Henry Phillips arranges a bouquet on Aug. 30, 2013, only hours before closing the doors to Henry's Florist in Murfreesboro, Tenn. The shop was open for 30 years. (TMP Photo/W. Moore Jr.)
Aug. 30 was a pretty normal day for most people around the Square, but for Henry Phillips, owner and operator of Henry’s Florist, it was the start of a new chapter in his life.
For the past 30 years Henry has served Murfreesboro from the same location, at the corner of Church Street and Main Street, assembling beautiful arrangements of flowers from all over the world.
“I love serving the public and being there for them,” Phillips said. “No matter the occasion, from celebrations to weddings to births and even moments of sorrow.”
Phillips was born in Rutherford County and raised in Franklin County, Winchester to be specific. He visited Murfreesboro regularly growing up and knew here was where he wanted to live.
“I feel Murfreesboro is one of the best places to live; the people here are friendly, cordial and warm,” he said.
Phillips said he has always had a passion for working with flowers and organizing them in beautiful arrangements just comes natural to him.
After working in the floral business for a while, he finally decided to open his own store. He first started in a small house here in Murfreesboro and immediately saw the need to expand to a place with more space.
After only a year in his first location Henry decided to make the move to the center of Murfreesboro, right on the Square. And he has never looked back.
He said the floral industry has been very generous to him but just like any other business, it has been ever changing.
He also admits at times it was very challenging to work with changes but with a little adaptation it became very rewarding.
“Today you can get flowers from all over the world, sometimes within hours,” Phillips said.
Phillips said he regularly received shipments of beautiful and exotic flowers from anywhere from South America to the Netherlands as well as other parts of the United States.
But the floral business is different from most businesses because there is no “one size fits all.”
“People like variety and opportunities change along with the seasons,” he said.
Along with the change of this season, Phillips has decided that it is now time for him to make a change and retire from the flower business.
“The fall is my favorite time of the year, and I am going to use this time to rest, gather my thoughts and look forward to the future,” he said.
As far as future plans go, the only thing certain is that he will be spending some much needed time with his wife of 21 years.
“The thing I will miss most about the florist industry will be the relationships that I have made with customers and friends,” Phillips said.
With the closing of Henry’s Florist, Murfreesboro loses a bit of history. But it also opens the opportunity for the future home of another business. With Murfreesboro growing by the day, the prime location is sure to attract another business in no time.