Great Little Garden Packaging Story

We are all concerned about the amount and make-up of packaging used in sending goods around the country, and quite rightly so. Here, at Great Little Garden, we are acutely aware of the part we can play in reducing usage and waste. Equally though, we need to ensure that what you order is received in perfect condition by you. We have worked tirelessly with our hand-picked UK based nurseries to develop packaging that not only does its job well but can also be reused or composted. That's where our packaging story begins.

There are obvious and easy examples of reuse such as the pots your shrubs are grown in. Clean them out and use them to pot up your tomato seedlings, sow some cornflowers or plant a few bulbs. Simple.

Great Little Garden Packaging Story

Delivering plants and shrubs

The inner bag your shrubs and herbaceous plants are delivered in is great at stopping any compost from flying around the box whilst your plant is in transit. We experimented with bags that were tightened around the stems of your plants with an elastic band. Now, elastic bands do have their uses in the garden, but tie handles eliminated the need for them altogether. Nice - tie handles it was. We also decided not to use plastic and opted for bags made from corn starch. These will naturally biodegrade in your compost bin within around six months and we liked that a lot. We've tried it and found if you rip the bag into shreds this process really gets cracking – three months and you shouldn't find any traces in your compost.

Delivery boxes

GLG plant box

The boxes themselves proved fun. They have to be sturdy and robust enough to withstand the rigours of the mailing system. That's why they are twin walled. Each box front is sealed with round stickers – after tests only a non-compostable glue was totally reliable in the damp environment of a working nursery. So, we went with that. There are actually only minute traces of glue but for the purest composter, it shouldn't be in the compost heap. Rip the stickers off or tear away that little patch of cardboard before composting.

Cardboard and Composting

Now, the actual cardboard. Lovely, lovely cardboard. The fact is that cardboard is fantastic in compost bins. It's a long story (and one the compost experts at Great Little Garden never tire of telling) but cardboard provides a balance to all the soft, sappy green leaves in a bin, and eventually helps to produce glorious, crumbly compost. So, if you've ever tried to produce compost from 99% grass clippings and only managed to produce a slimy, stinking mess, you are now on the right track. If you really want to know more (and if not, why not?!) have a look at our 'How-to videos'. And if you have any tricks and tips from your own composting experiences then please let us know and we'll pass them on to other gardeners. Together, we will get the UK composting the best way.

 Always improving

We are constantly striving to make things even better. It will take time but our plastic pots may be replaced with compostable alternatives. We will be trying different glues for the labels to find one that works in our strict tests and is also suitable for the compost bin. Our close relationships with each of the nurseries is making this progress quicker than normal.


We may not be perfect but we can assure you that we are giving 100% effort to make everything we supply the best we can for you, your garden and the environment. Read more about how we're ensuring we take care of our environment in our Environmental Statement Here.