Valentine's Day is coming up, traditionally a popular time to give flowers. Unfortunately, it's a terrible time to grow flowers in the northern hemisphere. Not only in winter, in fact, but year round, flowers to be sold in the US are grown in developing countries, covered with toxic pesticides, herbicides and fungicides that are harmful to the growers, who often work in unsafe conditions, before being flown to our florists and then bought by us to sit being quietly poisonous in a vase for a few days before being thrown out. This involves great environmental cost and a cost of social equity for the growers, as well. You can read about it in here. Another article, here, also discusses the relatively new fair trade certification for flowers.
This year, I encourage you to consider a Valentine's Day gift other than flowers for your sweetheart(s). If it must be flowers, then consider making them fair trade and organically grown. In fact, I encourage you to make this choice year round.