Greener Plants Concept Aims To Clean America’s Watersheds

An initiative by a Virginia nursery developed with the support of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, is taking root as the garden industry, watershed protection groups and the public push to improve water quality through a movement that starts in the homeowner’s yard.    

Following years of commitment to responsible growing practices that promote water conservation and reduce pollution and runoff, Eastern Shore Nursery of Virginia late last year launched its Greener Plants brand. Grown under an award-winning nutrient management plan and methods that minimize impact on the environment and Chesapeake Bay, the nursery is using its Greener Plants concept toward a larger goal: To encourage consumers to adopt environmentally responsible growing practices at home that will help clean up and preserve America’s watersheds.

 “From in the yard, to streams, rivers, bays and the ocean, better growing care at home will help generate an improved water environment for all,” says Nick Covatta, co-owner of Eastern Shore Nursery of Virginia. “This will also help the gardening industry as more people seek ways to be better stewards at a local level. We expect this to increase demand for greener plants and the products that go with them, such as soaker hoses, mulch, slow-release fertilizer and products to reduce water usage and runoff. Business is up this year in general as a more positive outlook grows throughout the economy. We’ve seen a lot of additional and new orders over 2010.”

To help consumers grow more responsibly, Eastern Shore Nursery has launched a website at GreenerPlants.com to provide consumers with a wide range of educational information and instruction. The full line of Greener Plants will be available starting in spring 2011, including the nursery’s Hollybrook Orchards brand of fruit trees, berries and nuts.

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF), whose mission is to “Save the Bay,” worked side by side with Eastern Shore Nursery of Virginia as it developed environmentally responsible practices. CBF and Eastern Shore Nursery’s shared vision is featured on the nursery’s Greener Plants tags. 

 “The Chesapeake Bay Foundation applauds Eastern Shore Nursery of Virginia as a model plant grower for managing nutrients in a manner that protects water quality in streams, rivers and the Chesapeake Bay,” says William C. Baker, CBF president. “As one of the first nurseries in Virginia to implement a Certified Nutrient Management Plan and for being recognized for their water conservation, Eastern Shore Nursery of Virginia’s efforts to grow plants in an environmentally responsible manner serve as a model for the entire plant nursery industry.”

Learn more at GreenerPlants.com.

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