Birmingham Flower Shop News
Small Business Spotlight: E. Stephen Hein - www.smileypete.comSunday, February 28, 2021
When he opened shop in 1987, he was asked to handle floral arrangements for such charitable events as the Lexington Ball, the Steeplechase Ball in Cincinnati and Beaux Arts Krewe Ball in Birmingham. In more recent years, his work has been seen at the annual Fabby Abbey Ball, a benefit for KET held at Spindletop Hall.
Hein first came to Lexington in 1961 from his home state of Indiana. While attending Evansville College (before it became the University of Evansville) in the late ’50s, he got an offer to become an ice skating instructor in Terre Haute, Indiana. Then he was hired by Crystal Ice Palace, located in Lexington’s new Gardenside Shopping Center, in 1961. The developers of the center, Pierson-Trapp Co., operated the outdoor skating facility in winter and had a swim club called Cabana Club during the summertime, both of which closed around 1964.
Those same developers invited Hein to join as a managing partner in the Villager Gift Shop, he said. For several years, Hein ran the retail store: a bridal registry shop with gifts, antiques, an art gallery and framing department. The Villager Gift Shop was advertised in national magazines like House & Garden and House Beautiful, and gave Hein his first experience buying beautiful silk flowers, which had become available to the gift market “just after the horrible episode of awful plastic flowers for homes,” he recalled. By the time he changed the name of the shop to E. Stephen Hein, Inc., customers were coming in requesting silk flower arrangements en masse.
“I had to do an arrangement like I knew what I was doing,” Hein said with a laugh, recalling his early foray into floral arranging.
Over the next two decades, the gift shop in Gardenside closed and Hein became involved with a couple of other businesses and jobs, including a stint at W.P. Pemberton & Sons Greenhouses.
“I didn’t know what was going on with that shop, but I thought I wouldn’t mind going in to learn the flower shop business,” he said. It turned out that they were looking for a manager. Building off his experience with silk flower arrangements, he soon learned how to work with natural flowers and plants, and in 1987, he left Pemberton’s to open his own shop.
Today, Hein’s floral shop has turned into a true family affair, with his granddaughter, Kelsey Hein Smith, having worked alongside him since graduating from Eastern Kentucky University in 2017. A floral designer and the store’s social media manager, Smith calls her grandfather PoPo – except during business hours.
“It’s weird to call him Steve,” she admitted.
Thoughtful, artistic expression has always been appreciated in the floral business, and remains a staple of Hein’s business model. While centerpieces and corsages are less common than they were at the start of his business, sending flowers across town – or even across the country – remains a popular action, and Hein can help with both. Some of his loyal clients utilize his services not only for local flower delivery but also to coordinate out-of-state arrangements for funerals or special occasions.
“We know what to say to the other florist, the dos and don’ts of what to use and what not to use,” Hein said, explaining that his clients appreciate his specific aesthetic. His penchant for communicating the specifics of that aesthetic when “calling out” orders to other florists hasn’t gone unnoticed, as the shop has often been lauded for orders that Hein helps coordinate across the country.
Former and fellow florists have also expressed their gratitude to Hein over the years.
“They have told me that when I set up shop in Lexington in 1987, I raised the bar for what florists do to make a show with their flower arrangements,” he said. “I thought that was a very nice compliment.”
E. Stephen Hein Florist is located at 380 E. Second St. More info is available at www.estephenheinflorist.com.
COVID-19 devastated flower shops. Local florists hope Valentine's Day starts resurgence - Hometown LifeSunday, February 28, 2021
That was the case for Bob Kupfer and Tiffany Florist in downtown Birmingham last spring. When he was closed for several weeks when COVID-19 was first detected in Michigan, he was left with a cooler full of flowers that couldn't be sold. So he would take them outside his shop at 784 S. Old Woodward and leave them in a bucket for those taking a walk and looking to get out of the house during quarantine. "When we shut down, every day I would come here and put a bucket of flowers in the street," he said. "There's a ton of people who walk by here every day. We were giving away flowers for a long time."Unknown factorsThat won't be the case in February. Kupfer said he is confident those looking to buy their sweetie some flowers — including the traditional red roses associated with the holiday — will be able to, whether they order a week early or walk in the afternoon of Feb. 14.Still, he said, it's best to order ahead to make sure customers can get exactly what they're looking for, since it's a guessing game this year as to how sales will go."The big unknown is, who's going to be buying for Valentines Day?" Kupfer said. "Do we need 10,000 of something or 1,000 of something?"More: Lottery awaits Golden ticket call from $1 billion Mega Millions winner, teachers or notMore: Many families eager to get back to in-person schooling. See what your district has plannedDonna Podpora, who co-owns Donna & Larry's Flowers in Northville with her husband Larry Podpora, said they are starting to get more clarity about what to expect for Valentine's Day, but there were still plenty of questions in late January as they got their shop at 1063 Novi Road decorated with hearts a stuffed bears."Even the suppliers are saying they don't where they're going to get the flowers from at this point. They've got the orders placed. They don't know what's going to come in," said Donna Podpora, who's owned the shop north of Eight Mile for nearly 37 years. "They don't know what to charge us because they don't know what they're going to have to pay because they don't know what they're going to get. It's just so different."Valentine's Day and Mothers Days are widely considered the two biggest days for giving flowers, and flower shops across the region have prepped since before Christmas. It's a bi... https://www.hometownlife.com/story/money/business/2021/02/03/order-valentines-day-flowers-early-year-florists-say/4226899001/
Norton's Florist giving away flowers at UAB to put smiles on faces - TrussvilletribuneWednesday, October 28, 2020
Norton's Florist giving away flowers on Oct. 21, 2020, as part of an initiative titled "Petal it Forward." Photo: Scott Buttram. From The Tribune staff reportsBIRMINGHAM — A random act of kindness is something we all like to see and on Wednesday, Oct. 21, Norton’s Florist set a great example.The florist gave away flowers outside UAB Hospital. The “Petal it Forward” initiative is meant to put smiles on faces in Birmingham.Owner Gus Pappas asked people walking by to take two bouquets, one for themselves and one for someone else. Pappas and his son, Cameron, do this every year in downtown Birmingham, but they felt like UAB Hospital was the best place to give back this year, due to the coronavirus pandemic.The pair asked everyone nearby to social distance and wear masks.You can follow the initiative on Instagram @nortonsflorist and use #MAKEBHAMSMILE to share your experience. https://www.trussvilletribune.com/2020/10/21/nortons-florist-giving-away-flowers-at-uab-to-put-smiles-on-faces/
‘The power of flowers’: Alabama’s florists cope with pandemic, recovery - AL.comMonday, August 24, 2020
Alabama. The life events where people expect flowers - hospitalizations, funerals - were suddenly in the news, but the demand for them was all but extinguished.Cameron Pappas at Norton’s Florist in Birmingham said the lockdown, and the reopening that followed, has reminded him of the “power of flowers.”“We’ve had a lot of reminders of how important flowers are to everyone,” he said. “They keep people sane.”The pandemic hit America right in a peak season for florists - the rush before Easter, proms and spring events. Pappas said business began to slowdown by about 40 percent one week before his shop closed for two weeks on March 23. The store laid off all of its employees for that period.Cameron Pappas delivered flowers to Birmingham-area restaurants during the coronavirus shutdown.Thousands of floral businesses around America were left with perishable goods that they couldn’t sell. Just three days before Norton’s closed, it had received a shipment of about $5,000 in flowers. Rather than throw them out, Pappas said, they made bouquets to give away at restaurants and nursing homes that would accept them. In some cases, he hand delivered them.“We wanted the flowers to still do their job, to bring joy to bad situations,” he said. “We wanted them to say that we’re not going to let this virus take away the heart of our city.”Morris, 86, said he was reduced to little better than a one-man operation for about five weeks, with his nephew keeping the books. Most of the business coming in was through funeral homes.Norton’s reopened on April 6, in time for Easter, which he said saw “decent” business. By Mother’s Day, 90 percent of the staff was back, and sales began to pick up. As with other businesses, online sales have surged; up 30 percent over the last two months, he said. Mother’s Day online orders doubled.But with reopening has come new challenges. In May, the World Health... https://www.al.com/business/2020/06/the-power-of-flowers-alabamas-florists-cope-with-pandemic-recovery.html
Buy THESE 10 Cut Flowers (They Last the Longest!) - StyleBlueprintMonday, August 24, 2020
Billy balls, Billy buttons, and woolly heads.LisianthusSarah Marshall, owner and lead florist of Gaia Florals in Birmingham, AL, says the long-stemmed Lisianthus is one of her favorites. “Of the flowers that I routinely use, the longest-lasting showstopper is Lisianthus,” she says. “It holds beautifully.” It’s known by many names, including the “Texas bluebell” and the “poor man’s rose,” and it can last between seven and 10 days. Fair warning: It tends to be susceptible to rot if it’s sitting in unclean water, so be sure to change it out daily for the best results.SnapdragonsSarah tells us, “Snapdragons are the long-lasting cool-season winner.” In the right conditions, they can last seven to 10 days. When choosing your snapdragon stem, look for stalks that have one-third to one-half of their pods open.Top row, left to right: Calla Lilies, Snapdragons, Lisianthus; Bottom: CraspediaRELATED: How To Get Any Stain Out: Your Ultimate Stain Removal GuideAmaryllisGreg Campbell, co-owner of Garden District in Memphis, TN, says the Amaryllis is his favorite long-lasting flower choice for the winter. Native to West Africa, the Amaryllis can last more than two weeks. It’s often associated with strength because it’s tall and sturdy, and it can actually last even longer in a vase than when planted.CelosiaA summer bloom, Celosia is another top pick for Sarah. It can run the color spectrum from blood red to goldenrod, and it looks like ocean coral or something that jumped out of a Dr. Seuss story. It’s a member of the Amaranth family and sometimes lasts over two weeks.EryngoMattie Bush, owner of Amelia’s Flower Truck in Nashville, TN, is big on Eryngo. An eye-catching flowering herb, it’s bluish-purple, prickly looking, and resembles a thistle. Also referred to as Flat Sea Holly, Eryngo has an incredibly long vase life, sometimes lasting well over two weeks. We are grateful to all our sponsors:LimoniumLimonium is another one of Mattie’s choices. Also known as Sea Lavender, even though it has no relation to lavender at all, Limonium looks more fragile than it is. Often used for bouquet filler, Limonium can last one to two weeks, and it retains its color when dried out.Magnum MumsMagnum Mums round out Mattie’s top three long-lasting flowers. An oversized chrysanthemum with hundreds of petals, the beautiful bloom is an impressive flower that can last up to two weeks.RanunculusLauren is a fan of using Ranunculus for long-lasting arrangements. These beautiful flowers look like they’re crafted out of tissue paper. They resemble min... https://styleblueprint.com/everyday/fresh-cut-flowers-that-last-the-longest/
10 Northern Michigan Florists – mynorth.com - MyNorth.comWednesday, March 31, 2021
February and whether yours is a newly budding relationship or a blossoming one, let your significant other know they’re special to you with a Valentine’s Day bouquet from a Northern Michigan florist.These 10 Northern Michigan florists (from Traverse City to Ludington!) are great to keep in mind for Valentine’s Day, but they also create arrangements year-round for weddings, funerals, anniversaries, parties and more!Beads and Blooms Florist78 N. Jebavy Dr. Ludington, MI 49431, 231.845.6537 or 231.425.4133A local florist that delivers on a personal level, “all flower arrangements are artistically arranged in a vase and hand-delivered to the recipient.” Flower’s From Sky’s the Limit413 Michigan St. Petoskey, MI 49770, 231.347.7770Pick out the perfect pair of posies (or whatever suits your fancy) online and choose from a wide variety of arrangements that can be delivered in Petoskey or nationwide. Flower Station341 W. Front St., Traverse City, MI 49684, 231.946.1742, toll free:Located a short walk from the heart of downtown Traverse City, the Flower Station is a family owned store that offers a selection of imported and locally grown fresh flowers.Hagstrom’s Flowers... https://mynorth.com/2015/01/10-northern-michigan-florists/
Longtime CEO of Wedel’s Nursery remembered for love of faith, family, fishing and flowers - mlive.comSunday, February 28, 2021
Andy Wedel said.He shared his love for plants and flowers in every way he could think of, his son said. He helped found the Michigan Certified Nurseryman Program in 1980. And he also spent 42 years on the air for WKZO 590 AM, delivering “Over the Garden Fence” on Saturday mornings.George Wedel picked up the mic from father Harley Wedel in 1963, before passing it to Andy Wedel 15 years ago. One of Southwest Michigan’s longest-running radio shows, it has stayed in the family in a similar way the nursery and garden center has, Andy Wedel said.Four generations of Wedels have put their hard work, sweat and love into the business Harley Wedel started more than seven decades ago. George Wedel was the company’s longest leader, though, the family says. His wife of 61 years, Joyce Wedel, who survives George, was also involved for many years in running the family business.Related: Sunny weather provides Kalamazoo-area gardeners respite amid coronavirus outbreakAll three of George Wedel’s children, including daughter Bonnie Russell, work there. He also has three grandchildren who work for Wedel’s. His brother Roger Wedel, now the last surviving child of Harley Wedel’s four children, is also still involved in the business, Schwartz said.That only scratches the surface of cousins, aunts and uncles who work at the nursery, now located in Texas Township, as well as the family’s farm and other related businesses, she said.Who will take over the business with George Wedel now gone is unknown, Schwartz said. But one thing is for certain — it will stay in the family.Known for his joy of bringing people together for picnics and BBQs on Sunday afternoons, George Wedel also loved fishing and the Detroit Tigers — his two biggest passions outside of his faith and love for plants, his children said.Each year, he would look forward to trips to Drummond Island to go perch fishing, Lake Erie to fish for walleye and an annual trip to Detroit for a ballgame, Schwartz said. Andy Wedel recalled trips to the South Haven pier as a child to catch perch.In addition to fishing, Andy Wedel recalled growing up in “gardens so big a child could get lost in” them and “Detroit Tiger baseball blaring over the little AM radio sitting out on the post.”“I think he has been part of making this county more beautiful,” Schwartz said. “All the trees, shrubs and plants that have been put in all over Kalamazoo County. Our business is 74 years old, just think how many things have been planted around here.“He had a work ethic was like no other and it’s really just why I feel our business has survived and done so well.”A visitation for Wedel will take place from 3-6 p.m. Sunday, June 28, at Country Christian Evangelical Free Church, 9286 36th St. in Scotts. The funeral will be at 10:30 a.m. Monday, June 29, at the church. Wed... https://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/2020/06/longtime-ceo-of-wedels-nursery-remembered-for-love-of-faith-family-fishing-and-flowers.html
Obituaries for October 8 - Hawaii Tribune-HeraldSunday, February 28, 2021
St. Joseph Catholic Church. Private services held. Survived by daughters, Diana Ponsonby of Nevada and Bernadine Nentwig of Florida; sons, Albert (Shirley) Araujo of Michigan, Gordon Araujo and Robert Araujo of Hilo and Douglas (Faith) Araujo of Minnesota; brothers, Michael Souza and Lawrence Souza of Hilo; sister, Marie (James) Souza of Nevada; grandchildren and great-grandchildren; nieces, nephews and cousins. Arrangements by Dodo Mortuary.Ralph Rogelio Cordoban, 72 of Honokaa died June 20 at Hale Ho‘ola Hamakua. Born in Honolulu, he was a retired truck driver. Private services at a later date. Online condolences: www.ballardfamilymortuaries.com. Survived by son, Ryan (Christina) Cordoban of Honokaa; daughter, Royalan Cordoban of Colorado Springs, Colo.; companion, Linda Anahu of Honolulu; sisters, Loretta (Doug) Whitaker of Charleston, S.C., and Alona (Alan) Kondo of Kohala; seven grandchildren. Arrangements by Ballard Family Mortuary.Eric Moani Hori, 55, of Kailua-Kona died July 26 at Kona Community Hospital. Born in Honolulu, he was a heavy equipment operator and cook for Meals on Wheels. Services at later date. Survived by wife, Tammy Awai-Hori of Hilo; daughter, Maluhia Awai of Kailua-Kona; son, Sam Awai of Kaneohe, Oahu; sisters, Kehau Hori of Washington, Glor... https://www.hawaiitribune-herald.com/2020/10/08/obituaries/obituaries-for-october-8-6/
2021 Virtual Great Lakes Floral & Event Expo Promises to be Like None Other - PerishableNewsSunday, February 28, 2021
Michigan Floral FoundationGold Exhibitor Sponsor: DWF-Flint, FloraCraft, Mayesh WholesaleSilver Exhibitor Sponsor: DWF – Toledo, Rokay FloralAgain visit www.glfee.com for full details on this event. Mark your calendars now and save the date for the 2022 Great Lakes Floral & Event Expo schedule for March 4-6, 2022 in Grand Rapids, MI. We look forward to growing stronger and staying healthy over the next year so we can once again meet in person and see you at the 2022 GLFEE. The Great Lakes Floral Association is a multi-state full service trade organization representing more than 400 florists, growers, wholesalers, and 150 Certified Florist (CF). Located in Haslett, Michigan, GLFA offers group savings on insurance, financial services, credit card processing and supplies, office supplies; is the sponsor of the Certified Florist (CF) program; creates and hosts the annual Great Lakes Floral & Event Expo; conducts educational seminars throughout the year at the association headquarters and various other facilities; publishes The Professional Florist magazine; hosts the GLFA website, and interacts with state/federal government agencies. For more information on GLFA, visit their web site at www.greatlakesfloralassociation.org. ... https://www.perishablenews.com/floral/2021-virtual-great-lakes-floral-event-expo-promises-to-be-like-none-other/