Sustainably Sourced, Low-Impact Flowers for Mother's Day or Any Day of the Year

Flowers are a thoughtful gift for any occasion, but sustainably sourced, low-impact flowers are the best way to go.

Lizzy Rosenberg - Author

May 9 2024, Updated 10:49 a.m. ET

Bouquet of white and pink flowers on a table.
Source: Getty Images

Whether you're making Mom breakfast in bed or you're treating Grandma to a day at the museum, you're most likely planning to pick up a bouquet for Mother's Day. But for the sake of your lovely mother and Mother Earth alike, it's crucial to buy sustainably sourced and low-impact flowers over anything else.

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Keep reading for ways to ensure your Mother's Day flowers are as sustainable as possible, and that they won't raise the environmental impact of your celebrations this weekend.

Look for the organic label

Woman picking up a small pot of flowers in a garden center.
Source: Getty Images

Although it might sound like a buzzword, opting for flowers with the organic label is a smart decision for your mom and the planet. Organic means the flowers were grown without pesticides. As you may know, pesticides harm the soil in which the flowers were grown, the surrounding wildlife, the farmers, and potentially, the receiver of said flowers. Organic ensures the flowers are clean and pesticide-free — your mom only deserves the best.

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Opt for local flowers

Small child with a bouquet of flowers facing the camera.
Source: Getty Images

Choosing locally-grown flowers — not flowers that are harvested overseas — not only ensures they will live longer (because they haven't been traveling for several days) but they ensure the transportation emissions are minimal. Through Whole Foods' Sourced For Good program, you can find tulips that were domestically grown at a Northern Virginia Farm called Bloomia.

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Aside from having less packaging and growing flowers on a smaller (and more sustainable) scale, nearby farmers' markets are also a great resource for locally-grown flowers that also ensure your flowers don't travel far. We wrote a roundup of our favorite farmers markets across the U.S. if you're planning on picking up mom a bouquet before Sunday.

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Consider dried flowers that will last a lifetime

A bouquet of dried flowers in a supermarket.
Source: Getty Images

To limit waste and give mom a gift that will last for years to come, consider getting her a bouquet of dried flowers as opposed to live ones. Dried flowers are guaranteed to stay looking pretty for quite a while, and let's be honest, there's something seriously charming about a cute little bouquet of dried lavender.

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Opt for sustainably packaged flowers

Many grocery store flowers come wrapped in plastic and polystyrene — so it's important to avoid that. Companies like Farmgirl Flowers or Fleur Box deliver flowers, in case you aren't seeing Mom in person this year. And instead of using disposable, wasteful packaging, they wrap their bouquets in upcycled, compostable burlap or recyclable cardboard. But if you're seeing Mom in person, farmer's market flowers rarely come in packaging.

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Remind her to reuse or compost her flowers at the end of their life

Pieces of flowers being used in composting in a garden.
Source: iStock

When Mom's flowers start wilting, remind her to dispose of them sustainably by pressing them, drying them, or composting them. This ensures that they're given a useful second life, as opposed to simply tossing them in landfill trash.

We're thrilled you're considering Mother Earth on Mother's Day — she certainly deserves the most this year.

This article, originally published on May 7, 2021, has been updated.

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