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5 of the best sustainable florists

Petalon, London

From farm-to-vase flowers to carbon-neutral couriers and all-natural wrappings, here are five florists greening the trade. By KATE SALTER

Lifestyle

Petalon, London

Petalon has looked at its whole supply chain in its search for sustainability, from the product to the method of delivery. Based in a converted warehouse in east London, delivery around its home city is done by bicycle, with overnight delivery to elsewhere in Britain via a carbon-neutral courier service. The flowers are seasonal and wrapped in natural hessian – even the sheath holding the water is biodegradable – while only two bouquet designs are available each week to lessen the amount of waste. Petalon donates 5% of its profits to the Bee Collective and plants a tree for every 100 bouquets it delivers by post.

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Lilac and the Cat, Melbourne

Lilac and the Cat avoids using cellophane, floral foam, ribbons or any unnatural elements in its designs, opting instead for upcycled vases or pots. Keeping the community spirit alive, it also offers a bartering system where bouquets can be exchanged for services such as carpentry and plumbing. Its arrangements are made first and foremost from seasonal, locally grown flowers, even flowers foraged from suburban yards. “We yearn to create flower designs that sing from the soil from which the flowers came,” says the brand.

WildFlora, Los Angeles

This Los Angeles company says it’s on a mission “to bring forth geographically and environmentally inspired solutions, products and cutting-edge designs that are ecologically responsible while being convenient and fresh”. Owned by Alexandra Scholtz, whose brother Mike runs the landscaping side of the business, WildFlora’s team is made up of young women with backgrounds in dance, creative writing and photography, so expect something original and artful. They also specialize in “interior greening”, which harnesses the power of plants to reduce indoor toxins, regulate humidity and remove airborne dust.

Lilac and the Cat, Melbourne

McQueens Flowers, London

What started in 1991 as a small shop in then-unfashionable Shoreditch has grown into an internationally renowned company with outposts in London, New York and Seoul. Its clients might include Claridge’s and the Vanity Fair Oscars party, but at its heart is an ethos of social and corporate responsibility. In October, McQueens Flowers received the Positive Luxury Butterfly Mark, an award that recognizes luxury brands with a commitment to sustainable practices, such as forest conservation, CO2 reduction, fair labor and community investments. Even more reason to love its sumptuous arrangements.

McQueens Flowers, London

Gardenia Organic, New York

New York’s first sustainable florist, Gardenia Organic, opened in 2007. Its flowers are sourced from growers who avoid the use of artificial pesticides or fertilizers, while its bags, business cards, tissue and wrapping are all recycled or biodegradable. As well as using flowers from local farms, the company also supports growers in developing countries who adhere to Fair Trade practices. But there’s even more to Gardenia’s bouquets. Founder Hannah Ling, who calls herself a “psychic florist”, is interested in the therapeutic power of flowers, too. Each flower has its own “energetic imprint” and bouquets can be made to order with specific aromatherapy properties or using chakra colors to aid healing.

The people featured in this story are not associated with NET-A-PORTER and do not endorse it or the products shown