Roses are red … but are they ‘Green?’

Flowers, the perfect way to make that special someone’s day. So when we’re buying flowers, how do we show our planet some love, too?

As you can see from the shocking stats below imported flowers are bad news for climate change:

0 CO2e picked from your garden, no inorganic fertiliser.
110g CO2e snapdragon, grown and sold locally.
1.7kg CO2e bouquet of 15 mixed stems grown outdoors in the UK and sold locally.
2.4kg CO2e rose grown in a hothouse in The Netherlands or an outdoor-grown Kenyan rose airfreighted to Europe.
32.3kg CO2e bouquet of five Kenyan or Dutch roses, five Dutch lillies and three Kenyan gypsophila.

In fact, it’s estimated that a bouquet a week of imported flowers could add a tonne and a half of CO2e per year, with out-of-season cut flowers either being put on a plane or grown using artifical heat.

So what can we do?

In an ideal word, picking cut flowers from your garden is the best case scenario. If that’s not possible it’s all about going with local, in-season flowers from smaller-scale grower-florists across the UK embracing the ‘slow flower’ movement. They may be harder to get hold of, but our planet will thank you. We’ve listed some of local flower growers below that fit the bill:



The Cornish Flower Patch

Wildrose Cornwall

The Cornish Cottage Garden




Shallow Ford Flowers

Flower Project


To see all the options near you, check out


If you’re looking to something a little different, why not go with longer-life indoor plants which impact our carbon footprint much less and have a much longer life? meaning you can enjoy them for longer!



Berners-Lee, Mike. How Bad Are Bananas?: The carbon footprint of everything (p. 83-84)


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