July 2, 2020
Well, we are wrapping up June with American Flowers Week! Maybe you have heard of American Grown Flowers or Slow Flowers? Slow Flowers is a movement, started by Debra Prinzing, which educates consumers about the importance of making a conscious choice to purchase cut flowers which have been grown domestically (preferably locally), instead of purchasing imported flowers, which in turn, supports the local economy. This is similar to the Slow Food Movement, and a wider culture of reducing one’s carbon footprint, which encourages consumers to think about where all their purchases come from and the resources it takes to get them to you.
This juicy, yumminess is a mix of hydrangea from my own garden, a few peonies from M&M Plants, and the rest from Grateful Gardeners. I absolutely adore how the honeysuckle vine wraps around the flowers, like a little flower-y hug.
“But Blair, you talk about flowers ALL THE TIME. We know you think it’s cool already. Why should we care about American Grown Flowers? I just go to the grocery store and buy flowers that are pretty. Isn’t that enough? I’m buying flowers like you told me to!”
Well friends, it’s not just “cool.” It’s important, and it impacts our planet, and American businesses. I’m not usually one for numbers, but, in the spirit of this week, here are some statistics you may not know about the American flower industry.
Are any of these numbers staggering to you?? They are to me too! Honestly, these numbers by themselves are enough for me to buy domestic flowers. But if you still need more reasons, read on!
Creative reasons for using American Grown flowers:
These two arrangements came mostly from Grateful Gardeners (Sarah wanted a big ol’ wildflower arrangement with no focal flowers! Ask and you shall receive!) and the hot pink peonies in the first image are from M&M Plants. What I loved about this day is that Sarah just brought over some flowers. I said I needed some line flowers, some focal flowers and some accent flowers and I gave her a budget. When you are working directly with a farm, you can do that! You can give a color palette, you can give a type of flower that you need, you can get their invaluable input on what to buy! We don’t always have to use typical flowers. The more new flowers you use, the more exciting your designs will be!
Economic and environmental reasons for using American Grown flowers:
These two arrangements are from another local farm co-op in my area, Monocacy Valley Flower Co-op. They are my main supplier of local product! These anemones were just to-die-for and the greenery are hosta leaves from my garden.
Before I end this long post, I want to say that this stuff is important whether you are a florist or just a lover of flowers. If any of these topics are important to you, pay attention to the flowers you purchase. If you buy grocery store flowers, you can look for the #Americangrown logo on the bouquets. There’s also one for #cagrown! If you are more of a farmer’s market type of person, you are almost guaranteed to be purchasing flowers straight from a flower farmer! If you’re getting married, ordering flowers for your home or ordering for a loved one, ask your florist where he/she sources flowers. Do they put a priority on domestic flowers? If it’s important to you, vote with your dollars. Where do your flowers come from?
(above) Artist: Tamara Hough @morning.glory.flowers Graphic Design: Jenny Diaz @jannymdiaz
I really hope you have learned something from this post. For additional resources, please read on.
Source of these statistics and soooo much more information on American Grown Flowers: Slow Flowers Society
HERE is a brilliant article that goes into further detail about the economic benefits of shopping locally, if you are interested in more information.