Everything’s coming up roses

Roses are one of the most romantic flowers given as gifts throughout the year as well as Valentine’s Day.  From a deep burgundy Freedom rose to a snow white crisp Blizzard rose and all the colors in between, roses continue to be the number one choice of flower for Valentine’s Day.   To keep your roses lasting as long as possible, here are some helpful tips.

1.  When you first receive your roses, check the water level.  If you have received your roses professionally arranged, it is important that you keep the vase as full as possible.  With arranged roses, not all of them will have their stem at the bottom of the vase but rather will be staggered inside of the vase.   It is therefore important that each rose have a constant water source.  Fresher roses tend to drink alot of water so it is a great idea to check the level each and every day. 

2.  Keep your roses away from extreme heat or cold.  This means do not set your roses on the television set (TV’s conduct heat).  Do not set them near a vent or an outside door.  Also, do not set them in a window.  On sunny days, you would be surprised at how much heat will penetrate a window.


3.  In the event that you receive your roses in a box or wrapped in cellophane, every rose should have a water tube.  Have your vase full of water and ready prior to removing the tubes.  Always use fresh cold water.  Do not use warm water because warm water actually has air bubbles within itself and can cause your roses to die prematurely.  Carefully remove any leaves that might end up below the water line.  Foliage beneath the water line will increase bacteria in the water which will cause your roses to die prematurely.  Never completely remove thorns from roses.  This will scar the skin of the rose and can create air holes much like a drinking straw with holes in it.  Roses that have been completely de-thorned have a greater difficulty in drinking the necessary water needed to stay alive and, therefore, will decrease its life.


4. Once you have all your components ready to arrange your roses, be sure to use a clean knife.  Do not use regular scissors as they can pinch the rose stem closed which will inhibit the rose from drinking water.  Cut each rose on an angle and place it in the fresh water quickly.  Roses can create a film over the fresh cut which will also inhibit water absorbtion.


Professional florists will include a flower food packet with your roses (arranged or wrapped).  Be sure to follow the instructions on the packet.  Add the packet to fresh clean water.  Use that water to keep the vase full.


Most important, enjoy your fresh roses.  Marvel at how beautiful they are.  Take in their fragrance and celebrate the meaning of receiving a gift so exquisite that they could only be created by Mother Nature.


Will you be my Valentine?

Valentine’s Day has been a day to celebrate love for centuries.  Every year in February, beautiful fresh flowers, candy, and gifts are exchanged as a part of celebrating Saint Valentine’s Day.  Have you every wondered why we celebrate this holiday as well as who St. Valentine might be? The answer to this question is actually shrouded in mystery. What we do know is that February has long been considered a month of romance.

One legend story is that Valentine was a priest who served in Rome during the third century. Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families. Therefore, he outlawed marriage for any young man who might be a potential soldier. Valentine felt this law to be a great injustice and, therefore, performed marriages for young lovers in secret. Once discovered, Claudius ordered that Valentine be put to death.

According to another story, legend indicates that while in prison, Valentine fell in love with a young woman, perhaps his jailor’s daughter, who visited him during his confinement. Before he was put to death, Valentine wrote a letter to this young lady, which he signed ‘From your Valentine’.

Although the actual truth behind the Valentine legends may never be known, the stories certainly emphasize his appeal as a loving, heroic and sympathetic soul. It’s no surprise that by the Middle Ages, Valentine was one of the most popular saints in England and France.

By the 17th century Valentine’s Day began to be popularly celebrated.  It was common for friends and lovers in all social classes to exchange tokens of affection and/or handwritten notes. In modern time, Valentine’s Day is still a fun day to celebrate all aspects of love and friendship.