In a normal week, East Maitland Florist would sell between 10 and 20 red rose bunches. On Valentine’s Day, they’ll sell about 100.
Valentine’s Day is this Wednesday and preparations are already well advanced for what is the florist’s busiest day of the year.
While some people won’t have even put a thought into what they will buy their significant other on Valentine’s Day yet, East Maitland Florist owner Annette Moss had her red roses order in more than two weeks ago.
And if you’re curious as to what that order was, it was for almost 1,000 individual stems.
“It’s a fun day, but it’s very, very hectic,” Ms Moss said.
As an example of how busy it is, most days of the year the shop has two staff members working at one time – on Wednesday they will have 14, with six dedicated solely to delivery driving.
It’s always been the red roses.East Maitland Florist owner Annette Moss
Some years, Ms Moss said she even had to stay overnight in the shop on the night before Valentine’s Day putting the final touches on gifts ready for the big day.
But it’s nothing new for Ms Moss. This will be her 40th Valentine’s Day working in the florist industry and her 14th as owner of the East Maitland business.
She said while it was always a busy day, the workload varied depending on what time of the week Valentine’s Day fell.
For example, Fridays and weekends generally weren’t as busy as mid-week, as couples opted for dinner or a weekend away as opposed to gifts.
Ms Moss also said the types of gifts also varied year to year.
In terms of flowers, she said gerberas, mixed flowers and lillies were all popular, especially for couples in newer relationships.
But, Ms Moss said there was always one type of flower that trumped them all year after year.
“It’s always been the red roses,” Ms Moss said.
But there are also variations on the typical red rose order.
Ms Moss said she usually received a few orders for 11 fresh roses and one silk rose, using the concept that the customer’s love will last until the last rose dies.
One year she even had the huge task of tying an engagement ring to a rose for someone.
But even with all of the stories and orders she has taken over the years, the romance of the day still hasn’t worn off for Ms Moss.
“I think it’s beautiful,” she said.
“It’s a nice time of year for people.”