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4 Things to AVOID for Eco-Conscious Wedding Flowers

If, like me, you've been trying to be more conscious of your environmental impact, I'm sure you will already be a keen recycler, trying to reduce your consumption of single use plastics and choosing eco alternatives where possible... But how can you bring the same mentality to your wedding day?!

The environmental impact of the floristry industry isn't one that the public have been told a lot about in the past. The long and short of the matter is that it has been terrible; * spoiler alert* chemical pesticides, flowers carried around the globe on planes, the excessive use of plastic wrap and the horrendous use of chemicals in floristry foam (or oasis as it is commonly referred to). But there are florists out there who are trying to change this.

Here are my top things to avoid for eco-conscious wedding flowers:

1. Imported Flowers

Try to use British seasonal flowers where possible in order to reduce the airmiles of your blooms. Your florist will be able to advise which flowers are in season at the time of your wedding. One thing to keep in mind: in the UK the majority of flowers bloom between late spring and early autumn - obviously there are some exceptions to the rule, but there may be less choice of home grown flowers during the winter months.

Floral meadow table runner incorporating purple and blue flowers sits on a table with blue candles in antique brass holders and blue tableware with gold cutlery. Set up ready for a wedding breakfast. Wedding flowers by Emma Jane Floral Design.

Choosing British grown blooms does not mean compromising on style! This summer meadow design was created using entirely British flowers, grown just half and hour away from my home on a little flower farm on the Shropshire border (as well as a few bits and bobs I grew myself!).

2. Plastic Floral Foam

Floral foam is filled with chemicals which are terrible both for us and for the environment... and it breaks down into micro-plastics too - ew! Luckily there are lots of ways to make stunning designs without using foam... the things we florist can whip up using chicken wire, moss, recyclable water viles and, of course, some gorgeous blooms are unbelievable! Remember to ask your florist if they're foam free.

Bride in crown headdress stands in front of a floral installation display by Emma Jane Floral Design.

Photography by Sophie Renshaw Photography.

This asymmetric "broken arch" design was entirely foam free! I used a mixture of British grown foliage and imported blooms (due to the event taking place outside of British flower season).

3. Plastic Confetti

This might be an obvious one. Biodegradable petal confetti is sooo much prettier and sooo much better for the environment than plastic confetti - Win win!

You can make your own if you have plenty of petals and drying space, or there are plenty of British confetti farms too. Top tip - some farms open for visits during the summer and they are truly magical to wonder around!

Newly married couple are showered with biodegradable confetti by their family and friends. The bride carries a botanical bouquet designed by Emma Jane Floral Design.

Photography by Mat James Photography.

4. Bleached Dried Flowers

Bleached flowers are everywhere at the moment, but the process of creating them isn't environmentally friendly (look it up if you want to be horrified!). But don't worry, if you like this aesthetic there are ways to achieve it naturally - ask you florist!

Naturally dried Gypsophila, Honesty, and palm leaves are great alternatives for the dreamy desert boho look. In the bouquet below, I used pampas, bunny trail grasses and dried fern to add a touch of boho!

Bride holding boho bouquet of peach roses, pampas and bunny tail grasses standing in front of a floral background. Bouquet by Emma Jane Floral Design.

Photography by Sophie Renshaw Photography.

Lastly, don't beat yourself up! If you can't find eco alternatives for every part of your wedding, don't worry - you've done what you can and even changing a few little details helps!

If you're interested in environmentally conscious floristry, check out #foamfreefloristry, #grownnotflown and #floristryischanging on social media.


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