Your Eco-Friendly Flower Guide for Mother’s Day

May 11, 2019 3 min read

Your Eco-Friendly Flower Guide for Mother’s Day

It’s almost Mother’s Day, and it’s time to express your gratitude. We challenge you to skip the cut flowers this year. Fresh flowers are fabulous to keep around the house, it’s true. But they are worse for our natural home than you may realize. Your mom will surely appreciate the extra thought you give to bringing home an eco-friendly gift.




Why are cut flowers so bad for the environment? 

Most of the cut flowers sold in the US are imported from Colombia at 70%. An additional 10% are imported from elsewhere. The remaining 20% are grown in the US.

Obviously, imported flowers have a short lifespan, so they must travel very far distances in cold temperatures at a fast pace to reach their point of sale. That transportation dilemma leads to a series of related issues.  



  • Imported cut flowers have a huge carbon footprint
Since cut flowers require air transport, their carbon impact is much higher than that of goods that can be shipped by a slower cargo ship. Anywhere from roughly 7 to 35 flights bring imported flowers to the US each day, depending on the demand and the season. For every 100 million roses, about 9,000 metric tons of CO2 gets emitted. That’s almost one ton of CO2 per 100 flowers!

Flowers also require refrigerated transportation to keep them fresh. Refrigerants are a known threat to the atmosphere because they leak HFCs, which are 1000 to 9000 times more harmful to the atmosphere than CO2.



  • Growers and distributors apply toxic chemicals to imported cut flowers
Flowers are inspected at the border for insects, but not for chemicals. This means farmers may do whatever it takes to improve the chances of passing these inspections.

Some flower importing farms apply chemicals which are banned in the US. Roughly one-fifth of the chemicals that developing countries use on the banned substances list in the US.

These chemicals are not regulated like the pesticides used in food production since flowers are not intended for ingestion. As a result, cut flowers have a much higher level of chemical residue than food.



  • It wastes a lot of fresh water to grow flowers

    Flowers are water-intensive crops. Almost 2.5 acres of a flower farm consume an estimated 3000 cubic feet of water per month



  • Cut flowers don’t last long and produce waste
Obviously, not all flowers are sold before they lose their luster. Those unused flowers go to waste. Oftentimes cut flowers are also wrapped in shiny single-use plastic packaging, which also gets tossed into the landfill.  



How to choose sustainable cut flowers
  • Search for locally grown seasonal flowers
Depending on your region, you might have to get creative. Consult with a local flower grower at your farmer’s market to discover the best flower varieties for May. The Slow Flowers database offers an easy way to contact a local flower farm. As you get to know the farm your flowers come from, you can share the local details with your mother.
  • Choose eco-certified flowers
A variety of labels on flowers ensure that either your flowers were grown more sustainably with considerations for pesticide and water use, such as Veriflora and Floraverde. The Fair Trade certification ensures improved working conditions. Meanwhile, the Rainforest Alliance certification on flowers ensures that the crops didn’t contribute to deforestation. Finally, the American Grown label is a good choice for finding locally grown flowers. Luckily these labels are fairly common at familiar stores like Whole Foods and Costco.


Try these Heartwarming Alternatives to Cut Flowers
Finally, there is no need to cut flowers in the first place. A much more sustainable and eco-friendly approach is to keep the flower idea in mind, but avoid plucking them from their roots. We’ve compiled the following gift ideas to get your creative juices flowing.
  • Potted Butterfly-Friendly Flowers for the Garden
  • Organic Wildflower or Heirloom Rose Seeds
  • Perennial Bulbs that Bloom Each Year
  • Herb Planters for the Window Sill
  • Endemic Tree Sapling for the Backyard
  • DIY Dried Flower and Twig Wreath


Sources:

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Size Guide

 

UNISEX TEES

Our unisex tees are loose-fitting, and suitable for both men and women. 

Sizes
Width (IN)
Length (IN)
Sleeve Center Back (IN)
XS
16
26.5
15
S
18
28
15.75
M
20
29.25
17
L
22
30.25
18.25
XL
24
31.25
19.5
2XL
26
32.5
20.75
3XL
28 33.5 22

*We tend to tell women to order a size down from what they traditionally are in WOMEN'S sizes. Ex: If you are a women's large traditionally, we would recommend you order a size down in our Unisex Tees. It all depends on your preference of fit, though.

ORGANIC UNISEX TEES

Sizes Width (IN) Length (IN)
XS 16.5 26.7
S 18 28
M 20 29.1
L 21.3 30.3
XL 22.8 31.25
2XL 24.8 32

*We tend to tell women to order a size down from what they traditionally are in WOMEN'S sizes. Ex: If you are a women's large traditionally, we would recommend you order a size down in our Organic Unisex Tees. It all depends on your preference of fit, though.

UNISEX CREWNECKS

Our unisex crewnecks are loose-fitting, and suitable for both men and women. 

Sizes Width (IN) Length (IN) Sleeve Center Back (IN)
XS 18 26.5 31.5
S 20 27.5 32.5
M 22 28.5 33.5
L 24 29.5 34.5
XL 26 30.5 35.5
2XL 28 31.5 36.5
3XL 30 32.5 37.5

*We tend to tell women to order a size down from what they traditionally are in WOMEN'S sizes. Ex: If you are a women's large traditionally, we would recommend you order a size down in our Unisex Crewnecks. It all depends on your preference of fit, though. These crewnecks are nice and cozy, so having them a little bigger if fine for a lot of customers.

 

UNISEX HOODIES

Our unisex hoodies are loose-fitting, and suitable for both men and women. 

Sizes Width (IN) Length (IN) Sleeve Center Back (IN)
S 20 27 33.5
M 22 28 34.5
L 24 29 35.5
XL 26 30 36.5
2XL 28 31 37.5
3XL 30 32 38.5
4XL 32 33 39.5

*We tend to tell women to order a size down from what they traditionally are in WOMEN'S sizes. Ex: If you are a women's large traditionally, we would recommend you order a size down in our Unisex Hoodies. It all depends on your preference of fit, though. These hoodies are nice and cozy, so having them a little bigger if fine for a lot of customers.

 

UNISEX LONG SLEEVE SHIRTS

Our unisex long sleeve tees are loose-fitting, and suitable for both men and women. 

Sizes Width (IN) Length (IN) Sleeve Center Back (IN)
S 18 28 33.5
M 20 29 35
L 22 30 36.5
XL 24 31 38
2XL 26 32 39.5
3XL 28 33 39.5
4XL 32 33 39.5

*We tend to tell women to order a size down from what they traditionally are in WOMEN'S sizes. Ex: If you are a women's large traditionally, we would recommend you order a size down in our Unisex Long Sleeve Shirts. It all depends on your preference of fit, though.

 

WOMEN'S MUSCLE TANKS

Tend to run true to size for women, with a loose fit.

Sizes Fits Sizes Width (IN) Length (IN)
S 2-5 16 20 1/4
M 5-8 16 3/4 20 5/8
L 8-10 17 3/4 21 1/8
XL 10-14 18 3/4 21 5/8
2XL 14-18 19 3/4 22 1/8

*We recommend ordering your regular, women's sizing for our Women's muscle tanks.

 

WOMEN'S SLOUCHY TANKS

Tend to run true to size for women, with a loose fit.

Sizes Fits Sizes Width (IN) Length (IN)
S 2-5 16 20 1/4
M 5-10 16 3/4 20 5/8
L 10-14 17 3/4 21 1/8
XL 14-18 18 3/4 21 5/8
2XL 18-20 19 3/4 22 1/8

*We recommend ordering your regular, women's sizing for our Women's slouchy tanks.