Wonder what happens to expired flowers?

Posted at 8:50 PM, Sep 22, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-22 22:50:31-04

Ever wonder what happens to expired flowers at grocery stores? One Colorado teen came up with an idea to make sure they never go to waste.

In the flower market at one Greeley King Soopers, blooms starting to fade no longer go in the dumpster.

"Just like food, flowers have expiration dates," said Terra Seyler, while loading a cart full of roses, carnations and mums slightly past their prime. "They may be expired, but they are still beautiful."

The 19-year-old Colorado State University Student may not be a flower connoisseur...

"I don't know my flowers. I just know they're pretty. That's all I know."

...but for the last year-and-a-half, she has volunteered to load carts full of the donated flowers and take them to senior homes all over Weld County.

At Birch Assisted Living, she makes a delivery that makes a difference.

"We're a Medicaid facility, so our residents have very limited income," said Tonya Winkler-Saenz, the owner and administrator. "So, it just totally brightens their day."

At this point, Seyler knows Janice's favorite flower is carnation, and Sharon loves roses.

"It makes me feel important," said Sharon with a smile. "It just really brightens the room."

The expired flowers look good, they say, for at least a week, and make the home feel a little more like home.

Seyler is looking for volunteers to help her deliver now that she is back in school and hopes that one day this could become a widespread effort, delivering flowers that may be starting to fade, but the joy they bring certainly hasn't.

"The smiles, that's the biggest thing, to see the smiles people have on their faces afterwards is what means the most," said Seyler.

To find out more or volunteer to help, check out her Facebook page.