Farm to Rhody Wedding Table

Expert tips from author Jill Rizzo on choosing local flowers for your wedding

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The farm-to-table movement, in terms of food, has become widespread over the last two decades as more and more people discover the benefits of supporting local agricultural systems. The same awareness with local flowers has been a little slower to catch on, especially in the wedding industry, but fresh, chemical-free blooms grown in your community deserve a place at the table as well.

Field to Vase

The decision to feature local and seasonal materials at your event is a direct investment in the farms and farm workers in your community and a positive alternative to the environmental and health issues linked to imported flowers. In their short journey from field to vase, local flowers use less fuel for transportation, less energy for refrigeration, and less packaging than their imported relatives. If local flowers aren’t available at the time of your wedding, you can work with a florist to source certified US Grown or Fair Trade flowers (traceable farms that follow social and environmental growing standards).

In the Zone

When planning to create your own event flowers, begin by educating yourself on seasonal availability direct from farms. Options range from pre-order bulk buckets of mixed varieties, individual stems, single variety bunches, or first-come, first-served bouquets. Instagram is a great resource for weekly crop updates and you can scroll back through farm feeds to see offerings in the weeks before and after your scheduled event date. The selection at different farms will vary depending on the farmer’s personal taste, what grows best in their climate, and what sells well in their market.

Bloom Service

If DIY is not your thing, choose to work with a florist who specializes in local blooms and regularly sources from a network of local farms. Hot tip: Florists who are consistent supporters of farms and buy a variety of material all season long have the best access to local blooms! Inspirational wedding designs emerge from the mutually beneficial collaboration between florist and farmer as there are always unexpected surprises from Mother Nature. Trust in your chosen floral professional is required (if you need to see an exact sample, this is not for you), but the results of truly embracing local and seasonal flowers are breathtaking and will be completely unique to your wedding. Learn more about Jill Rizzo at Farm and Flora Collective in Middletown

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