Who doesn’t love having some fresh flowers around their home? A vase of flowers is such a simple and happy way to bring nature indoors and they're part of all of life’s major celebrations. But have you ever thought about where your cut flowers come from?
Did you know most of the flowers you buy at the grocery store have been flown in from South America?
The Miami International Airport receives approximately 32,000 boxes of cut-flowers each day, which accounts for roughly 85% of the imported flowers into the United States. According to Floral Daily “80% of the flowers available in the U.S. are imported from other countries.” The two largest exporters of flowers to the United States are Columbia and Ecuador. That’s a lot of flowers that are being flown long distances and emitting a lot of greenhouse gases to make it to our homes, events, and restaurant vases.
Don’t get us wrong, we love seeing all the flowers in the grocery stores and we're definitely not anti-flowers! We just think it's important to be an informed and thoughtful purchaser (even when it comes to flowers), since all of those beautiful blooms have a significant environmental impact.
So here are a few tips next time you're in the market for some blooms:
More than likely the flowers at your local grocery or big-box store are from South America, so ask for VeriFlora Certified or Fair Trade Certified flowers, which insures the flowers were grown under environmentally sustainable practices.
Find an awesome flower grower near you and build a relationship with them. You'll not only gain an appreciation for flowers that thrive and are native to your area, but you can also ask if they sell their flowers at any grocery stores or florists near your home. A great website to find these growers is Local Flowers.
Our personal favorite field-grown, cut flower producers in Texas are Pamela and Frank Arnosky. They own Texas Specialty Cut Flowers in Blanco, TX and walking through the rows of flowers at their farm is a magical sight we'll never forget.
So incorporate flowers into your life, but think about where they came from and try to make informed purchases. Or better yet, plant some flowers in your yard so you and your neighbors can enjoy them on a daily basis!