Valentine’s Day is one of the most important days of the year for florists as people in the UK collectively spend up to £261 billion on flowers.

The owner of Nottingham’s Art of Flowers shop, Yvette, who does not wish to include her last name, explains that “Valentine’s Day is very important for the industry because it keeps us florists going through the quiet periods.”

Valentine’s Day alone accounts for a third of florists’ annual income.

Art of Flowers’ front desk
But she explains the busy day will leave florists running a tight ship: “Well, I’m gonna be here on Saturday, Sunday, Monday, we don’t go home Monday, Tuesday… We live here! We have them queuing out the door!”

“Valentines is very important for the industry because it keeps us florists going through the quiet periods”
Yvette

The preparation for Valentine’s Day in local shops happens months before as they order from Ecuador, Holland, and Colombia.

Audio: Yvette speaks about what makes Valentine’s Day busy for her shop

The History of Valentine’s Day

One popular belief:

  • The day gets its name from the famous St Valentine.
  • Emperor Claudius II and his army were in many battles but he believed that men who were married would not make good soldiers.
  • The ruler decided to ban marriage which Valentine didn’t agree with so he would break the rules and arrange marriage in secret.
  • When Claudius found out he threw Valentine in jail and sentenced him to death.
  • It’s believed that St Valentine fell in love with the jailer’s daughter and was taken to be killed on February 14th where he left her a love letter signed “from your Valentine”.

However florists are in fear over flower shortages as Brexit’s new border control rules came into force in January 2024 and could have a detrimental effect on the industry.

Dutch flower growers are urging the UK government to delay the change to prevent damage and loss.

The delay in lorries due to inspections could effect the quality of the plants and leave people disappointed.