WHERE HAVE ALL THE ROSES GONE

Heather WeickumCustomer’s Corner, Flowers, Production Updates, Roses

HOW CAN WE SMELL THE ROSES IF WE CAN’T FIND THEM…….

Roses are one of the most popular gifting flowers. Their scents are sublime, and their meanings convey a special message to their recipients.  As with all forms of life, roses also have a life cycle. Right now in the markets, there significant shortages in the South American rose supply. Some with say it’s due to Covid 19, others will say bad weather is the cause, and some may even say that it’s a tactic to raise prices.  Well, in reality, there is some truth to all of this.  In fact the normal plant cycle, coupled with cooler, cloudy, rainy weather, and a touch of supply and demand basics in productions, and the global rose markets are seeing a “perfect storm.”

Rose plants typically take roughly 90 days to reproduce beautiful blooms for harvesting.   In late October and early November, we hear about pinch, which is cutting all the rose plants down to the same level, so they can be harvested in mass numbers.  Farms to this to get all the plants ready for the biggest rose holiday of the year. Valentine’s Day.  After Valentine’s Day, the market sees a downturn in production and at the end of April, an upturn in the market just in time for Mother’s day.

While roughly 90 percent of this cycle is an expected effect in the rose market, the COVID pandemic, and the colder, cloudy weather in the growing areas have also hindered production levels.  The COVID pandemic forced farms to streamline their operations.  Some farms irradicated older varieties from their productions.  In doing so this means that without those plants to care for, the less workforce was needed.  Some farms had a shortage in workers because they were sick, could not work, or farms simply could not afford to pay them.

There is a saying we’ve always said around here at Amato’s when it comes to the weather.  It’s either too wet, too dry, too hot, or too cold.  While some might think this is just an excuse, there really is a lot of truth in that statement.   The weather in Ecuador has been foggy, and cloudy . These conditions, especially at night raise humidity levels and expedite the growth of botrytis making otherwise healthy plants sick and unable to produce quality blooms.

The Perfect Storm

Lower productions due to the normal cycle of the plants, coupled with the pandemics effect on farm losses, and unsavory weather conditions have created a perfect storm in the rose market.  But rest assured, just as with any other storm, this too shall pass and production levels will increase in the next few weeks just in time for July weddings.