Sep 17, 2007
Field of Flowers’ business bloomsBy Jo

Donn Flipse learned the floral business from the floor up.

“From the age of 8, I started helping around the holidays, sweeping up floors,” says Flipse, a third generation florist. “When I got out of [Dartmouth] college, I joined the family business full time.”

The family business was The Exotic Gardens founded by Flipse’s Scottish grandfather, Jimmy Donn, in 1914. The business was sold in 1989. In 1990 Donn Flipse founded Field of Flowers, billed it as a “fresh flower supermarket,” and expanded it to three South Florida stores. Annual revenues are $8.5 million.

Flipse, 60, chairman and CEO, is continuing what his grandfather did — keeping the business in the family. His son Donn Jr., 35, works with him in the Davie headquarters, which has 21,000 square feet of space, with 16,000 devoted to the store. The 8-year-old Coral Springs store has 11,000 square feet; the 3-year-old Boca Raton store has 6,000 square feet.

“I’m quite sure we are the largest floral business in Broward and Palm Beach counties,” says Flipse, who lives in Coral Gables with his wife, Diana. “We have no plans to open a store in Miami at this time, but it’s something we think about. It has to be the right spot at the right time.”

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