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January, 05 2019

Do You Ootheca?

Tags: Bugs

We have a pretty sweet terrarium in our kitchen at the LoCoFlo Studio. Our friend Irene picked it up on the side of the road a few years ago. It has showcased many wedding dioramas featuring calacas (Mexican skeletons) and has been home to several pupae (totally Kafkaesque - majorly).

This winter, some new tenants moved into the terrarium: The Oothecae (check out the pronunciation). Ootheca are egg cases where baby praying mantises gestate.

These nut-like cocoons frequently hitch a ride on evergreen branches that come into the shop - especially arborvitae. Anytime we see them, We clip them off and store them in our terrarium until Jess can remember to bring them to Bloomhouse. (Praying mantises are good for flower farms: They eat bugs that are harmful to flowers.)

Brittney was the first on the staff to identify the oothecae, and (because she's weird) had the word "ootheca" as part of her normal vocabulary. However, she mispronounced it saying "oo-oo" like a monkey. Or like ululate, which I did after learning more about the little time-bombs I thought were benignly hanging out in our kitchen..

When LoCoFlo MVP Kira told me the warmth of the shop might trick the baby mantises to hatch early, I had a mini freak-out. After some quick math (5 oothecae x 200 baby praying mantises per ootheca = LoCoFlo shop disaster) I threatened Jess with Trumpian revenge if she did not transport the oothecae to her farm before they exploded:



December, 27 2018

2019 LoCoFlo BookClub

Tags: BookClub, Friends, Routine, Nerdy AF

The LoCoFlo Book Club is getting extra nerdy in 2019 with a Darwin add-on. As always, the book club is super casual - just drop in. Meetings take place on Monday nights (dates below) at 7pm at our studio You can see more info on our Book Club facebook page. We’re always looking for more folks to join in the fun!

  • February 25 2019 Unsheltered, Barbara Kingsolver
  • April 22 2019 American Eden, Victoria Johnson
  • June 24 2019 The Hidden Life of Trees, Peter Wohlleben and Mike Grady
  • August 19 2019 The Reason for Flowers, Stephen Buchmann and Jonathan Yen
  • October 21 2019 A Beautiful Question, Frank Wilczek
  • December 9 2019 Darwin Comes to Town Menno Schilthuizen and Chris Nayak

Since Darwin has been a frequent subject in many of the books we've read over the past six years, we are finally going to tackle On the Origin of Species. This is an optional add-on to the scheduled readings. At the end of every meeting we'll discuss a few chapters of Darwin with the goal of finishing in December of 2019.

Our homie Charlie

Darwin add-on schedule (seriously):

  • February 25 2019 Intro and Chapters 1 and 2
  • April 22 2019 Chapters 3 and 4
  • June 24 2019 Chapters 5, 6 and 7
  • August 19 2019 Chapters 8 and 9
  • October 21 2019 Chapters 10, 11, 12
  • December 9 2019 Chapters 13 and 14


November, 30 2018

The 2018 LoCoFlo Gift Guide

Tags: So Local

Registries. Wish lists, Come on. You can do better. Be a creative gift-giver this year.

Surprise sweetie. Delight mom. Enchant Memaw. Anybody can click a box on Amazon. You are different. You are the best boyfriend, girlfriend, wife or husband. So much better than your siblings. A gift from LoCoFlo will make you the envy of givers and will garner eternal gratitude from receivers.

No Black Friday at LoCoFlo. Only unique, thoughtful, gifts that say as much about you as the joy the gift brings itself. Local. Sustainable. Special.

Order OnLine

We make it easy to be the bombest gifter this season. Check out our holiday order form. Centerpieces, arrangements, wreaths, gift certificates, subscriptions, the Pick Up and more! Orders available for pick up or delivery in Baltimore.

Visit us

Makers Alley Holiday pop up market. Ten local vendors set up in our shop Saturday Dec 8 9-12

Sat@LoCoFlo Saturdays 8:00AM-12:00PM Pick up a wrapped bouquet or some of our sweet swag - you be drippin'.

Open Studio Wednesdays 4:00PM-8:00PM Design your own.


November, 09 2018


Tags: Bugs

Not a bug, but high-stylin'.


October, 16 2018

The PickUp 2.0

Tags: The PickUp, Hilarious, Open Studio, Routine, So Local

The LoCoFlo PickUp has been improving flower lovers’ lives for a few years now. PickerUppers signed up in the winter. After great anticipation, the PickUp revved up in April. LoCoFlo cranked out locally grown bouquets of flowers once per month through October for pick up at the shop. Floral joy for all.

So, what about version 2.0? How can the PickUp improve your life even more?

Imagine this: A dark auditorium. Standing room only. Steve Jobs walks across an empty stage in his black mock turtleneck tucked into unbelted jeans with white sneakers (I know, but it’s just not the same with Tim - where was Queer Eye anyway?). Edge of our seats, mystery, nerding-out, etc. what is THE NEXT BIG THING?

Oh yeah the LoCoFlo Seasonal PickUp!

We are now offering the PickUp not just once a year. More than twice a year. Not even only thrice a year. But fource a year - the PickUp every season! You can now PickUp all year. No more waiting through the dreary winter months. No more missing the PickUp during the holidays. Non-Stop PickUp. Lit!

But that’s not all. We totally BK'ed the PickUp. You can have it your way. Choose the dates you want (as long as it’s a Wednesday). You can pick up every week during the season, or every other week, or every Wednesday for just one month, or go old school and pick up every third Wednesday (that would be weird, why every third Wednesday? whatever). You get the idea. The options are endless - well not really - but you get to choose your PickUp dates. Sick!

Stick around after your PickUp for our Open Studio event, every Wednesday 4:00-8:00. Make an arrangement with your PickUp or enhance your bouquet with some extra.

So, there it is. Kinda like when cheese showed up inside the pizza crust, you thought the PickUp couldn’t get any better and BOOM!


September, 11 2018

Meet a Grower: Bloomhouse

Tags: Farmers, Hilarious

LoCoFlo was very excited to buy the first flowers grown by some spanking new local farmers last week! Bloomhouse is an ambitious new business founded by Jess and Sam, former best friends who are participating in Future Harvest’s Beginner Farmer training program. If they sound like contestants on “The Amazing Race” - that is exactly what I thought when I interviewed them about their business.

In addition to Bloomhouse and learn-working at Butterbee Farm in the program, Jess joined us late last year to be the new Stacy. Still on probation, she is really making a go of it as a designer. When I asked to interview her for this blog, she wanted to make sure Sam was included (“Sam doesn’t want to miss out on anything!”). So we face-timed her in…

Jess, Sam and their first Bloomhouse check

How did all this begin?

Sam was rehabbing an ankle injury last year by hobbling around a park and thought there needs to be a better place to rehab ankle injuries.

OK. Strange. Very millennial - like an episode of “Girls” - then Bloomhouse was born. Why not “Broken Ankle Flowers”?

Ha. Ha. Jess needed to be included in the name. We found the LoCoFlo website and the grower’s page. That helped us to discover all the other growers in the area. We went to Bob Wollam’s farm for his annual festival and was inspired to build a place like that.

Acres of flowers, residences, flower interns, venue rental, dog park, ferris wheel, a true compound? This is sounding a little like Waco.

Yes! Like Chip and Joanna!

I was thinking more like David Koresh.

(blank stares)

This was back when you were in the “best friend zone”.

We’re still best friends.

But you can really have only one best friend. And Jess found a new best friend at LoCoFlo. Anyway, Do you have $10,000,000?

No, but we just sold $24 of flowers to you and we will each have $1,000 at the end of the farmer training program and Jess’s fiance Toby has equity in his house.

You’re on your way. And, Tobs will be an investor?

He will have a music studio on the compound.

And when was this ankle-injury-inspired business plan conceived?

Just last year. We came up with the name while watching football.

Wow. And you have already sold flowers?

Yes. We are growing at Toby’s house for now. Plus we are on the LoCoFlo growers page!

Jess at the Food Market with Bloomhouse flowers

Who are your flower mentors?

Definitely LB at Butterbee. Also, Maya at Hillen Homestead

What about local flower O.G.s like Dave Dowling, Bob Wollam and Leon Carrier?

They are so accomplished and know so much, we get nervous.

What else do we need to know about Bloomhouse?

Jess is the muscle and Sam is the business.

Nice. At LoCoFlo Ellen is the macaroni and I am the cheese. Partnerships like that can’t lose!


July, 27 2018

Art at the Shop

Tags: Friends, So Local

We love local art and artists. Many of our designers are graduates of art school - mostly MICA including current designer, farmer and aquatic artist Jess Rowe. We’ve commissioned paintings, purchased paintings, even painted some graphics on our walls. Our art represent our values, challenge our industry, establish identity, inspire our visitors, provide income, express our gratitude and more.

Here are some the paintings and other art we have collected over the years, the stories behind them, and artists who provided the work.

Matt Muirhead (https://www.instagram.com/mattmuirheadartist)

We met Matt when he modeled for our flower beard photoshoot. When Matt had an exhibit at the Creative Alliance featuring paintings of massive flower bouquets overwhelming Baltimore city buildings, we commissioned two of this theme for beloved long-time employees who moved on from us - Carling who continues to work for us from her home in Michigan and Irene who opened Dylan’s Oyster Cellar with her husband.

Matt also painted an image of our shop on top of a Robert Furber botanical print which was commissioned as a birthday gift for Ellen.

Annie Howe (http://www.anniehowepapercuts.com/)

Lucky Ellen was the recipient of more art for another birthday. Ellen’s thoughtful husband approached Annie with a request for a floral papercut. Annie made this fantastic and intricate design which depicts varieties grouped by season.

We were so pleased with the papercut, we had Momentum Printing make t-shirts and hoodies with the image.

Barbara Wolfe (comeonbarbragetawebsite)

Barbara is our friend who is an artist, musician, hobo, flower peddler, and floral designer among other vocations. We met Barbara through Locust Point Flowers at the 32nd Street Saturday farmer’s market down the street from our shop. She designed for us for a while, delivered weddings, and one day- just like dust in the wind - she was gone.

Barbara re-appeared in our lives as she was preparing for a show at Alchemy of Art in Fells Point. She used our flowers as the object of some of her paintings including the one we bought for the shop.

Graphics on our Walls

Our interpretation of Rage, the Flower Thrower by Banksy.

If you are not familiar with street art, Banksy is among the most famous graffiti artists. One of his more well-know stencils is a protester throwing a bouquet of flowers. We altered the image by wrapping the bouquet in burlap to support burlap freedom and our flower friends who were threatened with legal action for using burlap.

Our Shepard Fairey - via Barbara Kruger - inspired LOCAL graphic.

Another street artist, Fairey’s ubiquitous OBEY stickers gave us the idea for LOCAL. This fair use graphic has also been a popular t-shirt for us, The flower icon comes from the Noun Project. The rest was rudimentary Photoshop skills.

Come by the shop to check out the art (and flowers) in person! Saturdays 8:00AM-12:00Noon or Wednesdays 4:00PM-8:00PM


July, 04 2018

Meet Stacy Update: SBJ

Tags: Meet a LoCoFloer, Hilarious

Sweet Baby James is here! He was born among the hydrangeas.


May, 22 2018

Meet a LoCoFloer: Stacy Yeager

Tags: Meet a LoCoFloer, Hilarious

First question, elephant in the room, any big news?

Did you call me an elephant? I’m 8 months pregnant!

When’s the big day?

June 15. Hopefully sooner!

Ooh! We’re getting close. Boy or Girl?

Boy. And you’re not involved.



So cute! Does Forrest know?

(giggling) Of course, I see him every day.

Gotcha. How did you get started at LoCoFlo?

When I was a junior in college, I was looking into summer programs for agricultural volunteers. I really wanted to go abroad and live on an organic farm. I wanted to be a Wwoofer.

What? A Wookie?

(giggling again) No. WWOOF. It’s World Wide Opportunities in Organic Farming. During my research, I found Laura Beth who was a Wwoofer. Now she owns Butterbee Farm. She introduced me to Ellen.

So, you were looking for an idyllic summer on a organic farm in a foreign land, and you became a flower designer in Waverly?

(more giggling) Yes. That is how I met Ellen.

Those are totally different things. What did Ellen say?

She invited me for an interview for an internship.

And you you nailed it?

I guess so! I started learning in the winter of 2014 and you hired me for the summer.

Now you are our lead designer!

If you say so.

Yes, you are our number one! (Until James messes that up.) What do you do at LoCoFlo?

Mostly design arrangements. Whatever needs to be done. Make garland, wedding consultations, styling, wreaths…

Wait. What’s styling. Like me - high stylin’?

(pity giggle) Playing with dead flowers.

Oh right, I remember. Your viral post?

(lots of giggling) I guess so?

Tell us something we don’t know about you.

Oh my. I’m kind of an open book. I don’t know. I like scary movies and shows. Turkey Hill is my favorite ice cream.

I already know that. What is your favorite LoCoFlo memory?

I think the beards was really fun. Our first nacho party at Carling’s house. There are lots of good ones. The best was making a mock up of my own bridal bouquet.

What about the time we brought the compost to Real Food and drove up on the man who…


What about the time you were introduced to the Saddleback caterpillar hidden on the back of a leaf?

No! That hurt a lot. It felt like my hand was on fire!

What about the time...

These are not good memories.

What is your theme song?

“It’s A Good Day to Alive” by Travis Tritt or “Chicken Fried” by Zach Brown Band.

What about “Drunk on a Plane”?

(exasperated giggling) No. I wasn’t drunk on the plane. I spilled some wine,.and I shouldn’t have told you about it.

Maybe if you took it easy on the sauce you wouldn’t have…

(not giggling) I WASN’T drunk! And it WASN’T fun flying to South Africa with wine-soaked pants.

I know the answer to this one: WTMD or WPOC?

I like gravel in my travel. (Editor’s note: Local Color Flowers is a proud sustaining monthly donor to WTMD.)

Why is your alias Princess Peach?

I don’t know, you gave it to me.

Yeah, I don’t know either.

Who is your favorite co-worker at the shop?

I’m not answering that.

Is it me?

No.These questions are weird. I have a question for you - Are you using my baby to promote LoCoFlo?

Maybe. Also, I thought I might get a jump on recruiting Sweet Baby James to replace me as delivery boy. I ain’t getting any younger.

Let’s wrap it up. Thanks for talking with me.



April, 27 2018

Open Studio - Your Wednesday Night Get-A-Away

Tags: Open Studio, Friends, Routine

“Aren’t you the flower shop that is never open?”

That’s not the response we are hoping for when meeting someone new, but we hear it.

We’re not a retail shop. Most of our work is for events, classes, subscriptions and deliveries. So, we get it.

But, come on, we’re open anytime for orders or appointments. Plus, we’ve got Sat@LoCoFlo where you can get your flower fix every Saturday 8:00AM-12:00PM. Stop over during the 32nd Street Farmers Market.

Still jones'n for more local flowers? We got you.

Open Studio is now every Wednesday 4:00PM-8:00PM. Plus we’ve teamed up with Remington Wine who is offering a 15% discount for your drinks and snacks on your way over.

What is it?

Open Studio is a self-directed flower design event. It’s super casual. Bring a vase or buy one from us. We have the flowers, the corkscrew, and everything else you need for a magical evening of floral enchantment.

Come solo for some alone time with flowers, or bring friends for a unique social outing. (Please give us a heads up for groups of more than four so we can prep.)

How it works

Just drop in. We sell flowers by the stem. You pick them out. Make an arrangement as big as you want. Designers will be available for critique and advice.

Open Studio is a great mid-week get-away. Practice what you learn at our classes, prep for Bloom Battle, make your weekly arrangement, de-stress, so many possibilities. The flowers will change each week so you can make something different every time.

So, yeah, we are not never open. Saturday mornings and Wednesday nights. Totally make sense.


April, 15 2018

Giant Leopard Moth

Tags: Bugs


April, 02 2018

Improve Your Life for Only $210 (plus tax) - The PickUp!

Tags: The PickUp, Open Studio, So Local, Hilarious, Routine

Imagine you could go back in time to make a different choice. Maybe you would make a decision with your heart, instead of your brain - like selecting UMBC for a first round win on your bracket. Maybe you would go against the crowd and keep your online personal data secure by never joining Facebook. Maybe you would act like a normal human and not use a secret home equity loan to get your super-rich buddy out of a bind.

We can’t go back in time. We live with busted brackets, busted data, and busted leaders. But we can imagine a future where today’s decisions make our future selves not busted - decisions for an improved life.

Fast forward to next New Year’s eve. You are totally smashed and get reflective while Auld Lang Syne is hazily sung in the background. You ask yourself: What did I do this past year that was awesome? What decision could have I made that would make me say right now - Sweet Baby James, that was the best thing I did all year and I am better for it!

Let me help you out. The answer is The PickUp. This game-changing, can’t miss, no regret, best thing you will do all year panacea is a monthly subscription of locally grown flowers offered by LoCoFlo. It isn’t even difficult to obtain this sweet elixir. All you need to do is fill out this form and fork over a little scratch, or you can just show up at the shop each third Wednesday of the month April - October. (Update: now seasonal and available year-round - check out our The PickUp 2.0 post.)

Here are some made up quotes overheard at The PickUp last year:

“I’ve lost weight since joining The PickUp - I wasn’t even trying. In fact, I am eating more and exercising less. Plus my hair is thicker and less grey. It’s magic!”

“I’ve been feeling real frisky since my partner signed me up for The PickUp! I’ve been showing how much I appreciate it with some special attention." (I’m pretty sure that means sex.)

"The flowers have a calming affect on my children. They are delightful - the flowers, not the kids. The kids are still monsters, just a little more bearable.”

“After I joined The PickUp, my boss gave me a pat on the back and raise! Thanks LoCoFlo!”

“I’ve traveled the world, met with shamens, gurus, holy people. Nothing could cure my ills - then I found The PickUp.”

“Everything is better! Everything is wonderful!” Then fancy-pants actually started signing “Pure Imagination” from Willy Wonka and twirled out of the shop.

Joining The PickUp makes you the kind of person who says “Hell yes I picked the Retrievers, totally called it”, “no way I’m giving that nerd my info”, and “yeah, you’re on your own with that Stormy chick, bro”.

Join The PickUp. Your future self will thank you.


March, 04 2018

Third Annual Bloom Battle is ON!

Tags: Bloom Battle

We’re so excited to announce Bloom Battle: LoCoFlo’s third annual amateur floral design competition! If you’ve ever taken a class at Local Color Flowers or you love dabbling in design at home, this is the perfect opportunity to show off your skills and creativity.

How it Works!

Bloom Battle is a two day event:

  • April 6th 2018 - Competitors design and Instagram Famous voting
  • April 7th 2018 - Public Display, Judging and Glory

How to Participate

  • Be a contestant:
    Registration ($100 entry fee) is required. Space is limited.
  • Be a fan:
    Online: Enter your Likes among the three Instagram Famous finalists April 6 2018v10:30PM - April 7 2018 11:30AM.
    In person: View all arrangements at our studio on April 7 2018 9:00AM - 12:00PM and vote for your favorite. Most votes wins People’s Choice prize. Stick around for the announcement of winners.
  • Prizes

    Instagram Famous: LoCoFlo staff will select three centerpieces for online voting! Online voting is open between 10:30PM on April 6th 2018 and 11:30AM on April 7th 2018. Most likes wins. Prize: $50 LoCoFlo gift card

    People’s Choice: The centerpiece that receives the most votes by visitors to the studio (three votes per visitor) on Saturday morning 8:00AM-12:00PM wins! Prize: One of our favorite floral design books and a $25 LoCoFlo gift card

    Judges Selections Celebrity judges will evaluate entries based vessel choice, use of color, texture and composition.

    • 3rd Place: A LoCoFlo cap (also available for purchase), an Ideal Vessel Co. vase, and clippers like the pros use!
    • 2nd Place: A LoCoFlo knit hat (also available for purchase), $75 Remington Wine Co. gift care, and a $75 LoCoFlo gift card!
    • 1st Place: A LoCoFlo Sweatshirt (also available for purchase), $150 Food Market gift card, $100 LoCoFlo gift card!

    ,All contestants take home their arrangements at the end of the event. (everyone wins!)

    The Rules

    • All centerpieces must be created at Local Color Flowers’ Studio on Friday night, April 6th 2018 between the hours on 7:00PM and 9:00PM.
    • All centerpieces must be created using the flowers/foliage/branches provided by Local Color Flowers. The use of other flowers gathered from outside the studio whether forged or bought is not permitted.
    • The use of floral foam or Oasis is prohibited.
    • No wagering.
    • Amateurs only! No professional or former professional designers permitted.
    • Only registered contestants will be permitted in the studio for Friday night’s design night.
    • Vase opening may not be larger than five inches in diameter. Contestants are encouraged to use their own vases, Vases are available for purchase. All vases must be approved for entry.
    • Judge bribery will not be tolerated.
    • All supplies (clippers/water) and flowers necessary to create a show stopping centerpiece will be provided by Local Color Flowers.
    • All challenges will be reviewed by video in New York.

    The Celebrity Judges

    J. W. Radabaugh: Creative Director and Founder of QWRK Collective Environments.
    Irene Salmon: Owner Ideal Vessel Co., Dylan’s Oyster Cellar, Former LoCoFlo Designer
    Jess Schreibstein: Digital Strategist, Knitter, Painter, Founder of Mild Woman


    February, 14 2018

    Meet A Customer: Forrest (Valentine's Edition)

    Tags: Friends, Hilarious

    How long have you been a customer?

    I wouldn’t call myself a customer, but I am a regular. My crib is next to the shop. I’ve been coming to LoCoFlo for as long as I can remember.

    Oh, so you’re a neighbor?

    Yeah, LoCoFlo is the best smelling place around. Plus, they’ve got some sick talent. I have a little somethin’ somethin’ going on with a girl who works there.

    Really? That sounds juicy.

    Yeah. But we’re keeping it on the down low. She’s got an old man.

    Scandalous! How did this start?

    It was all Stacy. The first time I trotted into the shop, I wasn’t there more than a few seconds before the squealing started. She picked me up and kissed me before we were even properly introduced.

    She picked you up?

    Yeah. I only weigh 8 pounds.

    Because of your breed?

    Well, I’m small for my breed. But, can you blame her? I’m adorable. Everywhere I go ladies faun over me. Dudes too. But Stacy is my main babe. She gives the best belly rubs. Don’t tell Liz.

    Who is Liz?

    That’s my old lady,

    You dog!

    You know it. Representin’ all the Doodles.

    So, Rover Romeo, what do you have planned for Valentine’s Day?

    If I could get on the internet, I would order flowers from LoCoFlo’s website. They have special arrangements for Valentine’s Day, plus gift certificates, The Flower PickUp, and Gift Baskets.

    What about their Open Studio on Sunday February 11 10-2?

    Yeah, I’ll probably stop over. Open Studio is always the shizzle. But, I need to be careful - I’ve got a lot of ladies in the hood. I don’t need the drama.


    Yeah. Look, I gotta bounce. I’m meeting my homie, Larry.

    What are you guys up to?

    You don’t want to know.


    November, 17 2017

    2018 LoCoFlo BookClub

    Tags: BookClub, Friends, Nerdy AF, Routine

    2018 will mark the 5th year of the LoCoFlo Book Club! We are a drop in book club that reads books that loosely focus on the natural world. We have read fiction, non-fiction and poetry in past years. Our meetings take place on Monday nights (dates below) at 7pm at our studio in Charles Village (3100 Brentwood Ave Baltimore 21218). All meetings are drop-in so no need to RSVP. You can see more info on our Book Club facebook page. We’re always looking for more folks to join in the fun!

    • February 5 2018 Sea of Poppies Amitav Ghosh
    • April 9 2018 The Nature Fix Florence Williams
    • June 18 2018 A Passion for Nature: The Life of John Muir Donald Worster
    • August 20 2018 The Orchid Thief Susan Orlean
    • October 29 2018 The Book that Changed America Randall Fuller
    • December 10 2018 The Unsettlers Mark Sundeen

    Mark your calendars and start reading!


    November, 01 2017

    Pablo Escobar Started LoCoFlo

    Tags: So Local

    That’s right. THE Pablo Escobar. And I don’t mean some dude with the same name as Pablo Escobar. Not Pablito from down la calle. The real Pablo Escobar from Columbia. The guy Narcos is about. The biggest drug dealer in the world is the reason our little flower shop exists.

    I know what you’re thinking: No way. How could he have done this?

    Alright, I’ll admit he didn’t do it by himself - he got some help from the Bushes - H. W. and W. But, before I tell you how Don Pablo started a small locally grown flower shop in Baltimore 15 years after he died in Medellin, there are a few crazy things you need to know about cut flowers and cocaine.

    The cut flower business is a hyper-efficient 100 billion dollar a year world-wide industry. Today, 80% of flowers sold in The United States are grown in other countries! Truth. Almost all of those delicate, dying blooms come from a far off land. They are chemically preserved, packed, and shipped thousands of miles every day. Of all those imported flowers, three quarters come from Columbia.

    Q: Why do American’s buy so many flowers from Columbia?

    A: Pablo (and the Georges).

    If you haven’t seen Narcos on Netflix, you should. It’s pretty awesome. I’m assuming that some of the stuff is dramatized for TV but, Pablo Escobar’s life was really incredible. He is most infamous for founding and running the Medellin Cartel which supplied the United States with 80% of all cocaine that came into the country in the 1980’s.

    The scope of Pablo’s cocaine business was so big he was listed on Forbes’ international billionaires list for seven years in a row. He was making so much money he needed to spend $1,000 a week just on rubber bands to bundle cash.

    Anyway, the US government wanted to shut the party down. So, as part of the fight to stop Pablo from exporting nearly 100 tons of cocaine each month into the country, Bush 41 enacted the Andean Trade Preference Act (ATPA) in 1991. Bush 43 continued the effort with the Andean Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act (ATPDEA) in 2003.

    These acts remove import taxes and promote many commodities, including cut flowers, from Columbia and its neighbors. The ATPT and ATPDEA are intended to replace the cocaine business with legitimate business. Good idea, right? It has been working for some industries. But for cut flowers, the Andean trade acts made imported Columbian flowers way cheaper than American grown flowers. Columbian flowers have flooded the market which has put great pressure on American growers. Remember that 80% imported flower number I told you about, it was only 46% before the ATPA.

    Boom! Bolt of lightning! After learning about the proliferation of imported cut flowers and other flowers grown thousands of miles away from Baltimore (Columbia is closer to us than California), Ellen and some partners saw an opportunity. Local Color Flowers only uses flowers grown within 100 miles of the shop.

    So that is how Pablo Escobar started LoCoFlo. Would we still be selling locally grown flowers if Pablo never exported cocaine here? Of course! We are friends with our growers. It is the greenest way to sell flowers. And it just makes sense. Shout out to Pablo and George and George for making the story interesting.


    October, 30 2017

    Meet a LoCoFloer: Eric Moller

    Tags: Hilarious, Meet a LoCoFloer

    What do you do at LoCoFlo?

    What don’t I do!?! I truly think LoCoFlo would be out of business within a week without me. I am totally indispensable and irreplaceable.

    My primary responsibility is expert delivery of flowers to customers, but that hardly scratches the surface. I wash buckets. I clean the shop. I take out the compost. I’m also the tallest, and we have some very high shelves.

    Wow. It sounds like you have your hands full. What value do you contribute to the company?

    My most valuable contribution is cultivating the atmosphere and guiding culture at the shop. I’m really good with jokes. The designers and customers love me. They are particularly riveted by my stories from the road. Plus I’m easy on the eyes.

    Right. How did you get started at LoCoFlo?

    I’m married to Ellen. When she started the business she had two business partners. After Jen had twins, she just dropped out - totally flaked. Then, when Marina moved to the Eastern Shore, I swooped in. That is when LoCoFlo really started to cook with gas!

    Oh, I see. The picture is getting clearer. What is your experience with flowers?

    None! I can honestly say that after 10 years I still don’t know very much. And I haven’t developed any design skills. But I love working at LoCoFlo. I’ve worked in support roles at companies with great missions in the past: a homeless social service agency, an international health care NGO, and now LoCoFlo which advocates for local farmers.

    What’s a typical day like for you?

    It depends. During the week, the designers get in early to meet the farmers. Then they make the orders. I roll in late morning and I’m off slinging flowers to offices, hospitals and homes. Sometimes we will have a corporate event during the week.

    Every Wednesday night we have Open Studio. It is a drop-in, self-directed floral design event. But it gives our customers a chance to spend some quality time with me. I think of it like office hours with a professor.

    On the weekends we have Sat@LoCoFlo which is the bomb, and weddings. Delivering weddings can be intense. A typical wedding delivery includes personal flowers (bouquets, boutonnieres, corsages), ceremony arrangements, and table centerpieces. Often we will also set up and decorate an arch or chuppah. We will stick around until the ceremony is over to break down the arch. Occasionally, I will go back at the end of the night to retrieve rentals.

    Why do you say the wedding deliveries are intense?

    A wedding is one of the most important days in our customers’ life. Plus, it is so meaningful for the families. Although the flowers only last a short time, the pictures and memories last a lifetime. The floral products, my customer service, the experience we help to provide must be the highest quality. The customer put their trust in us for this day. It is a simple job, but it can be a high pressure situation. I take the deliveries very seriously, and it is a joy to be part of the wedding.

    What’s your favorite LoCoFlo memory?

    We have a lot of fun. nacho parties, flower beards, photo shoots, awards. Last fall two of our designers and one of our farmers got married (not to each other). We designed the florals and attended all three weddings. We had a party before all of the weddings at the shop featuring our neighborhood Hip Hop Chicken.

    Thanks for talking with me


    July, 31 2017

    Baltimore In Bloom

    Tags: Friends, Farmers, So Local

    Last weekend we were thrilled to host Dave Dowling, President of the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers and Mimo Davis of Urban Buds: City Grown Flowers in St. Louis Missouri for a whirlwind tour of flower farming in and around Baltimore.

    We’re so proud of our Baltimore flower farming community and we were excited to introduce Baltimore to our out of town guests.

    We started at the Sunday market to visit Elisa Lane of Two Boots Farm. Elisa started farming in Baltimore City when she co-founded Whitelock Community Farm in the Reservoir Hill. She and her husband now farm in Hampstead, Maryland. Each year she grows more and more flowers (because it’s addictive!)

    Next we headed over to Ananda Growers. Jen and Abhi are first year growers growing in East Baltimore in the shadow of Dr. King’s image. In addition to Ananda Growers, Jen also runs a youth farming program called Common Ground Youth Farming as part of her OSI Fellowship.

    Next, we traveled a few blocks east to visit Walker at Tha Flower Factory. A big sunny half acre in the middle of East Baltimore, Tha Flower Factory is in it’s 2nd year of growing. Watch for big things from this urban farm.

    Next we headed north to Hillen Homestead. Maya has been growing flowers in Baltimore City for five years. With two sites, she is the biggest producer of flowers in the city.

    At her original plot on Hillen Road, we checked out a plethora of gorgeous blooms including lisianthus, zinnias, love in a puff, snaps and amazing dahlias!

    After a quick stop at the Crown gas station for a snack (Turkey Hill lemonade and chips for everyone…just call me…the hostess with the mostest”) we drove 45 miles west to visit our friends at PlantMasters. Mimo was especially excited to see Leon and Carol Carrier’s farm because of all of the ways the extend the season for sales in early spring and late fall/winter. Their new hoophouse is filled with gorgeous Cafe Au Lait dahlias.

    Of course, we couldn’t be touring around without Bob Wollam getting in on the action. It was pretty great to see these two flower friends reunited.

    Our last stop on the tour was Endless Row Farm, owned by Leon and Carol’s son Lee. The name is so fitting! This farm is so beautiful! It reminded us all of the wide rows at Mel Heath’s farm.

    As we headed back to Butterbee Farm for dinner, my heart was so full. I’m beyond grateful to be part of this amazing flower farming community. From teeny tiny first year farms, to farms that have been producing local blooms for over 30 years, all of these growers play a crucial role in making the Mid-Atlantic such a special place for growing flowers.


    April, 01 2017

    Angle Shades Caterpillar (probably)

    Tags: Bugs


    February, 01 2017

    2017 LoCoFlo BookClub

    Tags: BookClub, Nerdy AF, Routine, Friends

    “With freedom, books, flowers, and the moon, who could not be happy?”
    Oscar Wilde

    Local Color Flowers hosts a super fun, totally dorky Book Club! All are welcome! The meeting is drop-in so no need to RSVP…just read and come on by. All meetings are held at our studio located at 3100 Brentwood Ave. Baltimore MD 21218 and take place from 7pm - 9pm.

    Here is the 2017 list of books to read and dates for the meetings:

    • February 6, 2017 Jayber Crow, Wendell Berry
    • April 10, 2017 Tulipmania, Mike Dash
    • June 19, 2017 Walden, Henry David Thoreau
    • August 21 2017 Paradise Lot, Eric Toensmeier and Jonathan Bates
    • October 23 2017 Urban Forests, Jill Jonnes
    • December 11 2017 Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Van

    Learn more on our Bookclub Facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/locoflobookclub


    November, 19 2016

    Getting Smart and Sciencey at the Flo

    Tags: Farmers, Friends, Nerdy AF

    Spent some time this week with amazing Chris Wien, Emeritus Faculty member at Cornell who continues to do valuable cut flower research in his retirement. Flowers growers in our region cheered a few years ago when this giant in the cut flower world decided to make Annapolis his new home after leaving Ithaca.

    This week, the designers and I got to contribute our experience with lisianthus to be included in his research on spacing, stem production and bloom time. We also got to here all about the creation of the black pear pepper and it’s journey to market beginning at the USDA research lab in Beltsville.

    We’re so grateful to be part of this weird, wonderful flower growing community!