At Bonnie Plants, gardening is about more than putting plants in the earth. We believe it’s a chance to nurture curiosity, self-care, and the ability to give back to our communities. We’re in pursuit of a world in which everyone can experience the joys and rewards of gardening.
Bonnie & AmpleHarvest.org
Our Grow More. Feed More initiative with AmpleHarvest.org encourages home gardeners to donate surplus produce to their nearest food pantry. The partnership was formed to help combat food insecurity caused by COVID-19, but the need for fresh, homegrown food among those without it continues to grow, and we’ll continue our commitment long after the pandemic is behind us. Both at the Bonnie Plants corporate office and at our growing stations around the country, we cultivate additional produce to help support local food pantries. Additionally, Bonnie Plants has already committed more than $250,000 to help fight hunger and we continue to donate 5 percent of all BonniePlants.com sales to AmpleHarvest.org.
“Teaching my kids about gardening helps them learn a lot about life and how there are times to sow, reap, harvest, and give back. Through AmpleHarvest.org, that concept has grown even further because, in addition to bringing some vegetables to our neighbor down the street, the food we grow now helps people in our area who are going through hard times and may be struggling to put food on the table, and that’s something that’s truly gratifying to share with my children. ”
— Travis Hammonds, Bonnie Plants employee
Bonnie Plants 3rd Grade Cabbage Program
Bonnie is committed to growing the next generation of gardeners. Through our 3rd Grade Cabbage Program we hope to introduce and connect kids to all aspects of gardening by giving each student who participates a young cabbage plant and the lessons needed to care for it every step of the way. They gain life skills and a passion for gardening by learning how to grow these vegetables. Since the program’s creation in 1996, we have donated more than 10 million cabbage plants to students across the country.
Together, Let’s GroMoreGood
Alongside our partners at ScottsMiracle-Gro, we’re committed to bringing the powerful benefits of gardening to 10 million kids by 2023 through GroMoreGood™. In 2021, we contributed monetary donations and plants to community gardens in more than 30 states and saw firsthand how they can help children grow hope, self-esteem, positive relationships, and better futures. Additionally, GroMoreGood™ stands for designing products that improve our surroundings and making a positive impact on the communities in which we operate.
“As vegetable growers, we have a unique opportunity to give back. Fighting food insecurity has always been a priority for us that goes back to our founders, Bonnie and Livingston Paulk, who set aside acreage of vegetable production way back in 1918 to feed those who needed it in the local area.”
— Mike Sutterer, President and CEO of Bonnie Plants
Protecting Our Environment
Bonnie Plants is committed to fostering innovation and improving our global environment. Our starter plants are grown in 72 locations across the U.S. and packaged in 100% recyclable growing pots to help reduce our carbon footprint. In the last five years, we have recycled more than 4.7 million pounds of used horticultural containers, and we continue to increase the amount of post-consumer recycled (PCR) material in our plastic packaging. We have also begun constructing the trailer portions of our delivery trucks with nearly 100 percent recycled plastic in place of aluminum. In this way, we’re able to upcycle waste material while keeping our trucks lighter, which helps lower our carbon footprint.
Supporting a Healthy Lifestyle
Homegrown food isn’t just better for you at mealtime. Here are some ways gardening itself helps promote a healthy lifestyle, too.
- Growing a garden at home can help reduce your carbon footprint.
- Gardening burns calories while building strength.
- Tending to your plants for 30 minutes can lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
- Gardening on a sunny day can boost vitamin D.
- Time spent in the garden can help lower the risk of heart attack, stroke, and dementia.
- Teaching kids how to garden can lead to healthier eating, more physical activity, better academics, and positive social interaction.
- Growing brings people together physically (in shared gardens) and digitally (across social media)
Giving Back at Bonnie Plants
Many of our associates enjoy growing good for their communities, as well as each other. Both in the garden and outside of it, here are some of the ways the Bonnie team and our partners take care of others.
- Through organized volunteer days and internal competitions, in 2020, our employees were able to donate 22,000 pounds of fresh produce to local pantries across the country in our mission to fight food insecurity.
- Our partners at Scotts Miracle-Gro also grow fresh food in the Associate Gardens at the company’s Marysville, Ohio, campus to give to local food pantries.
- Employees dedicate time to locating and mapping additional food pantries that accept fresh produce donations.
- Our associates use one annual paid day off to volunteer in community gardens, build houses, mentor students, or beautify their communities, among other causes.
- We find common ground in associate-led groups such as our Women’s Network and Wellness Committee.