Upcoming Roses: Grass Valley Florist & Cruz Thru Coffee are two in one

Ingrid Peterson, Grass Valley florist and owner of Cruz Thru Coffee, prepares a festive fall order.
Photo: Jennifer Nobles

Every day, Ingrid Peterson says it with flowers… and coffee.

Peterson is the owner of Grass Valley Florist & Cruz Thru Coffee, the only flower shop/driving cafe in town that has a variety of things to make lots of people happy.

For 27 years, she presided over the unique company that she brought to life in 2002.

“I had this great idea that it was going to be great and so that was a good thing but it’s also a lot of work,” Peterson said.

A patriotic bouquet is created for the 70th anniversary of Nevada County Republican Women by Grass Valley Florist and Cruz Thru Coffee.
Photo: Jennifer Nobles

Simultaneously operating as a full-fledged florist and supplier of caffeinated and non-caffeinated beverages, Peterson said the Nevada City Highway business maintains a steady flow of business, with the holidays being the busiest.

“Holidays are always busier,” she said. “Pick a vacation and we’re bringing in additional staff, but we seem to be pretty stable. There’s no prognosis.”

Peterson grew up in the Bay Area and visited Nevada City as a young girl. She found what she thought was gold (it later turned out to be pyrite) but never forgot her time in the Land of Gold.

“Long story short, I kept coming here and buying my house there, not knowing that (this) was my favorite memory.

“Fast forward twenty years and I wanted to work,” she continued, “so I walked in (the flower shop) and this place had astro-grass on the floor and horrible paneling on the side.

“I made an arrangement and they said, ‘Can you come and help me? Because you are fast.’

Her work at the florist paid off and in 1996 she bought the business. Just two years later, she bought the building, and that’s when the coffee drinks and flower expansion began to take shape.

“It’s come a long way,” she said.

For her part, Peterson said her favorite flower is a white daisy followed closely by an iris which she uses for her logo.

The florist also offers a range of indoor plants.
Photo: Jennifer Nobles

Peterson acknowledges that she is lucky to be a merchant of things that, generally speaking, are meant to uplift.

“I like to think (that I make) people happy. Everyone comes in and is pretty positive and they like it. Owning a flower shop, is it fun? It’s work, it’s work, and we work long hours, especially during holidays.

Unsurprisingly, Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day were among the busiest days of the florist’s year.

In addition to coffee and flowers, there is a wide assortment of indoor plants, home decor, antiques and accessories. Peterson said she selects her merchandise based on a few things.

“I really rely on the price,” she said. “We have a few local vendors and people love them. We just received handmade Christmas decorations. I really try to base it on price to make it affordable; so people know they are going to come here and get good value for money. And I must like it.

Peterson said that every week she welcomes a curious new client who decides to visit the space.

“It’s funny because people come here and say, ‘I lived here for 20 years and I’ve never been here.'”

Victoria Young, a friend and Peterson employee, said locals should know “how eclectic and diverse we are. We are not an ordinary florist.

Grass Valley Florist & Cruz Thru Coffee is located at 2153 Nevada City Highway in Grass Valley.

Ingrid Peterson and Victoria Young are often confused with each other. “My sister from another gentleman,” Peterson said.
Photo: Jennifer Nobles

Jennifer Nobles is a writer for The Union. She can be contacted at [email protected]

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