Plow and Hearth is committed to being a responsible retailer, taking an active role in our community and making a conscious effort to protect the environment. From reforestation and recycling to paper procurement and eco-friendly products, we hope you'll take this opportunity to read more about our current environmental efforts.
We plant two seedlings for every tree used to create our catalogs.
At Plow and Hearth, we take a proactive approach to reforestation. Plow and Hearth, in cooperation with the Virginia Department of Forestry, plants trees in the Culpeper Soil and Conservation District in central Virginia.
Paper - Choosing Wisely, Using Wisely
When we evaluate potential suppliers, we look for those companies that can guarantee the wood fiber used to produce our paper comes from sustainably managed forests, and that the paper used in our catalogs is produced using environmentally preferable technology.
Forest certification is one way paper suppliers can guarantee that their forests are being responsibly managed. There are many certification systems currently in use, each with a set of clearly defined standards covering environmental, social and economic aspects of management. Up to 35% of the fiber used in our catalogs comes from forests certified and/or registered by one or more of the following: FSC (Forest Stewardship Council), SFI (Sustainable Forestry Initiative), PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) or ATF (American Tree Farm). Regardless of the type of certification held, we encourage our paper suppliers to practice responsible forestry through:
Our printers are encouraged to control the environmental impact of their activities, products or services and to continually improve their environmental performance. Some examples of our printers' responsible environmental practices include:
We will continue to reduce our paper usage by utilizing targeted mailing strategies and current technology; we will encourage responsible consumption by promoting recycling; and we will research ways to increase the recycled content in our catalogs.
We strive to limit our use of virgin fibers by using packing materials that contain post consumer waste recycled material and by reusing packing materials when possible.
We make a concerted effort to reduce the amount of paper waste in our offices by utilizing the latest technology and by strengthening our inter-office recycling effort. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle is a part of our everyday operations.
We reduce the demand for paper in our offices by using electronic methods to share information both internally and externally, such as PDF (portable document file) and EDI (electronic document interface) when possible.
All of our copiers have duplexing capabilities.
We use 30% recycled paper for all of our business cards, stationary and letterhead.
We take special measures to ensure that our facilities are efficiently run and maintained.
The rural community that we call home is important to us. We make our best efforts to limit our impact on the surrounding land and on the environment in general through:
Energy and Water Conservation - In our distribution center, we installed automatic towel dispensers, toilets and hand dryers as well as photocell lights that help make smart use of our resources and to cut down on waste.
Recycling Efforts - Recycling paper is only the beginning. We recycle or repair all of our wood palettes, and we initiate a community-wide program twice a year to recycle electronics. All foam peanuts that we receive are collected and sent to another local merchant that reuses them in its packages.
Email us for more information.
Olla (Spanish, pronounced “oh-ya”) jars have been around since ancient times. Made of unglazed ceramic, ollas traditionally have short, narrow necks with wider bodies, and are made in a variety of shapes. They have been used for thousands of years for cooking, storage, and plant irrigation.
When used to irrigate plants, an olla is buried neck-deep in the ground near a plant’s roots, with the opening of the olla extended above the soil so that it can be filled with water periodically. The porous walls of the unglazed pottery allow the water to seep through gradually, constantly and consistently hydrating the plants without overwatering them – and without wasting precious water to evaporation or runoff.
The use of ollas for irrigation was introduced to the American Southwest by Spanish conquistadors during Colonial times, becoming very common among Native American tribes and Hispanic settlers. Though the technique gave way to more modern methods of irrigation some time ago, its superior efficiency, coupled with its simplicity, has caused it to make a comeback. Though the technique has changed little since its introduction, today’s ollas are usually capped off, making them even more water-efficient.
Perfect for home gardens, Ollas are a super-easy, eco-friendly, less time-consuming way to water annuals, perennials, herbs, vegetables and plants of all kinds in dry, sandy soil, very hot or drought-prone areas, raised beds, and even pots, planters and hanging baskets. Fill the olla before you leave on a short vacation to enjoy worry-free watering – and a smaller water bill!