Ron and Nancy Enomoto have retired from rose farming in 1997. In recognition of the spirit that the brought to the Saturday S.F. Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market, I am keeping this page up for those who would like to read about them.   Ron now has a personal e-mail address:

A Very Long History
Ron and Nancy Enomoto are the proprietors of Enomoto Roses, Inc. which must be the oldest establishment represented at San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market. The company was founded in 1907 in Redwood City, CA by Ron's grandfather, then run by Ron's father for 45 years until he retired in 1981 and is now run by Ron and his wife Nancy. Their current Half Moon Bay operation was an expansion of the original Redwood City nursery in 1965, a year after Ron graduated from U.C. Davis with a B.A. degree in economics.

Their operation is also known as Eagle Express Flowers (1-800-822-2224), a name they use for a project started 5 years ago in conjunction with the U.S. Postal Service to use USPS Express Mail to ship roses by mail order. They now ship flowers anywhere in the USA overnight by FEDEX or postal Express Mail. Prices range from $29 for a 15-stem mixed carnation bouquet to $39 for a 12-stem rose bouquet. 

Roses and More
The Enomotos grow roses, gardenias and stephanotis in 120,000-square feet of greenhouses which covers about 3 acres in Half Moon Bay. But roses are by far their predominant product. Ron estimates that his 72,000 rose plants produce a total of 1.8 million buds each year!

They currently grow 13 varieties of patented, hybrid tea roses:

Lady Diana (light pink)
Bridal Pink (dark pink)
Primadonna (hot pink)
Little Cameo (two-tone pink)
Lovely Girl (light yellow)
Golden Fantasie (dark yellow)
Cara Mia (red)
Royalty (red)
Cascade (white)
Bridal White (white)
Fire 'N Ice (white outside and red inside petals)
Sonia (peach pink)
Lavande (lavender)

The Enomotos originally selected these varieties for the following characteristics (in order of priority): production numbers, stem length, color appeal, bud shape, winter production, shipping ability, vase life, and fragrance. But Ron is now gradually re-orienting these priorities as he replaces older bushes and he's putting fragrance at the top of the list while shipping ability is much lower on the scale. Ron has been very concerned about getting off the pesticide treadmill while still keeping his roses healthy. In1994, he began experimenting with growing without use of pesticides and has attracted the interest of researchers who are intrigued that he could achieve even better disease and insect control than when he was using pesticide sprays.

Always a Fresh Rose
Their stand at the Saturday S.F. Farmers' Market is a romantic display of multicolored, fragrant bouquets of rose buds waiting to open as soon as you get them home. Ron insists that you follow his instructions for trimming the stems while holding them underwater as soon as you get them home and not letting air touch the cut end to insure that each bud will open -- this is the secret to encouraging all the buds to open into perfectly formed roses.

A bouquet of 12 stems costs $7.00. At those prices, it's hard not to buy at least one bouquet every week! Be sure to sign up for the "Frequent Buyer" program and get a discount. Ron will happily mix his roses into a mixed bouquet with any other flowers that you buy at the Market.

The Enomotos are also at the Sunday and Thursday Marin Farmer's Market at the Civic Center in San Rafael, and the Half Moon Bay/Coastside Flower Market in Half Moon Bay (the third Saturday of the month). In addition, they sell to wholesale and to retail florists as well as to the public at their nursery in Half Moon Bay. They welcome visitors from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday - Friday.

May 1996

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