When Green Isn’t Green: Reconsider Flowers This Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is around the corner, and with over 80 million mothers in the U.S. alone, we have a lot of women to show gratitude to. In fact, this gratitude adds up to over $2 billion in flower sales nationwide each year.

Nearly 70 percent of Americans celebrating Mother’s Day do so by purchasing flowers. However, you might consider an alternative, more eco-friendly gift — most cut flowers arrive in our shops and markets after being shipped internationally in refrigerated containers, because they are so perishable. Between water, pesticides and greenhouse gas emissions, flower sales have an alarming environmental impact.

If you’re attached to the idea of giving flowers, try giving a living plant instead of cut flowers, or find locally grown blooms through Local Harvest. If you receive flowers on Mother’s Day, remember to recycle the plastic wrap with plastic bags and compost the flowers once they’ve wilted.