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Florescence - Business Achiever Award 2010

Blooming success

Florescence farm on Old Elleker Road is a thriving flower farm.It might sound a bit corny but local lilium flower farm, Florescence, is a blooming success – and the business has many awards to prove it.

Owners Lee and Charles Reynolds took out the ACCI Small Business Centre Great Southern Business Achiever Award in the 2010 Albany Chamber of Commerce and Industry Awards, and were runner-up in the agribusiness award category.

This win is on top of accolades Florescence received when it won the agribusiness category of the 2009 Western Australian Small Business Champion Awards. And in 2008 ACCI awarded Florescence with a special award for ‘Implementing Innovative Work Culture to attract and retain staff'.

Florescence has been operating under its current owners since 2004 and in that time the business has moved from a small farm with limited production to being the largest commercial exotic flower farm outside the Perth metropolitan area.

Florescence supplies 80 per cent of the wholesale lilium market in Perth and 20 per cent of the Great Southern market. In addition to producing high quality liliums, Florescence also grows calla lilies and gladioli.

After spending just a small amount of time with Charles and Lee, it becomes obvious the reasons behind the success of Florescence. It is their enthusiasm, hard work and business development skills. It is also a result of their ability to build a team around them.

According to Charles, it was a true partnership with their staff integral to any awards they had won. "Our staff are committed members of our small team, who are dedicated to enhancing the business – we have implemented many of their suggestions," he said.

To fulfil the goal of maintaining quality production all year round, Charles has come up with many innovative ideas. These include building up the soil quality, keeping the liliums at a constant temperature by piping hot water around the stems, automated canopies and using fine woodchips as mulch.

"It is a constant learning curve - wondering how I can do things better – it's a wonderful challenge," he said.

Florescence supplies local florists with outstanding quality liliums, while also offering fresh flowers at affordable prices to customers via three weekend markets and local businesses.

The Reynolds are busy adding more strings to their bow with the addition of 500 cherry trees to their property and they are also looking at growing daffodils to sell to the local market next year.

Charles said he was particularly pleased to be runner up in the agribusiness section to such a serious commercial enterprise like Western Mineral Fertilisers. "Awards are not just about getting a prize - it is about having your business recognised because you've looked at every opportunity to enhance the viability and performance of your business," Charles said.

"We've come a long way but we are not there yet," he said. "It is often the little things that bring people joy. I am proud that people can buy a local and affordable bunch of high quality flowers from us. It gives us pleasure giving other people pleasure."

Return to Award Winners 2010