Coffee klatch, Take action

Coffee klatch: Slow flowers with Debra Prinzing

Organic floral bouquet from Farm Girl Flowers in San Francisco

Ready for a cuppa and some conversation? Come on in. Have a blueberry scone, hot from the oven. Me? I’m thinking about Valentine’s Day and this interview I ran across on Theresa Loe’s web site Living Home Grown. She interviewed author Debra Prinzing about the concept of slow flowers, very like slow food.

Did you know that most of the Valentine flowers delivered in the U.S. are imported? Yeah, I know! Talk about your high carbon footprint!

Whole wheat blueberry scones_3844sc

While we chat, have a fresh whole wheat sourdough blueberry scone, hot from the oven


Here we are, you and I, working so hard to make good, locally grown food choices that

  • Protect the environment by reducing pesticides and chemical fertilizers in our soil, air and water;
  • Protect farm workers, again, by choosing foods low in pesticides and other harmful chemicals; and that
  • Save the fossil fuel and other environmental costs of air freight to get out-of-season fruits and vegetables.

Yet, when we celebrate our love with flowers (candy too, but that’s another story), quite often we contribute to these ills. The one that bothers me most, though? The suffering of the workers who grow, harvest and pack the flowers.

Unless they work for a Fair Trade Certified company, unprotected workers live with the risk of developing horrific cancers and respiratory illnesses from toxic chemical exposure. Their pay is low, often not even subsistence level. If they get sick from that exposure, they’re fired, with no compensation and no health care.

It’s not too late to make good choices about the flowers we give to our sweethearts this Valentine’s Day. This is a locally-grown, in-season, organic bouquet I received from my daughters one year–not V-Day, but for another occasion. Isn’t it gorgeous? My girls know their mom!

Organic floral bouquet from Farm Girl Flowers in San Francisco

Organic floral bouquet from Farm Girl Flowers in San Francisco

While I make another pot of coffee, follow the link to Theresa Loe’s site, Living Home Grown and her interview with author Debra Prinzing. Learn how we can make more sustainable flower choices this Valentine’s Day–and all year long–that will impact the environment and our lives, as well as the lives of the farm workers who grow them, (just like we do with our food). Then come back here and chat about what you discovered, won’t you?


  1. I feel like I am sitting with you in your kitchen enjoying a blueberry scone and a hot cup of java, it’s wonderful! The flowers look beautiful by the way. Thank you so much for sharing this post. It truly will make me think twice the next time I order flowers for someone special. I hope you have a wonderful Valentine’s Day weekend full of lots of love!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Grateful for your thoughts. It’s rather boggling that such a simple choice can be life-saving, or life-destroying, isn’t it?


  2. Interesting. Never thought of sustainability and flowers in the same sentence, Something to think about. I also like your personal touches with offering the scone. Real cute.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As always your posts make me hungry, The scones look amazing, Most importantly this post really resonated with me as I have never been a big fan of the commercialization of what is essentially a holiday for lovers and sweethearts. If indeed we are lovers and sweethearts we cannot and will not define our adoration by how much money we spend. If we have to do so, we have bigger problems. For me it’s a homemade card (still cut out of red constructions paper and creativity) and a quietly shared meal.

    Liked by 3 people

    • @Leah, You’re welcome. I too look forward to more from Theresa.

      @the runaway palate, thank you. Turns out, flowers are one of the easiest ways we can make a conscious choice that impacts lives.

      @Poor Robert, I agree with you. Shared food and a homemade tribute are the best of the best. Thank you for your thoughtful comment.


  4. jennifertucker44 says

    The flowers are beautiful! I felt as though I was sitting having a chat in your kitchen -thank you. you have given me something to think about when I buy my flowers. Perhaps I will work harder to arrange the flowers from my garden!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. When I say the final farewell to old friends, I take a bouquet of rosemary; in the language of flowers rosemary is for remembrance. It smells wonderful, and helps my overgrown bush to have a few branches removed, for a good purpose. People look at me in a funny way, sometimes, but so what.

    Liked by 1 person

    • @Barbwit, what a wonderful way to say goodbye. A sprig or two of rosemary stuck in the ground might take root and become a forever remembrance.

      @Jennifertucker44, thank you. A home-grown nosegay beats a fancy commercial bouquet any day, in my book.


  6. Hi, Kathryn! Those flowers are beautiful. I love peonies — and I’ve been intending to write a blog post about them. Thanks for the reminder. I went to Living Home Grown, and bookmarked it to read later.

    Liked by 1 person

    • @98Acres in Albany, thank you!
      @SpiritualJourney17, go ahead, take one. I have more. : )
      @Maria Logan Montgomery, I look forward to seeing your peony post. I think you’ll enjoy the podcast.

      Liked by 1 person

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