My brother and I are very close, but we’ve always had a running joke; a healthy competition of who is the better sibling. Currently, I believe he’s winning because he will graduate from college this Fall whereas I merely have a plan in my back pocket for when (or if) I return to school. But I might be winning after all. Last week my Mom had her second foot surgery in three months and I sent her a bundle of blue irises from Organic Bouquet.This company is so wonderful that I don’t know where to begin. Let’s start with their delivery packaging. My Mom’s irises were delivered to her front door in a well-designed 100% recyclable box and the flowers protected by a corn-based flower sleeve “made from polylactic acid (PLA) – a natural, rapidly biodegradable alternative to traditional petroleum based cellophane sleeves”. Tucked inside the box was a note from me, printed with vegetable-based inks on a chlorine-free, 100% recycled, 100% post-consumer content card. I had the option of choosing a recycled glass vase or organic gourmet chocolates to go along with the irises, but I went with the vase which my Mom said held the irises perfectly. I’ve sent my Mom flowers before, but I’ve never heard her rave about their beauty so much as this organic blue iris bouquet. In trying to describe the vibrant purple hue, she sincerely likened them to Van Gogh’s irises. Clear instructions were also included in her eco-box: to cut the stalks on a slant every three days and the flowers will revive in twelve hours after shipping. That is no lie. My Mom reported that the stalks absorbed the water, swelling to fill the bottom of the vase. The iris blooms arched gracefully to span two feet. She said that the picture on Organic Bouquet’s site is a very honest depiction.You can trust my Mom, not to mention that the irises were grown using Veriflora conditions in Northern California. Veriflora’s web site states they are “a sustainability certification program for fresh cut flowers and potted plants.” They provide links on the “About the Program” page to describe their principles in vital areas such as sustainable crop production, resource conservation and energy efficiency, ecosystem production, integrated waste management, fair labor practices, community benefits, and product quality and safety. That’s quite a list of claims, so how can you be certain that your order of irises truly supports those practices? Rest easy knowing that Veriflora certification is conducted by SCS (Scientific Certification Systems) – a neutral third party not invested in Organic Bouquet at all. In addition to Veriflora-certified flowers, Organic Bouquet also offers flowers that are USDA Organic, Biodynamic, Fair Trade, and Transitional. Could this company rock any more?Why, yes they can! In hindsight, if I had more snap I would have ordered a charitable bouquet. This is a fabulous idea. For example, you can order two dozen long-stemmed yellow roses and Organic Bouquet will donate 5% of the retail price to The Humane Society. I could have ordered the same blue irises and supported Oceana. The list of organizations you can support is quite extensive, making it very easy to give a beautiful gift to a loved one as well as be charitable to your favorite cause.My only “complaint” is that Organic Bouquet’s flower and plant selection is slightly smaller than a company like ProFlowers. In answer to my inquiry, Michelle of Organic Bouquet said:
As far as the selection of flowers we offer, a lot has to dowith it being seasonal, but also because it takes time to develop theflowers that grow organically and can survive the transportation. It takes2-3 years minimum to get a farm certified organic.
I would rather wait on a larger selection knowing that in the meantime, I have several options to choose from that meet important, sustainable standards. Plus, Organic Bouquet’s prices are fairly comparable to ProFlowers, but I prefer to support a company like Organic Bouquet who, from the time I place an order to delivery on my Mom’s doorstep, practices sustainability. Johnny, if you are reading this review, please pick up on a hint: your wife loves these organic flowers.