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Flowers on Fourteenth

Nothing says “true love” like sending a beautiful bouquet of flowers to your valentine. Unless, that is, your valentine’s office is closed because of a big snowstorm.

Which is exactly the kind of logistical dilemma local florists are trying to help customers avoid ahead of tonight’s winter weather. If as much snow falls as is forecast, deliveries scheduled for Friday—Valentine’s Day—could be thrown off.

Sara Harmon, customer service manager at Nosegay Flowershop downtown, says customers have already been calling to change delivery addresses. The shop isn’t planning to make any deliveries tomorrow, and is hoping the forecast will allow for flowers to go through Friday. If not, people may have to wait until Saturday for their Valentine floral arrangements to the alternate addresses.

“Weather is very unpredictable, there’s no saying a few weeks ago this would happen,” Harmon says. “Talking to customers to move [their deliveries] over, everyone is fairly understanding”

At Capitol Hill Flowers & Fruit, once the early forecasts came out, they rented SUVs instead of vans this year to ensure they could deliver in the most treacherous conditions possible. Owner Bill Burchett says the shop will be calling all its customers on Friday to confirm that flower recipients are actually going to be where the flowers are being delivered.

“We, like everyone else, are waiting to see what happens,” he says. “We’ve been doing this since 1987, we’ve had multiple snowstorms.”

There’s also the fear that if no one is leaving their homes Thursday and Friday, there won’t be any of the typical last-minute walk-ins that flower shops have already accounted for in their inventory and budgeting. “I very seriously doubt that we’ll have walk-ins,” says Audrey McQuillen,a store clerk at Greenworks Florist.

Bottom line: You may want to rush out and buy some chocolate tonight if your only planned Valentine’s Day gift was a flower delivery Friday.

“They will get them in the next couple days,” says Peter Young, the general manager of Flowers on Fourteenth. “But we can’t guarantee when.”

Photo by Perry Stein