Each August, the USDA declares National Farmers Market Week and encourages the public to support farmers and local communities by shopping at farmers markets. I absolutely love farmers markets. They are one of the highlights of my warm-weather months.

This summer, I’ve committed to not only buying produce from the farmers market, but also buying one or two bouquets of locally grown flowers each week. I photograph my choices each week, and I’m putting my photos onto Instagram. Perhaps at the end of the summer, I’ll do a photo post of my flowers in my office that are never the same two weeks in a row.

How does my purchase of fresh produce and flowers benefit not only the farmers, but also my local community? American Farmland Trust has put together a short infographic that shows how the farmers, the communities, and the shoppers win.

One of the biggest benefits of buying local, whether you’re buying food, flowers, or material goods, is the stimulation of the local economy. As you can see from the graph above, the more money you give directly to local farmers, the more money goes into their pockets. And the more money they have in their pockets, the more they can spend right in your community. Eventually, it comes back to benefit you.

If you’re not sure where your closest farmers market is, the USDA recently updated its farmers market directory.  You can search by zip code to find markets in your community.

You already know that this year, my favorite way to support my local farmers is to buy flowers. What’s your favorite way to support your local farmer?

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