If there is one message that you come away with from this article, it is this: is open and ready for business.
The local florist shop along Dodge Avenue was started by John Long in 1895. And since then, it has served countless customers here in East Haven and throughout the greater New Haven area.
Now, Long's grandchildren — the brother and sister team of Richard Coyle and Corinne Lydem — own and operate the shop.
'Never Really Closed'
But in in late 2010, the family business' . A struggling economy and changes in the industry forced the siblings to make some difficult decisions: they closed the nurseries and greenhouse.
And they also almost closed the shop's doors for good. Almost.
"We've never really closed," Lydem said. "We had intended to close but in the end, we never did."
'Still Getting Calls'
Lyden said two years ago, while business remained solid, the expenses of running the greenhouse was just getting to be too much. And so, she and her brother reluctantly decided to close the nursery in the fall of 2010.
But as the two were going through the motions of closing up the shop, for good, they began to have second thoughts.
"We were in here, doing things, but we were still getting calls," Lydem said as she sat at her bookkeeper's desk in the shop's office. "And so we decided that we would be open on limited hours, and we'd see how it went."
And so far it has gone well.
"We're doing all right," Lydem said.
Coyle continues to put together flowers and floral arrangements for all occasions.
The shop itself is open Monday through Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.
"And if you'd like to make an appointment, you can call," Lyden said.
And the business will deliver to locations throughout the greater New Haven area.
'He Likes to Work'
One of Coyle's biggest strengths as a florist, according to his sister, are his wedding arrangements.
"They are very nice," she said. "And you get a very good value here."
One of his other strengths? His strong work ethic.
Lydem said that is one of the main reasons that the doors of J. A. Long are still open and welcoming its returning and new customers.
"He likes to work," she said.