Our History

Walter Swenson and Edward Silacci at the height of their partnership
Various flowers on-display in front of a 1940s-era delivery truck

A Salinas landmark since 1945

In 1945, Walter "Dutch" Swenson and his wife, Bessie, purchased the Salinas Nursery Florist located on Front Street (the current site of Hayward Home Centers) and renamed it Swenson's Flowers. Five years later, they moved the business to a shop they built at 220 Soledad Street. The Swensons steadily grew their floral business for the next 10 years and eventually hired their first employee, Edward Silacci, to be the delivery driver. Edward had always loved flowers and knew he wanted to be in the floral business. As a kid, Edward used to help his mom in her award-winning garden and at age 15, he set up a roadside flower stand to sell fresh-cut blooms.

With continued growth and success, the business moved again in 1961 to a more prominent location at 70 W. Alisal Street. In 1966, Bessie and Dutch offered Edward a partnership in the business whereupon the name was changed to Swenson & Silacci Flowers. Moving two doors down in 1969, the company set up shop at 90 W. Alisal Street. After this move, things really took off and Swenson & Silacci thrived. After 25 years running the business, the Swenson's decided it was time to retire and Edward became the sole owner.

Throughout the 1970s and 80s, Edward's skill in running the business and knack for creating gorgeous, cutting-edge floral designs resulted in even more growth. During this time, he also added a line of unique gift items to complement the floral products. Before the end of the 80s, Edward had grown Swenson & Silacci Flowers into the largest florist in Salinas.

In 1993, Edward's son, Mark Silacci, joined the business after completing the MBA program at Santa Clara University. With Edward and Mark at the helm, the business experienced significant growth leading them to open more shops. Their second location in Monterey, CA, opened in 1995. Five years later, they opened their third location in North Salinas, and in early 2001, Swenson & Salicci Flowers move into their flagship store - a 10,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art facility in South Salinas where they are currently located.

Moving to a larger shop enabled Swenson & Silacci to effectively and efficiently handle their growth while continuing to provide superior customer service to their clientele. After a while, Mark decided it made good business sense to close the smaller shops and focus on running operations out of their main facility which had recently installed top-of-the-line routing software.

In 2017, Mark expanded into the wholesale flower business and acquired Matranga Floral - the premiere wholesale florist in Monterey County. Matranga offers a wide variety of fresh flowers and greens as well as a broad selection of glassware, containers and florist supplies. We are a one-stop shop for floral professionals and DIY hobbyists and offer delivery service throughout Monterey & Santa Cruz Counties as well as service over to the Central Valley (Turlock, Modesto, etc) and down to San Luis Obispo County. Matranga is now housed in our main facility so together, the two companies offer a complete floral experience for all our customers.

Over the years, Mark focused on building a successful infrastructure within the business to improve operations and keep costs down in order to pass the savings onto the customer. Most of all, Mark has been able to raise the bar for exceptional customer service, the foundation upon which the business was built, and a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Several generations in, the Silacci family continues to excel at offering the freshest flowers and the finest service, and Mark and his family look forward to continuing offering only the best to Salinas and the surrounding communities.