This blog post was written by Elise Nerden, who was an intern in our summer intern program.
Pepperberry Florist, located at 539 Main Street, offers floral arrangements, unique gifts, and special occasion items. Owned by John DeCola, Pepperberry Florist provides flowers and plants for weddings, proms, funerals, and many more occasions. This past school year, the florist shop had its most successful prom season and donated a portion of its profits to the Melrose High School Grad Night event. The store expanded its business two years ago to include a gift shop, which carries candles, stationery, ceramics, seasonal decorations, and home decor.
DeCola first opened Pepperberry Florist in the Greenwood area of Wakefield in 1996. Since most of his customers were from Melrose, he moved the business to Melrose in 1999, and he said the community has been very welcoming since the move.
DeCola has been in the florist business since he was a child. His family owned a florist shop, and he enjoyed helping out. He has had a lifelong passion for floristry and enjoys being an owner of a floral business. DeCola likes to be creative and try new things in his craft, . His shop does not use any low-grade flowers or plants, preferring quality products for their arrangements. DeCola likes to use plants not normally found in bouquets to make his products unique and special.
When asked about advice for people who want to start a business, DeCola said, “the business owns you.” He believes someone wanting to be a successful business owner needs to be ready for a lot of work. For someone who wants to open a florist shop, they should have at least five years of experience and be able to clean flowers, design pieces, and many more tasks. DeCola loves running his business and providing people with beautiful flowers, plants, and gifts.
Pepperberries is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Wednesday; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday through Saturday; and closed on Sunday. For more information about Pepperberry Florist and their services, call 781-979-0444 or visit the website, www.pepperberryflorist.com.