Welcome to the Growing a Community website!

Growing a Community: Pioneers of the Japanese American Floral Industry, is an oral history project focused on collecting and sharing the stories of Japanese American nursery families in the San Francisco Bay Area. Despite their profound influence on culture, community, identity, and industry, many of the contributions and stories of Japanese American nurseries are unrecognized and unrecorded. This project sheds light on the origins of the Japanese floral industry in the East Bay, how Japanese immigrants and their children shaped the industry, and how it helped create a resilient, supportive, and active Japanese American community. This often overlooked part of Japanese American history played an important role in the growth and development of the floral industry, not just in the Bay Area but throughout California and beyond. Their stories of sacrifice, hard work, discrimination, and perseverance typify many California immigrant experiences and speak to all of us. Explore our site to learn about the history of Japanese Americans in the floral industry and hear first-hand accounts of their experiences.


Help us continue to record and share stories of the Japanese American floral industry by donating to the project! There are still many flower grower experiences and stories to gather but we need your help to fund these interviews and maintain the website. With enough support we hope to be able to create more videos about the San Francisco Peninsula growers, the South Bay growers, and those who moved their businesses outside of the Bay Area to places like Gilroy and Pescadero. Your help keeping this important history alive is greatly appreciated!