Last Updated on June 4, 2018 by Caroline Warwick
If you have ever been to Home Depot and seen a Venus flytrap for sale, you can most likely thank Flori-Design, Inc. in Eustis, Florida. Flori-Design, Inc. specializes in carnivorous plants, dish gardens, fairy gardens, terrariums, miniature gardens, and novelties.
“I’ve loved plants ever since high school,” said owner and operator Gail Cash. “Owning my own nursery has really been a dream.”
Cash began her journey into horticultural sciences by earning her degree in horticulture science from Virginia Tech. While she was in school, she took an internship opportunity in Florida. Upon graduating, her internship offered her a job managing their greenhouses. Cash later received the chance to purchase her own nursery, thus formally opening Flori-Design, Inc. for business.
“I remember when I started, the only structure on our property was a single hoop house,” Cash said. “We didn’t even have benches. I would sit on the floor and work with my newborn in her swing while I potted Venus flytraps. I just love carnivorous plants.”
Today, Flori-Design, Inc. is the largest supplier of Venus flytraps on the East Coast; and the second largest in the nation. Additionally, Flori-Design produces award-winning dish gardens. Flori-Design, Inc. has won the Tropical Plant Industry Expo ‘Cool Product’ award for the last six years in a row.
“Before owning Flori-Design, I was working for another greenhouse producer designing their dish gardens,” Cash said. “When they went out of business, their clients called and asked me to start making my own.”
Since then, Flori-Design has evolved to carry more than 35 product lines, including carnivorous plants and dish gardens. The company currently employs more than 30 people. Her staff works to ensure the care of the various plants the greenhouses hold, as well as the arrangement of terrariums, fairy gardens, and dish gardens.
The plant on which she built her business on, the Venus flytrap, comes in a cleverly marketed box labeled “Little Pot of Horrors” accompanied by menacing cartoons of the plants.
“It’s very labor intensive. The hours are long, you’re working weekends, and always planning for months in advance,” Cash said. “But I just love what I do and to me, it is completely worth it.”