Red Roses Mean Plenty of Green

Article excerpt

Roses remain a perennial favorite as a gift for everything from a "Get Well" pick-me-up to romantic bouquets. But why do they have to cost so much?

The common sense answer is simple supply and demand, with millions turning to the popular bloom as a show of affection on the heart-laden holiday.

In addition, there's more waste than meets the eye. Long-stemmed red roses remain the most popular flower for V-day, and several rosebuds have to be removed to get one clean long-stem. And busy times often mean busy workers, with florists and greenhouses hiring additional help to get through the rush.

"We get slammed with orders for Valentine's Day," said Orange Park Florist floral designer Tammy Neilson, who said the store hires extra hands and drivers to meet demand. Last year, the store sold 2,800 dozens of roses, mainly in red.

Did you forget to buy some blooms for your sweetheart? Below are some local florists and prices, including the single rose option for when the love in your heart is greater than the cash in your wallet.

- CHANEL MARTIN Prices compiled by MARY MARAGHY

Additional information from growerflowers.com

ORANGE PARK FLORIST

1940 Park Ave., 264-5120

One dozen long-stem red roses: $69.99

Dozen short-stems: $54.95

Single bud vase: $15

ANTONIA'S

322 Ferris St., Green Cove Springs, 284-5006

One dozen long-stem red roses: $42.50

Dozen short-stems: $42.50

Single bud vase: $8

HOUSE OF MILLE DE FLEUR

795 Blanding Blvd., Orange Park, 213-4442

One dozen long-stem red roses: $65

No short stems

Single bud vase: $12

SALLY'S ROSES & MORE II

7911-4 Blanding Blvd., 573-0077

One dozen long-stem red roses: $79.95

Dozen short-stems: $59 and up

Single bud vase: $9.95

WINN-DIXIE

248 Blanding Blvd. near Skate Station, 276-4200

Dozen short-stem roses: $24.99

Single bud vase: $8.99

WAL-MART

1505 County Road 220, 278-1836

Dozen short-stem roses: $20

Single bud vase: $3

WHY ROSES ON VALENTINE'S DAY? …

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