Which is why it's great to know that the Delaware Valley Consumer's Checkbook rated more than 160 local florists for price and quality.
"We found big differences among different florists," says Checkbook Editor Robert Krughoff. "In fact, in one particular arrangement, we found prices ranging from $65 to $272. And that's for exactly the same arrangment."
And some of the best deals didn't come from florists at all.
The average florist price for a dozen long-stem roses was 50 to 55 dollars. But at supermarkets, the prices were between 10 and 20 dollars... And street vendors charged even less than that.
"Of course, if you're thinking of buying from a street vendor, that's probably the most risky in terms of quality," Krughoff says. "It makes sense to buy those flowers early in the day, so they're not sitting out in the sun and wind all day long."
Look for flowers with tight buds, cleanly cut stems and no wilting petals or leaves.
You can definitely save by buying flowers and delivering them to Mom yourself. But if Mom lives out of town, how can you get the most for your money?
Krughoff recommends dealing with a florist here that you know and asking them to place the out-of-town order.
That way if something goes wrong, you'll have someone nearby to help deal with the problem.
To get the full list of the 166 florists rated by Checkbook, you have to subscribe to Checkbook.org. But here are the florists who received checks (the top rating) in both the price and quality categories. A Rose in December in Medford, New Jersey
Bakanas Flowers in Marlton, new Jersey
Breger Flowers in Wilmington, Del.
Brunton Bill's Flowers in Wilmington, Del.
C.J. Sanderson and Son Florist in Woodbury, New Jersey
Deerberry Flower Shoppe in Marlton, New Jersey
Flowers by Yukie in Wilmington, Del.
Franklin Florists in Philadelphia
Halladay Florist in West Chester, Pa.
Hilton Blake Florist in Rockledge, Pa.
Kathy's Flowers in Lindenwold, New Jersey
Kirk's Flowers in Newark, Delaware
Marcus Hook Florist and Gifts in Marcus Hook, Pa.
Overhill Flowers in Philadelphia
Richard's Flower Market in Morrisville, N.J.
Ron Eastburn's Flower Shop in Wilmington, Del.
Willingboro Florist in Willingboro, N.J.