14 Fun Facts About Valentine's Day Flowers

Red Valentine Roses
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Valentine's Day gift-giving just wouldn't be the same without fresh flowers. Whether you're giving a fresh cut bouquet, a live flowering plant basket, or an elegant single long-stemmed rose, there's a lot going on behind the scenes to ensure that the consumer demand for floral Valentine's gifts is met.

  1. Roses continue to dominate the Valentine’s gift market in the United States, but in Denmark, the tradition is to exchange dainty white snowdrop flowers. Make the most of short-stemmed flowers by including them in a corsage, a way to express love and appreciation for other special women in our lives like moms and daughters. 
  2. The National Retail Federation claims that 2018 is a banner year for Valentine's Day spending, and that includes flowers. Of a projected $19.6 billion dollars, more than a third of that (35.6%) will be spent on flowers. There's a modern twist to this spending: Over half of celebrants plan to use their smartphones to make their buying decisions, and about 45% will use tablets to find bargains. Many consumers will be looking to beat the price of a dozen arranged long-stemmed roses, which averaged $85 in 2017, according to the Society of American Florists (SAF). Even more budget-friendly? A gathering of unarranged long-stemmed roses for an average of $66.  
  3. The language of love goes beyond roses, which made up 51% of Valentine flower sales in 2017. You can communicate your specific feelings and desires to your love with the traditional meaning of flowers: send gardenias to your secret love, or purple larkspur to your first love.
  4. Forget about the classic dozen when it comes to giving roses for Valentine's Day. A gift of a single rose says that the recipient is the only one. Increase that to three roses if you wish to say, "I love you." A gift of 11 roses means that the giver is the missing flower in the dozen. Finally, an extravagant gift of three dozen long-stemmed roses says that the giver's heart belongs to the recipient.
  5. Where’s the fragrance? The hybrid roses produced for the Valentine’s Day market are bred for perfect form and longevity in the vase, often at the expense of the fragrance. If you don’t have access to homegrown heirloom roses, consider asking your florist to mix fragrant freesias, scented stock, or oriental lilies in with your rose bouquet.
  6. Not all Valentine’s flowers come from South America. California is the leading producer of domestically produced cut flowers, accounting for about three-quarters of the wholesale value produced. Sourcing is increasingly important to customers; 21% of customers frequently asked about flower origin, according to a SAF survey. 
  7. To make the cut as a long-stemmed rose for Valentine’s Day, the flower must have a stem length of 24 to 36 inches and a blossom diameter of two to four inches. These special roses are cultivated using specific pruning techniques and strict greenhouse climate controls.
  8. You can combine chocolate and flowers for Valentine’s Day, and not just those cheesy foil-covered chocolate roses. Consider giving a chocolate scented orchid for lasting blooms and sweet fragrance. Oncidium orchid "Sharry Baby" can fill a room with a rich cocoa scent over its two to three month bloom time.
  9. Some cities seem more romantic than others due to their floral names. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are four cities named Rose Hill, five called Roseland, and six named Roseville.
  10. Online shopping has changed the logistics of the way customers shop for Valentine flowers, and instant gratification rules. Florists responding to a SAF survey reported that 38% of Valentine orders came on the 14th, while more than 50% took Valentine orders on the 15th.   
  11. Does your Valentine also have a February birthday? Honor the birthday and the romantic holiday by sending a mixed flower bouquet that includes violets, the birth flower for February.
  12. U.S. Customs and Border Protection protects consumers by screening hundreds of millions of imported fresh cut Valentine flowers for pests and diseases, mostly from Columbia and Ecuador. Commonly intercepted pests include thrips, moths, and aphids.The bulk of these flowers enter the U.S. through Miami and Los Angeles during the Valentine season of January 1st through February 14th.
  13. Valentine’s Day is a bigger payday for florists when it falls on a weekday. Floral gift-givers tend to send better flower arrangements to the recipient’s office, where the flowers can fall under the gaze of more admiring eyes.
  14. The top 10 cut flower imports during the Valentine season are, in order:
    1. Roses
    2. Mixed Bouquets
    3. Dianthus
    4. Pom-pon Chrysanthemum
    5. Mini Dianthus
    6. Rose Bouquets
    7. Alstroemeria
    8. Chrysanthemum
    9. Hydrangea
    10. Gerbera Daisies