Over the new year I had an amazing opportunity to learn first hand about the cut flower industry in the state of California. I haven’t had the chance to compile our adventure into a few posts (I can’t wait to share!) but suffice to say, in all my efforts to support and help my own community, local farmers and growers (through the Harvard Farmers Market), I never fully considered the cut flower industry as I have local food producers.
But for all the same economic, ethical, sustainability, and communal reasons it is important to be aware of where your cut flowers come from. Flower farmers face many of the same challenges that other local farmers do and their US based industry has dwindled to just a fraction of what it once was.
Debra Prinzing recently wrote a book (Slow Flowers: Four Seasons of Locally Grown Bouquets from the Garden, Meadow and Farm) that encourages and helps imagine floristry that is seasonal and sourced close to home. And why wouldn’t you want that? The soul of a bouquet is truly in the beautiful gift of nature – and if that gift can connect you with what is just beyond the front door, it is that much more alluring.
To help you and I and the industry make the ‘local’ flower connection Debra has been raising money through an idiegogo campaign that will be used to set up a website. The Slow Flower site will enable florists who use locally grown flowers and buyers find each other all across the country. It is pretty simple really – like a digital farmers market for flowers. If you want to support the site, you can chip in to the indiegogo campaign or if you can’t swing that, you can still sign up at the site so that as the site is built and populated you can learn about growers and florists in your own area.