Free Plants for Consumers Means Jobs for People with Disabilities

Share Article gathers unsold garden plants from growers all over the country and ship them to workshops that employ people with disabilities. We then make them available free to the public on the website.

Garden writer and photographer Cheryl Richter’s new project called Free Trees and has met with early success. Ms. Richter finds unsold trees and plants and hires workers with disabilities to package them. She then sends the plants to anyone who reserves them at

Every year millions of healthy high-quality plants go unsold and are destroyed. They go to the dump, are plowed under or get burned or buried. They come from the very same growers that supply many of the most famous garden catalogs. Every plant selected for the project is as good as, or better than, those featured in catalogs and garden centers.

Richter’s industry-contacts alert her about large numbers of plants that have not been sold and are scheduled for destruction. She obtains the plants at little or no cost. She then works with organizations that provide employment for disabled workers to process and package the plants for shipment. The free plants are then featured on and shipped on a first reserved, first served basis to anyone who will send $6.95 to cover shipping and processing. As a believer in direct action and social responsibility she does not ask for or accept donations and the project does not seek charitable designation.

A visit to the site features evergreen, flowering and shade trees, perennials, shrubs, and flowering bulbs. Everything shown has been selected as an easy-to-grow gardening or landscaping favorite.

Anyone can reserve free trees, plants, and bulbs by visiting Quantities are limited, but new selections are added often.

Cheryl Richter is an internationally published garden writer and horticultural photographer and has worked with organizations offering employment to the disabled for more than twenty years.

Contact Information:

Debra Ersch

1701 South 17th Street, Suite 2D

Lincoln, NE 68502


Telephone: 402-475-5507

Fax: 402-475-5633

Photograph available.

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Debra Ersch
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