The Crocus Nursery
You can grow a lot of plants on a 30 acre nursery. Crocus grow 2,823 different varieties and last year they delivered 600,000 plants to customers across the country. It takes a lot of doing, but Karen, Crocus nursery manager, has a fantastic team and every year they come up trumps come rain or ….more rain!
Peat free compost trials
For a long time gardeners and the trade were very resistant about moving away from peat, because it is such a valuable growing medium. However, there are now increasingly good alternatives and this year Crocus will be using a reduced peat mix for all their plants. The mix is 50% peat plus a mixture of bark, wood fibre and coir.
Despite recent years being some of the wettest on record, water is becoming an increasingly rare resource. As a nursery, Crocus use a vast amount of it. Over the last 18 months they’ve built a network of channels across the 30 acre site to collect water from the nursery and buildings. This water is collected in a reservoir and then re-used on the nursery. Last year they reduced their mains water usage by 80%.
Warehouse heating from waste material
Crocus used to use oil, but in 2010 they decided to install a wood burner. This burner is capable of burning most of their waste material – like pallets etc, which used to be sent to landfill. In recycling terms, it’s been a bit of a double whammy!
Like any mail order company Crocus have to package everything in order to get it out to customers. As they send out 650,000 plants each year, that’s a lot of packaging. In 2010 they made sure all their boxes were made from recyclable board. That way they can, in theory, be used again.