by Janet Lee Harrold
Baby it’s cold outside, but inside it’s like an enchanted gift shop filled with wonder and magic. It’s the most wonderful time of the year at Cedar Grove Gardens and we are like busy little elves preparing for the upcoming Holiday Season. I thought I would take a minute to define just what it is that we do behind the scenes. An effort to inform and inspire you and put you in the Holiday spirit, grab a cup of coffee and curl up on the couch with your lap top as if you were watching your favorite Hallmark Christmas movie. Warning this may exhaust you!
For most of you, the Christmas Holiday begins the day after Thanksgiving, but when you are in retail, the holiday starts much earlier than that, often in the summer months and for some of us it really is an all year round on-going event. Though we try and prepare early, (after all Christmas is the same time every year) and because most of our product is fresh, it seems like there just isn’t enough time or days leading up to the “Holiday Hustle” with a full staff on hand working overtime and extra seasonal help hired, we somehow manage to get through it, at the end of the season we have accomodated hundreds of happy customers like yourself. At least, that’s the goal!
Outside in the garden center we stock over a thousand Christmas trees, balsam and fraser fir are two of my favorites, we also carry pine and balsam roping and a variety of different size wreaths. Some of the wreaths are plain and others are beautifully decorated, did you know that we are one of the few local shops that design custom wreaths while you wait? A service that separates us from the rest and one that our customers have really become a custom to. we even have customers who travel a great distance to have one of our famous “Bow Ladies” create a masterpiece for their front door. We use only the finest quality ribbon and our designs are as unique as our shop itself. We do carry traditionally decorated wreaths and have many all ready made and hung outside for you to grab, but inside is not an assembly line where wreaths are made basic and quick to fulfill the demand, these are top quality designs made to your specifications. Our custom wreaths are nothing short of extraordinary.
An additional service that we provide is Holiday Installations. We enjoy filling your containers and window boxes full of winter fragrances, fresh incence cedar, balsam boughs, red twig dogwood, pine cones, birch logs and berries, the possibilities are endless. In fact a lot of the local streets that you see decorated are created by Cedar Grove Gardens. Did you know that we also decorate off site? We actively deck the halls of many commercial and residential homes as well- both inside and outside. Our clients come to us for a professional hassle-free experience. We decorate many local restaurants, bars, offices, property management and personal homes and churches.
Inside the shop is where the real magic happens, stroll through our beautifully decorated Christmas tree’s and pick a sparkling ornament, we have hundreds! Relish in the inspiring decorating ideas strewn throughout the shop and take home with you your new found passion for stylizing that you didn’t even know you had. Observe the many talented designers on site working their magic with fresh flowers. In addition to the Holidays, everyday floral life shall go on, you may spy them creating flowers for a special birthday, a funeral or if you are lucky they may be preparing for a special event such as a holiday Christmas party or styling a wedding. Either way, I guarantee it will be droolworthy!
Gift Giving… unfortunately, in today’s online world, the inside of the shop is something that many of our customer’s don’t get the pleasure of seeing. Our website mostly features fresh floral arrangements and so many have no idea what a hidden gem we actually have. There is something irreplaceable about being able to walk into the shop and experience all the smells and feels that bring your Holiday experience to life. Coming up with gift ideas for everyone seems impossible, inside you can find unique gifts that are perfect for any age, for any occasion and for anybody. We have a lot of non traditional treasures that are great for hostess gifts and teacher’s gifts. In a rush as most of us are, there is always the gift card option and we have them in any denomination.
Peace & Joy… though the days are long during the Holiday season from early morning market runs starting at 5:00a.m. at the Boston Flower Exchange, and closing the shop most evenings at 8p.m. Some would say that as florists we need our heads examined but there is something unusually fun and fulfilling about unloading Christmas trees and serving our loyal customers for almost 40 years that makes it all worth it in the end. I always say that sleep is a bit over rated after all, nothing a little eggnog can’t fix right!!? Cheers!