This Valentine's is proving to be remunerative for Indian rose farmers. According to the Indian Society of Floriculture Professionals (ISFP), roses worth Rs 27-30 crore will be exported across the world by Indian rose growers for Valentine\u2019s Day celebrations. Exports this year are higher at Rs 27-30 crore as compared to Rs 23 crore last year and Rs 19 crore in 2017 season, Praveen Sharma, president, ISFP said. The UK continues to remain the largest market for Indian roses, followed by Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand and Japan, Sharma said. Malaysia is comparatively a new market for Indian roses and a lot of demand has emerged from this country, he added. Exporters in Talengaon \u2014 a major floriculture belt of Maharashtra located in Pune \u2014 however, claimed that the sudden cold spell in the state last week impacted exports to the tune of nearly 50% since the buds did not flower in time for Valentine\u2019s Day. Shivajirao Bhegade, president, Pune District Flower Producers Association and a major flower exporter in Talegaon, stated that the production had been impacted by 50% because of a sudden cold spell last week. Usually, exports start from January 25-26, but the buds were not flowering because of the cold and as a result of the rise in temperatures in last 3 days, there has been a sudden rise in flowering, Sharma said. The domestic market, however, has been good for us and there have been no complaints because of the wedding season, he added. Rose growers in Talegaon exported roses worth nearly Rs 75 lakh earlier and another Rs 1 crore worth of roses were exported last week. Pune and Bengaluru are the two major rose exporting cities in India. Also Read:\u00a0Smart homes to Deep learning: How AI is reinventing consumer electronics space\u00a0 Sharma said that this February has been special for rose growers. During the month, apart from Valentine\u2019s Day which marks a peak demand for roses, there are 10 wedding muhurats well spread across the month which translates into more demand for flowers, he said. Last year, there were only 3 muhurats for weddings, he added. \u201cWe are expecting bumper demand during this and the wholesale prices are expected to fluctuate between Rs 250-350 per bunch of 20 flowers,\u201d he said. The long winter this year has proven to be a boon for Indian rose growers. \u201cSince the winter slows down growth, this enhances the period between flush to flush (flowering of the bud), the normal flush is expected in about 45 days, whereas if the temperature drops, the growth gets slower, enhances the quality of flower size but duration increases from 45 to 50-52 days. Most of the experienced growers keep such temperature fluctuations in their planning, since the Valentine Production Window is from January 25 to February 12, such temperature fluctuations are managed well. This has resulted in long stems which have increased demand for Indian roses,\u201d he said. \u201cThe quality of flowers enhances due to the increased carbohydrate consumption high evapotranspiration rate at high temperature by the respiration through various parts (i.e. roots, flower buds and leaves) are responsible for the decrease in the size of the flower stems, leaf and buds. \u201cAt lower temperatures, the size of the leaf lamina increases due to slow evapotranspiration rate. Similar effect is seen on the flower petal sizes. The increase in flower petal sizes results in bigger buds during winter season,\u201d Sharma pointed out, adding that these factors have played a key role in enhancement of Valentine exports this year. Because of the long stems, Indian roses are commanding prices between 25 euro cents per flower to 60 euro cents, he said. More small farmers are getting into floriculture since it is more remunerative. Farmers with land holdings from 10 gunthas to 2-3 acres are getting into business. Larger export houses are also sourcing roses from these farmers during Valentine\u2019s, he added.