I was very relieved to read a great Instagram post today, written by internationally renowned florist Shane Connolly, about the excessive and worrying use of floral foam. It is a widely ignored problem that the industry tries to hide; forever promising Eco friendly alternatives that never actually come to market, and continuing to use colossal quantities of foam every day. This is a subject I have been ranting on about for years and it’s great to see that respected professionals are putting their hands up and raising awareness about this truly awful product. For those that do not know what I am talking about, floral foam is a green ‘brick’ (brand name Oasis is the best known) made of non-biodegradable material that is soaked in water and used extensively in flower arranging. Many people have no idea just how bad for the environment foam is and assume that it can be reused and recycled. They are totally unaware that it is in fact made from extremely harmful chemicals that do not biodegrade. Picture the elaborate funeral tributes spelling out the name of a loved one or depicting their favourite sport or pastime and then realise it will be sitting in landfill long after the deceased has gone! Ever visited a flower festival and wondered at the massive construction of the huge floral centrepieces? They’ve nearly all been created using mountains of floral foam which will be chucked into a skip when the festival is over and then passed on to landfill where it will remain for literally hundreds, if not thousands, of years. Now multiply this by all the regular church flowers that are arranged each week, the wedding centrepieces, the endless blocks used in Floristry colleges, the corporate flower displays, amateur flower clubs and the funeral tributes all using endless blocks of foam and you start to see the problem. Now factor in that this is a global issue and not just the UK and it becomes truly terrifying. Foam has to be ditched and I will do whatever I can to ban it – please, if you care about the environment, do your bit and make sure anything you order from a florist does not use floral foam. We don’t need it and we must halt it’s excessive consumption. For more information follow Australian blogger @nofloralfoam on Instagram and read this horrifying account of how it is already affecting our oceans.
In my next blog post, when I have calmed down, (!) I will show you some creative alternatives to using floral foam. In the meantime you can check out my gallery for lots of foam free ideas, and my Instagram and Facebook photo albums for more inspiration. Until then, please like this post and share. Thank you for reading!