Local florists prepare for Valentine’s Day

Published 6:00 pm Friday, February 10, 2017

“Roses are red, violets are blue, sugar is sweet, and so are you!”

That romantic bit of prose fits Valentine’s Day to a tee and Beaufort County florists are working hard to make sure their customers have a wide choice of gift items from which to choose.

“We’ve already started taking orders, but some people do wait until the last minute,” said Ronnie Boyd of Gurley’s Flower Shop, located at 630 E. 10th St., in Washington. Boyd added Gurley’s has been in business “for more than 30 years,” and he has owned the shop since 1989.

“We start two or three days before Valentine’s Day and we work longer hours, and we make sure we have extra items available for last minute customers,” said Boyd, who works as a floral designer alongside Shelia Bowden and Kevin Rogers. “We have cut arrangements, silk arrangements, plants, teddy bears, gift baskets, balloons and candy.”

Linda’s Flowers and Gifts, located at 104 E. 15th St. in Washington, expects to keep as many as five floral designers busy as the Valentine’s holiday draws near.

GIFTS GALORE: Brandy Williams of Linda's Flowers & Gifts shows off one of the plentiful gift baskets available for Valentine's Day.

GIFTS GALORE: Brandy Williams of Linda’s Flowers & Gifts shows off one of the plentiful gift baskets available for Valentine’s Day.

“Oh my goodness … we’ll do hundreds of arrangements,” said Brandy Williams, who called herself a personal assistant whose duties include delivery van driver, clerk and designer “when they let me.” She said red roses are the most popular flower for the holiday, but the shop offers other colors of roses and an assortment of flowers as well.

“We also do a lot of gift baskets filled with bath products, snacks, chocolates and stuffed animals,” Williams noted. “Of course, we have baskets for women, but we also offer little girls’ baskets and men’s baskets.”

Across the river in Chocowinity, The Flower Spot owner Jessica Long-Mills is also anticipating a busy Valentine’s Day and she’s planning on creating most of the arrangements herself.

“It’s mainly a dozen red roses; roses are ‘the thing’ at Valentine’s,” said Long-Mills, whose florist shop is located at 39 N.C. Highway 33 W. in the heart of Chocowinity. “But we’ll also have pink roses and lilies and carnations. And I like to throw in a little purple to make the red pop.”

Outside her shop, Long-Mills keeps a small chalkboard sign with a countdown to the big day, a gentle reminder to shoppers looking for Valentine’s arrangements. Even so, she plans to have a supply of fresh flowers on hand for just under the wire, walk-in customers.

“But most guys are pretty good about knowing what they need to do,” she said with a smile.

GETTING READY: Ronnie Boyd of Gurley's puts the finishing touches on a silk flower arrangement.

GETTING READY: Ronnie Boyd of Gurley’s puts the finishing touches on a silk flower arrangement.