We settled on a standard order for the 14 remaining companies: a dozen long-stemmed red roses. Since most rely on local florists to actually fulfill the orders, bouquets vary depending on location. To see how that played out in real life, we sent 14 bouquets to our writer in Chicago and the same 14 to our offices in Seattle — which company would deliver the same quality of flowers in two urban locations?
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These companies left us feeling thoroughly lukewarm. Their bouquets weren’t the worst we’ve seen, but generally lacked the show-stopping effect of our top picks. If you’re unable to get the bouquet you want on the date that you want from one of our top picks, these services are worth checking as a backup, but we wouldn’t recommend them as our first choice:
Wesley Berry Flowers. In both Seattle and Chicago, the bouquets were sent unarranged, with no vase, and the ends of the roses weren’t kept wet. There also wasn’t any greenery whatsoever; it was literally just 12 rapidly drying roses in a box, and Seattle’s were already a little wilted. Wesley Berry’s website also got the worst score — it had annoying pop-ups; it refused to show us the shipping charges; and, at the end of the transaction, we found a tiny “donation” box pre-checked that would have charged us an additional $4 had we not caught it. These roses had the distinction of being the first roses we had to throw out — a mere three days after receiving them. Not recommended.
In the Netherlands, the first horticultural college was founded in 1896 in Naaldwijk; the second horticultural college was founded in 1897 in Aalsmeer. In 1926, the first national professional qualification examinations in floristry were held in the Netherlands. The horticultural college in Aalsmeer celebrated its 75th anniversary in 1972 and in 1997 its 100th anniversary. Since 1926 is the horticultural college in Aalsmeer was called the ‘Rijks Middelbare Tuinbouw School’ (RTMS). The first professional floristry education started at the RMTS in 1968. The first professor in floristry at the horticultural college in Aalsmeer was Mr. Theo Boerma. In 1972 Theo Boerma started teaching professional evening courses for the floristry diploma: vakdiploma Bloemist-Winkelier. In 1980 Theo Boerma and his wife José Boerma founded the first privately owned floristry school; Boerma Instituut International Floral Design School in Aalsmeer. The floristry diploma was recognized by the Dutch government until 1996. When the borders of Europe opened, the diploma was no longer needed but professional training for Dutch and international students is still organised by the Boerma Instituut.