8 Ways to Get the Best Value on Valentine’s Flowers


What's Hot


2 Types of Black Marks Might Vanish From Your Credit File SoonBorrow

6 Ways the Obamacare Overhaul Might Impact Your WalletInsurance

7 Dumb and Costly Moves Homebuyers MakeBorrow

This Free Software Brings Old Laptops Back to LifeMore

Obamacare Replacement Plan Gets ‘F’ Rating from Consumer ReportsFamily

Beware These 12 Common Money MistakesCredit & Debt

21 Restaurants Offering Free Food Right NowSaving Money

17 Ways to Have More Fun for Less MoneySave

House Hunters: Beware of These 6 Mortgage MistakesBorrow

30 Household Uses for Baby OilSave

25 Ways to Spend Less on FoodMore

Nearly Half of Heart-Related Deaths Linked to These 10 Foods and IngredientsFamily

5 Surprising Benefits of Exercising Outdoors in WinterFamily

10 Ways to Save When You’re Making Minimum WageSave

Boost Your Credit Score Fast With These 7 MovesCredit & Debt

7 Painless Ways to Pay Off Your Mortgage Years EarlierBorrow

The Most Sinful City in the U.S. Is … (Hint: It’s Not Vegas)Family

The True Cost of Bad CreditCredit & Debt

10 Companies With the Best 401(k) PlansGrow

This Scam Now Tops ID Theft as the No. 2 Consumer ComplaintFamily

6 Stores With Awesome Reward ProgramsFamily

6 Ways to Save More at Lowe’s and The Home DepotSave

6 Healthful Treats for Your DogFamily

New Study Ranks the Best States in the U.S.Family

Thousands of Millionaires Moving to 1 Country — and Leaving AnotherGrow

Strapped for College Costs? How to Get the Most From FAFSABorrow

6 Overlooked Ways to Save at Chick-fil-AFamily

Ask Stacy: What’s the Fastest Way to Pay Off My Mortgage?Borrow

Where to Sell Your Stuff for Top DollarAround The House

8 Ways to Get a Good Price on a Shiny New AutoCars

Ask Stacy: How Do I Start Over?Credit & Debt

Secret Cell Plans: Savings Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint Don’t Want You to Know AboutFamily

30 Awesome Things to Do in RetirementCollege

14 Super Smart Ways to Save on TravelSave

The Rich Prefer Modest Cars — Should You Join Them?Cars

You’ll Soon Pay More to Shop at CostcoSave

10 Ways to Save When Your Teen Starts DrivingFamily

Learn where to look for the deals and how to spot stale blooms when shopping for flowers.

Fresh flowers are a wonderful gift. But choosing them can be a confusing exercise– unless you know the tricks of the trade.

Getting the freshest flowers for the best price begins with knowing how to spot stale flowers. After purchase, fresh flowers should stay in peak condition for a week or longer.

For fragile blossoms, temperature swings are deadly. Blooms left should be kept at 32-40 degrees Fahrenheit, according to this article reprinted from Florists’ Review magazine. Blooms left unrefrigerated at any point along the journey from field to store will result in a shorter life, wasted money and disappointment when the flowers quickly wilt.

Inspect blooms carefully and don’t buy in these circumstances:

  • The flowers are unrefrigerated or in water that’s not icy cold.
  • There is heavy condensation on the blooms or wrapper.
  • The flowers show spots of grey mold.
  • The blossoms are mostly open. Few of the buds should be open, and most should be mature buds just about to bloom.
  • The flowers’ foliage is slightly yellow or brown, instead of bright green.
  • Buds or petals fall easily from the stems.

Following are eight tips to get the most for your money when shopping for flowers:

1. Buy less-popular blooms, and skip fancy arrangements

399729901 / Shutterstock.com

Avoid roses on Valentine’s Day. Instead, choose unusual, less costly flowers.

Also, skip arrangements and vases. Even florists and some online retailers will sell you a bouquet of cut flowers with no vase. They are much cheaper and just as nice.

2. Use a higher-end grocery store

Tymonko Galyna / Shutterstock.com

Better stores have floral departments that focus on quality but at lower prices than florists. I recently ordered 20 (closed) white tulips and greenery for a niece in another city at a higher-end grocery chain there. My niece’s mom picked them up from the store. Wrapped in handsome paper and tied with ribbon, the elegant bouquet cost $21.56, including tax.

3. Find coupons and codes, and do your own delivery

Batkova Elena / Shutterstock.com

To find bargains, start with Groupon, LivingSocial and Amazon.com. Check for sales on retailers’ websites. Or, place your order by phone and ask about specials, deals and discounts.

Also, deliver the flowers in person. You’ll save money on delivery costs, and it’s more fun to see the look on the recipient’s face.

4. Make sure you know all costs before ordering

Nikodash / Shutterstock.com

When shopping with an online florist, insist on learning the entire price before you begin ordering, even if that means phoning the company to ask. Some online florists withhold the total price until the end of the order, adding shipping or “handling” fees that turn a bargain into a major expenditure.

5. Don’t pay shipping fees

MR.SUTHON PRAKOPPHON / Shutterstock.com

Shipping adds enormously to flower delivery. Find free shipping by searching online for “free shipping flowers.” Or get free two-day shipping with a free ShopRunner membership, available through American Express. Also, ShopRunner offers a 30-day free trial. Paid membership costs $79 a year.

6. Ask a florist for help

Syda Productions / Shutterstock.com

Tell the florist your budget at the outset and ask for help getting the best bouquet possible. Florists usually love the challenge of creating a beautiful bouquet, even on a budget.

7. Beware scammers

Versta / Shutterstock.com

You might run into online ads from scammers posing as local florists. They charge hefty fees and might or might not place your order with the florist. It’s best to be sure you have the website or phone number for the legitimate florist before sharing payment information.

8. Shop around for the best prices

Einar Muoni / Shutterstock.com

It’s hard to know where to shop.  Here’s a rundown of several sources:

  • Big-box stores: Supermarkets, big-box retailers and warehouse chains like Costco, BJ’s, Sam’s Club and Walmart often sell flowers cheaper than what you would pay at a florist. Selection is limited, however, and it’s difficult to check on quality. Ask if the flowers you are buying have been refrigerated consistently since they were picked.
  • Grocery stores: Grocery store flowers tend to be slightly more expensive than flowers at big-box competitors. There’s a wide range of prices, so shop around. Selection is limited, though. As always, inspect flowers closely for freshness.
  • Street vendors: You might be tempted to buy a cheap bouquet from a street-corner vendor. But it’s a risky purchase. Unrefrigerated flowers are not likely to hold up well.

Check Out Our Hottest Deals!

We're always adding new deals and coupons that'll save you big bucks. See the deals to the right and hundreds more in our Deals section.

Click here to explore 2,060 more deals!