The owners of Abbey Rose Florists and Gifts in Mint Hill have taken steps to ensure their business is eco-friendly. The mother-daughter team of Suzanne Wolf and Libby DeYoung have taken the slogan Reduce, Reuse, Recycle to heart, and to the shop.
Abbey Rose has reduced the amount of waste they send to the landfill. Each week the shop throws away no more than one bag of trash. Much of their waste is organic and is composted. The Wolf family began composting years ago at their home for the garden. Wolf says her compost is a commitment. It takes two years to start, and periodic turning is required for equal disintegration.
Flower arrangements use only half of a stem. With the number of stems the shop goes through, Wolf and DeYoung did not feel comfortable taking up landfill space with material that could be easily composted. They separate their waste and collect the numerous stems for their compost pile.
Abbey Rose has reduced gas emissions by trading in their delivery van for a more environmentally friendly Chevrolet Aveo. The shop averages 10 deliveries a day and covers the whole Charlotte area. For big holidays like Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day, Wolf says she expects 75 deliveries for two days, which can really add up in terms of pollutants.
Wolf and DeYoung would like to introduce their used vase program. Patrons of Abbey Rose can turn in vases they received from the shop for a $1 voucher. Vouchers can be collected and used together for any flower order.
It comes as no surprise green-thinking people recycle, but Abbey Rose is finding other ways to incorporate recycling into the shop. They offer a line of biodegradable arrangement containers made from recycled bamboo.
Wolf and DeYoung say there is another important aspect to their ecological business practices: trading with local growers. In floristry, this means buying within the United States instead of looking to South American growers. Abbey Rose does business with American flower wholesalers in California. They want to support American businesses and reduce emissions from long trade routes. They support local businesses in Mint Hill, as well. Patrons can pick up “Shop Mint Hill” stickers at their business.
“We are thinking of the bigger picture,” said Wolf. She and her daughter anticipate more people and companies will adopt green and local business practices.