LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Roses are one of the most popular gifts Americans purchase on Valentine's Day - but are they fresh?
Consumers purchase the beautiful temporary gift for their loved one from different venues at prices that range from $9.99 to $199.99.
Some consumers prefer to only have the professional florists handle their Valentine's Day bouquets.
"I prefer to buy it fresh," said Jacob Cooley, a roses customer. "A florist is better because it will be specialized."
However, other customers would rather have their flowers ready-made and considerably cheaper than a high-dollar florist.
"It saves money because it's cheaper and more convenient," said Brent Bertrand, a roses customer.
Susie Brasseal purchases flowers from Kroger on a weekly basis. Brasseal said she would pick the grocery store's selection over a florist any day.
"I find the quality is comparable, and the price is much better," said Brasseal. "I'm very convinced that they are just as fresh and last just as long."
7News collected roses from three different venues and tested which flowers stayed fresh the longest under the same room temperature and watering conditions for 8 straight days.
The three different roses we tested included the $75.95 roses from Wendi's Flower Cart in Lake Charles, the $9.99 rose bouquet from Kroger, and a $42.98 bouquet from 1800flowers.com.
Petals on the roses from the on-line company, 1800flowers.com, had already begun to turn brown upon arrival. Roses from both Kroger and Wendi's Flower Cart remained fresh for at least seven days.
On Day 8 of the test, the flowers from 1800flowers.com suffered the most damage in this experiment. The cheap yet beautiful roses from Kroger just began to die on the final day of the test. However, the roses from Wendi's Flower Cart remained fresh through the entire 8 Day Test.
"The grocery store roses are shorter stemmed and they are a lot cheaper," said Ray Bustillo, owner of Wendi's Flower Cart in Lake Charles. "Here at this flower shop we try to get the optimal rose to last as long as possible for the consumer."
In conclusion, consumers are bound to receive what they pay for when it comes to purchasing roses.
Americans purchase more than 180 stems of roses every Valentine's Day. According to consumers, the rose business is guaranteed to keep booming no matter where they choose to pick their posy.
"Roses are the symbol of love," said Brasseal. "And when you purchase flowers, it always reminds you to take time to smell the roses."
Although we attempted to make the roses fresh test as fair possible, the test was not scientific. The variation of sources from the companies we tested is another factor that could have easily swayed the results in this test.