You see them almost everywhere in supermarkets: extremely cheap and beautiful bouquets of cut flowers enticingly placed right by the cashier. It is very tempting to quickly add a bouquet to your shopping cart. Once home you find that these flowers often don't stay fresh very long and end up in the compost heap after barely a day.
Why cut flowers are only beautiful for a short time
The reason for this is quite obvious: most of the cut flowers we buy are imported and have been harvested several days and travelled thousands of miles before they land on our supermarket shelf. Most of the imports come from the Netherlands or various developing countries. In developing countries, in particular, working conditions are rather harsh. The people who grow the flowers are poorly paid and they are usually inadequately protected against the highly toxic pesticides that are used - if at all.
In addition, growing these flowers year-round results in extremely high water consumption and the CO2 footprint is catastrophic too - after all, the flowers often travel halfway across the world in a plane.
Enjoy Slow Flowers Instead
But now there are alternatives, the so-called Slow Flowers. (The name is borrowed from the Slow Food movement) These are flowers that
are grown using sustainable cultivation methods
have short delivery routes
can only be harvested during the natural flowering period
treated with as little chemistry as possible
Because Slow Flowers are only harvested when they are in bloom naturally in your area, the choice is of course limited. But you can access it with a clear conscience. It is interesting to note that Slow Flowers are often even cheaper than the conventional alternative. The reason is simple: flowers that are in season are in abundance and therefore cheap.
The Slow Flower movement is getting bigger and more popular. No wonder, because sustainability is becoming more important as people become ever more environmentally conscious.
Even better: flowers from your own garden
Slow Flowers are an excellent alternative to conventional cut flowers but there is an option that is even gentler on the environment: cut flowers from your own garden. There are now also suppliers who offer seeds specifically for cut flowers such as Jora Dahl with the wild bouquet "Soft Apricot".