Florists prepare for Cupid’s rush

Published 11:09 pm Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Florists are preparing for Valentines Day and roses are popular. -- Illustration

Valentine’s Day; It’s the day when one may not mind getting hit by Cupid’s love arrow. And though the holiday only comes once a year, local florists in Selma prepare weeks and even months in advance.

“We start preparing as soon as Christmas is over,” said Vicky Wilkerson, owner of The Flower Basket. “During a normal year, we have about 150 to 200 deliveries and between 20 to 30 last minute pickups.”

According to online holiday statistics, more than 110 million roses are purchased on or three days before Valentine’s Day.

Email newsletter signup

Wilkerson said roses, especially in the colors red, yellow, pink and white, are the most popular. Mixed arrangements, tulips and green plants are next.

“We’ve been taking orders for two weeks now,” Wilkerson said. “Our flowers come in a couple of days before the holiday.”

Bill Albritton, owner of Albritton’s Flowers, said his shop receives hundreds of orders during this time of year.

“Valentine’s Day is the No. 1 day for flowers and we order from our vendors about two weeks in advance,” Albritton said. “We make sure to double check orders, order enough vases and supplies. We arrange flowers during the weekend and the Friday before, we kick things into high gear.”

Wilkerson said all flowers are kept in coolers and vases of water mixed with preservatives, to help keep them fresh, until arrangements are made. Wilkerson said the roses are imported from South America, California and Colorado.

Albritton said because roses are so popular, prices are higher than usual and it’s better for customers to buy early.

“We often run out of roses on the day of the holiday,” Albritton said. “So the earlier you order, the better.”