Vancouver Flower Auction
Most people, even most locals, don’t realize that Vancouver and the Fraser Valley are home to a thriving plant and flower industry.
Millions of flowers and plants are grown annually. One grower of premium roses, for example, produces more than 11 million cut roses a year. A large percentage of the flowers and plants grown here are sold at auction.
Every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday morning at 6:00am, a hundred or more people gather at United Flower Growersat 4085 Marine Way, just past Boundary Road in Burnaby, to buy flowers. It is the second largest flower auction in the world, smaller only than those in Holland. Although the auction can handle 4000 individual transactions an hour, everything proceeds quietly, orderly, electronically.
Bidders watch and bid from comfortable stadium seating, equipped with bidding keypads, as a long procession of flowers rolls past on wagons. The parade includes all kinds of cut flowers, potted flowers and plants, and flowers in flats, bunches, blooms and baskets. You’ll also see bunches of sticks, leaves, bags of moss and ferns, most of which are grown or produced in the fields and greenhouses of the Fraser Valley.
By no means a tourist attraction, United Flower Growers does allow visitors to watch auctions but not to purchase flowers. Of course if you stay around until the end, auctions last between an hour and three hours, you may be able to buy a bunch of flowers from a florist loading up a van.
United Flower Growers Co-operative Association
4085 Marine Way, Burnaby, BC, Canada V5J 5E2