Flower people are happy people: Butterfly Gardens builds community through flowers


Kathy Carlson, above, owns Butterfly Gardens in Maple Lake with her twin sister Colleen. The flower mart, located in the Cennex parking lot, has come to town each spring since 2009. (Photo by Shelby Maznio)

Located right off Highway 55 in the Cenex parking lot, Butterfly Gardens Flower Mart offers a wide selection of flowers and plants to aspiring and dedicated green thumbs. Owners and twin sisters, Kathy and Colleen Carlson, have made their business a place where the community can come together and chat while looking for a new flower to begin or add to their garden.
Growing up on a farm in Montrose the Carlson sisters began working in a greenhouse when they were about 14 or 15 years old. This led to buying their first location in Maple Plain in 1999, later moving it to a new location in Montrose in 2002. They expanded to Maple Grove in 2006 and came to Maple Lake in 2009, where Kathy oversees the greenhouse while Colleen is in Montrose.
“It sort of just became a part of who we are,” Kathy said. “We’ve been doing it now for roughly 18 years.”
The expansion of Butterfly Gardens came when the sisters realized they had a bountiful stock available and an ever-growing passion to be a part of more communities.

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