and body care products free of toxins and chemicals.

“It was a lot cheaper to make them myself,” Wolfe said. “And I started gifting them to my friends and family. And the business grew from there. And now we have a herb farm.

Some of the produce from Blue Rose Micro Farm in Somerset.

In 2015, she began her farming career, growing food and raising chickens, while living in South Carolina. She moved back to Somerset in 2018 when she and husband Kevin bought their current one-acre property not far from where she grew up on Old Colony Avenue. The pandemic has slowed business, but Blue Rose is now at full speed.

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Wolfe became a Certified Herbalist in 2020 and earned her Level 1 and 2 certifications from Farmacy Herbs in Providence. Last year, she interned at the Farmacy Herbs farm in West Warwick, Rhode Island.

Denise Wolfe dries herbs on these shelves at Blue Rose Micro Farm in Somerset.

Locally, Wolfe sells at Farmers Markets, in Bristol, Providence, at SOAM right here in town. She also sold at the Fall River Craft Market.

Very soon, she says, she will be selling her “porch products” directly from the farm. She also plans to organize, as the holidays approach, open days where the curious can discover and buy products in the living room of the house.

A bee on Frost Aster which is used to make tea at Blue Rose Micro Farm in Somerset.

At www.bluerosemicrofarm.com, customers place an order to pick up at Wolfe House. In December, she said, Blue Rose will offer free local delivery.

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