This week, as the lovestruck file into supermarkets to pick up their Valentine’s Day bouquets, local gay flower enthusiast Dan Fingerhut will die a little inside. “The stuff there is so ugly and dated,” he says, so disheartened at the way grocery stores and mass online retailers have ruined our connection to the things that go bloom. “Where I live, in South Philly, people put dirt in their windowsills and stick plastic flowers in there. It’s devastating.”
The FlowerSchool New York-trained florist is bound and determined to “help people realize how awesome flowers area again” through his online floral boutique, Spike Greens, which debuts to the public tomorrow in the Gayborhood. There he’ll be peddling one-of-a-kind red-, pink- or purple-garden-rose bouquets that are “spiked” with sweet-smelling, locally bought herbs and fruits, like clementines, apples and pomegranates. The base of the bouquet is the real kicker, though: swiss chard. “I use swiss chard because it’s beautiful,” he says. “I want something that looks good enough to eat. I think the greens of the bouquet are ignored in standard arrangements, but they’re as important as everything else.”
Something else that’s more important than everything else — especially on Valentine’s Day? Sweet, sweet revenge. Those pissed off at their exes can opt to purchase rose bouquets with the thorns intact. You can also attach a nasty note “written in dead black ink that says ‘Spiked with Thorns,’” he laughs.
If all goes well at this Valentine’s Day event, Fingerhut says he’ll start hosting regular pop-ups for “flower holidays,” like Easter and Mother’s Day. “I’ll try to build an audience that way, then maybe open a brick-and-mortar shop down the road. That’s my dream.”
The pop-up shop will be open at Duross and Langel (117 S. 13th St.) on Valentine’s Day, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Prices for bouquets range from $49-$99, and bottles — a simple, tasteful vase filled with two types of roses — run $26-$29. To follow future Spike Green events, check the website or “like” them on Facebook.