Most cut flowers sold in the US are imported, often coming from growing fields where fair labor practices are not the norm. Imported flowers are fumigated at the border to pass through US customs, and even more chemicals are used to preserve them for their long journey. But everything in your Slow Bouquet was grown within 100 miles of Madison, Wisconsin! This way, we support local farmers, reduce the transport impact on our environment, and keep chemicals OUT of our vases.
- You choose the size of arrangement, but not the flowers. Whatever is blooming and in season determines your arrangement. By eliminating choice, we can keep our prices down and greatly reduce flower waste.
- Currently 80% of the cut flowers at stores and warehouses in the US are never sold and go to waste. Reread that crazy statistic one more time. But our flower waste is almost zero, as we donate vases of unsold flowers to area nursing homes, and we compost our scraps.
- Because we respect the seasons, we have many weeks of lovely, fragrant arrangements made from evergreens, pods, berries, and twigs. It is a time to celebrate texture and shape over color and youth. Just as locavores have learned to love root vegetables, locaflores love the Dogwood twig. With the knowledge that the first bite of asparagus in the spring, like the first crocus bloom, will be downright life-affirming. Learn more by reading Ann’s article in Cut Flower Quarterly magazine!
- We use sustainable materials. Out in the fields at my partner farms, I use old yoga mats and repurposed pickle buckets to collect flowers. (Thanks for the buckets Jenifer St. Market!) Back at home base I arrange flowers in donated vases and mason jars. I wrap bouquets in burlap, not plastic. (Thanks for the burlap donations Ancora Coffee Roasters!) I use ribbon made from recycled silk saris. Instead of plastic flower picks to hold enclosure cards, I use overstock bamboo chopsticks from local restaurants. No toxic floral foam is used, as we are able to use clever methods with repurposed materials to hold flowers in place. My top secret recipe for floral preservative uses natural everyday items you probably have in your cupboard. (Read the awesome book Petal and Twig by Val Easton to find the recipe!) When I have enough, I fill vases with collected rain water.
- When possible, we deliver by bike within the isthmus (Randall to Dunning). When we need to use a car, we combine trips, carpool, and drive compact, efficient cars.
- Although I call it a “Slow Bouquet” we work fast and get your flowers to their destination on time, every time.
- We donate $1 from every order and the full cost of flower girl bouquets to projects endorsed by Girls Not Brides, a global partnership committed to ending child marriage, thus enabling girls to attend school and fulfill their potential. Please take a moment to read about the great work they’re doing, and consider getting involved or making a donation of your own. Read about Ann’s project to bring the movie Girl Rising to Madison!