Gardener Norman Redcliffe and the CVRD are partnering in a new program that will see some plastic containers diverted from Bings Creek recycling centre to be used as plant pots. (Robert Barron/Citizen)

Gardener Norman Redcliffe and the CVRD are partnering in a new program that will see some plastic containers diverted from Bings Creek recycling centre to be used as plant pots. (Robert Barron/Citizen)

Local gardener and CVRD partner to reuse plastic containers for plant pots

Proceeds from sold plants to go to charity

Veteran gardener Norman Redcliffe has begun a program, in cooperation with the Cowichan Valley Regional District, that will see a lot of plastic containers that were heading for recycling being used as plant pots.

The CVRD has agreed to set aside a bin at the Bings Creek recycling centre for people to place suitable plastic food and beverage containers — such as those used for yogurt, fruit, and soups — for the use of Redcliffe, who is a member of a number of local garden clubs, to grow plants in that he will sell and contribute the proceeds to local charities, scholarships and bursaries.

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Redcliffe will supply a billboard to be placed by the collection bin the CVRD is providing at the Bings Creek centre that will explain what he is trying to do and, hopefully, residents will pitch in the sort of pots he is looking for.

“It will be my responsibility to sort out and sterilize the pots and ventilate them for drainage, and those we can use to grow plants in will be sold to raise money for various charities,” he said.

“Any unsuitable containers will go into the bulk bin of plastic containers at the Bings Creek centre and are then taken away [to be recycled]. My ambition is to raise $1,000 for the Mill Bay Garden Club’s agricultural/horticultural bursaries to assist Grade 12 student graduates who live in the Duncan/Mill Bay areas. I would also like to raise at least $500 for the Clements Society, who do such a wonderful job for disadvantaged adults and young people from the Duncan/Mill Bay areas.”

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Redcliffe said, as well as reusing the plastic containers for the good of the community through donations to charities, he thinks it’s important that economical ways to repurpose the materials used for food and beverage containers are found or the world will be doomed to become a massive garbage dump in just a few years.

“It would be great if we could excite enough gardeners in the area to recycle thousands of plastic containers, many of which are destined for landfills,” he said.

Doug Stevens, the CVRD’s manager of operations in its Recycling & Waste Management Division, acknowledged the district has agreed to assist Redcliffe with his program on a trial basis at the Bings Creek recycling centre.

“Residents will have the ability to support Norman’s initiative by placing their containers into a designated bag, or recycle them with Recycle BC, at their discretion,” he said.

“Norman will be providing signage that will speak to his initiative and provide samples of what types of containers he is looking for.”



robert.barron@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

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