Sturtz & Copeland celebrates 90 years in bloom

The story of Sturtz & Copeland, Boulder’s treasured florist and garden center, is a storied one. It dates back to 1882 when James and Rhoda Hubbard built five greenhouses alongside the quiet dirt avenue of Arapahoe Road and opened Fawcett Floral. In August of 1928, Lloyd and Gladys Sturtz bought out the Hubbards, and Sturtz & Copeland officially entered its name into Boulder’s history in 1929, when Gladys’ father, Albert W. Copeland, joined his daughter and son-in-law in business. Fast forward 90 years and Sturtz & Copeland has become a trusted fixture of the Boulder Valley, beautifying our homes and gardens with a stunning selection of annuals and perennials, professional floral arrangements, and a year-round greenhouse filled with indoor plants. Since its start on 1500 Arapahoe Road, Sturtz & Copeland has grown dramatically, making a move to Valmont Road in 1981 under the then new ownership of Carol Riggs, who bought the business in 1976 after having worked at the greenhouse since the late 1960s.

In the years since, the shop has flourished under Riggs’ green thumb, thanks in part to General Manager Connie Smith and her team, who personally visit local brokers to hand-select houseplants, outdoor plants and fresh-cut flowers—piecing together a wide variety of traditional, exotic and trending plants.


That’s not to say the road to Sturtz & Copeland’s continued success has been without obstacles: this generation’s obsession with instant gratification led the greenhouse to begin stocking different types of plants, including more mature plants and quick-blooming flowers, as opposed to the fall-to-spring bulbs-think daffodils or tulips-it used to sell by the thousands. Perhaps the biggest shift for the company, however, came courtesy of the internet boom, and the introduction of online orders. This new realm of business forced Sturtz & Copeland to adapt and change the way it had done business for years, but it did so successfully, just as it has successfully navigated the onslaught of competition from big-box stores and grocery stores selling fresh-cut flowers and plants. As Smith relates, each new challenge has simply motivated Sturtz & Copeland to work ever harder to maintain the stellar reputation it has built in the community. And maintain it has. As Boulder has grown, changed and flourished over the decades, Sturtz & Copeland has remained a steadfast staple of its landscape; a shining example of just how much hard work, customer loyalty and an unwavering dedication to excellence can achieve.