Valentine's Day

------- By Caroline Ogden -------

History of the Holiday

Valentine's Day was originally intended to serve as a Christian holiday celebrating the death of Saint Valentine and was first created by Pope Gelasius sometime during the 400s. However, it was not until the Middle Ages that Valentine's Day actually gained the slightest romantic significance due to the thought that birds began mating on the 14th of February. In 1415, the oldest known Valentine was written by the Duke of Orleans to his wife during his imprisonment in The Tower of London. Americans began exchanging valentines in the 1700s, and later in 1840, Esther A. Howland began selling mass-produced valentines.

History of Flowers with the Holiday

Before Valentine's Day, many fertility festivals occurred during the same time of year, and flowers were commonly used as a symbol of fertility. Flowers were traditionally sent on Valentine's Day to pass on non-verbal messages due to specific meanings attached to each flower, allowing actual conversations to go on through flowers alone. Roses are currently the flower most commonly purchased for Valentine's Day, one of the largest flower-buying holidays to date.

The Average American Floral Valentine's Day Client

  • Is male
  • Will spend around $95
  • Only buys flowers at this time of year
  • Feels like they must buy flowers

Impact Economically on the Floral Industry

Percent Ranking by Retail Dollars

Valentine's Day

36%

Mother's Day

27.4%

Christmas & Hanukkah

15.1%

Easter & Passover

8.9%

Thanksgiving Day

7.4%

Sweetest Day

1.2%

Administrative Professional's Day

1.1%

St. Patrick's Day

.09%

Grandparent's Day

.09%

Halloween

.05%

Father's Day

.04%

Boss' Day

.02%

Source: American Floral Endowment Consumer Tracking Study