April showers bring May flowers, which is exactly what the new business on Seacrest Beach aims to deliver.
Formerly known as Musgrove Florist, Flower House has taken a new name and location with owners Jake and Karen Miller.
When the husband and wife team decided to purchase the Panama City Beach-based flower business, they decided to head to a new address with more curb appeal.
"It's a more vibrant location," Jake said of the 30A placement. "Before, it was located in a rundown plaza and the walking traffic didn't exist."
When the Millers opened up shop last month, it felt like another world, Jake said.
"It's a good feeling to come to work every day," he said.
Taking on the blooming business was driven by Karen's passion for horticulture. Before moving to Florida, the Millers lived in upstate New York where Karen taught gardening, nutrition and canning in addition to helping local schools plant flower gardens. She holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Foundation at Cornell University. This summer, Karen will continue her floral education with Jake when they enroll in the South Florida School of Floral Design in Lake Worth, Fla.
Having never owned a floral shop before, the Millers are learning how busy certain holidays can be. With graduations and Mother's Day, the store has been bustling, which is good news to the business-owners. However, they strive to not be dependent on holidays. Thanks to several house accounts, the shop is busy year-round.
Giving back to the community that supports you is important, Karen said. Flower House regularly donates to charity fundraisers for organizations such as Boys and Girls Club.
The new business is more than just your average floral delivery service. The store also houses a gift shop featuring knick-knacks, unique vases, balloons and more. If you're looking for a more personalized gift, you can opt to have the Flower House designers put together a themed basket — whether it's a picnic basket complete with wine or a kid-friendly beach pail and sand toys. Presenting original arrangements and gifts is important to Jake and Karen.
"It's more personal, people can stop by and pick what they want. We even let them go in the cooler," Karen said. "You can go to Wal-Mart and get any arrangement, but at Flower House we offer different types of flowers, better quality and longer lasting flowers."
Purchasing flowers from a local florist versus chain grocery stores has benefits beyond supporting local businesses. It's a matter of quality, Karen explained.
"Most grocery stores get the cheapest flowers they can get; they might last three to four days," she said. "We have fresh flowers delivered from Pensacola and we pick what we want from the truck and they last up to two weeks. When you have a passion for what you do, you want it to look nice and put a smile on your customer's face."
NEED FLOWERS? Flower House offers arrangements and gift baskets for any occasion through wire-in, wire-out and Florists' Transworld Delivery (FTD), or you could stop by the shop, located at 9961 E. County Rd. 30A, Seacrest Beach. For more information, visit www.flowerhouseflowers.com or call 234-7673.