When Robert Winston wheeled out his flower cart in 1944, he wasn’t planning on starting something of a local flower empire, but that’s just what Winston Flowers has become. As the award-winning floral design and events company enters its 75th year, it’s clear that things have stuck close to those humble roots. The business is still family-owned, now operated by Robert’s grandsons Ted and David Winston—their dad, Maynard, made the first storefront a destination that became one of the first U.S. florists to import new exotic blooms from Europe.
In addition to the original Boston storefront, Winston boasts a by-appointment-only design studio in Long Island City, along with a smattering of New England spaces, and also manages a thriving philanthropic program, dubbed Charity in Bloom. Spearheaded by Ted’s wife, Simone, it has raised more than $2 million for health and wellness charities across the region. But despite these large accomplishments, the brothers’ greatest achievement is simple: “I am most proud of the relationships that we have built within the community,” says Ted. “There are families that Winston Flowers has been a part of for generations—people whom my father and grandfather started working with, and now their children and their children’s children are clients. We have been with those families for weddings, births and every type of occasion both happy and sad. Relationships are the foundation of our business and the reason for our success through the years.” By appointment only, 23-37 Borden Ave., Long Island City, Queens, winstonflowers.com