Local flower shops work through pandemic challenges to deliver bouquets this Valentine's Day

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WEST ALLIS, Wis. (CBS 58)-- It's that time of year when nothing says 'I love you' quite like a dozen red roses, and local flower shops are working through a new set of challenges to deliver sweet bouquets this Valentine's Day.

Kimberlee Grob is the lead designer and owner of Locker's Florist in West Allis. This is her 28th Valentine's Day in the industry, the second in a pandemic.

A pandemic that brought on a new set of challenges, including supply chain issues and staffing shortages.

"There's deciding how many arrangements and orders we think we're going to have, ordering the flowers for it, getting extra staff in," Grob said.

Valentine's Day brings in 10 to 15 times the amount of deliveries, especially when it falls on the first day of the work week.

"Monday's can be really brisk, especially this year when it's going to be the day after the Super Bowl," Grob said.

Super Bowl LVI lands on Sunday, Feb. 13 this year.

"We expect the gentlemen to call us Monday morning for those last minute deliveries," Grob said.

Although Grob is prepared to fill orders that come in the morning of Feb. 14, she said husbands, boyfriends, and partners may not score their top seed.

"To get the best and the brightest and your first choice arrangement, it's always best to order early," Grob said.

Local flower shops are feeling the effects supply chain issues brought on by the pandemic.

"We're seeing it with glassware. There's very little in the way of opaque and colored glassware, like red vases, pink vases, purple vases, things like that, that are very popular," Grob said.

Grob started ordering as early as December of last year to secure supplies in shop by this month.

"We are limited. We may run out of a certain vase or a certain flower," Grob said.

Some of the work can be done ahead of time, but most flowers will be arranged just before Super Bowl kick-off.

"While everyone is relaxing and enjoying the football festivities, we will be in here and making the arrangements, and getting the dozens of roses ready to go out the next morning," Grob said.

Cupid's Day brings a mad rush of lovers, but it's nothing florists like Grob can't handle.

"I love the fervor and the frenzy, the phones ringing and the flowers going out, and just knowing there are all of these people across the city who are receiving flowers and having these genuine smiles," Grob said.

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