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Green Christmas

With the holiday season coming up, families are busy adorning their houses with Christmas trees and wreaths. This year, many households are choosing organic ornamental plants as their contribution to the green initiative.

A consumer survey from the National Christmas Tree Association reported that 28.2 million christmas trees were sold in 2008. Conventional tree growing methods can be harmful to the environment because it involves herbicide, pesticides, and harsh fertilizers. These chemicals eventually end up in rivers, groundwater supply, animals, and eventually humans.

Many growers have decided to switch to organic farming and a recent USDA report showed a 83% increase in organic nurseries and greenhouses in the U.S since 2004. However, rallying support for organic ornamental plants remains a challenge. Consumers buy organic fruits and vegetables because they realize that organic food is more healthy. However, purchasing organic non-edibles requires a new level of commitment since health is not a factor.

Also, growers are reluctant to invest in organic fertilization or organic insect management because it is too costly and not as effective. Their main concerns are insect and disease management and fertility. Economically, organic plants are expensive to grow the the market demand for organic ornamental plants is still low.

Consumers need to be more environmentally conscious and opt for products that are less harmful to the ecological system. They can even buy trees from local sources to boost the local economy and reduce transportation costs.

During this season of giving, give back to not only your friends and families, but also to the environment.

Go Green!

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