When it comes to Valentine’s Day, florist Frank Delli Santi knows from three decades of experience that “everybody wants roses.”
So Delli Santi, owner of , Caldwell, makes sure to order an ample supply three months ahead of the holiday.
This week, some 9,000 long-stem roses from Holland and South America arrived at his Bloomfield Avenue shop for one of the busiest holidays of the year for florists.
Two-thirds of the roses Flowerland ordered were red and the other third consisted of a mix of pink, lavender and other shades.
“I’ve been doing this personally for 30 years, but [Flowerland’s] been in existence another 30 years,” he explained as he filled glass vases with greens, baby’s breath and red roses.
Delli Santi and his team started prepping the roses Thursday night, working until midnight to remove thorns and condition stems with a solvent that helps the petals stay hydrated.
In addition to 20 percent more staffing, Delli Santi said he has a fleet of 15 vans working to deliver flowers around the Caldwells and beyond. Delli Santi said most deliveries are Sunday to the house, Monday to the office.
The flower shop will be open until 8 p.m. tonight, but he’ll be there until 11, continuing to work assembly-line style to meet the demand of his customers. The florist will be open from 8 to 8 on Saturday and Sunday, and then again at 8 a.m. on Valentine’s Day.
“Monday, we’ll be open until the last rose is sold,” Delli Santi said. “We’ll put in 40 hours in three days.”
So how and when will Delli Santi celebrate Valentine’s Day with his wife, Karen?
“We celebrate on the 15th with dinner at .” he said.