Seasonality Series: What the heck are seasonal flowers?
I’m sure you’ve heard this a million times – save money by buying seasonal flowers! I’m not exactly here to call bullshit, but I am here to give some insider perspective…
This advice has been around For. EVER. And while it’s not entirely wrong, the globalized economy has made it a little bit more complicated. The above statement was definitely true decades ago when the global flower trade wasn’t what it is today. Out-of season flowers had to be imported or greenhouse grown and would subsequently cost a fortune. But today, walk into the grocery store and a majority of the flowers are either imported or greenhouse grown or both! For instance, the largest producer of cut roses is Ecuador with Columbia as a close second. Advances in cold-chain management mean places with ideal flower growing climates (like the equatorial Ecuador and Colombia) can bang out roses all year. Agricultural advances including high-tech greenhouse that can control irrigation, light and fertilizers mean flower farms in other climates (like the Netherlands) can churn out flowers year round too.
This consistent supply of flowers leads to more stable and often comparatively lower prices for varieties that lend themselves to these growing methods. This includes roses, carnations, hydrangeas, snapdragons, stock and many more. Agricultural advancements have helped certain flower varieties transcend seasonality! They’re also helping out your bank account. In my opinion, if we’re going to update the sage advice from above, I’d say: save money by… buying standard flowers that can be efficiently grown year round.
The problem in my book is, I want your flowers to be a reminder about the unique time of year that you got married. I *love* using specialty seasonal blooms, especially those that are locally grown. They are one of the best ways to make your wedding flowers special and help celebrate the unique time of year that you and your love tied the knot. That way when your 1st, 5th or 20th anniversary comes around and you see those special flowers coming out, it will take you back to your wedding day. The problem is a lot of those specialty blooms, even if they are locally grown, can be… pricey. That is why I generally use a mixture of standard blooms and specialty blooms depending on budget.
“I thought local, seasonal flowers were supposed to be cheaper?” Well, when particular varieties of seasonal flowers are locally grown, it often means for a short period of time they will be affordable because they are abundant. But be warned, just because they are locally grown and in-season doesn’t necessarily mean they will be super affordable. Think about going to the farmer’s market. When apples are in-season you can buy literal barrels of them for so little! Comparatively, when the wild blueberries are in-season buying enough for a single pie still costs a small fortune. They are entirely different products and the work that goes into bringing them to market is totally different. Don’t be tricked into thinking that all seasonal or locally grown flowers are going to be budget-friendly. But just like the wild blueberries – they’re often worth every penny.
Check back in for the next blog in the series to see a breakdown of varieties available year round, semi-seasonally, or for a short season.