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The Blog: Let's Talk Gardening

Celebrate Earth Day


Shopping and selecting plants can make putting the garden together a creative endeavor. But what do you do with all the plastic pots your plants came in? Yes, with Earth Day coming up tomorrow, we're all looking for ways to make a difference. And, recycling is one of the best ways to do it.

We are committed to benefiting the environment by offering plant pot recycling. Recycling turns materials that would otherwise become waste into valuable resources. By collecting used plant pots and nursery trays and bringing them to the McDonald Garden Center collection site, you are participating in a series of steps that generates a host of financial, environmental, and social returns. Since many recycling services will not take these pots, we are asking that you consider bringing them back to any of our three year-round locations in Chesapeake, Hampton and Virginia Beach. We ask that you empty the pots of their contents, such as potting mix, leaves or trash. You do not need to rinse them; just dump any contents that are left inside. We also ask that you remove all metal hangers from baskets, as well as metal rings and staples. Stack the pots as best you can by nesting together those of the same or similar size regardless off style or color. When you get to McDonald Garden Center, bring the pots to the Trees & Shrub nursery yard and place them in our designated Pot Recycle Bin.

The three categories of plastic pots will be accepted, #2, #5 and #6. This number can be found on the underside of the pot, inside the small triangle. Number 2 pots are HDPE, High Density Polyethylene. These are usually ribbed and have a hole in the center of the bottom of the pot. Number 5 pots are PP, polypropylene. This includes pots and some trays with mesh bottoms. In a wide variety of sizes, shapes and colors, they are usually marked on the bottom with the symbol. Number 6 pots are PS, polystyrene. Most trays and cell packs are polystyrene.

We are asking you to help us provide a greener future and REDUCE, REUSE and RECYCLE! Simply drop off your empty garden pots at any of our three year-round locations.