In honor of Mother Earth’s favorite day, we’ve compiled a list of ways that you can go green when choosing flowers for any event, big or small. These are simple and effortless ideas that go a long way – and they can be implemented every day, not just in celebration of Earth Day. You can help the planet and farm workers in developing countries by planning ahead and using these techniques when selecting blooms.
1. Buy local flowers – Find out what is available to you within an easy driving radius of your home or office. You can cut down on carbon emissions by keeping your flower shipments close to home.
2. Go organic – Reduce the chemical impact on the planet by purchasing American-grown and organic arrangements for your next event. Because flowers are not eaten, there is no limit on the amount of toxic pesticides, fertilizers or artificial scents that importers can use.
3. Choose seasonal arrangements - Identify the flowers that are most available to your region during the spring, summer and fall months. For example, choosing tulips, ranunculus or peonies for your springtime wedding will avoid using exotic flowers that need to be shipped from far away. Check out this seasonal flower guide for spring from Green Wedding Shoes.
4. Look past traditional arrangements – Roses are lovely, but what about flowers that can be replanted? Succulents can be placed in gardens or planters and enjoyed for years to come. They are also drought-tolerant plants that don’t require a lot of water. If you live in an area where water preservation is a concern, succulents are also a great addition to any arrangement.
5. Go eco-friendly beyond your blooms – Look for companies that go green all the way. Many companies offer to pick up client’s containers after use to repurpose them, recycle the water that has not been absorbed by the flowers at the end of the day, and some even deliver flowers by bike!
6. Look for ways to give back – If you’re planning a wedding and you know that you’ll have a lot of flowers left over, consider companies like Rebloom or Bloomerent which offer a hassle-free way to recycle your wedding flowers after your big day. This will brighten up someone else’s event and your flowers will get major mileage at two events.
7. Less is more – Work with your florist to come up with unique and stunning arrangements that use less flowers all together. Planning a wedding? Ask your bridesmaids to carry a single calla lily instead of an enormous bouquet.
8. Avoid killer filler – Avoid buying arrangements that use florist’s foam or any other materials that cannot be recycled. If you want to bunch your flowers together for use in a bouquet, use twine, not plastic.
9. Petal power – Large events that require elegant and elaborate table settings often come with a grand arrangement and petals scattered on the table to compliment the flowers. Instead of tossing the petals away at the end of the day, plan ahead and choose edible flowers that you can freeze dry and use for future use.
10. Turn your flowers into invitations or thank you notes – There are many companies that specialize in turning flowers into gorgeous invitations, scrapbooks, gift tags or thank you notes. Try Cast Paper Art for an earth friendly and innovative design.
Do you have any other earth friendly flower ideas? Let us know!