Following a stormy weekend, Valentine’s Day is granted a sunny reprise. Outlets are brimming with individuals, waiting for their turn to buy their loved ones a rose and delivery vans are making their rounds across the country. But where does Malta usually get its roses from? And are there enough?
A spokesperson for Birkirkara-based Alistair Floral Design told this newsroom that they get their roses from Sicily.
Malta is not particularly known for growing roses. You will at times find some households growing a few on their balconies, however, Malta’s soil is not suited to grow them at scale.
While roses are adaptable they thrive in deep, mineral-rich, and well-aerated soil that is slightly acidic. The soil in Malta tends to be shallow and rocky, high in clay and leans more towards alkali.
This makes Sicily, with its rich volcanic soil thanks to Mount Etna, an excellent destination for mass cultivation.
Another popular source of flowers for Valentine’s Day is the Netherlands. In 2022, snowstorms in continental Europe caused shocks in floral supply chains with several delays triggered by the weather. This also led to higher prices for a number of outlets, many of which tried to absorb as many of the price shocks as possible.
“We order a week in advance,” informed the spokesperson for Alistair. He informed this newsroom that they never really have any issues with meeting the demand. “It only ever happened once that there weren’t enough roses.”
Despite storm Helios impacting both the islands of Malta and Sicily, with some parts of northern Sicily getting covered in snow, it does not appear to have had any impact on the rose supply needed for Valentine’s Day.
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