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Valentine’s Day is the perfect occasion to offer the traditional bouquet of roses.
Ask your SKY cadeaux et fleurs florists for color and style suggestions!
Valentine’s Day is synonymous with the gift of flowers, and has been for more than 100 years. The 14th of February is a day of symbolism, love and celebration.
From the traditional bouquet of roses, red roses to personalized flower arrangements, our Valentine’s Day gift options and flower bouquets are sure to surprise your loved one on this special day.
Valentine’s Day is undoubtedly the most important day in the world for sending flowers, cards and gifts, but have you ever wondered where this tradition comes from and why we send flowers and gifts?
The history of Valentine’s Day
The history behind the day of love and its patron saint is shrouded in mystery.
There are two major origin stories attributed to Valentine’s Day, stemming from different cultures.
In ancient Rome, a pagan holiday was celebrated every February in honour of Juno, the goddess of marriage and women, nowadays more popular under her greek name: Hera. On February 14th, young roman women would place their names in a massive jar. The city’s bachelors would them pick one at random, and would then be paired with the young woman for the remainder of the festival. Most of these pairings would amount to marriage, as the young couples would fall in love or find deep friendship after spending time together.
Christianity brought a different point of view to this celebration, originating in the martyrdom of three religious figures, all named Valentine or Valentinus. The most popular of the legends recounts the tale of a 3rd century roman priest named Valentine, who went against Claudius II’s orders for the sake of love. The emperor had declared single soldiers more useful than married ones, and had therefore forbidden the marriage of young roman men. Saint Valentine saw this as an injustice and continued to perform wedding ceremonies for the roman youth, and was beheaded for his disregard of the Emperor’s decree.
The popular phrase “From your Valentine” is attributed to a different Saint Valentine, who was imprisoned for his religious beliefs under an earlier roman Empire. He had fallen in love with the daughter of a prison guard and would write her letters, signed: Your Valentine. He is therefore credited with the first Valentine’s note!
Why are roses so popular on Valentine’s Day?
Of all the Valentine’s Day gifts, none is as iconic as the rose.
Roses became an important part of this romantic holiday in the early 18th century thanks to King Charles II of Sweden, who introduced the art of floriography, or the language of flowers, to his court and to Europe. In Victorian times, people made flower arrangements following detailed codes and meanings to express their feelings to their loved ones. Gifts of flowers, plants and specific flower arrangements were used to send a coded message to the recipient: entire conversations could be conducted without a single word.
For example, a bouquet of roses in matching colours meant ‘You are the world to me’; a bouquet of red tulips represented a declaration of love; a single flower presented with the right hand meant ‘yes’ and with the left hand ‘no’.
Because of its versatility, beauty and variety, the rose quickly became one of the most popular flowers used to express love, devotion and sometimes hidden feelings. It has varied from culture to culture, and from era to era, but overall this beautiful flower has become a classic symbol of love in all its variations. For example, a single red rose is an elegant way to say “I love you”, a bouquet of pink roses tells your loved one that you are perfectly happy with them, and red and white roses express unity.
Of course, Valentine’s Day roses are not just about romantic love. Thanks to the different meanings of the colours of the roses, these classic beauties also make great Valentine’s Day gifts for friends and family.
We can help you:
Our florists can create outstanding floral arrangements that will satisfy your taste.
Ask your florist at SKY cadeaux et fleurs for colour and style suggestions.
The rose industry on valentine’s day
Many disgruntled lovers can be seen seen running around the shops on the 13th and 14th of Febrary each year, trying to find the perfect gift for their partner. Even if this holiday comes around every year, it is still quite rare to find people who plan in advance to avoid all the lines at the jeweler’s, confectioner’s or, most often, the florist’s. And, when they get to the cash register after selecting the perfect bouquet, many are surprise by the flowers’ higher than usual price. As a lot of people have come to expect, the price of flowers, particularly roses, rises up approching Valentine’s Day, while their quality might not be the one we’re used to from our local florist. Why is that? Do all the florists in the world up their prices knowing that people will buy them regardless? Or is there an industry secret behind Valentine’s Day?
Actually, there is a more complexe reason behind this phenomenon. Red roses, in huge demand in February, are in fact very rare at that time of year, and are mostly grown in greehouses. In summer, it takes around 30 days for a rose to grow enough to cut it. In winter, the fewer daylight hours and the cold up that time to 50 to 70 days. During that time period, it is necessary to keep the greenhouse lit and heated, which can cost more than $200 000 a month in the United States.
Apart from production, transportation also causes a problem. Millions of flowers have to be delivered in a period of 5 days before Valentine’s Day. They’ll wilt and perish if delivered too early, and will not be sold if delivered even one day too late. The huge quantity also means that the roses are cut and kept refrigerated for weeks if not months in advance, so the companies in charged of wholesale can make sure they have enough product. Therefore, flower are not taken care of quite as well as usual, and are kept refrigerated much longer than normal, which can make them seem smaller and of a subpar quality.
In short, producers have to up their prices to be able to heat and light their greenhouses, delivery companies also have to up their prices to keep their trucks refrigerated and to guarantee the delivery period. The florists then also up their prices, so they can buy the more expensive flowers and still make a profit. The prices and quality of the flowers on Valentine’s Day are due to the law of supply and demand.