Gordon Hill Flower Shop
Jackson, CA

Q&A with Leon from Gordon Hill Flower Shop


Meet Leon from Gordon Hill Flower Shop

 I’m here with Leon, owner of Gordon Hill Flower Shop.  Leon, where does the name of your shop come from?​
   “Gordon Hill Flower Shop was established in 1946.  Gordon Hill was the name of a location.  It was named after a county superior court judge named Gordon whose house was built on a hill, called Gordon Hill.  In 1946 they started a nursery, and then developed it into a flower shop and nursery.  The nursery was closed in the 1980’s, and the flower shop stayed.  We purchased the shop in 2001, and it was still on the North hill property in a barn that was over 100 years old.  It was actually dismantled and stored in the town of Volcano about 20 miles up the road.  From there it was transported by horse and wagon to the town of Jackson and put together as a little barn shop, which they added on to.  It was very primitive and had no insulation.  We moved the shop to our current location in 2006.  We are located on a hill on Highway 88, with Jackson Creek right below us.  We are a very large shop, over 2400 sq ft, with two cooler boxes, plus we have a 600 sq ft basement.”

How did you get started in the flower business?
   “I worked for the state of California.  When I was old enough to retire, I decided to get out of state government. It was driving me crazy!  I was looking for something else to do with my retirement, and my daughter mentioned that there was a flower shop for sale.  I thought, ‘Well, I did work for a flower shop for six years in Santa Barbara in my younger years, and it had worked out pretty well.’  So I went over and looked at the shop and decided to give it a try.  I worked and rented it for a year and realized it was a viable business.  I bought the shop with my family and we’ve all been running it ever since.  And here I am… this is my retirement!”
You are obviously a very successful flower shop.  What has been the key to your success?
    “We love what we do.  I love the flower business.  Our formula for success has always been to offer great service and quality products.  People really appreciate that.”

What tips do you have for us to get the most out of our flower purchases?
    “Flowers are all about bringing out emotions.  We do this by bringing out a lot of colors in our arrangements, especially with the purples and the reds. They just bring out the emotions.  It’s also emotional just to receive flowers.  When we deliver flowers either to a workplace or business, everyone turns to us hoping ‘is it for me?’  The recipient is always emotional and joyful.” 
  Tips for Sympathy flowers?
   “Sympathy flowers run the gamut.  If it’s for the home, you want to cheer them up through those crucial first few days.  Or, if it’s at a service, you want to show how much you valued the departed.  At the service it often is about what the person was like and what they really loved.  If there is a favorite color or a flower that they loved, we will incorporate that.  It can even be an animal that they loved.  I’ve done a funeral arrangement that looked like a cow.  I’ve done dear horns and fish for the outdoorsman.  In our funeral arrangements we try to pick up the essence of who that person was.  Flowers at a service really makes the service much better, much more pleasant.  They ease the solemn and somber tension in the room.” 
  What about flowers for no occasion at all?
   “There are people who send flowers to their wife or girlfriend (or even husband!) for no reason at all.  They send flowers just to say ‘I love you,’ or just to say ‘thank you.’  We even have people who buy flowers regularly for themselves, just to have flowers in their own home.  Some will want arrangements made, others will just buy assorted flowers which we wrap up so they can arrange them on their own.  From a new baby to the passing of a loved one, and everything in-between, flowers are important.  It’s great just to have them around.”
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