Monday, March 31, 2008

Newest Flower Designer

new flower designer
We would like to welcome our newest designer to the Visser's Florist design team, Celi Barbosa. Celi has been a floral designer for over 12 years and we are so happy that she decided to join Visser's. Celi brings an interesting and unique style to our talented design team. Her specialty is wedding design, but all of her designs are just amazing. Next time you're in Anaheim, stop by the shop and say hello to Celi.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

San Diego Flower Fields

It's almost April, and Spring is here. I thought I would share one of our favorite Spring daytrips with you: The Flower Fields in Carlsbad California. The Flower Fields are south of Orange County in Carlsbad California--off the 5 freeway going to San Diego. From March to May every year it is simply one of the most spectacular displays of flowers in Southern California (well, maybe not better than Visser's Florist and Greenhouses), and well worth the drive.

For eight weeks every spring, the giant renunculus are in bloom and the land is changed into a sea of vibrant colors. There are currently 50 acres of planted renunculus and also 10 acres of gladioli, watsonia and other flowers that make the area even more beautiful. The impact of so much color and beauty is difficult to describe. Once you go, you will never forget it. Also, be sure and visit the All-American Rose Selection test garden. The Flower Fields conducts group tours and wagon rides—especially popular with the kids. If you love flowers, this is truly a worthwhile drive—and fun for the entire family.

Directions: Take Interstate 5 to the Palomar Airport Road exit and go east to 5704 Paseo Del Norte. The Carlsbad Flower Fields are about 30 miles north of downtown San Diego (760) 431-0352.

Be sure and take your camera.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Visser's Flowers on TV

What an interesting morning. No, I'm not talking about the 1 1/2 hours I spent unclogging the drain in the walk-in flower cooler. Visser's Florist is going to be on TV.

Local TV station KDOC has a morning program called Daybreak OC on in the morning. Every Monday morning they have a segment called "I love my job". One of our delivery people, Ron Caro, is going to be featured on the segment in three weeks. Ron, who really does love his job, will be shown working around the flowershop and actually delivering flowers.

The great thing about delivering flowers is how happy people are when they get them. And, with all that positive energy how could you not love your job!
Anyway, the tentative date of the airing is April 14. We will keep you posted.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Super Plant Sale

Next week March 31 - April 5 will be Visser's annual plant supersale.

Hundreds of plants on sale for 50% - 75% off our regular low prices. These plants are mostly overstocks and excess inventory. A few are orphans that need a little TLC. Come on by and check out this sale--it only happens once a year.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Easter Flowers - not like the good old days

It's interesting to me how celebration of the holidays change over time. Easter is a good example.

Obviously, Easter is a Christian holiday (although pagans also celebrate a similar holiday) celebrating the resurrection of Christ. It has a confusing date which is based on the vernal equinox and a full moon. And, since approximately 80% of Americans identify themselves as Christian, this should be a big holiday.

In one way it still is. Church attendance soars on Easter. In fact, there is even a term for this--CEO which refers to people that attend church on "Christmas and Easter only". However it seems like the family celebrations are just not the same.

Our family used to get up early, get all dressed up (my sister in her new easter dress) and go to church. Then we went home, got the potluck dish that mom made the night before and headed off to grandma's house for the easter egg hunt and family potluck. For us kids it was the second biggest candy holiday--slightly behind halloween. AND, most importantly (since I am a florist) everybody took an easter lily or small flower arrangement to liven up grandma's house.

I just don't see this anymore. There is still a lot of commercialism, but the specialness and focus on family togetherness seems to be gone. I think it's sad.

Anyway, put in a little effort to make this holiday special for your family. Maybe even stop by Visser's Florist on the way to grandma's. It will make you feel good inside, and you know grandma will like it.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Easter Lilies

The Easter lily (Lilium Longiflorum or long flower lily) is a of symbol beauty and life during Easter season in the United States. How did it get that way? And more importantly, why does it bloom right at Easter each year when Easter can vary from late March until mid-April.
According to Dr. Leonard Perry, University of Vermont in this article, the plant originally comes from Japan, discovered in the late 1700s. Then after world war II, a soldier brought some bulbs back to his home in Oregon, starting production in the United States. Now, the California Oregon border, known as the Easter lily capital of the world, produces 95 percent of all Easter lily bulbs in the world and virtually all of the plants seen in the U.S. Ten growers account for almost all of the production.
Now, on to the big question: How do the plants know when to bloom? The answer is really pretty simple. The plant needs about 1000 hours of cold temperatures in the ground before they sprout. After they sprout, the grower constantly monitors the temperature and increases it or decreases it to speed up or slow down the crop. Each plant is watched carefully and moved between a colder or warmer spot to get it to bloom at just the right time.
When buying a lily, look for one with some buds and some open flowers. Avoid plants with yellowing leaves or signs of insect damage. When the flowers open pull out the yellow anthers in the middle to prolong their life—but do not get the pollen on your clothes as it stains bad. If you do, use a pipe cleaner to take it off, don’t rub it or use a rag.
At home, keep your lily away from drafts and drying heat sources such as appliances or heating ducts. Place where there is plenty of light but not direct sunlight. Don’t overwater. Finally, if you have cats, especially those that like to chew on leaves, keep your lily away from them. Any part of this plant can cause kidney failure in cats.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Best Wedding Flowers Yet

wedding flower arch
wedding centerpiece
I am proud to say that we just finished our best wedding ever. Our son Dennis, Visser's Florist's flower buyer was married this weekend. I can't tell you how beautiful it was (although I might be slightly biased).

It was a fairly small wedding, about 110 people but it took 3 people 4 days to create all the flowers. Each of the centerpieces contained 9 dozen roses.

I want to thank all of the people on the Visser's team that worked so hard to make Dennis and Olivia's day as magical as they dreamed--especially because we did 4 other weddings on the same day.

In the next couple of weeks we will try and post some of the pictures on our website. The two pics at the top don't really convey how beautiful it was.

Monday, March 17, 2008

FTD top Florist

I'm back! I just spent a week in Mexico with the top 100 FTD florists from the USA and Canada. What a great week it was. It is such a great learning experience to be able to mingle with so many successful florists. We have never gone to one of those events and not come away with several ways we can improve our customer service (and a pretty serious case of sunburn).

In the coming weeks look for several exciting things to come from Visser's. We believe that if we keep improving our service and value to you, we will remain one of the top florists in the country. And finally, if you have any ideas about how we can improve our service to you, feel free to call me, Ted Robinson at 714 772-9900.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Flowers in a recession

A number of people have asked me lately about the impact of the recession on the floral industry. Obviously, an economic slowdown will impact retail sales in a couple of ways.

First, the business that comes from big companies will decrease. As a big company downsizes, or tightens its belt, the flower orders will go down a bit. Maybe they cut out a company party or stop sending birthday bouquets. This definitely has an impact on your local flower shop, which in turn has an impact on the flower wholesaler, and ultimately, the farms that grow the flowers.

Second, the business from individuals is also impacted. People are losing jobs, record numbers of houses are in foreclosure and gas is going to $4 a gallon. Even the people whose jobs and houses aren't affected get nervous with all of the bad news coming out every day. This generally means that people may send flowers a little less often, or will send something but spend a little less money.

The good news is that flowers are an inexpensive way to brighten up someone's day. There aren't that many other ways to spend a small amount of money and still make someone feel good. The flower shops that have provided great value and great customer service and that have supported their community during the good years should emerge from this downturn stronger than ever. That's why Visser's has been here for 51 years.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Email Wedding Flowers

Recently, more and more brides want to email a list of flowers to us and have us give them a quote for their wedding--without ever talking to a real person. I have problems with this approach.

First, it usually means that the bride has emailed 20 florists and is just looking for the cheapest quote. This is a horrible way to get your wedding flowers. Remember the old adage "you get what you pay for". Some flower shops will lowball the quote just to get you in the door, and then you find out the price is actually much higher. Other shops will bid low, and the cheap flowers will reflect the bid.
Not us. When you pick a shop like Visser's, that has years and years of experience, and one works hard at maintaining a great reputation, you don't have to worry about your wedding flowers.

When you look back at your wedding, either in your pictures or in your memories, flowers will play an extremely important part. Give them the attention they deserve.

Finally, it doesn't cost anything but a little time to come in and talk to a wedding consultant. It's their job to make sure you are happy. They can tell you how to get the most for your money, and how to best create the magic that you are striving for. Be honest with them--give them your budget (the real one) and share your vision. You will be amazed with the results.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

FTD Top Member -- Again!

We have recently been notified by FTD that Visser's Florist has once again been selected as a FTD top member florist. Based order volume and certain other criteria like product quality, FTD selects about 100 of the biggest and best flower shops in the nation to be its TOP MEMBERS.
I am proud to say that Visser's has been a member of this elite group of shops for several years in a row.
What this means to you is that when you deal with Visser's you are dealing with a flower shop that has been ranked at the very top of the thousands and thousands of shops in the U.S. We have the volume to buy quality flowers at cheaper prices and pass the savings on to you. We also have a 51 year reputation to protect so when you send an order through us, you know we stand behind it.
After all, isn't that what you really want when ordering flowers--reasonable prices, qreat quality and a commitment to getting the best for our customers? Give us a try--you won't be sorry.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Who would kill a florist

A Florist in Toronto was found dead in the bathroom of her flower shop by her husband. Felicia Hosany, owner of Flowers by Felicia, was discovered by her husband. Subsequent reports link her death to a robbery, which is very similar to another flower shop robbery a few blocks away.
After her husband found her and called paramedics, they forced open the bathroom door in the store, and found Felicia tied to a chair and was bound and gagged with duct tape.
She was declared dead at the scene. It appears that she suffocated because the tape covered her mouth and nose.
My question is why would anyone want to rob a flowershop. Most of them don’t make very much money to begin with, and what they do bring in is usually paid for by credit card. It’s really a sad state of affairs when even a florist is at risk.
We didn’t know Felicia personally, but nevertheless, we will all miss her.