These are some of the things that we have instigated at Coolings The Gardener’s Garden Centre, Rushmore Hill, as part of our mission to do our bit.
Over 1 million plants are grown on our 4.5-acre nursery at Rushmore Hill every year. We grow over 80% of our own bedding, including over 6,000 hanging baskets. In addition to this the Hardy Nursery Team produce over 300 varieties of shrubs, 600 varieties of herbaceous perennials, 300 varieties of roses and many trees on site. The benefit of this is that we know the top-quality of our own plants and travel is negated! Where we source plants from outside, we endeavour to use local suppliers.
We harvest water from our roofs, glasshouses, tunnels and irrigation and pipe it back to our two on-site reservoirs where it is stored until used again. These reservoirs can hold a huge 6.7 million litres of water (the equivalent of 6 full sized Olympic swimming pools). This means that we are less dependent on tap water as we are reusing water on site.
We use drip irrigation and sub-irrigation extensively throughout our site. Our plants take up their water through capillary action, ensuring they only take up what they need. This also results in stronger and healthier plants with less need for chemical sprays.
We compost more that 2 shipping containers worth of our material (spent compost, prunings, dead plants and coffee shop vegetable waste) every year and use this to mulch our flowerbeds and incorporate it prior to planting. We also sell it to our customers as a low-cost alternative soil improver!
Plastic and cardboard are bailed and recycled. It is collected from us and sent to be recycled and used. Over 20 tonnes of cardboard is recycled every year (the same weight as 10 Black Rhinos!), along with 2 domestic garages worth of glass and paper.
Our coffee shops also use these facilities to reduce their waste and they recycle all glass bottles and tins used.
Arthurs coffee shop has solar heating panels on the roof, which help to heat up the hot water for the bathrooms. This reduces the supply of hot water needed in Arthurs. You can see a read out of the roof temperature next to the ladies’ toilet door in Arthurs.
We aim to encourage environmental awareness amongst our visitors and are vocal about what we do for the environment. We also love wildlife and promote its importance in the garden where we can.
Coolings Green & Pleasant
Our sister site at Main Road, Knockholt is one of the most environmentally friendly garden centres in the UK. These are some of the ways in which they reduce their environmental impact.
- A biomass boiler burns wood waste material from green garden waste and provides heating.
- Walls are insulated with straw bales, insulating the building.
- Roof insulation is significantly thicker than industry standards, meaning there is less heating demand in the Winter and less need to cool the building in Summer.
- Rainwater is recycled to be used for flushing of toilets and irrigation on site
- Reclaimed timber has been used for the flooring which not only means it is used twice, it has less impact on the environment than concrete.