Sustainability

The Gardens at UGA plan to be 100% sustainable by 2010, however we have placed great emphasis on sustainability this season as well. Confusion swirls around the true meaning of the word "sustainability", but we are using the Merriam-Webster definition "relating to, or being a method of harvesting or using a resource so that the resource is not depleted or permanently damaged." To the right we would like to recognize the companies that support us in this endeavor.

Below is our plan on how we will accomplish this. All of these are being practiced in 2008, and will be the norm in 2009.

A Sustainable Ornamental Trial Garden:

Why we believe sustainability makes sense for us:

1. Enriches environmental quality and the resource base from which our nutrients derive.
2. Maintains our standard of excellent aesthetic design within the garden space.
3. Continues to be economically viable.
4. Stresses productivity.
5. Enhances the quality of life for our community of growers, landscapers and gardeners.

Practices we are performing to integrate these objectives:

1. Reduction of Water Waste:
a. Irrigation zones that highlight plants with similar water requirements
b. Drip irrigation
c. Terra-Sorb: superabsorbent hydrogel mixed into soils of containers and hanging baskets.
d. Mulch to reduce water run-off and erosion

2. Fertility
a. Daniels plant food: Both the greenhouse and landscape formulations
will be used as our organic liquid feed through out the season to encourage
root growth, dark green foliage, and larger, more numerous blooms.
b. Plant Growth Activator Plus will inoculate soil with 52 strands
of beneficial soil microorganisms, essential amino acids, vitamins, biotin, folic acid, and
natural sugars: we expect the microorganisms to protect roots from nematodes and pathogens,
recycle nutrients, improve soil structure, and make minerals available to the plant.
c. Soil and tissue analyses to assess our nutritional efficiency.
d. Cover crops in the fall as organic soil builders.
e. Green manure: soft tissue plants tilled into soil before cover crop seed broadcast.

3. Pest and Disease Control:
a. Introduction of beneficial insects such as lady bugs and praying mantids.
b. Perimeter plantings of a carrot, chervil, coriander, clovers, subclovers, nasturtium,
parsley, alyssum and yarrow mix to encourage beneficial insect populations.
c. Insect nutrients will provide an additional food source for beneficial insects. Food sources will be interspersed between plants.
d. Organic pesticides, fungicides, miticides, algaecides when needed.
e. Crop rotation, intercropping, and companion planting.
f. Introduction of pulverized shrimp shells to reduce root-knot nematode populations.

4. Weed control:
a. Manual
b. Organic herbicide mainly comprised of clove oil.

5. Reduction of non-renewable resources:
a. Ellepots: 100% plastic reduction of pots, trays will be recycled.
c. Using manual tools (i.e. reel lawn mower).


Our Supporters:

These partners believe that sustainability is not only environmentally friendly, but profitable. We recommend you support them in your production, wholesale or retail facilities.

 

We couldn't do this without our sponsors. Thank you.