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!
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!
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?