Store Watch: eco|stems

July 20th, 2009

We have two pairs of friends who recently got engaged to be married. Congratulations Jen & Taylor and Julia & Payman!!! So in honor of our bridezillas to be, here’s our vote for florist to ease you into party planning madness. Also, eco|stems is located right next door to UpsideDive. Twofer!


Who are you?

Joseph Delarge is the owner of eco|stems. He has seven years of experience in the floral industry and is a four time award-winning Floral Designer. He has a certificate in Floral Design from Seneca College and a diploma in Horticulture from Niagara College. Joseph sits on the Seneca College Floral Design Program Advisory Committee. Joseph is also a Master Gardener, is a Student Member of the American Institute of Floral Design (SAIFD), and is a member of the Toronto Botanical Garden.

eco|stems can help with anything from weddings and events, corporate clients and accounts, sympathies and condolences and with people who just want some flowers to take home or delivered to a friend or that special someone.

Throughout our operations we try to make a difference by being Bullfrog Powered, reducing water use, using biodegradable, recycled and recyclable packaging, reducing emissions from car use by providing bicycle deliveries, reducing energy consumption, reusing and repurposing floral containers and materials, reducing and diverting waste and always buying used before new.
Drop by our store at 267 Queen Street East or call 416-214-6479. Visit our website to learn more,


How long has the store been open?

eco|stems has been open for 9 weeks as of Thursday, July 16, 2009.

Why did you open your store?

I opened eco|stems because I love flowers and plants, it has always been my dream to own my own flower shop.  I also saw a need for a more environmentally and socially sustainable flower shop in Toronto


What can people expect to find when visiting your store?

When people come to eco|stems they can expect to find a great selection of local, organic or fair trade flowers and plants.  We also have a unique line of fair trade pots and a great selection of unusual vases.  Flowers are sold by the stem or can be combined to create a beautiful bouquet or arrangement. I try to bring in more unusual varieties of plants and present them in interesting ways.  I also keep quite a few different types of orchids in store.  We offer a delivery service throughout Toronto and the GTA and we deliver by bicycle in the downtown and east ends of Toronto when possible.


Who are your customers?

eco|stems’ customers are people who want to make an environmental and social difference when they buy flowers and plants.  They care about where and who the flowers and plants come from but they are unwilling to give up style and great design.


Favorite moment while running your store?

My favorite moments are meeting my new neighbors in this area of the city. From other business owners to new customers and my residential neighbors. It’s always great to meet new people and get their feedback.


Worst or most Embarrassing moment?

The most challenging moment so far was in early May when I was trying to officially open. I had an event booked the night before my first day to be open.  The event required 25 centrepieces as well as some other extras.  I was able to finish the event flowers and be open the following day but not without the help of some great friends!

Name something  you sell in your store, that you also own in your own home?

I have a collection of Sansevieria (aka Mother-in-laws Tongue or Snake Plant) in my home. They are my favorite type of plant.  I have made a point of stocking a variety of them in the store.


What are you really interested in right now?

This summer I have been concentrating a lot of my spare time in my garden. I planted a vegetable garden that includes Lettuce, lots of different herbs, Beets, Carrots and Peas. Along with my vegetables I also planted quite a few flowers such as Sunflowers, Begonias, Calla Lilies and Gladiolus.  As a Horticulturalist and a Master Gardener I can answer any gardening or plant question anyone might have.

Joseph Delarge
267 Queen Street East
Toronto, Ontario
M5A 1S6

M-F 10-6, Sat 12-5
(days and hours can change over time. These are up to date as of July 2009. Always best to call or check their website for the most recent info.)

An environmentally and socially sustainable flower shop.

Bullfrog Powered
eco|stems is a proud member of Green Enterprise Toronto


Photos by Juli Daoust

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