Bloomin’ Marvellous

Mother’s day, birthdays, funerals and weddings, John Henry Flowers can do it all for you. We spoke to John Sartain, owner of John Henry Flowers in Roath about his achievements last year, plans for the future, and his secret to keeping customers happy.

What are your plans for this year? Did you make any resolutions?

Our plans for the business this year will include tweaking the layout of the shop to allow us to expand our range, hoping to be able to stock more dried flowers. We will continue to support the local community and hope to have a stall at Marlborough Road Primary’s Winter Fair again this year. As far as resolutions are concerned, we should probably aim to have healthier snacks during peak periods!

Was was the highlight from last year?

One of the business highlights of last year would have to be providing wreaths and arrangements for the Welsh Government, when they held a memorial for the Holodomor famine in November. It was an honour to be asked as a small independent business and extremely poignant considering what is happening in Ukraine right now. Our flowers were actually featured in Ukrainian media and I believe some of the flowers were taken back as gifts. They must have been pleased with the works as they’ve ordered from us again for more events this spring.

What is your favourite part of the job?

Seeing happy customers! It’s really satisfying to know that we’ve contributed to the magic of someone’s special day, and even though we provide a lot of flowers for sad occasions, it’s also nice to know that we can celebrate someone’s life and provide comfort.

Do you have challenges in what you do?

Working to deadlines is definitely a challenge. Hoping that the flowers required will be available and arrive on time from the wholesaler, especially if there’s an unusual request! Then having the time to get the work done. We always manage it though. Price increases are another challenge this year, but, I’m sure our customers will agree, we still manage to provide good value. Not being able to get chrysanthemums through January was also a bit tricky!

Why do your customers come to you? What sets you aside from the others?

Aside from being good value, I think our customers continue to support us as they know they get excellent quality from us. We make sure that what you order is exactly what you get. All our bouquets and arrangements are made on site by a florist with over 30 years of experience in the trade. We also specialise in floral sculpture which is not something you can get everywhere.