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How floods will push up the price of romance

Pam Barton from Barton's Rose Farm near Kalbar has seen some of her potted roses damaged from the recent heavy rain.
Pam Barton from Barton's Rose Farm near Kalbar has seen some of her potted roses damaged from the recent heavy rain. Claudia Baxter
Pam Barton from Barton's Rose Farm near Kalbar has seen some of her potted roses damaged from the recent heavy rain. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times
Pam Barton from Barton's Rose Farm near Kalbar has seen some of her potted roses damaged from the recent heavy rain. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times Claudia Baxter

VALENTINE'S Day is among the casualties of the floods with Queensland-grown roses set to be in shorter supply than usual.

The wild weather experienced along the east coast of the state last month, which inundated commercial flower farms in the Lockyer Valley and Bundaberg, will mean large quantities of roses will be imported from overseas.

Barton's Rose Farm in Kalbar received a battering from the rain, but luckily escaped any major flooding.

While many roses were left bruised, owner Pam Barton who sells potted roses to the public, said, had they been commercial cut growers, they would have lost about half-a-year's income in stock.

"There's big growers in Bundaberg that have been adversely affected so there will still be a shortage of roses," said Mrs Barton, who has been in the business for more than 30 years.

"You will find a lot of flowers will come from overseas because the conditions are not conducive to growing.

"January and February are the hardest time to grow any flowers in Queensland because of the hot weather."

One Ipswich florist told The QT the price of long-stemmed roses had increased this Valentine's Day by at least 15-20% with recent weather conditions.

Lockyer Cut Flowers escaped the wet weather reasonably unscathed since shifting its farms to the Toowoomba Range.

The commercial grower lost everything at its former Grantham site during the 2011 floods.

"We got a bit blown away up here, but we only had small losses in the greenhouse," grower Stephen Spierling said.

He said many growers he knew of avoided significant damage as growers tended to sell their Valentine's Day stock a few months before the big date.

"All out Valentine's Day stock had be sold three months ago," Mr Spierling said.

Flowers Association of Queensland Inc. executive officer Denyse Corner said Bundaberg growers were the worst affected across the state, but were not completely washed out.

Mrs Barton said Mother's Day was the biggest day of the year for florists, with Valentine's Day coming in second.

Pam Barton from Barton's Rose Farm near Kalbar has seen some of her potted roses damaged from the recent heavy rain. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times
Pam Barton from Barton's Rose Farm near Kalbar has seen some of her potted roses damaged from the recent heavy rain. Photo: Claudia Baxter / The Queensland Times Claudia Baxter

Topics:  flood florists flowers oswald roses valentine's day


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