Along with Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day sees the highest demand for cut flowers across Australia. While there is nothing quite like the beauty of fresh flowers (and all of our mums no doubt deserve a big bouquet of love!), there are a few choices you can make this Mother’s Day to ensure your purchase is spreading the love as far as possible. First up, where you can, buy local, seasonal blooms. There are currently no laws requiring Australian florists to label the country-of-origin of their cut flowers, so make sure to ask questions before you buy. Local flowers not only come with a guarantee of fair working conditions, there is also less energy spent on refrigeration and transport – and Australia has some stunning, globally-coveted natives available, so why not take advantage?
Secondly, avoid roses and lilies (unless you can find locally-grown varieties). Roses and lilies are the most heavily imported flowers to meet the spike in demand – and they are often imported from countries with highly exploitative working conditions. Imported flowers are generally also exposed to much higher levels of harmful pesticides, as it is a rule of entry into the country that they must be thoroughly quarantined (including dipped in Roundup). Which leads us to the final point: buy from organic, sustainable and/or fair trade growers where you can. Not only will your bouquet be free of many of the nasty chemicals you’ll find in commercial blooms, but you’ll be supporting a system of farming which is as good for the planet as it is for you!