Common Questions, Lifestyle  |  October 10, 2019

Why We Stopped Shipping Plants

An Open Letter About A Big Change

Our business was born out of a deep love for our planet, and the desire to foster that same love and connection in other people. 

Over the years our business has changed and grown, but our fundamental value of sustainability has always been a guiding principle. We care deeply about our impact on the planet and work every day towards leaving the world a better place for future generations. As our business has grown, we've had to examine what works and what doesn't, and be fearless in moving beyond those things that don't align with our mission. For example, in 2011- 2013 our business created cut floral arrangements and wedding decor. Though that business was very profitable, the negative impact of cut florals on our planet became so apparent that we realized we could no longer offer this service and stay true to our mission of sustainability. 

Today, we find ourselves at a similar crossroads. While there are so many benefits to shipping our plants nationwide, as our shipping has scaled, the negative environmental impact is just too big for us to ignore. While we are deeply proud to offer the highest quality plants to our customers around the country, the reality of shipping plants from south Florida to New York City, packaging them, and mailing them around the country, sometimes just miles away from where they were grown, is a practice that keeps us up at night and is not the impact we want to have on the world. It is not a sustainable practice. Our current national culture of convenience and consumerism is not sustainable and today we are announcing that we have chosen to put our planet and values over profits and shutter nationwide shipping for the foreseeable future.

It is difficult to make decisions such as these, but part of what we love about being a 100% family owned and operated business is that we can make these choices with our amazing team and do what we feel is right. We are so inspired by other companies like our dear friends at Etsy who have made a commitment to a complete offset of their global shipping carbon impact. We are going to take time to examine our practices and hopefully be part of the solution and no longer part of the problem of rising carbon in our atmosphere. We hope to re-engage our nationwide presence in the future, but only when we can ensure our practices fully align with our values. 

What does this mean for our New York City customers? No change. We'll still be delivering the best plants, pots, tools, and accessories throughout NYC, and we encourage you to come visit us in person at our retail outpost in Greenpoint. Since opening in February, the amazing connections and community that have sprouted from our store are deeply rewarding, and we want to encourage all our national customers to put their phones down and go out to visit their local garden center. There you will undoubtedly meet other plant passionate people and make real connections to both people and nature. We are committed to continuing to foster these real-life connections and community building around plants and nature. 

As business owners and as global citizens, we feel deeply that our core values should be more about people and the planet than about growth and profit. Changing the status quo is part of the reason we get up to go to work every day, and owning a business gives us the opportunity to make a change and have an impact on our industry, however small. As parents, we want to create a world where younger generations will thrive, and not look back and wonder why we didn’t do more to address the climate crisis. We are inspired by the movement and leadership on environmental action that this younger generation is taking and proudly join them in taking a stand against marginalizing the impact of corporate greed on our planet's future. 

It’s up to all of us to be the change we want to see in the world, and though it may hurt our bottom line and inconvenience some of our customers, our impact on the planet and future generations is more important to us. Thank you for continuing to support us as we learn and grow. We so deeply appreciate your business and hope to see you in Greenpoint!

--Rebecca, Adam, and the Greenery team