Sunday, 2 June 2019

A fancy for flowers...

According to the UK Flowers and Plants Association the UK spends about £2.2billion each year on indoor plants and cut flowers, of which about 90% is on cut flowers. Now it seems to me that as most of these come from overseas and are flown around the world using up valuable resources for ephemeral pleasure rather than necessity, then this should be one of the first places we look when we want to make the switch to a more environmentally friendly lifestyle, whether you buy dozens of bunches for every room in the house every week or just one bunch in a year.

Now I don't mean you should give up cut flowers, heaven knows they are one of my favourite treats and bring so much joy to lives that in my view, only the grumpiest of environmentalists or frugal fanatic would say that's it, no flowers for the house ever, for anyone. But there are questions we can and should ask before we make any purchase, especially a luxury item like flowers. I mean, when did you last ask yourself any of these questions when faced with a bunch of flowers in the supermarket or need to make a last minute order? -  Where do these come from? How they are produced? How did they travel? Is there an alternative?

Did you know that there are dozens of companies and small producers up and down the UK producing beautiful, sustainable, local UK-grown blooms that are available through local florists, direct from the grower or through the post? In many cases you can even source British grown flowers through your supermarket if you check the labels carefully and if you stick to seasonal beauties then you'll probably save money too.

If you need to buy flowers why not check out social media sites under the hashtag #BritishFlowers and #GrownNotFlown for inspiration and sources or look at sites such as The Great British Florist and Flowers From the Farm or ask your florist to recommend blooms grown here in the UK.

But for even greater enjoyment, especially if you want flowers for yourself, you can produce gorgeous bouquets and posies from your own garden or allotment for most if not all the year round. Whether you just take a few blooms from your border or dedicate half the allotment to a cutting garden why not try cutting your own flowers once in a while?

June 2019

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