Garden Hits Recycling Stride


| November 23, 2007



If you’ve ever wondered what to do with all those plastic plant pots, take heart. They no longer have to stack up in your shed or head off to the landfill. It turns out most of that material is good for at least one more life, even if you don’t reuse them for growing plants.

For 10 years, the Missouri Botanical Garden has collected and recycled more than 300 tons of waste. In 2007, the garden set a new recycling record, sending more than 100,000 pounds of horticulture plastic to be reused. The garden conducts the Plastic Pot Recycling program in St. Louis.

Over six weekends in May and June, staff members of the garden’s William T. Kemper Center for Home Gardening organize collections of plastic garden pots, polystyrene cell packs and trays. The program continues to expand to more green industry businesses, including landscape contractors, public works departments, grounds crews and wholesale growers. Some of the collections are coordinated with garden centers.

For 10 years, the Missouri Botanical Garden has collected and recycled more than 300 tons of waste. In 2007, the garden set a new recycling record, sending more than 100,000 pounds of horticulture plastic to be reused. The garden conducts the Plastic Pot Recycling program in St. Louis.

Over six weekends in May and June, staff members of the garden’s William T. Kemper Center for Home Gardening organize collections of plastic garden pots, polystyrene cell packs and trays. The program continues to expand to more green industry businesses, including landscape contractors, public works departments, grounds crews and wholesale growers. Some of the collections are coordinated with garden centers.

More than 100 volunteers donated more than 500 hours to assist with this year’s recycling efforts. At each site, pots and trays are sorted and granulated into small chips, which are reshaped and sold back to consumers in the forms of ties for retaining walls and timbers for landscaping. The plastic timbers are resistant to water and pests, can be cut and drilled, and last longer than lumber.





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