Otter Garden Centres is the first in the UK to trial a new style of plant pots.

It’s a major step in our ongoing commitment to reduce the use of plastic in our business.

The Bioplasmar eco-pots offer a sustainable alternative to traditional plastic products. They are 100% plastic free, 100% biodegradable and made entirely from composted waste wood fibre reclaimed from the construction industry.

The pots are designed to be placed directly into the ground with the plants they hold. Over time they will biodegrade and become part of the soil around them; this should take around six months, depending on conditions.

Richard Lovering, Otter Ottery St Mary

There’s an added benefit for gardeners as this method will help to prevent ‘transplant shock’ which can happen when plants are taken out of their growing pots before being planted out. So we’re expecting that plants should perform even better than usual.

The key benefits of the eco-pots include:

  • Completely biodegradable with no waste
  • Conserving resources
  • Enriching the soil
  • Decrease in use of plastics
  • Promoting the circular economy model which aims to turn waste into a resource.

Nursery Manager, Arron Taylor says “It’s been estimated that well over 500 million plastic plant pots are used in the UK each year, which is an astonishing figure. Although we and our customers have been recycling plastic pots for many years, ultimately an option like this is going to be so much better for the environment for the long term.”

To start with, Otter is trialling the pots at all its seven garden centres with a small range of 12cm plants including Coleus, Geranium, Dahlietta and Osteospermum. The initial potting up of plants into the eco-pots has been carried out by Richard Lovering and his team in the Ottery St Mary nursery and they are now available instore.

Arron added: “We’re looking forward to receiving feedback from customers later in the year about how the pots and plants have performed in their gardens. We’re expecting great results!”