Knox Nursery, Inc. started in 1962 on the Knox family's porch. Although the family-run nursery has grown to encompass more than 23 acres since then, the second-generation owners haven’t forgotten their humble beginnings, still emphasizing the down-home customer service that made the business what it is today. They and their staff lovingly harnesses the Floridian sunshine to produce plugs and liners, cultivating more than 5,000 plant varieties ranging in size from young ones destined for greenhouses to 4-inchers perfect for landscaping.
At the retail center, staffers stand ready to help green-thumbed shoppers to navigate the selection of annuals and perennials or pick out shrubs to block views of money-filled swimming pools from jealous neighbors. Palms, trees, and vegetables await their chance to fill out gardens or finish landscapes.
Pawsh Pet Resort and Spa was designed from a pet's perspective to provide its furry visitants with homely comforts amid a safe, fun, and personalized environment. The facility is managed by Holly Kierski, whose credentials for the job include certifications in pet CPR, first aid, and as a bark-to-English translator. Holly heads a staff of professionals that supervise all of Pawsh's day-to-day activities, ranging from exercise-packed daycare services to upscale boarding options, some of which feature password-protected webcams so traveling owners can peek in on their canine or kitty. Meanwhile, on the spa side of Pawsh, professionally trained groomers spruce up shaggy styles, and outside the facility, Pawsh employees jet off to clients' houses for in-home sitting of more exotic pets, such as horses, birds, and freeloading cousins.
The home-objects experts at TLG Home Furnishings pack their showroom with a selection of name-brand gear for domestic dining, lounging, and sleeping. For convenient decorating, TLG lets customers choose their home accents a la carte or cart home a multi-piece-package bedroom or dining set. Customers can solicit the sage design wisdom of the in-store staff or utilize the company's Create Your Own Space online tool, which allows shoppers to sample endless furniture combinations and try out different styles of ottoman toupees.
On Friday and Saturday evenings, it’s not uncommon to hear Johnny Cash tunes echoing across Showcase of Citrus farm’s 2,500 acres as members of the Arnold family shake off another satisfying workweek with their friends and customers. Fourth-generation grower John Arnold and his family can usually be found caring for their groves of citrus trees, collecting fruit, making juice, feeding farm animals or greeting visitors from around the globe.
Located just 15 minutes from Disney World, the Arnold family farm produces more than 50 varieties of citrus fruit and blackberries without using pesticides, herbicides, or magic beans. The fruit–as well as jams, jellies, marmalades, and honey—are all available onsite at Farmer John's Old Time Country Store where guests can sample sauces, jellies, marmalade, and honey. Guests can spot native or exotic wildlife such as alligators, zebra, water buffalo, watusi cattle, or scarlet macaws on one of the farm’s monster-truck eco-safari tours.
The technicians at Orlando Pool & Spa inspect, maintain, and repair home pools during weekly cleanings or one-time services. The staff tends to all pool-related needs, checking filter pressure, removing debris and leaves, and adding chlorine when needed.
Like most success stories, Leader's Casual Furniture didn't start at the top. Founded in a single west Florida show room in 1971, the company now boasts 19 retail show rooms, a 150,000-square-foot distribution center, and an ever-increasing selection of rattan, wicker, and patio furniture. Upon browsing the virtual show room, visitors find rattan dining sets, beds, and entertainment centers as well as wicker tables with stone or glass tops. Custom fabrics and tropical-themed pieces add personal flair to interiors or exteriors, and an online room plannerhelps customers get a feel for how chosen pieces will fit into their homes.