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Pleasant Run Nursery

Business Information
Name of Organization: 
Pleasant Run Nursery,Inc.
Organization Type: 
Business Description: 
We started Pleasant Run Nursery in 1998, with a mission to provide new and garden-worthy plants to the discerning gardening world. We grow high quality, cutting-edge woody ornamentals and perennials, with an emphasis on special plants to solve specific site problems, such as deer, and moist, dry and shade conditions. Customer service has always been a top priority for us…from the moment you first contact us, all the way through loading your vehicle or delivering plant material to you. We do our best to help you get the information and plants you need to make your endeavors a success. We appreciate our customers' input and suggestions, and work to incorporate them at the nursery.
Contact Person: 
Richard Hesselein
Owner & President
Business Location: 
Place of Business
93 Ellisdale Rd PO Box 247
08501 Allentown , NJ
United States
40° 9' 14.9364" N, 74° 35' 7.8576" W
Number of Employees: 
Renewal Date: 
Thursday, February 11, 2021
Management and Leadership
Develop Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Plan
Description of Action: 
We purchase environmentally preferable products whenever possible. 1. Our annual catalog is printed on FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) paper. We print an average of 2,000 catalogs annually. In an effort to reduce paper consumption, customers can choose to view our catalog from our website and save multiple versions of it directly to their computers. 2. All print materials used by customers in the office and printed for tradeshows are printed on 100% recycled paper. 3. All printer and copier paper is FSC approved paper 4. Paper products (paper plates, cups and plastic ware) for business events are bioplastic: 5. We (Nomad Pizza) use 'bioplastic' tableware. Bioplastic is made from corn and sugar cane. It is biodegradable and compostable. We will compost all bioplastic tableware and use it in our garden. We use napkins made from recycled paper. Even our trash bags are made from bioplastic.
Waste Reduction
Description of Action: 
Water coolers are used throughout the nursery and employees use refillable water bottles. We utilize Crystal Springs bottled water delivery service. We get regular 5 gallon water refills. In 2014, we received 282(5 gallon)bottles from Crystal Springs. 1 gallon equates to 128 fluid ounces, a 5 gallon bottle equals 640 fluid ounces. This equates to 53 (12oz bottles) for each 5 gallon container. Annually, by utilizing the 5 gallon refillable bottles we would eliminate 14,946 (12 oz) plastic bottles. In addition, Crystal Springs cleans and sanitizes their 3 & 5 gallon water bottle containers and refills them up to 50 times. Most of these water bottles are recycled at the end of their lives to make carpet, toys, tool handles, bird feeders and other items, which is why they are not typically found in landfills.
Waste Reuse
Description of Action: 
We reuse our office paper as scrap paper, and then recycle the paper.
Waste Recycling
Description of Action: 
1. We recycle our nursery containers, flats and all greenhouse plastic. In 2013, we recycled 1.80 tons of greenhouse plastic. 2. We recycle the following in our office: Ink & Toner cartridges with Staples Inc. In 2014 we recycled 43 recycled ink cartridges with Staples We received $129.00 from Staples in the form of Staples Rewards 3. All paper, plastic, glass and aluminum containers/cans are recycled and delivered to the recycling center. As are all cardboard boxes received from plant shipments. We recycle every other week. Our Box truck usually contains about 600 cubic feet (20’ x 7.5’ x 4’) or 22.22 cubic yards of recyclable materials. Based on these numbers, waste is reduced by 133,320lbs/yr. This is equivalent to 66.66 tons/per year of recycled materials not sent to landfills.
Lbs Saved: 
Energy Efficiency
Description of Action: 
When replacing light bulbs throughout the nursery, all new bulbs are GE Energy Efficient Reveal® Halogen bulbs. They use 28% less energy than less conventional light bulbs. In 2014, we install motion sensor lighting at office and potting barn. This eliminates the need to have lights on all night long, making energy usage more efficient.
Renewable Energy
Description of Action: 
In 2012, we installed a Solar System at the nursery. The system consists of 3 rows of solar panels; each row is 200 feet in length and 15 feet wide. The energy generated by the solar panels powers the entire nursery including the pump house, business office and owner’s home, propagation house and over 88 greenhouses We have averaged a $10,000 savings per year for the past two years.
Money Saved: 
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Employee Commute
Description of Action: 
Eight (8)employees commute to work via carpooling. Instead of 8 separate cars traveling from Trenton, the total number of cars is 3. The distance round-trip from Trenton to the nursery is 21 miles. Employees work 51 weeks a year and approximately 36 Saturdays for a total of 291 round-trips. Total miles reduced by utilizing carpooling are 6,111 miles per year. Average Fuel Saved: 277.77 gal/yr Money Saved: $1,013.87 $/yr
Miles Saved: 
Gallons of Fuel Saved: 
Money Saved: 
Fleet Vehicles
Description of Action: 
Electric golf cart batteries are charged by solar panels. Currently, we have 14 golf carts, used by staff and customers.
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Water Conservation
Description of Action: 
Utilization of drip irrigation on approximately 20% of the nursery reduces the over-usage of water, especially during the hot summer months. We utilize a “Pulse style” irrigation schedule. Our irrigation schedule provides more consistent moisture and maintains constant soil temperatures, while reducing runoff by short duration application of water at multiple times per day. This program allows us to reduce our fertilizer rate since it makes our use of fertilizer more efficient and minimizes our leachate.
Stormwater Management and Site Design
Description of Action: 
Entire nursery is about 20 acres. 1. Bioswale and Rain Garden: 3 Bioswale (2,200 total sq. ft) and 1 Rain Garden (900 total sq ft) These features aid in water filtration by slowing runoff water, cleaning out extra nutrients and impurities and recharging ground water while reducing the total water runoff. These planting areas also allow for trials of various wet site tolerant plants, as well as providing food for native birds, insects and bees. 2. Nursery Roads (account for approximately 2 acres): Our numerous roadways into and around the nursery are ¾” clean gravel, to help reduce the speed of rainwater runoff and allow for infiltration into our ground water. This also aids with erosion control. The gravel also filters silt so the water is cleaner. 3. Over 97 growing fields and container houses (accounts for approximately 12 acres), all fully permeable surfaces for irrigation and rain water. 4. Landscape display beds (accounts for approximately 2 acres): These areas are not being utilized for production use, landscaped display beds feature native plants for wildlife habitat, and also reduce turf and turf maintenance. 5. IPM Management: Beneficial insects (various species of predatory wasps) used in the propagation house to help reduce pesticide use. Routine Scouting: Our Production Manager regularly walks the nursery scouting for disease and pest issues. In addition, we hire a Nursery IPM Scout through Rutgers Cooperative Extension who visits the nursery on a weekly basis throughout the growing season. We receive a report on his findings listing severity level and recommending treatment steps. By regularly scouting and identifying specific plant issues, this greatly reduces the need for nursery wide pesticide applications. We are able to target specific disease/pest issues more effectively. Also, by understanding insect life cycles and timing, we are able to target pests more effectively with fewer chemicals in order to protect beneficial insects. For example, if beneficial insects like Lady Beetle larvae or Green Lacewing are found on a crop with Aphids, it does not make sense to spray for aphids or let the beneficial insect naturally correct the problems. We also scout for cultural issues at the nursery that would increase the chance of plant disease (i.e., water/sun requirements and airflow). By detecting issues early and using preventative microrhizomes, we reduce fungicide applications. 6. Sustainment of wildlife habitat placed throughout the nursery: 6 Bat houses, 7 Purple Martin houses containing 92 nesting boxes. In 2014, we had 80 nesting pairs of Purple Martins at the nursery. 9 maintained beehives, with honey being shared with all employees and some clients. 36 Bluebird houses which are tracked twice a year. In addition to Bluebirds, the houses are also occupied throughout the season by Tree Swallows, House Wrens and Chickadees. 55 Chickens co-habitat with the two Sicilian donkeys, allowing for better pasture management. The donkey/chicken pen is 28,000 sq ft. All these animals, birds and insects help with monitoring IPM. Due to these established habitats, we are very committed to the use of pesticides which are less harmful to our natural predators and pollinators. 7. Root Dip/Root Shield/Actino-iron: Organics are used to reduce root diseases and promote vigorous growth of root systems and tops, limiting the use or need for synthetic fungicides. 8. Native Plants: We continue to remove aggressive invasive plant that border the nursery property (Acer platanoides (Norway Maple), Rosa multiflora (Multiflora Rose), Artemisia vulgaris (Chrysanthemum weed/Mugwort), etc. and introduce a broad spectrum of native plant species into our landscape beds. Our goal is to increase diversity in our landscape and nursery, while showcasing garden-worthy natives. This helps to attract native beneficial insects and song birds, and create healthy habitats for our wildlife.
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Environmental & Community Restoration
Environmental & Community Restoration Other
Description of Action: 
Currently at PRN, we have a total on 13 working beehives. In 2016, we added 4 additional hives. The standard hives we use at PRN have two deep supers; the supers are where the bees live. The average peak population in the month of June is 60,000* adult bees. * PRN’s Measurable Results: 4 x 60,000 = 240,000 additional bees
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Support the Well-Being of Your Employees
Description of Action: 
Employee vegetable gardens: We have a total of 6 gardens (approximately 4,300 sq ft) at the nursery which provide vegetables for all 22 employees and their families. PHOTO We have 55 chickens at the nursery that produce eggs which are shared by the owners and staff. Beehives: Harvested honey is shared will all staff and some customers.
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Finished Application: 
Member Since: 
Wednesday, February 11, 2015