Tips to becoming more sustainable
The heart of floristry is our love for working with nature. More than ever, it is important for us to work more sustainably, to protect the planet and precious resources for the next generation.
Making the change and adapting our methods to be more sustainable can seem overwhelming. There are lots of options you can think about for your practice, for example biodegradable, recycled, compostable etc.
Flowers have a high carbon footprint. They are transported overseas all over the world from Holland, Sri Lanka, Colombia, Ecuador and more, plastic packaging, and single use items contribute to florists creating more carbon emissions and waste.
What is sustainable floristry?
“Sustainability looks to protect our natural environment, human and ecological health, while driving innovation and not compromising our way of life.” (link)
How can a florist work green and ethically?
It is important as a sustainable florist to make choices. You can make decisions about the flowers to use, the materials, who they buy from, waste, chemicals, conditioning flowers, repurpose and reuse. It is vital to educate the cliental about being eco friendly, spreading the message to make being more sustainable more viable.
Steps to be more eco-friendly
There are simple, small steps that we can take in our own practice to help and make a significant change.
- Embrace the natural season
- Buy from a local supplier
- Re-use, recycle and minimise wast
- Educate your customer base
- Use sustainable floristry techniques
Sustainable Floristry Techniques
To expand on this point in more detail, there are tools and methods that can be used for florists and floral designers that avoid the use of floral foam.
Floral Foam was developed in the 1950’s and revolutionised floristry practices Being super absorbent, it is used to keep flowers hydrated for days, helping to secure and provide structure to floral design and transportation of floral arrangements. It makes larger designs in both wedding and funeral work much easier and allows for innovative creative designs. Despite the benefits of using foam, it is bad for the environment. The floral foam (wet) is formaldehyde-based and it is not biodegradable meaning it will not break down in landfill.
Types of alternatives
- Chicken wire
- Re-usable glassware
- Holly chapple pillows
- Flower frogs (or pin holders)
What are the benefits of being more sustainable?
Build your eco-friendly credentials into your business model and share this with your customer base. It can be a great marketing edge as customers do want to support businesses that are supporting the community and protecting the planet. The more we use the natural resources of our planet, the less there is for the next generation.
At Triangle Nursery Academy of Flowers, we do use Floral foam for certain floral designs including funeral and basic designs, but also teach sustainable approaches.