Plants are resilient, yet they often get treated like the store-bought goldfish of the plant kingdom: cheap, leafy pets handed out as party favors or given as housewarming gifts that are lucky to survive a few weeks in a new home before suffering a neglectful demise. 

The notion that houseplants are disposable results from how plants are sold to people, with little information about how to care for them and no support system in place to follow-up on plant care. This short-lived exchange reinforces common misconceptions that houseplants are finicky, hard to care for and easier to replace than maintain. But the truth is that plants (much like goldfish) can be long-term companions that will grow alongside you for years to come. 

Plant obsolescence 

When you think of throwaway culture, houseplants don’t immediately come to mind in the same way as plastic bags and to-go coffee cups, but most of them end up in landfills all the same. Big box home improvement garden centers stockpile greenery, and what they don’t sell eventually goes to the dump where they break down and contribute to even more carbon emissions. 

In and outside of home improvement stores, modern buying culture is designed around disposability. Since the 1950s, consumer culture in the US has seen the proliferation of cheaply made household appliances and objects that are designed to be replaced within a few years instead of being made to last a lifetime. This rise of planned obsolescence has distorted the way that we relate to our world of natural organisms and human-made objects alike.

Made to last

One of the reasons we started Horti was to help people develop healthy, lasting connections with the people, plants and objects in their lives. One way we built longevity into our business model is in our packaging. Horti plants arrive either naked or potted in our signature clay pots, generic everyday planters that—without our flourish of paint—most people might not think twice about throwing away.

The ubiquity of terracotta (which simply means baked earth) makes it seem replaceable despite its versatile hardiness and eco-friendly functionality. We intentionally upcycle an underrated object and add to its beauty.

Deepen your roots

When we say we don’t just want to sell you on plants, we mean it. To us, success means cultivating a mindset of tenderness in our customers who (we hope) share our philosophy of care and apply it beyond their new green friends.

We’re playing the long game of plant care that helps people see the beauty around them and inspires them to tend to the things, plants, creatures and humans of our world. In an age of climate crisis, we hope this ethos isn’t limited to houseplants but spills over into all areas of our existence to reduce consumption, limit waste and help savor what’s already here. Join us in growing a culture of gratitude.