For absolute years, we’ve been bombarded with messages from the media about what makes the ideal Valentine’s Day gift. Unsurprisingly, the message has been focused on flowers, particularly red roses. Why? Because they’ve always been the traditional Valentine’s Day gift, haven’t they?
Actually, no. Flowers first began being sent during the Victorian Era, a time when actions spoke louder than words. That’s because of words, or rather words about feelings, romance and love were not encouraged. So, the Victorians used flowers to share their emotions, by giving colours and flower species their own individual meanings.
Today though, things are rather different. Flowers are not the best gift you can give your partner on Valentine’s Day and we’re going to explain why!
Flowers Are Not the Preferred Valentine’s Day Gift Anymore
First, let's get something straight; we love flowers. Whether they’re in the garden or in a vase, there’s nothing quite like the softness and colours of the petals, along with a gentle scent to make our hearts sing. Problem is though, they’re not what the guys or gals want to be given for Valentine’s Day anymore. Why? Because besides being boring, there’s an environmental impact no one is paying attention too. Plus, why would you want to be like everyone else getting the same gift, or have a partner who is unable to think outside the box?
Well, the good news is they don’t have to – think outside the box that is. A gift box is the perfect Valentine’s Day gift and we know just where to find them. But more about that later. Let’s first take a look at the reasons why flowers should be avoided this Valentine’s Day:
Zero Creativity – heading to the florist or picking up a bunch of flowers at the supermarket doesn’t require much thought. You get there and look at the bouquets on offer, then choose one that looks nice and fits your budget. Some of the petals may be damaged, the stems a bit slimy, but hey; it’s the thought that counts, isn’t it? Well, we believe that there’s a better gift than something which is already dead…
Dead as a Dodo – flowers are the reproduction part of a plant and need the nutrients the plant gets from its roots to survive. The second a flower stem is cut, the flower dies. It can no longer help the plant to replicate and will begin to decompose. Who wants to be given something dead?
Chemically Treated – they may smell beautiful and look stunning (for a few days, that is), but there’s a good chance that your bouquet has been treated with chemicals. Around 50% of flowers sold in NZ are fumigated before or upon entry into the country. This is done to help protect our country from unwanted pests and diseases, which we’re fine with. What we don’t like is knowing that we are putting our face close to and our hands upon potentially hazardous chemical residues.
Environmental Impact – it will be of no surprise to you when we say New Zealand is a small country at the bottom of the world. What may be a surprise though, is that as flower growers cannot meet all the demand for their products, around 50% of flowers sold here are imported. For instance, most roses come from Columbia and peonies from Holland, both countries of significant distance from us. Once cut in their country of origin, they are packaged and transported inside refrigerated trucks and airplane holds. Within these vehicles, the flowers are exposed to a mixture of oxygen and carbon dioxide (CO2) with just the right humidity and temperature. Having to maintain the right refrigeration levels means the vehicle needs to burn more fuel, which releases more carbon emissions.
Short Lasting – once a flower has been cut, it begins to decay almost immediately. While the rates differ between species, you’ll have just days to enjoy seeing your flowers upon your desk or in a vase on the table. By the time an imported flower reaches our shores, there’s a good chance it was cut around six days ago, compared to an NZ flower with transport from grower to florist being around two days. You haven’t got long left to smell the roses now, have you?
If you’re feeling despondent about giving or receiving flowers this Valentine’s Day, it’s not too late to do something about it!
NZ’s Best Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas
So, flowers are out, obviously. What else can you give your partner this Valentine’s Day (or hint strongly that they should give you)? Well, we’ve got a few ideas, starting with our absolute favourites, gift boxes!
Valentine’s Day Gift Box for Him– guys are traditionally hard to buy for, and as such usually end up with something boring like socks or undies. But not anymore! Our male-orientated gift boxes contain all sorts of items he’ll love, including whiskey, craft beer, snacks and nibbles, reusable cups, coffee, chutney and chocolate.
Build Your Own Gift Box– does your partner have special dietary requirements? Or you’d like to personally create them a unique present? You can, with our Build Your Own Gift Box option. From candles to vodka, bath bombs to truffles, there’s plenty of options available for the ultimate gift basket.
Other ideas for gifts this Valentine’s Day include:
Useful gifts – why not a piece of clothing or a pair of boots? Not terribly romantic, but certainly useful.
A child-free evening – send the kids off to Nana’s house and spend time wining and dining your partner. There’ some stunning wines to be found in our gift boxes, just saying…
Photoshoot – hire a professional photographer to spend an hour or so capturing the two of you for eternity. Just a gentle hint, this also makes a great engagement present gift too.
Gift an experience – why not a voucher for ice skating, a night at the movies or being very extravagant, a five-night cruise? Experience gifts are always popular with both the giver and receiver.
Of course, being New Zealand’s ultimate gift box store, we believe that gift presentation is as important as the gift itself. It’s why we take great pride and care in creating our gift baskets and boxes. Our gift boxes are beautifully packaged with a band, ribbon and free notecard, on which we’ll record your message to the special person in your life.
What are you waiting for? Today is the day to say no to flowers and choose the ultimate Valentine’s Day gift: a Spoil Me gift box!
We look into the history and the reasons why we celebrate Valentine’s Day, including its surprisingly dark beginning and how this has transformed to the day of love and romance we celebrate today. Valentine’s Day wasn’t always about red roses and a box of chocolates....