HvH Specialty Growers
“They know us as people and check in on us from time to time to see how we are doing. They have shown us that our success is something that they’ve taken to heart.”
After fulfilling careers in the corporate world, Lisa Haas and Ron vanHuuksloot wanted to begin their next professional chapter within their own community.
They are passionate about Fairfield’s Suisun Valley and wanted to be a part of the ‘fabric’ of the region. They have always enjoyed being together outdoors and flowers have been a passion of Haas’s for years.
Their vision for the future was a Suisun Valley flower farm, HvH Specialty Growers, an 11-acre farm they opened in early 2020.
They connected with the Solano-Napa SBDC months before opening because they found the organization to be a “rich source” for business start-up information.
“Knowing that a solid business plan is the foundation for a well-planned startup, we opted to ‘do it right the first time’ as the saying goes,” Haas said. “I knew having a comprehensive document in hand when applying for funding and permits would go a long way in moving us forward quickly and more smoothly than having a hastily prepared business plan.”
They enrolled in the SBDC’s NxLevel entrepreneur training in 2019 and were paired with Solano-Napa SBDC Advisor Carolynne Gamble. She assisted them through the process of creating a business plan for HvH Specialty Growers.
Haas and vanHuuksloot’s business plan “was the most comprehensive I have ever seen in all my years as a business advisor,” Gamble said. She continued working with HvH Specialty Growers as they welcomed their first guests in early 2020 and pivoted through the COVID-19 pandemic. Haas said they will be “forever grateful” to Gamble and their other advisors who helped them weather the pandemic, provide financial guidance, and grant assistance.
In 2020-2021, they worked with the Solano-Napa SBDC on an application for a $20,000 grant – which they received – from the Rebuild Solano’s Small Businesses Grant. They also went through the California Dream Fund program and received a $10,000 grant for their business.
Earlier this year, HvH Specialty Growers received the Celebrating Solano’s Workforce Microbusiness award for their dedication to their employees and Suisun Valley community. Gamble nominated them for the award.
That personal connection with advisors, Haas said, can make all the difference in the world.
“They know us as people and check in on us from time to time to see how we are doing,” she said. “They comment in our social media feeds. They have shown us that our success is something that they’ve taken to heart and over the years that psychological boost to know somebody’s out there rooting for us to make it in this business has been inspiring.
“We continue to grow and feel the support of our advisors every step of the way.”
HvH Specialty Growers operates their flower farm year-round, supplying fresh cut flowers for large events, flower markets, and retail florists, as well as operating a farm stand where visitors can create their own hand-tied bouquets. While most blooms are dormant in the winter, the spring and summer months are especially popular with U-pick weekends, photography sessions, and special events.