Behind the Scenes of Flower Talk with Lily (Part 1)

Sun Valley's Flower Talk was recently featured in Floral Management magazine, the publication of the Society of American Florists. Our own Bill Prescott penned this story about the blog and offered up many best-practices for blogging.

In Part one, we hear how the blog was established and what makes it unique.


Let’s face it, you know more about flowers than you even realize. A blog is an amazing way to share this knowledge, and it is also a great way to provide fresh content for your site, which is good for SEO and for your social media platforms, which helps you connect more effectively with customers. The questions a lot of people in our industry have: What do I write about and
how do I best use my time?

At Sun Valley, we have created what is likely the longest running weekly blog of original material in the history of the flower industry. As the longtime author of our blog, this gives me a unique perspective to share.

From Scattershot Approach to Consistent Posts

I inherited the blog, Flower Talk with Lily (, when I started working at Sun Valley Floral Farms in June 2012.

Back then, I was a newbie to the flower industry. My first challenge was that the blog was named by my predecessor. We kept the name because it already had some brand recognition, and we didn’t want to lose that, but the name also reflected our desire for the blog to be seen as warm and personal
— a bit like a friend dispensing good advice. (Plus, of course, it highlights one of our primary crops; naming the blog after a core characteristic of your business can be a good strategy.) I started writing as “Lily” but with a gender-neutral perspective, which usually works, but on occasion has raised some eyebrows when people meet me in real life.

As to what an industry newbie wrote about, my manager Ginny Wyche, instructed me to grab the camera and walk the farm nearly every day. I would get back to the sales office with a collection
of photos illustrating all elements of flower growing. Things that seemed interesting to me, even if I knew nothing about them! I would ask Ginny the who, what, where, when and how about what
I experienced on the farm; she would explain, and I would write.

I think there are at least two important takeaways here for florists: The first is, if you are too busy to blog, assign the task to someone on your team! With some guidance and mentoring, blogging can be an ideal way to expose a new employee to the many factors that go into running your business — and into the floral industry in general.

In my case, we quickly realized that if the uninitiated found a topic interesting, then the rest of our community would as well. I soon learned that my source material was endless. Topics now range from a deep dive into a particular flower, to thoughtful commentary on the importance of flowers in our lives. The blog highlights design trends, flower-growing techniques, seasonal
specialties, creative writing, videos, interviews, and muddy boots out in the flower fields.

We made one other important change my first year, one that involves consistency. Initially, when I started, we posted in sporadic bursts; however, by mid-2012, the blog settled into a rhythm. Since June 6, 2012, we’ve created a new post every week, rain or shine. That’s more than 430 posts that we can now pull from and refer to in our communications with our staff and customers.


Tune in Next week for Part Two, where we share the second part of this article, focused on Blogging Best Practices.