The Terracotta Army - War On Plastic
20 March 2018 - by Rachel Bannon

PRESS RELEASE

The 2018 War On Plastic Pots campaign will mark the start of a huge change in the way Plant Nurseries use plastic. Urban Jungle aims to convert their use of 1000's of plastic pots into terracotta.

The UK is drowning in hundreds of thousands of unwanted plastic garden pots, lots of which end up in our landfills. It's estimated that 500 million pots go into circulation every year¹ and together Co-owner Liz Browne and Propagation Manager Niamh Mullally, are leading their Terracotta Army in the War On Plastic Pots.

Liz and Niamh, Leaders of The Terracotta Army

From left to right; Propagation Manager Niamh Mullally, Co owner Elizabeth Browne. Plants; Fascularia, Aeoniums and Echiveria.

This year the Urban Jungle ethos and mission is to reduce their environmental impact by reusing and recycling where possible, and the 2018 War On Plastic Pots campaign will bring a sizeable reduction to the consumption and use of plastic pots within the Nursery.

Until recently, who didn't have a massive bale of carrier bags stuffed under the kitchen sink? Shops introduced a charge, and this was widely accepted by the general public as a good thing, massively reducing plastic bags ending up in landfill.

Now it's time to turn our attention to the 'pot mountain' behind the shed. They can languish behind the shed for years, with gardeners not quite knowing what to do with them, but feeling too guilty to throw them away, until the mountain gets too large, and they end up in the bin anyway, ready for landfill or incineration.

Like carrier bags, it's an environmental scandal. So this year we'll be introducing a range of plants grown and sold in terracotta pots. Our customers will be able to re-use the pot or return it to us on their next visit to receive a refund. We'll then re-use them ourselves. It's a small step, but hopefully one in the right direction.” Co-owner, Liz Browne.

Volunteer Michael Terracotta Army

Volunteer Michael potting up for the Terracotta Army

The price of the plants will increase by just a few pence and will be refunded upon return of the pot. No profit will be made on the wholesale price of these terracotta pots. The plants included in the campaign will include succulents, agaves and puya.

You only have to visit Urban Jungle's eclectic and vibrant cafes to realise that this is a business committed to reusing and recycling. We are extremely proud to be the first Plant Nursery to announce the War On Plastic Pots campaign.

Now 1/5 of our entire range of plants heading to our Norfolk and Suffolk nurseries will be grown and sold in terracotta pots. The propagation department will then reuse the returned pots each growing season. We anticipate that our like-minded customers will also be proud to be part of this movement, and join the Terracotta Army in 2018.” Niamh Mullally, Propagation Manager

'It’s estimated that we each own about 39 redundant plastic plant pots and over the UK it is suggested there are over 5 million languishing in sheds and garages.'²

Terracotta Pots

Thousands of terracotta pots, of varying sizes have arrived in the Jungle... 

The initiative begins this spring. Just look out for the recyclable plant labels in the Norfolk and Suffolk Nurseries.

In year one, the campaign will keep a close eye on the impact of the extra weight and surface area in lifting and transporting thousands of terracotta pots, in planning for further reductions to the use of plastic in 2019. Urban Jungle are already looking into alternative pot materials to combat some of the anticipated issues, such as bamboo.

Urban Jungle are also proud to recycle all of their cardboard, and compost all of their coffee within the Edible Jungle, which itself provides organically grown salad and vegetables for both the Norfolk and Suffolk Cafes with practically zero food miles.

#TerracottaArmy #TheWarOnPlastic


Both Urban Jungle, and Cafe Jungle Norfolk and Suffolk are open every day from 10am until 5pm (Kitchen closes at 4pm and Cafe closes at 4.30pm).

Urban Jungle Norfolk: Ringland Lane, Old Costessey, Norwich, Norfolk, NR85BG 01603 744997
Urban Jungle Suffolk: London Road, Weston, Beccles, Suffolk, NR34 8TT 01502 219110

For press enquiries contact rachel.bannon@urbanjungle.uk.com

¹http://www.bbc.co.uk/gardening/today_in_your_garden/ethical_plastic.shtml

²http://www.pottoproduct.co.uk/

 
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View Comments 3 Comments


Direct Link to this Comment Diana - 30 March 2018 11:27
Very impressed - well worth supporting. How about the other possibilities - 'hairy pots' for instance? Have bought substantial sized bulbs in hairy pots (what is it, coir fibre or something?) which have definitely benefitted from being planted out still in their degradable pots. Best wishes, Diana

Direct Link to this Comment Simon Dyer - 01 April 2018 09:06
Terracotta are too heavy! I use plastic root trainers for my Date Palms which aren’t a shape available in Terracotta! If a Terracotta pot falls, it smashes, Plastic just spills the content!! I am always re-using my plastic pots because I’m busy repotting all year round...growing palms from seed, and up-potting every time I need to, knowing that pot will be used again and again

Simon Dyer
Phoenix Palms grower and collector
Direct Link to this Comment Susan Fisk - 08 April 2018 19:06
Brilliant idea. I'm sure it will catch on. We must have 100 redundant flower pots in our greenhouse. Must come and see you again soon now spring is upon us, visited several times during the winter months.
Susan Fisk

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