Ask Governor Wolf to Open Garden Centers in Pennsylvania

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Governor Tom Wolf has closed independent family-owned garden centers in Pennsylvania under his COVID-19 executive order. Surrounding states - Ohio, New York, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland - have kept their garden centers open during the pandemic.

The Governor's Office has shut down their phones due to the volume of calls. Please follow this link after signing the petition to ask Governor Wolf to open independent family-owned garden centers. https://www.governor.pa.gov/contact/#OnlineForm

Why have other states kept their garden centers open during the pandemic?

  • Gardening and home landscaping have been scientifically proven to reduce stress, improve mental health, reduce depression, and lower blood pressure, so needed during this time.
  • Studies have shown that patients who have access to green space recover more quickly.
  • A recent national survey showed that 77% of adults work in their home gardens.
  • A third of households have vegetable gardens to grow their own food.
  • Garden centers are a resource for the home-grown food supply, with vegetable plants, seeds and other materials needed by the home gardener. 
  • Plants give off oxygen and absorb carbon, helping ease climate change.
  • Plant leaves and root systems absorb rain and runoff, protecting our streams and rivers.
  • Garden centers keep most of their plants outside, allowing social distancing and access to fresh air.
  • The trade associations for garden centers have created social distancing best practices for their member garden centers to follow. 
  • Family-owned independent garden centers earn 60%-75% of their annual revenue during the spring season. If they cannot open this spring, many will fail.
  • Millions of plants grown in Pennsylvania for the spring season are being trashed because they cannot be sold. Greenhouses and nurseries that grow plants are  permitted to operate, but without garden centers they have no place to ship their plants for the public to purchase them.