Holidays often create a lot of waste – even Valentine’s Day. According to treehugger.com, $1.7 billion is spent on candy and $2.1 billion will be spend on flowers alone. Shopping is a big chunk of the waste that happens on Valentine’s Day but it doesn’t have to be. Here are some ideas on how you can have a green Valentine’s Day, and enjoy the holiday while still being kind to the environment.
Reduce your Valentine’s Day Waste
- Enjoy the outdoors – For Valentine’s Day, in lieu of buying a gift, plan a trip to a park or nature area to enjoy the great outdoors.
- Make homemade goodies – Instead of buying a box of chocolates, why not make your own homemade sweets? If you want valentine packaging, find a reusable container or decorate a shoebox.
- Eat locally grown food – Try a restaurant that offers locally grown or organic food. Better yet, cook your own romantic dinner at home and avoid the crowds and expense.
- Dim the lights – After all, it is Valentine’s Day, so why not conserve energy and add some romance by dimming the lights a bit?
- Choose flowers that last – Rather than giving cut flowers that last only a few days, opt for giving a potted plant or flowers that can be planted outside in the Spring (like tulips or hydrangeas). Another fun idea is to plant a new tree together and watch it grow over the years.
- Involve the kids – Teach the kids how to reduce waste on Valentines Day. Fruit can be a fun and natural treat instead of candy. Many valentines can be homemade or reused instead of buying new. Many valentine crafts can also be made from recycled materials. Here are some ideas.
- Go out for a picnic – Remember to choose reusable containers instead of disposable baggies or single-use plastic containers. If you live in a cold climate, picnics can also be fun with a blanket on the living room floor.
- Get creative with Valentine cards – 65% of gifts on Valentine’s Day are cards. Instead of buying a card that will probably make itself into the trash, make your own unique cards using photos or other reusable or recyclable items around your home. You could also send an e-card instead of a paper card.
- Hand down an heirloom or special item – There may be something special in your home that may be the perfect Valentine’s Day gift. Consider giving it to a loved one.
- Recycle your Valentine’s flowers – If you get flowers for Valentine’s Day, don’t throw them away. There are some great ideas in the video below for recycling your Valentine’s Day flowers.
What other ideas do you have for reducing waste for a green Valentine’s Day?