There are a lot of options for starter pots available on the market today. We’ve tried all of them and none of them are ideal for starting plants.
Terra cotta pots are made out of clay, which means that they break easily, absorb water the plants need to grow. Given their rigidity, it’s difficult to get plants out without damaging the roots. Some terra cotta glazes can contain lead or other toxins.
Compostable pots could be a good option for some folks, but they don’t break down in many climates, and they are still single use pots, which means you have to buy them again every year.
The problem with plastic? There is no “away.” Researchers estimate that over 8.3 billion tonnes of plastic has been manufactured since 1950 and nearly all of that still exists in some form on the planet today. We can’t recycle our way out of plastic pollution.
Less than 9% of plastic is actually recycled. The rest is either landfilled or incinerated.
Incineration releases thousands of pollutants into the atmosphere that cause respiratory and other negative health impacts to communities.
Plastics can't truly be recycled--they only break down into smaller and smaller pieces which eventually break down into microplastics. Microplastics absorb toxic chemicals from the environment and pollute everything from waterways to wildlife to the sushi you had for dinner last night.
Black plastic is ubiquitous in the gardening industry. Each year, hundreds of millions of pots are sold by nurseries and garden centers. The vast majority of garden pots on the market today are made of single-use, disposable black plastic. They’re cheap, break down easily, and are not designed for reuse.
There are no safety requirements for black plastic: it can contain unregulated amounts of toxic chemicals including phthalates, flame retardants, and heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, nickel, and mercury.
Most black plastics use carbon to color the plastic black. Recycling sorting machines cannot identify the resin in black plastic. Even if it makes it to a recycling center, the vast majority of black plastic pots still end up in the landfill.
Back Porch Pots are made from 100% food-grade silicone with no fillers. High-quality food grade silicone with no fillers has been deemed safe and non-toxic by the FDA and Health Canada (to determine if a silicone product has fillers, stretch/twist the material and if any white shows through, it is not pure silicone).
Silicone doesn't break down easily or decompose like plastics; it won't shed microparticles into the environment.
Silicone does not contain lead, phthalates, PVC, formaldehyde, nitrosamines, latex, or hormone disrupting chemicals like BPA and BPS, which are commonly found in petroleum-based plastics.
We acknowledge that silicone is not a perfect material. After researching all available materials, we determined silicone to be the best option with current technology for this application due to its durability/reusability, sustainable attributes, and flexibility. Silicone is made primarily from silica, an abundant and common component of sand, mixed with oxygen, carbon, and hydrogen. Silica is processed at high temperatures to produce silicon, which is then reacted with hydrocarbons to form the polymer backbones of silicone. While silicone is not 100% fossil fuel-free, it is the best alternative to single-use plastic.
Back Porch Pots are recyclable at silicone recycling facilities. If at some point you no longer need your Back Porch Pots, you can donate them to a local community or school garden, or send them back to us to ensure they are responsibly recycled.
All of our packaging is plastic-free and 100% recyclable/biodegradable/compostable. We use FSC-certified 100% recycled content (95% post-consumer waste) packaging and vegetable-based ink.
Back Porch Pots are manufactured by our US-based manufacturing partner at their facility in India, in an environmentally-controlled molding area.
It remains our goal to manufacture our products in the USA. Given the current realities, manufacturing costs, and supply chain shortages, it is not a feasible option at this time. We will continue to work with our partners to transition our manufacturing to the US as soon as practicable. We are confident that our manufacturing partner is prioritizing environmental and human health and safety.
Our shipping prices are based on the total weight of your order and the speed by which you want to receive your order. Shipping options, costs, and estimated delivery dates are on the checkout page.
Back Porch Pots has a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you decide Back Porch Pots are not working for you, please contact us for returns.
Choose Shop Pay at checkout and reduce the environmental impact of your deliveries for free. Every Shop Pay purchase supports carbon removal projects that remove CO2 from the atmosphere.
We are committed to give back to our communities through charitable donations to organizations that are making a positive difference in the world. Learn More
Back Porch Pots is a member of 1% for the Planet. 1% for the Planet represents a global network of businesses, individuals and nonprofit organizations tackling our planet's most pressing environmental and social justice issues.
Back Porch Pots is a partner with the Healthy Pots, Healthy Planet coalition. Healthy Pots, Healthy Planet is an initiative to build demand for plant containers made of more sustainable materials to reduce the use of virgin plastic.