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Connecticut Garden Journal
Connecticut Garden Journal is a weekly program hosted by horticulturalist Charlie Nardozzi. Each week, Charlie focuses on a topic relevant to both new and experienced gardeners, including pruning lilac bushes, growing blight-free tomatoes, groundcovers, sunflowers, bulbs, pests, and more.

Connecticut Garden Journal: This Valentine's Day, Go Beyond Cut Roses

Ashbridge Studios (Flickr)
Creative Commons
A bouquet of cut roses won't last as long as a mini rose plant.

Ahh, the big floral holiday is almost upon us. Valentine's Day is one of the biggest flower-giving days of the year. It's estimated more than 250 million roses are sold on this day alone, traveling from as far away as Chile. And while roses are thought of as the go-to Valentine's Day flower, there are other blooms that make nice alternatives to the rose.

In February in our climate, it's dry, white or brown, and cold. A little sight and smell the tropics would be nice. So I usually lean towards buying colorful cut flowers with a fragrance for that special day.

A few stems of Oriental lilies, freesias or stocks added to a bouquet will give your sweet heart dreams of the Caribbean. But watch out, she might get so swept away, you'll might have to include a few plane tickets, too.

You can also go the potted plant route. Forced pots of tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths make great Valentine's Day flower gifts. Unlike cut flowers, potted plants will last longer and you can watch them grow.

Also, moth orchids can be a great Valentine's flower. Even if your sweetie doesn't have a green thumb, with little care, the flower stalks will stay in bloom for months, providing bright cheery color in the dead of winter.

Finally, if you must buy roses, consider a miniature rose plant. These small roses make nice houseplants this time of year. In spring, they can be planted outdoors in your garden. Unlike the cut flower roses, miniature roses can last for years grow with your relationship as a reminder of your love.

Next week on the Connecticut Garden Journal, I'll be talking about Asian greens. Until then, I'll be seeing you in the garden.

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