Accountants have April 15. Politicians have the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. But far and away the busiest time of the year for florists is Valentine’s Day. According to Roses Incorporated, 110 million roses will be sold within the three days leading up to Valentine’s Day. This can make life pretty hectic for a florist, especially if she operates her own flower shop.
Rani Chaudhery is just such a florist. She is the owner of Flowers By Rani, located at 4238 Wilson Blvd. near the Ballston Common mall. She has operated her shop for two years now and says that, during this time of year, she practically lives at her shop to cater to her romantically-inclined customers.
How long have you worked in Arlington?
I have been working in Arlington for the past 2 years.
Why did you choose Arlington as your place of business?
A family friend owned some businesses here. This used to be a coffee shop before I came here. When they closed down I just took the opportunity to buy [the space] and try out the flower shop here.
Are you married? Do you have any children? Do you have any pets?
No, I am not married but I do have a 9-year-old daughter named Sunaina. As far as pets, I do not have any.
Where did you go to school?
I lived and went to school in Gaithersburg, Md. I graduated from Colonel Zodak Magruder High School.
What was your first job?
My first job was at Burger King, located on Shady Grove Road. I was 14 when I started.
What do you like to do with your spare time? Do you have any hobbies?
Well, I don't really have any more spare time as I am always working but I love to paint and cook. I also enjoy dancing and just hanging out with friends.
How did you get involved in the flower business? When did you open your store? Where do you get your flowers from?
Well I just kind of tried it out. I mean who doesn't love flowers? I opened my shop on my birthday — Feb. 8, 2006. We get our flowers from several different vendors but most of our flowers come from Holland.
How much extra business do you usually do around Valentines Day? How many hours a day do you typically work around this time of year?
Valentine's Day is our busiest time of the year. We practically live at work.
What is your most popular bouquet for Valentines Day?
The traditional long stem red roses.
Have you ever fielded any unusual requests for flowers on Valentines Day?
No, not really. But then again, nothing is really unusual when it comes to flowers...