But for the floral industry, it’s essentially a national holiday — and demand is higher than ever.
This year, Latam Cargo told CNN it flew more than 12,600 tons of flowers grown in Colombia and Ecuador around the US, Australia and Europe — a 45% higher amount than in 2019.
But of all the millions of buds and blooms that flooded florists and grocery stores this Valentine’s Day, not all of them ended up in someone’s living room. What happens to the bouquets that don’t make the cut?
There are dozens of charities in the US that accept unsold bouquets from florists, repurpose them and donate them again.
The charity has three branches in the South and Midwest, which each receive around 5,000 to 6,000 bouquets of flowers every month. That number will likely double this month counting post-Valentine’s Day deliveries, she said.
They’re used for education
Florists-in-training often practice their trade on donated bouquets.
More than often, wilting bouquets end up in the garbage. Seeds that fall from pollinated flowers likely wouldn’t grow in the trash, where light is obscured and soil isn’t viable. Flowers that are landfilled help contribute to greenhouse gases …
… Unless they’re composted! Flowers don’t stay blossomy and fragrant for long once they’re cut. But they biodegrade naturally, and nonprofits like Random Acts of Flowers try to compost as much as they donate.
“Without [the charity], the unsold blooms at the stores in our community would likely be discarded to the landfill,” she said.
Flowers won’t smell as sweet as they did when they were sitting in a vase, but they’ll improve soil quality and even reduce the amount of harmful toxins in the soil and air. And maybe, for Valentine’s Day 2020, you’ll have grown your own bouquet with your composted soil.