THE BRONX - Flowers have long been synonymous with Valentine?s Day, but with the economic crisis in full swing, florists are not expecting to get much love from their customers this year.

"Usually on holidays we hire more employees,? says florist John Katsalis. "This year, we cut in half and we bought fewer flowers."

According to a National Retail Federation survey, consumer spending is expected to be lower than it has been in the last two years.

Despite lowered expectations, retailers who depend on Valentine?s Day for a significant portion of their annual revenue say they are hopeful the spirit of the holiday will bring customers in.

?Whether they?ll spend a dollar or $100, they?ll still come in,? Katsalis says.