Wednesday, July 11, 2012
Shelia Jones wanted to give the community a gift everyone could enjoy. It’s the little things people don’t think about that often bring out a smile, and flowers seem to do that, she said.
The area where chickens used to roam on the Joneses’ farm in Rock Spring, she has turned into the Chicken House, what Jones describes as a pick- your-own flower market.
“We supply the bucket and shears for customers to cut their own bouquet,” she said. “Or if they prefer, we can pick the flowers and create an arrangement for them.”
The Chicken House has a 15,000-square-foot field which is home to 10 different varieties of sunflowers and five varieties of zinnias. Jones said she had hoped to include lavender but explained that Georgia soil has too much clay to sustain the flower.
“You see a lot of these types of businesses in Pennsylvania and Maine,” she said. “I didn’t know what the response would be, but people really seem to enjoy to pick the flowers.”
The Chicken House charges per stem. Sunflowers are sold for $1 per stem; 50 cents for zinnias. There is also a bucket option, which is sold for $30 for all you can fit.
“It’s not only cost-effective, it also brightens their day,” Jones said. “People haven’t seen flowers in this mass and it’s really a treat to them.
“The flowers bring back good memories and people come in and share their story. I love that we all share.”
The two on-site chic gazebos, which sit aside the field of flowers, were originally chicken houses but are now full of rare and unusual articles that make perfect gifts, especially when coupled with a hand-selected bouquet. Jones said she buys in small quantities so the inventory is always changing.
“I wanted to establish something unusual that you just can’t go to Walmart and get, so I am always adding new vendors and finding unique items customers will like,” she said.
In addition to flowers, there is a diverse variety of merchandise which includes items such as unusual lamps, handmade brooms from bamboo, a line of inexpensive knives, Amish-made tinwork from Pennsylvania and Watkins products, to list a few.
The Chicken House is open Thursday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., but Jones said, “If someone needs to pick on a day we’re closed, I’m always glad to let people come by to pick or make flower arrangements.”
Visit the Chicken House at 436 Kay Conley Road in Rock Spring or on Facebook or call 423-693-4778 for more information.