Roses for Valentine’s Day? Expect to pay more and get less, says florist

Valentine's Day roses. Blake Lough

If you think roses are your best bet as a gift this Valentine’s Day, you might want to think again, according to a local florist.

Catherine Metrycki of Callia Flowers told 680 CJOB that all of the hype surrounding the classic flower means you’re going to be paying more and getting less.

“The problem with a dozen roses on Valentine’s Day is that they end up being really expensive – three or four times what you’d pay at any other time of the year,” said Metrycki.

“The farms know that, so they harvest them earlier and the quality’s not as good. You pay a lot for not a lot of flowers.”

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Metrycki said that doesn’t mean roses are a bad idea, but it’s worth mixing them into a bouquet instead of going for a dozen on their own.

The demand, she said, is so high at this time of year that prices on roses are typically marked up at every step between the farm and the florist’s counter.

“I was hearing some numbers that there were some florists charging $150 for a dozen roses. Well, the cost on that is not even $30.”

She said her business gets 80 per cent of their orders on Feb. 13 and 14 as lovebirds leave their floral purchases to the last minute.

“There’s a couple of Valentines who have gotten ahead of it over the past couple of days,” she said, “but everything’s going to come in today and tomorrow, so we’ve got a lot of flowers, we’re taking a lot of orders, but there’s a lot going on.”

According to Statistics Canada, roses still have massive popularity in this country, with 4.4 million rose stems produced in Canada in 2017, but considerably more – 12.4 million dozen – imported from countries like Colombia and Ecuador. That’s over $76 million in imported roses and rose buds.

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