You might have seen Miriam “Mili” Cordero and her flowers around town before at events like the Summer Night Market at the River Garden or South Main Trolley Night, and if you’re not quite sure, just look for her vintage, pink flower truck. It’s impossible (and way too cool) to miss.
Speaking of the flower truck, it was imported from Poland. Mili and her husband found it in California and spent the next 11 months fixing and customizing it themselves for the business. These Memphis summers can be rough on all of us, but they can especially take a toll on the blooms. The truck keeps the flowers fresh with a canopy and lots of ice and flower food.
As for the flowers, well, they’re all sourced locally. What you’ll find on the truck depends on the season, but some of her staples include sunflowers, roses, eucalyptus, daisies, baby’s breath, stock, and blue thistle. Most of the arrangements cost between 15 and 25 dollars, and single flowers are based on stem price.
Mili’s been in the business since February of this year, but her heart signed up long before she did.
“I have loved flowers since I was little and my mom had a beautiful garden,” Mili said. “She inspired me to love and care for flowers, and since that moment I knew I wanted to have a flower shop.”
So, Mili gave her notice at her job at the time and pursued her dream by taking on Mili’s Flowers and Gifts full time. Along with the bouquets, she also sells other gifts and novelties. A lot of these are handmade by Mili herself or are brought home straight from Mexico.
Photos by Cady Jones
Whether it’s Mother’s Day, for a birthday, or to brighten up your kitchen for that monthly game night, the right bouquet can make all the difference. Mili handpicks her flower arrangements herself or lets her customers customize their own bunch.
Mili loves all flowers, but she does have a couple of favorites.
“My favorite flowers are peonies and proteas, which are the emblematic flower of Africa,” Mili said. “You can easily build a bouquet around those flowers.”
Along with favorite flowers, some of her favorite places to park her truck include Overton Square and Riverside Drive.