If you haven't bought the perfect gift for your valentine, there's still time to send a beautiful bouquet. While red roses are romantic, there are a variety of blooms and ways you can dress up a bouquet to let that special someone know how you feel. Lisa Benenson, Editor-in-Chief of Hallmark Magazine, has five simple tips on how to send the perfect arrangement.
1. Send a secret message.
In Victorian times, a gift of flowers sent a specific message; every bloom had its own meaning. For instance, red tulips meant a declaration of love, while variegated tulips stood for beautiful eyes. Ivy entwined in a bouquet represented marriage and fidelity and peach blossoms signaled "I am your captive."
2. Pick the best blooms.
Choose flowers whose buds are still closed (the exception: tropical flowers like orchids). Avoid those that are bruised or browning at the edges.
3. Do all the work.
On Valentine's Day, give the gift of not-making-your-beloved-hunt-for-a-vase by giving a gorgeous bouquet already arranged by the florist — or you.
4. Keep the love alive.
To maintain the flowers' freshness, dissolve a packet of plant food in a vase full of room-temperature water. No plant food? Try mixing one part lemon-lime soda to three parts water with a few drops of bleach.
5. Attach a sweet note.
Surprise your Valentine with more than a simple, "I love you." You don't need to be Shakespeare to express your feelings, just think of specifics about what you love about him or her: her pretty eyes or the way she cuddles you on Saturday mornings, his great laugh or the way he never fails to take out the garbage.