Move over, Valentine’s Day. 

Mother’s Day, without a doubt, is the busiest day of the year for local flower shops.

Hundreds of colorful, fragrant flower arrangements are brought this time of year right to the doors of mothers and grandmothers in Green Valley, Sahuarita and Tubac environs. 

After all, a surprise delivery of spring flowers is a time-honored and much-appreciated way to let mom and grandma know you’re thinking of them.

This is the time of year when deliveries of lilies, roses, carnations, tulips, irises, snapdragons and more — in such popular shades as lavender and pink — are at their peak, according to local flower merchants.

“It’s the biggest holiday of all down here with our age group,” say Mary Schmidt, owner of Camilot Flowers in Green Valley Village.

At Green Valley Flowers & Gifts, Mother’s Day in May and the holiday season in December account for one-third of the orders for the entire year, according to the shop’s owner, Samantha “Sam” Hinkley.

While December’s orders are spread out throughout the month at both shops, Mother’s Day brings a hectic three-day rush that requires the businesses to call in reinforcements: additional delivery drivers, flower arrangers and sales clerks.

Family members are part of that mix. Hinkley’s husband, Jamie, helps with sales and deliveries, and son, Josh, and daughter, Jessy, do their part, too.

Schmidt’s husband, David, is Camilot’s buyer, working with various flower farmers. Daughter Grace assists customers, while daughter Ally helps out designing arrangements. Plus Schmidt’s sister and brother-in-law, Susie and Louis Uccellini, come to town this time of year to lend a hand.

Camilot handles local and Teleflora orders and plans for 500 to 700 flower deliveries from the Thursday to Saturday before Mother’s Day. So it’s no wonder Schmidt and her husband put in 16 to 17 hours of work each of those days.

Green Valley Flowers & Gifts takes local, Teleflora and FTD orders and will make about 400 deliveries for Mother’s Day, Hinkley says.

Last-minute shopping

Both shops also can help out last-minute shoppers today, Mother’s Day, although flower choices will be picked over.

Schmidt points out that every florist’s challenge is keeping the number of fresh but perishable flowers purchased as close as possible to the amount of orders that come in, so to limit any waste.

While websites of all sorts offer holiday flowers, and some even list local phone numbers, Hinkley says folks purchasing flowers as a gift will get the most for their money by ordering from a local shop that offers true floral knowledge, high-quality blooms and reliable deliveries.

“We’re very service-oriented,” she says, noting that customers can get same-day deliveries.

Schmidt also is proud of the personal service her customers receive and of her friendly drivers who she describes as “genuinely nice people.”

Flowers have been her passion since she and David took over Camilot in 2000.

“I love it,” even though running a flower shop won’t make you rich. “But you know you’re making someone’s day,” she says.

Hinkley has been in the business more than 20 years and in Green Valley since 1997, drawn by her love of color, design and flowers.

“Every day I get to see God’s creations. It’s a pretty awesome job.”

She’s also come to see that people choose to give flowers to those they care about because buds, blooms and blossoms convey messages that words at times cannot express.

There’s no doubt, she points out, that giving someone a dozen roses says “I love you.”

There's always next year

  • Camilot Flowers is at 115 W. Esperanze Blvd., Suite D, in the Green Valley Village. Phone: 520-625-1199.
  • Green Valley Flowers & Gifts is at 125 Calle de Las Tiendas, Suite 111A, in Green Valley, Phone: 520-648-1432 or 800-571-3980.
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