Wholesale Flowers in Linda Vista
Plus, the Linda Vista-Beatles Birthday Connection, and Upcoming Community Events
Do you like fresh flowers on the table? Do you need a lei for a graduate? Do you need a beautiful funeral spray? And do you want these things without breaking the bank? Well then, maybe Wholesale Flowers and Supplies is the place for you.
This store, tucked away off Linda Vista Road at 5305 Metro Street, is a fun place to visit. The store is full of flowers, both fresh and artificial, everything you need to make your own beautiful arrangements including vases and ribbons, pre-made arrangements or made to order, and so much more. My favorite spot is the cold room, filled with buckets of every flower imaginable that you can purchase individually or in bunches, all reasonably priced. The staff is friendly and will answer all your questions. And if that's not enough, the Home Decor section, added in 2019, will amaze you. I’m sure you won’t leave without your arms full of beautiful purchases.
In a recent visit we asked if the store management would be willing to answer some questions about the business for our readers. Cristian Ferretti, Assistant Manager, graciously complied and here are the results of our interview with him.
— How long has Wholesale Flowers been operating at this location?
Wholesale Flowers has been at 5305 Metro Street for roughly 20 years. Before that, we were actually located at the corner of Metro Street, in the red bricked building.
— What portion of your sales is to other retail stores (wholesale versus walk-in customers)?
I would estimate that our business sells around 30-40% to florists, and 60-70% public.
— Of the fresh flowers you sell, which are your most popular? Has any one particular flower(s) been growing in popularity recently?
As for our most popular flowers, roses are of course the staple of the floral business and carnations are a close second. There is however no correct answer being that in reality, trends are fluid and ever changing. Pinterest tends to drive a different flower’s popularity week by week.
— What are your busiest holidays in terms of business?
Our busiest day of the year is a near tie between Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day. Mother’s Day does however take the cake as far as the busiest holiday of the year.
— When did you expand to include the home decor section?
Our new Home Decor addition to the business was set up in May of 2019. Shortly thereafter, we opened a doorway between the two sides.
— Are most of your sales from individual flowers or pre-made arranged flowers?
The majority of our sales come from fresh cut flowers. Our expert designers make special arrangements from either a catalog, or a customer request.
— How has the pandemic affected your business?
The pandemic has affected our business just as it has all other small businesses here in San Diego. We have been serving SD County for over thirty years and we don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. Traffic dropped, employees and customers alike were scared to go out, and people didn’t need flowers. Things seemed dim but our customer base stayed loyal and got us through the toughest time we’ve seen in decades.
— Tell our readers something interesting about the flower business that they might not already know?
An interesting fact about the floral business is that about 70% of domestically produced flowers are grown in California!
— How does your staff learn all there is to know about flowers and flower arrangements?
Our designers have formal schooling in design and floral arranging. The rest of our staff is taught on the job by the Managers.
— What are some helpful hints you can give customers regarding taking care of newly purchased flowers?
Whenever buying flowers (even for a few days from the purchase date) the first thing you want to do is give those stems a fresh cut and get them all in water. After that just take off all the packaging and have fun arranging! Cut flowers don't like being in direct sunlight so make sure to keep them happy and out of harsh sun rays.
— What do you personally enjoy about working with flowers?
The thing I enjoy most working at Wholesale Flowers would have to be the customers. I am constantly working the customer service desk and it makes me happy to see that by selling flowers, I am helping to brighten up everyone's day!
—What is the most expensive flower you sell?
The most expensive flower we sell would have to be the highly desired “Peony”. Everyone loves peonies and we get asked year round if we have them, however the season is really short and limits the flower to be sold in May, and some years June as well. For three stems you will roughly pay $10 to $15 dollars in an average season.
— Is there anything else you’d like to say to our readers about Wholesale Flowers or flowers in general?
The last thing I would like to say to the readers is this: if you’re already a customer of ours I appreciate you and your taste in flower shops. And if you haven’t ever heard of us, I encourage everyone to come down and meet the team, we will help everyone out with any size project.
The Linda Vista Update wishes to thank Cristian Ferretti for taking the time to answer our questions.
5305 Metro Street
San Diego, CA 92110
Monday thru Saturday: 8:00 am to 5:30 pm
Sunday: 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
The Liverpool to Linda Vista Beatles Birthday Connection
Did you know that Paul McCartney celebrated his 79th birthday this past Friday (June 18)? And then there’s Ringo Starr. Are you aware he turns 81 on July 5?
What’s with all the Beatles’ birthdays? And when did they get so old?
I know what you’re thinking, readers. What do the Beatles have to do with Linda Vista? There can’t be a connection, right? After all, over 5000 miles separate Linda Vista from Liverpool, England. As far as I know, no Beatle ever stepped foot in Linda Vista. And I understand there is no Penny Lane in Linda Vista. There is talk of building a Linda Vista community garden, but we’ve never ever (much less forever) had any Strawberry Fields. Nevertheless, I still contend there exists one sliver of a connection between Linda Vista and the Beatles. Though there is no truth to the outlandish rumor that sometime in the 1960’s the Beatles paid a secret visit to Linda Vista and played a concert at Skateworld (with the bootleg recording now a valuable collector’s item), the Fab Four did indeed get within 5 miles of Linda Vista back on August 28, 1965. That was the day the Beatles actually played a concert at the old Balboa Stadium. It was the only time the group played here in San Diego. Accordingly, that’s where we find the Linda Vista-Liverpool connection, because in attendance at that concert was longtime Linda Vista resident Sandy Coker.
Upon discovering this interesting Linda Vista rock and roll connection, and in light of the McCartney-Starr Beatle birthday confluence, the Linda Vista Update thought it was a good time to ask Ms. Coker to share her memories of that historic concert.
It turns out that while still a student at Montgomery Middle School, Coker was lucky enough to attend the concert and be an official participant in what was once joyfully referred to as Beatlemania. With Ringo Starr as her favorite Beatle, Coker attended the concert with a couple of her fellow neighborhood kids, driven to the concert by a neighborhood dad. She was able to successfully keep the “expensive” price of the ticket (about $6.00) a secret from her dad. She described the concert as “crazy” and “wild” with “lots of yelling”, and many more females than males in attendance. When asked if she was one of the females yelling, she assured us that she might have screamed, but “not too much.” She also described the concert as full of “good music” driven by a “good sound system,” though she remarked that the stage was in the middle of the field, and the security guards threatened to cut the concert short because the fans kept getting past the barricades and approaching the stage. According to Coker, once the Beatles left the stage, some fanatical fans began to pull up patches of grass from the field in an attempt to garner themselves a souvenir of the night (that’s why they called it Beatlemania).
According to an article published in the San Diego Union Tribune, there were approximately 17,000 people in attendance for the concert, and what was most interesting were the backstage arrangements for the Beatles which included the following: “ The Beatles, as per their contract, were provided with one rented piano; two cases of soda pop; two tubs of Kentucky Fried Chicken; three portable TV sets; four cots and sets of clean sheets; five 1-gallon bottles of water; 10 dozen paper cups and 24 assorted sandwiches. The total cost for their backstage food: $33.96.” But rest assured readers, that’s when $33.96 was a lot of money!!
Coker remains a big Beatles fan and maintains her favorite Beatles tunes continue to be “Hey Jude” and “A Hard Day’s Night.” And she’s proud to say that she also attended another British invasion band concert—the Dave Clark Five— at the old Westgate Stadium (located where the Fashion Valley Mall is today).
Cameron Crowe, the famous rock and roll journalist, critic and screenwriter (the movies Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Almost Famous) attended the old University of San Diego High School which was located in Linda Vista. And according to Wikipedia, Bob Mosley, a member of the 1960’s group Moby Grape, graduated from Kearny High School. Those two people notwithstanding, Linda Vista doesn’t have much to brag about in terms of rock and roll history. So until we discover that Jimi Hendrix once attended Kearny High School, or that Mick Jagger used to hang out at Mr. Peabody’s, or that Jan and Dean’s hit song “Linda” was really about Linda Vista, we will be proud to report that Sandy Coker rates high on our list of Linda Vista rock and roll historical personalities.
Now, let’s all think about how we’re going to personally celebrate Ringo Starr’s birthday!
Upcoming Community Events
—Linda Vista Planning Group. The LV Planning Group will hold its monthly board meeting at 5:30 pm on June 28. The meeting will be held on Zoom. You can attend by clicking here: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86886713189
—San Diego Legion: The San Diego Legion Rugby team, a member of Major League Rugby, will play its next home game at 12:00 pm on July 3. The game will be played at the University of San Diego’s Torero Stadium. The Legend will be playing the Seattle Seawolves. Get ticket information here: https://sdlegion.com/collections/game-tickets
— Movie Night. The Linda Vista Recreation Center will be hosting a Movie Night on July 16. See the poster below for details.
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