Flower farm damaged by Hurricane Florence busy prepping for Valentine’s Day


CASTLE HAYNE, NC (WWAY) — With Valentine’s Day just three days away, shops are filling with flowers hoping to be the right gift for your lover.

Castle Hayne Farms makes about 5,000 flower bouquets weekly but leading up to Valentine’s Day the farm produces about 15,000 arrangements.

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After Hurricane Florence set the company back a month, this busy holiday is a blessing.

“For Valentine’s, we plan three times as much as we do for a normal week,” said Castle Haynes Farms Co-owner Mark Hommes.

“A florist starts planning towards the end of December and that’s when we start kicking into high gear,” said Retail and Wholesale Manager Christina Cooke.

Castle Hayne Farms is a wholesale provider of fresh-cut flowers sold to local florists, event planners, and grocery chains like Whole Foods and Publix. After Hurricane Florence destroyed the tops of many greenhouses, they had to halt production.

“We didn’t ship any product for close to a month,” said Hommes. “Our customers were very understanding. They said let me know when you’re back on line.”

Hommes says the roof of every greenhouse was destroyed and the sidings are still under repair but Cooke says Valentine’s Day couldn’t have come at a better time. It is the second busiest holiday for the farm.

“We’re really happy for this holiday right now even though it’s really busy,” said Cooke.

Lilies, irises and snapdragons are a few of the most popular flowers grown and sold at the farm, but Hommes says roses can’t be grown in this climate.

“Colombia, Ecuador, Costa Rica and Mexico grow all the staples like roses, carnations, alstroemeria,” said Hommes. “They have a good climate for it.”

As the big day draws closer, shipments are starting to die down but as the start of the spring season comes approaches, the farm is constantly planting.

“Everything is kind of on a system so, we constantly have product to offer,” said Hommes.

Mother’s Day is the next big holiday the farm is prepping for.

If you are interested in getting a beautiful arrangement for your loved one, the farm welcomes the public. It is located at 4415 Castle Hayne Road in Castle Hayne.