Zero waste flowers from Henry and Jayne – perfect for Mrs Green’s Birthday!

Filed in Blog, Product reviews by on May 21, 2009 19 Comments
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Zero waste flowers from Henry and Jane (and Liz and Marjorie - the camel)

Zero waste flowers from Henry and Jayne (and Liz and Marjorie - the camel)

It’s my Birthday this weekend and I love to receive flowers. The trouble is, most flowers are NOT a zero waste present.

Most cut flowers, (unless sourced by Mrs A from Wiggly Wigglers and shown in all their glory on this post,)  come wrapped in cellophane, tied with ribbons, which you can’t always undo, and have packs of flower food in plastic sachets. In addition, the majority of flowers bought in this country are grown in hot houses the other side of the world, smothered in pesticides and involve child labour.

Zero waste flowers

Fortunately, Liz from Henry and Jayne knows all about creating zero waste, environmentally friendly and beautiful flowers. Whatsmore, these flowers will last until my NEXT Birthday AND survive a little neglect!

You see, these special flowers from Henry and Jayne (and Liz) are lovingly hand crafted from wool.

Liz’s own sheep are given a hair cut 3 – 4 times a year, the wool is felted, hand made into stunning flowers, dyed using azo free dyes and then sent to people like you and me to love and admire!

Nothing for the landfill

Now the most rubbish bit of all, erm, is that there isn’t any – rubbish that is! You see, Liz is a woman after my own heart and has worked hard to make her product as kind to the environment as possible.

The aluminium wire, which is used to give the flowers structure is recycled. Every last drop of dye is used; they don’t make a batch of flowers and chuck the rest of the dye down a drain like many companies. And currently, Liz is using old DHL postal bags, collected from local businesses to send out her flowers. Apart form the polythene bag, my flowers arrived naked and in perfect condition.

When I asked Liz about her zero waste policy she said “we just do it that way because that’s the way it should be done. We have no need really to create waste.”

And we couldn’t agree more.

Support schooling in India

If, like me, you’re wondering about the story behind these beautiful and quirky flowers, you’ll need to take a trip with me to India, where we’ll meet a four year old boy called Pankaj.

When Liz first met Pankaj, he couldn’t wait to show her his school book. Pankaj was proud because even though he didn’t learn English at his school, he could count one, two three…

Liz was so touched by this little boy that she supports Pankaj’s schooling through the sale of her flowers. Last year, Pankaj’s Head Master agreed to transfer him to an English school where his language skills are taking off. Pankaj is now nine years old, and hey guess what? When he grows up, he wants to help people and make flowers!!

So there we have it, a feel good story and hand crafted, zero waste flowers. What more could you ask for on your Birthday?

Available in 12 colours, Henry and Jayne’s ‘fuzzy fleurs’ cost £7.95 each or £34.95 for a bouquet of 5.

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About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth's fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (19)

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  1. Deb from Boston says:

    Mrs Green – Happy Birthday! – and yes, your flowers are lovely. While you are out in your garden, may I suggest you plant some Zinnia’s – you will have many a bouquet all summer – and the more you cut, the more that will bloom.

  2. John Costigane says:

    Hi Mrs Green,

    Many happy returns on the day. If it is the 23rd you share my late mother’s birthday, always an occasion for flowers in vases, even nowadays.

    I am able to buy Zero Waste cut flowers by asking the florist to wrap in paper only. Feed is another matter but I will enquire into plastic-free options. The wool based design is a more longlasting choice and highly decorative.

  3. Yay – happy birthday Mrs G. The flowers are perfect for the occasion. I love ’em … could you add them to your shop. They could be popular. Have a beautiful weekend and hope the sunshines. 😀 x

  4. greenlady42 says:

    Many happy returns for the weekend !

    the wool flowers are lovely and I do like the thinking behind them, and the way they are made etc. I rarely buy cut flowers even though I enjoy them. I must admit it is more from thinking they are a bit of a luxury rather from eco concerns. I did recently order some narcissi from the Trenoweth Flower Farm on the Isles of Scilly for a friend. Whilst their little package of flower food is plastic and I imagine the flower sleeve is cellophane, the rest of the packaging is card/paper. They go via the Scillonian on its regular route rather than air freighted. It is also important to support the island economy with sustainable home grown crops like the narcissi and pinks. I might order some for myself and check the packaging out 🙂

  5. Yes happy birthday from me also for the weekend.

  6. Mrs Green says:

    @Deb from Boston: Hi Deb, thank you for the Birthday wishes. I shall take a look at zinnias; I’d never heard of them, but they look great and will certainly grace my garden – thanks for the tip!

    @John Costigane: Hi John, my Birthday is tomorrow, but I’m treating myself to a whole weekend spent with friends and Sunday will be a family day. Our local florist shut down, so we don’t buy cut flowers any more 🙁

    @Almost Mrs Average: Thank you Mrs A – it’s 22 degrees outside today and the sun is constant. Just the thing for a barbecue and campfire later 🙂

    @greenlady42: Thank you Greenlady. Thanks for the review of Trenoweth Flower Farm; we always appreciate recommendations.

    @maisie dalziel: Thank you Maisie! I thought of you this morning as I was in the kitchen baking 80 biscuits LOL!

  7. Layla says:

    Ooh, lovely!!

    & HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! 🙂

    wishing you lots of zero waste bliss, inspired politicians & fellow citizens of the world!! 🙂

  8. MrsJ says:

    Happy birthday, lovely day for it x

  9. Mrs Green says:

    @Layla: Thank you Layla; what a great list of presents LOL!

    @MrsJ: Thanks Mrs J – how are you and babe? I had the perfect weather, didn’t I?!

  10. @Deb from Boston:
    thank you for liking the flowers!… zinnia’s that’s a plan… in our opinion u can never have too many flowers!!

  11. @John Costigane: thank you john… we like to think that once people have enjoyed our flowers they will pass them on for others to enjoy. my grandma used to use half a teaspoon of sugar in the flowers rather than feed, that would save on the plastic in the feed wrapper… just a thought!!

  12. @Almost Mrs Average: now that’s a plan am sure we could work something out with mrs green!! glad you like our flowers!!

  13. @greenlady42: we’re off on our holidays to the isles of scilly so am going to see if i can find Trenoweth Flower Farm it sounds lovely… re eco… we make everything by hand, do not use electricity and i hope that we prove to larger companies that products can be made in a sustainable way which is absolutely vital if we are going to change anything…. i used to be a buyer and was so horrified when i went to visit some of the factories i gave up my job to start making things the way they sould be made! I often say the flowers are completely useless and just for fun but have just realised that they aren’t because they get people talking about where things come from and how they are made!

  14. MrsJ says:

    @Mrs Green: Yes unlike the weather on mine. We’re good and he’s back on the average weight centile now and big enough to be in his reusable nappies. :O)

  15. Caroline says:

    Can I buy the wool flowers online? I am looking for ideas for a winter wedding where the bride does not want imported flowers so any other ideas of flowers made from recycled stuff would be appreciated.

  16. Mrs Green says:

    @Caroline: Hello Caroline; yes the link is in the post; it’s http://henryandjayne.co.uk/ These would be perfect for a wedding 🙂

  17. Caroline says:

    I’m puzzled – that link just says the website is due very soon.

  18. Mrs Green says:

    @Caroline: Caroline; it would appear they are having a website rebuild – these things can take a lot of time, especially if problems are encountered 😉 I would just keep trying. There is an email address and telephone number for them on the welcome page of their site.

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