Sustaining Our Natural Resources

A vibrant blue bird perches at the tip of a branch covered in green leaves
Hank Davis

Sustainability at our Gardens is comprehensive and far-reaching, addressing everything from our people, our millions of guests, our plants and gardens, our infrastructure and systems, and our natural resources. 

Our approach is guided by the American Public Gardens Association Sustainability Index, an index directed, funded, and then donated to the industry’s membership association by Longwood. Soil to Sky is a resource-management approach and a philosophy for the responsible care of Longwood’s natural resources that reside below the land’s surface to the air above Longwood’s property. 

Biodiversity and Conservation

Our commitment to ecological land management and preservation extends beyond the formal Gardens to include nearly 750 acres of natural areas consisting of meadows, forests, and wetlands.  These practices are governed by our “Soil to Sky Management Plan.”

Materials Management

We are leaders in innovative recycling and composting practices. In 2012, we were recognized for our work in this area with the Chester County Green Business Award.

Water Quality and Consumption

Conserving the earth’s most valuable resource is of the utmost concern to us. Using proven irrigation systems and water-management approaches, our staff strikes a delicate balance between nature and man.

Energy Use and Impacts

We have made a pledge to minimize our impact on the environment by reducing our dependence on fossil fuels. This has led to a tireless pursuit of viable sources of renewable energy. These include a 10-acre solar field that produces 2 million kilowatt hours per year and accounts for about 30 percent of our annual expenditure.