Our biodegradable plant labels

At Life.Ecology.Food. we make our own biodegradable plant labels.

Our biodegradable plant labels

You may have noticed every time you buy a plant it comes with a lot of plastic. A plastic pot. A plastic label. And often enough, a plastic bag. As you probably know, this isn’t great and we have a real problem now with plastic pollution. Recently the world of science made the distressing discovery of micro-plastics invading almost every ecosystem on earth, including deep sea trenches. Simultaneously there are literally islands of plastic forming in the mid-Atlantic! Plastic pollution is having an untold impact and we need to do more to avert our plastic obsessions. At Life.Ecology.Food nursery, one small step towards this has been trying to dream up a way of making biodegradable and affordable, plant labels.

Plant labels are important. It’s great when you can come back to a new plant a couple of years later and find out what it’s called, where you got it and what conditions it likes etc. Normally nurseries buy a quite expensive plant label maker that pumps outs many quite durable – and plastic – plant labels. As a small nursery, we can’t really afford to do that, and also, just don’t want to. Surely there’s a better way of doing labels?

Over the last two years we’ve had an experiment going on out doors with a variety of different plant label techniques, all based around paper and beeswax. Finally we’ve struck upon an approach that works (pictured). Beeswax and paper labels last quite well in the British weather! This approach allows us to design our own label with a unique QR code per plant, and produce them in bulk quickly, cheaply. But best of all, they will eventually self destruct in their own good time.

How cool is that?