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     As we’ve reported in the last few years, cut flowers, both domestic and imported, are being tracked and counted differently than they have been in the past, partly due to homeland security issues. Nevertheless, we can use the numbers as guides to gain some insight into the current state of cut flower production in America.

specialty crops lead
     Despite some of the issues with counting our cut flower crops, we can safely say that the bulk of America’s floriculture product, which includes cut flowers, cut cultivated greens, flowering potted plants, foliage plants, bedding/garden plants and herbaceous perennials, is grown in California and Florida. Growers in the Golden State are the primary producers of fresh-cut flowers, accounting for approximately 78 percent of total U.S.-grown floriculture crops.

     Domestic production is tracked via an annual survey conducted by the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), which polls growers in the 15 largest floriculture-producing states whose sales exceed $10,000 although some of the data are reported only from growers whose sales exceed $100,000. These data suggest that cut flower production remained relatively stable from 2007 to 2008, with only modest decreases in most crops—and even some increases.

     Domestically, tulips, Gerberas and lilies top the chart (above right), and it’s clear that bulb flowers and other specialty crops, such as snapdragons and Delphiniums, are some of our growers’ strongest supplies.

Reach Senior Editor Shelley Urban at or (800) 355-8086.

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Florists' Review Enterprises, Inc.