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Made in the 956: Valley florist named Texas State Designer of the Year

2 weeks 2 days 12 hours ago Tuesday, April 02 2024 Apr 2, 2024 April 02, 2024 11:47 AM April 02, 2024 in News - Local

A Rio Grande Valley florist is doing more than just creating beautiful bouquets, he's creating art. Just recently, he received a very big award, an award he's dedicating to his late mother.

Abel Gonzalez Mencio is this week's Made in the 956.

Abel is also known the Valley's flower guy. One look at his creations, and you'll see why. 

"I call myself a design engineer. [I] give myself a little fancy title rather than just a florist," Abel said.

Abel doesn't just know how to make these beautiful creations, he's certified in it too. 

"I am an AIFD, CFD, PFCI, TMF, the letters stand for American Institute of Floral Design, Certified Floral Designers, Professional Floral Communicators International and Texas Master Florist," Abel said.

Abel's done state and national competitions, competing with some of the best floral designers.

"I went and competed in Louisiana and won the Louisiana Cup, but it wasn't the Texas Cup. I've always wanted to win Texas," Abel said.

He finally reached that goal.

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Abel is the 2023 Texas State Designer of the Year for the Texas State Florist Association, an award he dedicated to his late mother.

"Unfortunately, my mother passed away about two years ago right before I won the cup, and I dedicated it to her and I said you know what if it's god's will and her will, she's my guiding spirit, I'm going to win this cup. And someone had told me, it was strange because they told me if you win this cup, the moment you walk in there the first thing you do is thank your mother because she's your guiding force, and then you thank god," Abel said. 

Abel owns the flower shop, Casa Granada Floral in La Feria, bringing his expertise and designs to customers across the Valley.

"We, in this industry, are the only ones, I don't think there's any other industry in the world that you encompass people's joys, happiness, sadness, you encompass every aspect of their lives," Abel said. "They call us to do baby showers, birthdays, weddings, sometimes more than one, anniversaries, homecomings, Sweet 16's, quinceañeras, you name it, and then the final tribute is when people pass away. So we're entrusted in all these aspects of people's lives, and it's an amazing opportunity for us to be creative and to express in flowers the feelings of our customers," Abel said.

Feelings for Abel that will continue blooming for years to come. 

"I enjoy working with flowers, I enjoy making people happy," Abel said.

Abel Gonzalez Mencio from Casa Granada Floral, Made in the 956.

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