We all know that summer is the busiest and most expensive wedding season. You may not have thought about it, but there are many good ways to keep your wedding eco-friendly and reduce your environmental impact, and even more reasons why you should care about this stuff.

Levels of commitment to the environmental movement usually vary from person to person. Recycling is good, so is bringing your reusable bag to the grocery store, but have you ever thought about how special occasions fit into the “go green” routine? Keeping eco-friendliness in mind will make your wedding better (at least environmentally speaking), and wedding flowers are just one way to make this happen.

Beautiful flowers that will save you money and show respect for the environment.

It is becoming more important to buy flowers that naturally grow in your area during your wedding season. Other eco-friendly ways to flower your wedding include making your own silk flowers or growing your own flowers. These are great ways to cut down your carbon footprint; just be prepared to put in some extra time planning, crafting, and cultivating.

If you choose to go the route of silk flowers you can make enough bouquets for the ceremony and spice up your table decorations with edible flowers, like the ones from Pro Flowers. This will save you time (because you won’t have to make a ton of flowers for the tables) and be a hit with your guests.

Some of my favorites.

Once you’ve chosen the option that works best for you, go with a theme that matches other elements of your wedding. There are so many seasonal options if buying cut flowers. For summer I love Lisianthus, Magnolia, Roses, Sunflowers, Orchid Cymbidium, Zinnia, and Alstromeria (just to name a few). There is a lot of information out there on flowers and their corresponding seasonal facts. You will, without a doubt, find flowers that fit your budget and personal taste while remaining environmentally savvy.

Understanding the environmental ethics tied to flowers.

Local, seasonal flowers without pesticides are ideal for the environment. Now, more than ever, it is important to remind ourselves why we love the environment and why we must aim to make environmentally conscious decisions. Special occasion planning is another way we exercise our individual influence on the Earth and the use of its resources. If you go with flowers that aren’t in season, they will most likely be flown in from a different part of the world, increasing greenhouse gasses and adding to global warming.

You will also want to avoid out of season flowers being flown in unless you do extensive research on the company you are dealing with. You will find that some practice less than fair trade and deplete the resources of developing countries where the flowers are being grown.

Making Progress.

Aldo Leopold’s essay “Land Ethic” is an awesome read on the basic philosophy behind environmental ethics, reminding us of the solid reasons why we should care about how eco-friendly our lives are. Everything from eating locally grown organic foods to selecting the right wedding flowers is relevant to the discussion.

Leopold urges humans to use the land according to the way we define our relationship with the other members of the land (soil, plants, and animals). The point is to view oneself as a part of this larger community and make decisions that take into account not only economic interests but also the interests of the “biotic community”.

To quote Leopold, “A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.” This is the key to environmental progress. Choose beautiful, seasonal flowers for your wedding while ensuring our planet’s integrity, stability, and beauty.

About the Author: Megan Everett is a 24 year old, self-proclaimed relationship expert and environmental activist. She enjoys hiking, yoga, and spending time with her family.