“In the UK and Europe plastic-free packaging of all types is a huge driver for growers at the moment”, says Mark Lingard, marketing manager of Sirane. In this market where more and more growers and suppliers are asking for sustainable products, Mark sees the demand of their fully compostable plant pot growing.
Mark explains: “our plant pots are made from a cellulose, which is effectively paper-based and it has a compostable film made from a bio-polymer. The inside of the pot is an absorbent material that will hold water. That reduces the need for water and it prevents the plant or seedlings from drying out. We’ve been able to make this product for a few years, but recent changes in the market in the UK, particularly in relation to plastics, have given it fresh impulse.”
There is no need for the plastic pot that plants usually come in. You simply plant the whole thing, pot and all. “This means less shock damage to the plant. The roots are left undamaged and untouched. The water retention of the pot provides a steady source, and also the material, as it composts, provides a source of nutrition. We’ve had people plant the same products side by side, one in a compostable plant pot and the other straight in the ground, and they’ve told us the one in the plant pot has grown significantly bigger and stronger. We’ve never done any formal trials, however, if any growers wished to run some trials, we’d support them”, Mark says.
Easy in transport
“Not only does the plant pot compost quickly in the ground, it also actively aids the plant. It can also be flat-packed, which is convenient for transport.” Sirane can manufacture any size to suit, says Mark. “However we have launched a standard product in 0.3L, 0.75L, 1L and 2L, as we felt these would be the most suitable and the most widely used for the markets we were targeting.” The pots are used in the ornamental industry and can also be used for growing herbs.