Having low flowers sales

all_bout_flowersJuly 5, 2010

I was just wondering if other flower farmer's here were having a low sales year for their cut flowers? I have talked with a couple of my florist customers and they don't have as many weddings as last year which of course effects my sales. I usually have several brides contact me before now.

Also, what types of advertising does well for you?

Thanks,

Kathleen

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thinman(Z5 MI)

Kathleen, sorry you're having a slow year so far. I'm a very small-timer in a resort area and my season is actually a bit better than last year so far. That is partly the result of a very warm May here that got some things going sooner, and I added herb plants to my offerings to get some earlier season things to sell. Also, our market was moved to a better location this year. So yippee for me, but that doesn't help you at all, does it?

Sorry I can't help you with advertising advice: so far in my little business I sell only at the local farmers' market.

I hope things pick up for you. I wonder why there are fewer weddings.

ThinMan

    Bookmark   July 5, 2010 at 12:49PM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

Could be the economy in general. Flowers, after all, are a luxury item.

Last week, the second week of our market, I had several people walk by, ooh and ahh over my bouquets, think about it for a minute or two, and then not buy. They made comments like "flowers are not in the budget this week" or "no money for flowers this week". So I'm thinking things are tight and food comes before flowers for most people.

I can't be of much help with the advertising. I'm very small so I just show up at the farmer's market with my bouquets - no advertising for me... yet!

I hope things pick up for you soon! Good luck!
Dee

    Bookmark   July 8, 2010 at 4:45PM
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bfff_tx(z8b TX)

Hi Kat
You can't possibly be doing just sales to florists. Remember it's Summer and sales always slump in Summer for Florists, at farmers markets too. Do you have a web-site ? They are not expensive and a necessity in this day and age. Brides are online looking for flowers. Check out 'Floretflowers.com', Erin is somewhere near you I think, might give you some ideas on how to market yourself. Facebook is another good way to get your name out there, flaunt your flowers as much as you can, local papers, put bouquets in banks, at the hair dressers, places people go, someone will always want to know where the flowers come from. Take care and Cheers
- Kim
Billabong Fresh Flower Farm

    Bookmark   July 17, 2010 at 2:42PM
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wildearth

I just had a disappointing market day last week with two buckets of gorgeous LA Hybrids (deep yellow Pavias) and sold only three! Everyone stopped to look and admire them, but few bought. Prices were $3-$2.50 a stem (with 4-6 buds, one open) and 3 stems for $8. Was I too high?

I'm in a small town market of about 10,000 people in central NY. I'm trialing a buch of stuff this year; some are growing well, others not so well, but I really didn't count on this! The markets around here seem lackluster this year so far. Other vendors did about the same, a little better for veggies and baked goods, but not what I would call really good.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2010 at 3:18PM
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annebert(6b/7a MD)

Yeah, everybody stops to admire my lilies and few buy. I feel your pain... They don't keep (especially since we've had weeks of 90+ degree weather) and ity's yough to haul 2-3 buckets to the market and bring home most of them.

I am only asking $2 for mine - wholesale looks to be $1.10- $1.60 now since this is still the normal season for in-ground lilies (even though mine are grown from precooled bulbs in crates). I'm in the DC metro area, but in a transitionign farming county that's becoming bedroom communities. So it's hard to get what they're worth. Just building up my customer base. I will raise to $2.50 in late August/September.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2010 at 9:27PM
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all_bout_flowers

Thanks for your suggestions, things have picked up have all my regulars back buying for the season and selling bouquets at an up-scale home/plant nursery store in a weekend beach home area. My weddings are still nil but not worried since those are one time sells because most of the brides are out of towners. Market, market, market yes get your flowers everywhere. I trade at a great coffee shop and with a few others it's a great way to get some of the things you like that wouldn't normally have the extra cash to splurge on.
I have found lilies are a hard one to sell, buy the bulbs as cheap as you can mix them in with something so it looks like they are getting more for their money.
Waiting for dahlias to bloom....maybe this season.
Kathleen

    Bookmark   July 27, 2010 at 9:17PM
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flowers4u(z6 OR)

I too am seeing farmer's market sales still down (as was last year). I think for me, it is because we have 2-3 flower people from the Portland metro area drive out to our markets and I won't compete with the huge bunches at $10/$15! I try to make ours look different and sell individual stems.

I have had lots of success this year with weddings - working with a few caterers/B&Bs who recommend us. Had 8in July!

I agree -- lilies mixed in seem to work best...but it is still nice to sell individual stems. Glad I have a cooler, so can pick before they're open and store them!

I had one inquiry where a potential bride was questioning my prices! I told them they were my wholesale prices...and for me, geared to cover the administrative side of handling the weddings! So, I may not get that one -- only 50 stems of dahlias at $0.65/stem! hummm...they may go to Trader Joes for orchids! Go figure..

Good luck everyone and hang in there!
Wendy

    Bookmark   August 13, 2010 at 1:37PM
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tommyk

Our FMs flowers have sold very well. We sell mixed bouquets for $5/ea., sunflowers $.50 (Moulin Rouge) and Golden Cheer ($2/ea.) My Asiatic & Oriental lilies sell for $4/stem and sell out.

In addition our produce and container plants are selling well, also.

We are in small venue but this year people seem to be buying more.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2010 at 2:33PM
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