September 17, 2020

Need Flowers - Or Anything? Buy Local

Need Flowers - Or Anything? Buy Local

Now, more than ever, buying local matters. Small business owners and local shops have had to do some quick pivots during the last six months and not all have survived. Here at the shop we are forever grateful for our faithful friends and new customers who have found us on social media over the last few months.

The internet has ushered in an era of convenience and accessibility for shoppers, which is great. But in the midst of looking for the best deal and flocking to discount retailers we, as consumers, can forget about the lovely and unique local shops in our own back yard. Here are some tips to consider when looking to make a purchase.

Rose Flower Arrangement by Academy Florist

Five Tips to Keeping it Local

1. Do Your Research

Before you spend a dime, do a little research. Do a search on social media to find unique shops in your area. Often times, local businesses 'follow' each other and promote each other on Instagram so spend a little time following the 'follow-chain' to discover  a new, hidden gem in your town. Your local neighborhood Facebook group is a great place to find recommendations on shops and services in your area, too. 

Red Rose Flower Arrangement by Academy Florist

2. Be Flexible 

When shopping local, remember that small businesses don't have the buying power of big box stores so while you may have something in particular in mind remain open to suggestions. Local shops often stock unique or handmade items from local artisans or independent designers. Having an open mind while shopping local can yield wonderful results!

Flower Bouquet including Roses and Eucalyptus by Academy Florist

3. Add a Little Extra 

In this time of economic uncertainty for small businesses, every customer is a difference maker and spending a little bit more can have a huge impact on the business come month end. If you are picking up a gift, add an art card. Ordering take out, add desert. Picking up flowers for a friend, take home a little plant for yourself, too. Each extra ten or fifteen dollars spent boosts the bottom-line for your local retailers and that's just good news for everyone!

Flower Arrangement including Eucalyptus by Academy Florist

4. Be Kind 

These last months have been filled with uncertainty and stress for all of us. No one in our generation has ever experienced such widespread change and continued shifting of protocols and guidelines before. This has left us all a little (or a lot) more stressed than usual. That's why a little kindness goes a long way. It's been a huge learning curve for shop owners to take their businesses online while at the same time adapting their in-person shop experiences to maintain all recommended protocols. I promise you, we are all doing the best we can. We want to serve our customers to the same standard we did pre-COVID, it just may take us a little more time or more steps to fulfill your requests. Be kind. Be patient. We're in this together.

Colourful Flower Arrangement by Academy Florist

5. Spread the News!

Have you had a great experience at a local shop? Tell your friends and your neighbors. Leave a good review. Tag the shop on social media. Recommend the business on Facebook. And above all, call the manager to let them know how stellar their staff is. Honestly, people are quick to ask to speak to the manager when they are displeased but it rarely occurs to folks to call back to give a shout out for a job well done. It means the world to your front line retail workers to hear that their efforts are appreciated.

Flower Arrangement including Roses by Academy Florist

This too shall pass. Eventually this pandemic will end and we will settle in to the regular rhythms of life again. In the meantime, shop local, be kind, wear a mask, wash your hands and know that we sure do appreciate you.

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July 29, 2020

International Friendship Day

International Friendship Day

What is better than finding that one person who gets you? Or that group of people who can make you laugh until you cry? Bestie. Squad. Crew. Buddy. Pal. Whatever you call them, they are your people. Your safe place to land. Your cheerleaders. Your sounding board. Your ride or die. Your friends.

Thursday, July 30, is International Friendship Day.

Here at Academy, we are more than co-workers, we are friends. Our friendships have been forged in the fires of long holiday hours, late night wedding prep sessions and creative problem solving through a pandemic. We make a pretty good team here and we all really do care for each other and finds ways to celebrate each other as often as we can.

Staff Members at Academy Florist

We make a big deal over birthdays, with Irene ordering meals or delicious treats for us all. Darlene, randomly yells out, 'Chocolate Time' and brings out her secret stash of chocolate treats. Or there are the times when Nichole brings in her waffle maker and runs a lunch time waffle bar. Not all of our celebrations revolve around food (well, most of them do though). Sometimes we celebrate our friendship with sharing embarrassing stories or watching Kayla & Kirsty have a dance party in the middle of the shop.

However, you and your crew bond and build your friendships, there is no better way to acknowledge your pals than with flowers!

Bouquet including Tulips by Academy Florist

Friendship Florals

Traditionally, Alstromeria and Yellow Roses have been given as symbols of friendship. In many cultures they symbolize good fortune, prosperity and happiness. Chrysanthemums, Daisies and Sunflowers are also popular choices to celebrate friendship.

We offer an array of bright, yellow blooms that compliment all sorts of colour palettes and styles that will ensure that your friends feel the love!  And by choosing our Designer's Choice arrangements or bouquets you can request your favourite colour combinations while still leaving room for our skilled designers to do what they do best... create beauty!

Colourful Bouquet by Academy Florist

And while you're at it, you might want to consider adding a box of chocolates, a wonderfully scented candle or a stuffed bear to your gift of friendship!

Share the Love

This Thursday, why don't you share the love! We are offering a one-day, in-store special that makes it easy for you to show your love for your pals while keeping a little bit of beauty for yourself. On Thursday, July 30 come in to the store to purchase a fresh, cut bouquet of $50 or more and receive a bonus Friendship Bouquet (valued at $25) for free. These bouquets are available in-store, for pick-up only... and for Thursday from 9am-5pm only.

Stop in and celebrate International Friendship Day!

Sunflower Arrangement by Academy Florist

Wait... there's more!

Watch our social media on Thursday for your chance to win a bouquet for you and your bestie!

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July 08, 2020

For Good Health's Sake

For Good Health's Sake

It'll come as no great surprise to you that we think flowers are the perfect addition to any room but did you know that there's scientific evidence to prove that flowers can bring a boost to your mind and emotions?

Colourful Flower Arrangement by Academy Florist

The last six months have been a doozy! Even though, the world is finding a new rhythm, a new way forward, many of us are still dealing with the stress and fatigue of surviving months of uncertainty and disruption. Whether you were able to self isolate in the safety of your home and try out new recipes and crafts or if you worked in an essential service or if you balanced work life, home life and bored kids from the chaos of your kitchen table, I am sure you could use a breather and a bit of sunshine in your life, just now.

The good news is that, while I cannot make the world return to normal, I can offer you a wee bit of sunshine to boost your mood!

Pink Rose Arrangement by Academy Florist

There was a study done at Rutgers in 2019 that reinforces what we all inherently know- flowers make us feel better! This study examined the effects that different types of gifts have on people and -hands down - people experienced a greater mood-boost that lasted longer when they received flowers over gifts of food or candles. Another study, along the same lines, also concluded that flowers can immediately decrease feeling of stress, agitation and depression while increasing a person's sense of satisfaction with their life.

The science behind these studies revealed that natural elements in our living and working spaces provide mini-escapes for our minds and help us to recall memories of relaxation and adventure in the outdoors. These moments of mental escape can release chemicals and hormones in our brains that combat stress and fatigue. Flowers have the added emotional benefit of bringing vibrant colours and beautiful scents into our spaces, too.They can help to create a wee oasis in the middle of your regular, full life.

A Girl Holding A Large Flower Bouquet by Academy Florist

Here in the shop, we can attest to the goodness flowers bring. One of the greatest perks of the job is being surrounded by the beautiful scents, colours and shapes of the various flowers we bring into the shop each week!  While we love all of the beauties that find their way here we all have a few varieties that speak to us. Here are a few of our staff's personal favourites:

Irene loves Lily of the Valley, Kayla favours stock and Nichole digs ranunculus. Kirsten can't get enough of cosmos (she even has a tattoo of these beauties!). Colleen is a sucker for Queen Anne's Lace and Delphiniums make Erlyn smile. Vanessa is a fan of peonies while Brittany prefers poppies!

Garden Style Rose Arrangement by Academy Florist


What are your favourites? Let us know in the comments! 

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June 29, 2020

Our Green Little Buddies

Our Green Little Buddies

Whether summer or winter, a few little green buddies can brighten your space and make everything seem homier. Here at Academy Florists, we get so excited when we receive new plant stock. We all have our favourites; some of us love our array of spring blooming plants, others are partial to our succulent gardens and still others cannot wait for our Christmas mini-trees.

Whatever your favourites are, all of these indoor gems need a little TLC to stay healthy, happy and growing at their best.

3 Succulents in Light Blue Ceramic Pots

Green is Good

Green plants, for the most part, are pretty easy going. Generally, they require indirect sunlight, consistent temperatures and proper watering. If you have a lot of direct sunlight coming into your space, you can diffuse the intensity of the rays with sheer curtains. These plants are happiest when a normal room temperature is maintained and they do not like cold, winter drafts.

When (and How) to Water

Best watering practices begin with the roots. If you want your little plant buddy to thrive, you need to ensure the roots have room to grow and proper drainage. If    you are noticing that the soil in the pot dries out very quickly, you might want to consider replanting. Another sign that your little plant isn't getting the space it needs   to grow is if you notice that the new leaves are  considerably smaller than they should be.

You also need to be aware of the danger of root rot. This occurs when your plant is potted in a pot with no room for drainage. In order to prevent your plant from dying from root rot, you'll need to ensure that you have it set up properly. There are pots that sit in coordinating trays and have drainage slits near the bottom to guard against root rot. If you do not have a pot like that, you can also place a handful of rocks at the bottom of your pot when replanting to give water a place to collect away from the roots.

Another way to protect your plant family from root rot is to ensure you are not over-watering. Most green plants appreciate a thorough soaking once the soil is dry to the touch. Another good rule of (green) thumb is that plants with large thin leaves require more water and plants with thick, rubbery leaves need less water.

Blooming Buddies

Our Blooming Buddies require the same type of general care as our Green Friends do. The only notable difference is caring for the blooms and learning the ins and outs of hibernation for your little bloomer.

Most blooming plants going through blooming seasons and dormant seasons. With a little education and care, you can keep your blooming plant happy and healthy for years. It is best to read up a bit on your specific type of plant to learn the best way to keep your bloomer well during its dormant season.

But remember, just because there are no active blooms doesn't mean that your bloomer has died - it's most likely resting and preparing for it's next growing and blooming season!

4 Begonia Pants in Terracotta Pots by Academy Florist

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June 09, 2020

Back to Business As Usual - Sort of

Back to Business As Usual - Sort of

Beginning Wednesday, June 10. Our store will re-open for walk-in customers. The Academy Florist Team is so excited to see our customers  (we've missed you!) once again but before you pop by the shop there are a few things you'll need to know.

Flower Arrangement with Pink Roses with Eucalyptus

What You Need to Know Before You Arrive

Due to government guidelines, we are limiting the number of people who can be in the shop at one time. Our front doors will be the only entrance available for customers but they will remain locked and an associate will let you in when it is your turn. We will need to sanitize the shop in between customers so we ask for your patience in this. We also ask that you maintain a two meter distance while waiting in line.

We are encouraging all customers entering the shop wear a mask during their shopping experience, however, it is not mandatory. If you do not have one and wish to wear one, one will be provided to you. There will also be hand sanitizer at the door for your use upon entry.

What You Need to Know About Your Shopping Experience

Once in the shop, we ask that you maintain physical distancing. We have a few markings on the floor to assist you in this. Our associate will be happy to help you choose one of our pre-made cut bouquets or arrangements from our cooler. We also have a variety of plants and gift ware available. If you would like a custom arrangement or bouquet we ask that you place that order online or on the phone ahead of time. If you want to place a custom order in person, you will need to leave the shop and return once it is completed. 

Academy Florist's Reception Area with Local Products

A Note of Thanks:

We would also like to take a moment to thank our community. Over the last few months you have been so supportive of our shop. We appreciate your care, flexibility and enthusiasm. We have often commented, in shop, about the overwhelming kindness and engagement we have experienced through social media. These  past weeks have been filled with uncertainty and, at times, loss but you have delighted us and upheld us with your faithfulness and care. 

We deeply appreciate you and look forward to serving you once again.

A Girl Holding a White Bouquet of Flowers by Academy Florist


*For further information, here is a link to our COVID-19 policy on our website

Updated June 26th, 2020

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