Local florists import flowers for Valentine's Day

BISMARCK, N.D. - When you wake up and smell the roses on Valentine’s Day, do you ever wonder where the flowers came from? They usually don’t come from anywhere close to North Dakota.

“Most of my flowers come from California, Florida. All my roses that I have here for the holiday are from Ecuador, Salvador and Costa Rica, places like that,” said Marlee Perez, Concrete Daisiez owner.

“Our Minneapolis grower grows a lot of their own products, so they’re wonderful products, and it’s nice to have it come from the Upper Midwest. The rest of the flowers, really come from somewhere in South America,” said Laura Russler, Roberts Floral & Gifts Owner.

Russler’s shop has been open for 60 years. In the last 25, she’s seen an increase flower imports.

“The hot pink rose with the bright orange tip, and that would be an import rose. He orders that ahead for me, and then I order that ahead from him, and then my customer gets it from that way. So it’s a three part system,” said Amy Pierce, Roberts Floral & Gifts store manager.

But why import?

“In the U.S. we don’t have the heat South America has, so that’s why they get the big roses there. The U.S. can grow roses, but they’re not as big and people love the big ones now. So that’s why South America has just exploded; people prefer them larger.”

She says every year the demand for bigger roses increases.

Both floral shops say they ordered more than a thousand roses for the holiday.

Russler says there will be more than 60 people working the holiday.