Red Roses – A Valentine Classic

LivRio Magazine January 2022, powered by FloraLife

There is no other flower that is more associated with Valentine’s Day than a red rose. It is no surprise that three of the most desirable red rose varieties for Valentine’s bouquets are ‘Freedom’, ‘Corazon’, and ‘Explorer’. With their beautiful large heads of luscious velvety petals, these roses are guaranteed to gladden the heart of anybody who receives them.

Shakespeare may have said “…a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”, but the names of these roses have a deeper meaning. First released in 2001, shortly after 9/11, the Freedom rose was so named to represent the resilience of the American people in the face of international terrorism. Then there’s ‘Corazon’ which is the Spanish word for heart, so gifting one of these stems is the perfect way to let your crush know your true feelings. And lastly but not least, ‘Explorer’ which was named in the hopes it would conquer the world.

So, if you want to be sure to hit a home run this Valentine’s Day, be sure to give the gift of a classic red rose bouquet consisting of one of these stunning varieties.


What to look for when purchasing

  • Roses are sensitive to ethylene. The sensitivity and the damage symptoms vary depending on the variety. Symptoms include poor opening, abnormal opening, petal shattering, wilting, bent neck and petal discoloration. Source from growers which treat stems with an ethylene action inhibitor such as EthylBloc™.
  • Free from botrytis. Brown spots or patches on the outer petals may be an indication of botrytis infection.
  • Free of mechanical damage.
  • Avoid rose stems with obvious excessive wilting symptoms which is an indication of improper temperature and humidity management.

Shipping and Storage

  • Shipping and storage temperatures should be 34 – 38° F / 1 – 3° C with a 75 – 85% relative humidity.

Re-hydration at Store Level

  • Start processing with a clean bucket, sanitized with FloraLife® D.C.D.® Cleaner.
  • If received dry packed, conditioning of stem ends is recommended to prevent blockage and promote uptake. Cut approximately 1” / 3cm or more off stems. Use clean, sanitized clippers or knife, and treat with FloraLife® Quick Dip.
  • Place flowers in a flower food holding solution such as FloraLife® Express 200. Do not put flowers directly in metal/galvanized buckets. Use clean, high quality water that has not been treated with a water softener as the salt levels can be damaging to flowers.
  • Store in a cooler at 34 – 38° F / 1 – 3° C.
  • Allow minimum 2 hours to hydrate placing buckets in an area with good airflow.
  • Always remember FIFO (first in/first out) when rotating Roses or any other flowers.

Vase Care

  • Remove any leaves that might be below the vase solution.
  • If received dry, cut approximately 1” / 3cm or more off stems. Use clean, sanitized clippers or knife, and treat with FloraLife® Quick Dip.
  • Immediately place flowers in properly dosed vase solutions (Flower Food and water) containing FloraLife Crystal Clear® (the perfect solution for clear vases), or FloraLife® Express 300 (the no-cut premium solution).
  • Keep away from direct sunlight and fruits.

Special Considerations

  • The outer petals of roses tend to be quite different from the inner petals. These are known as ‘Guard Petals’ and are a naturally occurring part of the rose. Many florists choose to remove the guard petals for aesthetic reasons, but they can also add a naturalistic element if left untouched. To remove them, simply hold each petal firmly and give them a gentle tug to remove.
  • Red roses can sometimes display blackening at the petals‘ edge. This occurs during the growing process when cold nighttime temperatures and high daytime temperature & high levels of sunlight occur together. Blackening of the petals’ edges is not a disease. There is nothing wrong with these beauties.

A happy customer means repeat business, especially at Valentine’s!  This may be the only time of year someone may purchase or receive roses and may be your one and only chance to make an impression.  Be sure to send your customers home with FloraLife® Flower Food packets and know-how!  Proper care and handling and educating customers will not only give your customers an amazing experience but have them coming back to you when it’s time to buy roses again!

To learn more about best practices from the experts in flower care or to inquire about products and availability in your region, visit or contact your local FloraLife representative.