August 15, 2011
The 2011 version of the National Plastics Recycling event saw over 76,000 pounds of material collected across Canada from June 25 to July 4.

The pilot project began four years ago at Landscape Ontario’s home office. It has since grown to the national level, with Canadian Nursery Landscape Association (CNLA) involved. This was the first year to use garden centres as collecting depots.

Organizers estimate that 40 per cent more plastic was collected this year compared with last year, and enough volume to pack about five 53-foot semi-trucks to the brim.

A total of 25 LO members acted as depots and actively worked with their customers to encourage the recycling of plastic pots and trays. In Ontario, organizers were only able to provide an estimate of 75 skids of horticultural plastics collected across province.

One LO member, Tim Dyer of King’s Creek near Ottawa, expressed how happy he was to receive a number of plastic pots that he can re-use in his own nursery production.

Overall response, say organizers, was very positive. Gardeners appreciated having convenient places to deposit their used pots. “Neighbourhood garden centres truly want to work toward a solution,” says Renata Triveri, CNLA retail priorities manager.

Appreciation was expressed for the work of CleanFARMS, West Coast Plastics, BFI Canada (Parksville), Plastix Canada, and Myers Lawn and Garden Group — each managed transportation and recycling of the collected garden plastics in their respective regions.

Triveri says, “Down the road, the horticulture industry is looking for ways to reduce the use of plastics in nursery production. Until that time, the industry is committed to developing a sustainable program for plastics recycling.”

The National Plastics Recycling Event is scheduled to return in 2012 from June 22 through July 1. For more information contact Renata Triveri at CNLA, 1-888-446-3499, ext. 8730, or