By Joe Bachman
When Paul C. Beasa purchased property on the 400 block of Saratoga St. in 1912, little did he know that he was purchasing history.
In June, Ebsen Greenhouses will celebrate 100 years in Wisconsin Rapids; a feat rarely duplicated in this day and age. While the greenhouse bears the name of Henry Ebsen Sr., the story begins with Mr. Paul Beasa. Beasa started the Paul C. Beasa Floral Company in 1916, which would become Wisconsin Rapids’ first florist and greenhouse.
Beasa hired a then 27-year-old Ebsen, who just moved to the area from Marshfield. Ebsen was a practicing horticulturist, and started his journey in with Marshfield florist T.D. Hefko.
On Feb. 23, 1918, Ebsen bought the Paul C. Beasa Floral Company and gave the greenhouse his own name. From there, the greenhouse grew into one of the leading growers of everything from chrysanthemums, carnations, and daffodils to orchids and premium geraniums. In 1955, Ebsen would add four new structures to the property, totaling 12,400 square feet of growing space.
Ebsen turned his greenhouses into a family business by beginning a partnership with sons Paul and Henry Jr. in 1949. Henry Jr. and his wife Mary ran day to day operations from 1958 to 2012. In that time, due to the development of the E. Jackson Expressway in 1978, Ebsen Greenhouses renovated itself and officially became Ebsen Greenhouses Inc. at 411 Jackson St.
However, throughout the years and changes, the one constant has always been tradition. Ebsen Greenhouses is now run by Henry Jr.’s daughters, Jennifer, Sally, and Mary Anne Ebsen.
“Tradition meant a lot to the family and we were glad to be able to continue to carry out that tradition,” said Mary Anne.”
The passion for the business has been passed down through generations, and speaks to the legacy and longevity of this 100-year-old business. To celebrate 100 years, Ebsen Greenhouses will have a dozen roses on special for $12.95 from Jun. 6-11. It’s a good possibility that your life has been touched by Ebsen, as they have serviced birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, holidays, funerals, and countless special events over their 100 year span.
“We basically grew up in the greenhouses,” said Ebsen. “So flowers have always been a part of our lives, and my sisters and family have gardens at home — we’ve tried to carry our passion of flowers through that, and the greenhouse.”