Santa Barbara- S County

Flower Business Booming Week Before Valentine's Day

Florabundance Getting Hundreds Of Calls Each Day For Flower Orders

Valentine's Day Flowers

CARPINTERIA, Calif. - It's the busiest week for fresh-cut flower businesses as Valentine's Day inches closer.

More than one million roses will be sold this year for the most romantic holiday, which means the flower business is booming.

It's not just about the roses anymore; flowers of all shapes, sizes and smells are being bought for the holiday.

"Mixed flowers, which is any type of flower. We typically carrry about 800 different varieties," said Joost Bongaerts, the owner of Florabundance in Carpinteria.

He sells wholesale flowers to florists locally, the East Coast and even to Alaska.

"This is going to Hawaii," said Bongaerts, holding up a bouquet.

This week the Florabundance phones are ringing off the hook.

"Extremely busy. It's Valentine's week, so we are shipping all of our fresh-cut flowers to florist and floral designers around the country," said sales manager Debbie Kline.

The flowers come from around the world and even the warehouse's neighbors.

"These are grown right here in Carpinteria," said Bongaerts.

When the flowers arrive, they are taken out of the boxes and are unwrapped. Each is inspected for flaws.

Before the flowers are shipped off, they are packed up by hand, making sure they get to their destinations just as beautiful as they came in.

"It's really great to get the reactions back from our customers, 'Wow this looks so cool, it looks like springtime,'" said Bongaerts.

The clock is ticking to pick the right bunch.

The last shipment to leave the Florabundance warehouse will be shipped out at 3 p.m. Thursday.

Slideshow: Flower Business Booming Week Before Valentine's Day

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