MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG-TV)– In tonight’s What’s Working, recycling wedding flowers into something special. A Mobile woman is “up-cycling” flowers to give to others. Debbie Richards takes flowers to residents in local nursing homes. She takes wedding flowers and makes them into smaller arrangements. She started doing this five years ago when she couldn’t stand seeing flowers go to waste.
“They would end up being in the dumpster. I knew how much the bride had spent. There had to be something to do with them,” Richards said.
On the Monday after a wedding, Richards’ kitchen looks like a florist when she starts to repurpose the flowers. She puts all the stems in water and starts over! She tries to make little arrangements for the dining room tables at places like Ashbury Manor Assisted Living. Ashbury Administrator, Cindy Johnson, says the residents love the flowers.
“When they walk into the dining room and there are flowers on the table, they are like ‘Ahhhh.’ It makes it feels like home,” Johnson told WKRG News 5’s Devon Walsh.
Richards calls her hobby, “Happy Flowers.” She said she does it for free. Making people happy is all she wants to do.
“It is a lot of work, but it makes me happy doing it. They are happy flowers. They keep the joy of your day going,” Richards said.
Richards also gets her grandchildren and the neighborhood children involved. She uses soup cans as vases. The children paint the vases bright colors.