Garden Centers and their Barriers to Sustainability


This post on Open Register, the blog of the retail garden center, announces that Garden Center Magazine will focus for the next 12 issues on "barriers to sustainable practices," and that’s garden center practices, y’all.  "Each month, experts will tackle a challenge and offer real-world solutions."  The listed challenges are:

  • Recycling
  • “Green” plants (part I)
  • “Green” plants (part II)
  • In-house energy sources
  • Pest control and fertilizers
  • Waterwise (part I)
  • Waterwise (part II)
  • Expansion and building issues
  • Operational tweaks
  • Labeling
  • Education
  • Marketing your sustainable program

Speaking as just one garden center customer, I’m dying to read this behind-the-scenes stuff.  The magazine isn’t on line, so what’s a curious gardenblogger to do? 


  1. Susan, the series will be posted on our Web site,, through out 2008. In mid-December, we are also launching a blog,, that will act as a public forum for those involved in how the green industry can be more, well, green. I’m in the midst of writing the first article, which is on recycling horticultural pots and more traditional recycling. I have a lot more material than I can use in a magazine format. Most of that extra info will be posted on the new blog.
    This is a movement that many, many garden centers feel passionately about. Barriers like recycling companies refusing to take horticultural pots has really frustrated these retailers. We hope that by interviewing key people and talking to each one about what the other experts have done, we’ll help tear down these unfortunate barriers. Wish us luck!
    Carol Miller, Editor, Garden Center Magazine

  2. I hope that this actually goes somewhere. I would LOVE, for example, for someone to figure out how to recycle all of these godawful plastic nursery pots that I have.


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