Special to Mississippi Clarion Ledger Vases splashed with color by artists at a local nonprofit looked even more vibrant when filled with fresh flowers during a popup shop in Ridgeland.

Carly McKie, manager of Green Oak Florist in Ridgeland, invited the Mustard Seed , a community in Brandon for adults with developmental disabilities, to show its creations and join forces for the popup.

“It was a natural partnership,” McKie said. “There’s so much creativity put into each piece created at the Mustard Seed. No two are alike.”

Pink Gerbera daisies, yellow tulips and other brightly colored blossoms looked right at home in the vases, jars and containers the participants at the Mustard Seed, who are fondly known as “Seedsters,” painted with dots and dashes and swirls and stripes.

“All of the vases we had previewed sold in the first hour, and the Mustard Seed had to bring in several more boxes of pots, vases, pitchers, and utensil holders,” McKie said. “It was an incredible day connecting with the community and bringing smiles to people’s faces.”

The pop-up marked the first time Mustard Seed partnered with a florist for an event showcasing its creations filled with fresh flowers, said Kaitlin Childress, volunteer coordinator at the Mustard Seed.

The Mustard Seed closed its campus and gift shop for several weeks at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Childress said, and the popup offered an outlet for sales and a way to make the community aware of what it has to offer.

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Tori Arinder of Madison, a volunteer at Mustard Seed, encouraged Carly McKie, a long-time friend, to work out details for a popup.

Arinder, a physical therapist at Select Specialty Hospital in Jackson, said she enjoyed the popup so much that she purchased two vases

“The vases and the flowers complemented each other,” she said. “Carly was able to match the flowers to the vases and the vases were brought to life.”

The popup fit right in with McKie’s goal of selling Mississippi-made products such as artwork, greeting cards and other unique items at the Ridgeland florist, which designs flowers for events from weddings to funerals and special occasions such as birthdays and anniversaries. Green Oak a family affair

McKie, who learned how to arrange flowers by watching designers at Green Oak in Jackson, is among the young generation of family members at the florist.McKie’s grandparents, Rita and the late Billy Martinson of Madison, opened Green Oak Nursery in Jackson in 1960. Her parents, Karen and Muar McKie of Madison, own the Jackson and Ridgeland locations of Green Oak.A graduate of Jackson Academy, Carly McKie earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from Mississippi College in 2013 and then worked at the World Trade Center in Mississippi where she facilitated international trade. Madison County School District: Here’s what projects are in the works to improve schools Barbara Travis, who directed the World Trade Center in Mississippi, shared with McKie that the Rotary Foundation offers global scholarships for graduate studies and […]