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Weddings and Events Go Green

By: Jean Patteson
The Morning Call

Thinking about introducing eco-savvy "green" elements to your wedding, corporate banquet or family barbecue? Here are some tips from events planners.

Use recycled or tree-free paper and soy-based inks. Choose small cards, use a reply postcard instead of a card and envelope. Create a Web site with directions, hotel suggestions, etc. For paper with seeds embedded, visit

Use flowers or potted plants from local and/or organic farms or order at Check for a VeriFlora sustainability tag. Donate flowers to a nursing home after the event.

Locally grown organic foods are fresher, pesticide-free and less fuel is burned transporting them. To avoid waste, don't over cater. Send leftovers to a composting program. Decorate your wedding with organic, edible flowers.

Use bottled water in biodegradable bottles -- Serve organic wines.

Outdoor venues use less power for air conditioning and lighting. Hold the wedding ceremony and reception in the same place or nearby to reduce travel. Encourage guests to carpool or provide a bus or pedicabs. Use an emissions calculator -- -- to determine travel-related pollution; offset these with a donation to a clean-energy group. Find a venue that recycles glass, cans and paper.

Register with an eco-conscious retailer. Give bridesmaids and groomsmen useful items such as cosmetics, wine or fair-trade coffee. For ideas, visit

Choose seeds, seedlings or potted herbs. Or instead make a donation to an environmentally friendly organization on behalf of guests. For ideas, visit,,,,

Find a dress or tuxedo from a vintage or resale store. Buy a simple dress of organic silk, cotton or hemp you can use again. For examples, visit, or Learn how to donate wedding dresses to charity at

Use biodegradable plates and cutlery made from sugar-cane fiber, cornstarch and limestone, available from and Or rent real glasses, dishes, cutlery and cloth napkins to avoid disposable paper or plastic goods.

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Sustainable Flowers Make The Perfect Gift For All Occasions

Organic Bouquet is the largest online provider of eco-friendly and organic floral gifts. All of our flowers are grown in a manner that is not only environmentally friendly but also provides outstanding resources for farm workers and artisans. Organic Bouquet partners with select flower farms in California, Ecuador and Colombia. All of our flower farms follow stringent growing practices which are monitored by multiple certification agencies and associations. When you purchase flowers from Organic Bouquet, you are helping to improve the life of a flower farm worker, their family and the local floral community.

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