Why Hamilton is the perfect location for this mother-and-daughter flower shop

The owners of flower store Two Little Buds searched for a new community in which to blossom.

They found it at 17 North D Street in downtown Hamilton after 11 years at Bridgewater Falls in Fairfield Twp. and three years in a private greenhouse before that.

Owners Alice Francis and daughter Mindy Staton said they realized that “a lot” was happening in Hamilton and wanted to be a part of it rather than stay among big-name retailers.

“I’d rather be surrounded by small, family-owned businesses. There’s a sense of community here,” Staton said.

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Two Little Buds’ locally grown, seasonal flowers come directly from Morning Sun Flower Farm, a venture launched in 2015 near Oxford.

“The flowers are prettier and we can offer our clients flowers that are in season,” Staton said. “I could go out in the field and pick the prettiest blooms for my events that weekend.”

Although the store’s business model is shifting from walk-in floral shop back to its roots of mainly focusing on weddings and other events, customers can still stop by to pick out individual stems and create their own bouquet.

“We’ve already gotten more walk-ins here in the three-and-a-half weeks that we’ve been here than we did even on the Mother’s Day weekends at Bridgewater,” Alice Francis said. “They’re walking in and saying, ‘We are glad you’re here.’”

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Now the business is starting a Flower CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program where customers can purchase a share of the farm for $85, $160 or $240 and, in return, receive six, eight or 12 weeks of fresh flowers. Bouquets each week range from 12 to 15 stems and may be picked up at the Hamilton storefront or at locations in Oxford or Cincinnati’s Over-The-Rhine neighborhood.

Shares, which may be divided between customers, are still being accepted for this summer. A fall share is dedicated mainly to dahlias.

Morning Sun Flower Farm offers three “Farm to Vase” workshops each year, where attendees are greeted, served drinks and dinner in the flower field, then watch a demonstration on how to arrange florals. Guests then go out and cut and arrange their own flowers. The summer workshop will be held July 7 and the fall workshop on Sept. 22.

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Two Little Buds devotes Mondays and Tuesdays to harvesting its flowers and Wednesdays to gathering them for event arrangements. Store hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m Thursdays and Fridays and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays.

For more information about Two Little Buds and Morning Sun Flower Farm, visit www.twolittlebuds.com or call 513-737-8527.

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