Free flowers find friends in St. John’s ‘Lonely Bouquet’ project – Newfoundland & Labrador

Flowers were sprouting up around St. John’s on Friday, but not from the ground.

The Newfoundland Horticultural Society’s floral design group left 146 bouquets around the city, to be discovered as a part of the Lonely Bouquet initiative.

The idea comes from the United Kingdom’s National Flower Arranging Day, which is held on the first Friday of May.

Corrie Outerbridge is chair of the floral design group and was up at 6 a.m. along with a group of about 30 volunteers placing flowers around town.

“The idea is to make a bouquet or even just a single bloom and leave it in an area where passersby — strangers —will see it and pick it up and enjoy it for themselves or give it to somebody else.”

Corrie Outerbridge and her volunteers began distributing bouquets around the city at 6 a.m. Friday. (Alyson Samson/CBC)

This is the second year for Lonely Bouquets in St. John’s.

“We concentrate on the not-for-profits first, so shelters, then we go into hospitals, nursing homes, park benches, bus shelters,” Outerbridge said.

“We try to get the morning commutes, so this morning there was a beehive of activity around the city.”

Donations from funeral home, flower shops

The flowers used to make the bouquets are recycled.

“Last year we decided to partner with Carnell’s Funeral Home, and Jeff Carnell kindly agreed for us to do a little brochure in the funeral home,” Outerbridge said.

“So at the end of their service if they want to donate to the lonely bouquet program they could leave their flowers.”

This year they also received a grant towards the project from the Royal Bank of Canada and had donations from local flower shops.

The St. John’s Status of Women’s Council also had a part in the project, with the women’s centre assembling the bouquets.

“It’s a great fit for us to be working with the women’s centre. We do a lot of outreach programs,” Outerbridge said.

Each bouquet has a tag attached with how to reach the society…

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