The HC Companies has two sustainable solutions that are designed with the needs of growers, retailers and gardeners in mind – satisfying everyone’s increasing desire to make an environmental impact whenever possible. Benefits include:
If you Googled the term “sustainable products”, you’d be given a litany of definitions from those respected in the scientific community to community bloggers – all believing their example best defines the notion. But in truth, Wikipedia provides the clearest, most digestible definition for those unfamiliar with the practice. “Sustainable products are those products that provide environmental, social and economic benefits while protecting public health and environment over their whole life cycle, from the extraction of raw materials until the final disposal.”
For the grower, this is an opportunity to bring your plants full circle by utilizing and marketing a series of sustainable fiber planting containers that are also certified for organic farming (EcoGrow® only). This provides those individuals who are predominantly more environmentally conscious with choices, thus securing them as a customer rather than surrendering them to the competition who already has such sustainable options in their arsenal. (Fiber Round Mum Pan shown)
EcoGrow® products are molded using recycled newspaper and a plant-based binding agent. They breathe like clay, providing an optimal environment for root systems and biodegrade quickly when planted or worked into the soil. EcoGrow containers have been certified for organic farming and gardening in both the United States and Canada according to NOP Regulation.
FiberGrow® products are molded using a slurry of fibers and binding agents in order to increase their strength and durability in such applications as planters, hanging baskets and other large containers. Available in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and styles, FiberGrow products also help insulate root systems to help protect them in fluctuating temperatures while offering superior drainage and moisture retention. A wax coating is available to increase the containers longevity.
Yes, what’s compostable is also biodegradable. But what’s biodegradable is NOT always compostable. Read more here.
The longevity of our fiber containers depends a great deal on the cultural practices at your greenhouse or growing location. Are your fiber containers sitting on a concrete floor in pools of water with no drainage? What are your irrigation practices and how moist is the soil kept? Are the containers kept outside for long durations of time?
When our fiber containers are used under normal growing conditions, you can expect our EcoGrow containers to last one complete crop cycle, while our FiberGrow containers will last one complete season.
Generally speaking, it will take our EcoGrow containers about one season to fully biodegrade and crumble completely into the soil. The ultimate duration will vary depending on your environmental conditions.
Due to the process in which they’re created, our FiberGrow containers will not biodegrade into the soil the way our EcoGrow products will. However, you can break them up into smaller pieces and use them as additions in your general composting practices for use in gardens and planting beds. These containers can also be included with your municipalities paper recycling program.
White or pale brown fungi/mold is common on the bottoms and sides of fiber containers and are symptoms of excessive watering. While the fungi/mold is not dangerous to the plant, overwatering can eventually lead to root rot and other more damaging conditions.
NOT all sustainable fiber planting containers are created equal. Here are some things to look for before making a purchase for your growing facility.
Moreover, it is “often considered a sustainable material as defined by the Sustainable Packaging Coalition, since it is produced from recycled materials and can be recycled again after its useful life-cycle” ends.
Molded pulp is created by mixing recycled paperboard or newsprint, water, a fungicide to help prevent any mold issues and a binding agent in a giant caldron to produce the fiber slurry needed to shape the molded pulp products.
Molds are then used to help re-form the fiber slurry mixture into a variety of shapes, sizes and applications such as growing containers, hanging baskets, protective packaging, consumer products and more.
“My students enjoyed using your fiber pots for their growing project. The pots held up well and plants grew well in them. The root systems of the plants appeared to be larger and more fibrous than when the same plant was grown in a black plastic pot. Thank you for sharing and providing this opportunity for my students.” – Dr. Helen T. Kraus, an Associate Professor at the Department of Horticultural Science at North Carolina State UniversityLearn More
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