Traditional flowers for Lunar New Year celebrations are suffering from poor growth after recent cold weather in Guangdong and Hong Kong, farmers say. They have complained that the growth of popular New Year flowers, such as lilies, gladioli and blossom peaches, fell almost to a standstill as temperatures dropped. The farmers said the coming week would be crucial for a good harvest. If temperatures fell again to below 15 degrees Celsius, supplies of flowers would be affected with prices likely to be driven up drastically over the Lunar New Year. Hong Kong and Guangdong suffered from cold winds from the north late last month and early this month, and snowfalls were reported in Beiyunshan in Guangzhou. Tsang Kwok-keung, director of the Hong Kong and Kowloon Flower and Plant Workers General Union, who visited Guangdong recently, said flower growth in Huizhou and Taishan was almost non-existent. 'The flowers failed to grow as they were damaged by the cold weather. It is likely that most flowers will blossom only after the Lunar New Year,' he said. Hong Kong's flower farms also faced the same problem as temperatures remained low. Leung Yat-shun, a flower farmer in San Tin, Yuen Long, said: 'The flowers almost fell into a dormant state. What we can do now is to look to the sky and make a wish for warmer weather.' Mainland and local flowers account for 60 per cent of the Hong Kong flower market during the Lunar New Year. Both lilies and gladioli grow at an optimal temperature of 18 degrees and take 70 to 80 days to mature and blossom but some flowers might now take up to 90 days to bloom because of the cold weather. However, the Observatory in Hong Kong said the weather had not been particularly cold this winter, adding that temperatures last month were still warmer than the average for December.