The History of Petersen & Tietz, A 90th Birthday Celebration!

The History of Petersen & Tietz, A 90th Birthday Celebration!












Nestled at 2275 Independence Ave in Waterloo, Iowa, Petersen & Tietz Florists & Greenhouses stands as a testament to a rich legacy that began nine decades ago. Our many years of experience have provided us with the expertise to continue serving the Cedar Valley as your premier florist. Today, join us on a journey through time as we unveil the captivating history of a family business deeply rooted in the love of flowers and the art of floral design.












1929-1934: The Seedling of a Dream

In 1929, the journey began with the purchase of the land at 2275 Independence Ave, where a residential house was built. This marked the establishment of a family legacy by Peter and Margaret Petersen along with their children Henrick and Joni. The next milestone came in 1934 when the Petersens began supplying vegetable plant seedlings to Rath Packing Company co-workers from a small greenhouse. This greenhouse not only nurtured seeds but also planted the seed of floral passion within the family.












1942-1948: Growing Dreams in Glass

A significant turning point came in 1942 when the original greenhouse was torn down, making way for two glass greenhouses. These structures, the first two encountered when visiting our greenhouses, witnessed the expansion into growing both flowers and vegetable plants. During this time, Margaret Petersen, inspired by a request to arrange flowers for a wedding, traveled to Chicago to master the art of floral design. In 1948, the Flower Shop was built, accompanied by the addition of the #3 house.









1953-1960: Nurturing Growth and Artistry

In 1953, Petersen's Greenhouses became part of Florist Transworld Delivery (FTD), marking a commitment to excellence in floral service. The family legacy continued to bloom with Ted and Joni (Petersen) Tietz's marriage in 1957. Ted's vision led to the addition of a wholesale division, accompanied by the construction of the #5 house. The family welcomed Heidi Tietz, the 3rd generation, in 1958. The business expanded further in 1959 with the purchase of adjacent land at 2277 Independence Ave, and houses #6 and #7 were added.

1965-1970s: Making Changes

The period from 1965 to 1967 marked the official name change to Petersen & Tietz Florists & Greenhouses, solidifying a united family presence in the business. The 1970s witnessed the construction of Greenhouses 8-10, while the addition of Interior Plant Maintenance and tropical plant stocking enhanced the business's offerings. Jeremy Tietz (3rd generation) was also born.










1984-2007: Facing Challenges and Blooming Innovations

The 1980s brought both challenges and innovations. In 1984, Margaret Petersen passed away, and in 1985, Henrik Petersen retired. However, the resilient spirit of Petersen & Tietz persevered. The 1990s saw the return of Heidi after she attended Iowa State University. Tragedy struck in 1992 when Ted Tietz was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's Disease, leading to his passing in 1995.








The new millennium brought forth a new generation, with Kalli Tietz (4th Generation) born in 1996, followed by Reawna in 2001 and Reegan in 2007. Despite the challenges, Petersen & Tietz continued to innovate, receiving a patent in 2004 for the Poinsettia "Ted's Red." The Flower Shop received a noteworthy addition in 2015, symbolizing the ongoing growth and commitment to serving the community.









Today and Tomorrow: A Blooming Future

As the third generation continues to carry the torch, Petersen & Tietz Florists & Greenhouses remains a beacon of floral excellence in Waterloo. The legacy of passion, dedication, and a love for nature continues to blossom, promising a vibrant future for generations to come. Join us in celebrating 90 years of Petersen & Tietz, where each bloom tells a story, and the art of floral design is a timeless tradition. Thank you for being a part of our history!


Back to blog