Buy-Recycled  Series
                         LANDSCAPING  PRODUCTS
   It might be easier than you think
   to turn garbage into gardens!
   Whether you're a park manager,
professional landscaper, or tend a
small garden bed, you'll find recy-
cled-content products offer a quick,
effective, and affordable way to
make your grounds green.
  Buying recycled products.

  ...conserves natural resources
  ...saves energy
  ...reduces solid waste
  ...reduces air and water pollutants
  ...reduces greenhouse gases
  ...creates new jobs
 Solid Waste and Emergency
 Response (5305W)
 Washington, DC 20460
 www. epa. gov/osw
 May 2004
      To make it easier to buy
      recycled, the U.S.
      Environmental Protection
      Agency (EPA) updates the
      Procurement Guidelines
      (CPG) every 2 years.
      Through the CPG, EPA des-
      ignates items that must
      contain recycled materials
      when purchased with
      appropriated federal funds
      by federal, state, and local
      agencies, or by government
      contractors. Several land-
      scaping products are among
      these items. EPA's research
      shows that the items desig-
      nated in the CPG are of
      high quality, widely avail-
      able, and cost-competitive
      with virgin products. EPA
also issues nonregulatory compan-
ion guidance—the Recovered
Materials Advisory Notice
(RMAN)—that recommends levels
of recycled content for these items.

Why Buy Recycled?
Recycling is more than just drop-
ping off your cans, bottles, and
newspapers at the curb or at a local
collection facility. Diverting recy-
clables from the waste stream is
only the first of three steps in the
recycling process. The second step
occurs when companies use these
recyclables to manufacture new
products. The third step comes
when you purchase products made
from recovered materials. That's
how we close the loop.

Buying recycled products results in
many environmental benefits. It
supports local recycling programs
by creating markets for the collect-
ed materials that are processed and
used to manufacture new products.
This creates jobs and helps
strengthen the economy; conserves
natural resources; saves energy; and
reduces solid waste, air and water
pollutants, and greenhouse gases
that contribute to global warming.

What is  CPG?
      The Resource Conservation and Recovery
      Act requires procuring agencies to buy
      recycled-content products designated by
EPA in the CPG. Issued in May 1995, the first
CPG designated 19 new products (including
hydraulic mulch) and incorporated five previ-
ously designated items in eight product cate-
gories. The first CPG update (CPG II) was
published in November 1997 and designated an
additional 12 items, including garden and soak-
er hoses, as well as lawn and garden edging. A
second CPG update (CPG III) was published in
January 2000 and designated an additional 18
items, including food waste compost and plas-
tic lumber landscaping timbers and posts. The
third CPG update (CPG IV), published in April
2004, designated seven new products but no
additional landscaping products.

Procuring agencies include all  federal agencies,
and any state or local government agencies or
government contractors that use appropriated
federal funds to purchase the designated items.
If your agency spends more than $10,000 per
year on a product designated in the CPG, you
are required to purchase it with the highest
recycled-content level practicable. The  CPG
also applies to lease contracts covering  desig-
nated items. Executive Order 13101 and the
Federal Acquisition Regulation also call for an
increase in the federal government's use of
recycled-content and environmentally prefer-
able products.

Once any new items are designated in a pub-
lished CPG update, an agency has 1 year to
develop an affirmative procurement program
(or revise an existing one) to include these new
items. In previous years, agencies have had to
revise their affirmative procurement programs
to incorporate items such as hydraulic mulch,
compost, garden and soaker hoses, lawn and
garden edging, and plastic lumber landscaping
timbers and posts. Since CPG IV does not des-
ignate any additional landscaping products,
agencies are not required to revise the land-
scaping products portion of their affirmative
procurement programs.

The CPG acknowledges that specific circum-
stances might arise that preclude the purchase
of products made with recovered materials.
Your agency may purchase designated items
that do not contain recovered materials if it
determines that: 1) the price of a given desig-
nated item made with  recovered materials is
unreasonably high, 2) there is inadequate com-
petition (not enough sources of supply), 3)
unusual and unreasonable delays would result
from obtaining the item, or 4) the recycled-
content item does not  meet the agency's rea-
sonable performance specifications.

                                LANDSCAPING PRODUCTS
                                        PAGE 2

How  Do  I  Purchase  Recycled
Content Landscaping Products?
      The EPA issues guidance in RMANs, which
      are designed to make it as easy as possible
      to buy the designated items. The RMANs
recommend recycled-content levels to look for
when purchasing landscaping products, as shown
in the chart below. Following the RMANs' rec-
ommended levels will help ensure your affirma-
tive procurement program and standards meet
the buy-recycled requirements. The RMANs also
provide other purchasing guidance. Please refer
to  for more
information on individual products.
                       Rather than specifying just one level of recycled
                       content, the RMANs recommend ranges that
                       reflect actual market conditions. The recom-
                       mendations are based on market research iden-
                       tifying recycled-content products that are
                       commercially available, are competitively
                       priced, and meet buyers' quality standards.

                       Access EPA's online recycled-content products
                       database by going to 
                       and selecting "Supplier Database." See the
                       last section of this fact sheet for other helpful
      EPA's Recommended Content Levels for Landscaping Products
 Hydraulic Mulch


 Garden Hose
 Soaker Hose
 Lawn and Garden
 Timbers and Posts
Yard Trimmings
and/or Food Waste
Rubber and/or Plastic
Rubber and/or Plastic

Rubber and/or Plastic

Mixed Plastic/Sawdust
Other Mixed Resins

   See Endnote 2



See Endnote 2

1 EPA's recommendations do not preclude procuring agencies from purchasing landscaping products manufactured using other
 materials. EPA simply recommends that procuring agencies, when purchasing landscaping products designated in the procure-
 ment guidelines, purchase these products containing recovered materials.
2 Purchase or use compost made from yard trimmings, leaves, grass  clippings, and/or food wastes for applications such as landscap-
 ing, seeding of grass or other plants, as nutritious mulch under trees and shrubs, and in erosion control and soil reclamation. EPA
 further recommends implementing a composting system for these  materials when agencies have an adequate volume and suffi-
 cient space.
                                LANDSCAPING PRODUCTS
                                        PAGE 3

Planting the Seeds:
Hydraulic Mulch
You might be establishing wildflowers along an
interstate or replanting grass on a public golf course.
In either case, your first step is to plant the seeds.
Hydraulic mulch is a quick, proven, and affordable
way to help get the job done. Utilizing recovered
newspaper and wood products, hydraulic mulch is
commonly used in highway construction projects to
grow grass along embankments, medians, and road-
ways. It also is used in recreational areas and on res-
idential lawns. Through hydroseeding, a mixture of
water, seeds, and hydraulic mulch is sprayed over
soil. The mulch stabilizes the soil, prevents wind
and water erosion, and provides protection and
warmth for the seeds, helping them grow.

Be sure you require that contractors use hydraulic
mulch for all your hydroseeding projects, where
appropriate. Hydraulic mulch not only protects
young seeds from  the elements;  it also strengthens
demand for wood waste and the newspaper you recy-
cle in your local recycling program.

Strengthening the Soil:
Yard Trimmings  and Food
Waste Compost

Used frequently in both commercial and residential
landscaping, yard trimmings and food waste com-
post turns the organic waste we might otherwise
throw away — such as grass, leaves, twigs, and fruit
and vegetable trimmings — into an effective soil
amendment. Compost returns nutrients to the soil,
improves soil texture, and promotes new plant
growth. Additionally, compost can suppress some
plant diseases and prevent soil erosion when used as
cover for seeded grass.

With an increase in the number of composting facili-
ties from 651 in 1988 to 3,800 in 2000, the market is
clearly growing for this valuable product. Even so,
more yard trimmings and food waste could still be
composted. In 2000, these valuable organic materials
constituted more than 23 percent of our national
waste stream, with 53.6 million tons generated, of
which only about  30 percent of that amount (16.5
million tons) was  recovered for composting.
Quenching Mother Nature's
Thirst:  Garden and Soaker Hoses

Once your seeds are planted and the soil is enhanced
with nutrient-rich compost, nothing is more impor-
tant than adequate watering. The questions of how
much  and how often to water are a matter of local
climactic conditions, but one thing is clear—buying
recycled-content garden and soaker hoses is the ideal
choice for watering your garden or planted areas.
Not only will these hoses deliver water to meet your
garden's needs, they also help create new uses for
old tires and recycled plastics from items such as
discarded cable wires and old traffic cones.

Building a  Home  for the Garden:
Landscaping  Timbers and Posts
(Plastic Lumber)

To create attractive and effective landscaping, you'll
need some construction skills as well as a green
thumb. Raised beds, for example, will frame and
protect flower beds.  Framed walkways, bordered
lawns, and flower beds all enhance the appearance of
a landscape. Likewise, retaining walls can control
erosion. Whether you're beautifying a park, highway,
housing development, zoo,  or the exterior of an
office  building, you can do it with recycled-content
landscaping timbers and posts. The National Park
Service is leading the way with more than a dozen
projects using timbers and posts manufactured with
plastic or composite lumber, which give new life to
recovered wood and plastic materials such as milk
jugs and plastic bags.

The Border Line:  Lawn and
Garden Edging

When  you're ready to finish the job, recycled-con-
tent lawn and garden edging provides the perfect
barrier for delineating your beds.  Sold in both indus-
trial and residential  strengths, these quality products
help keep grass and weeds out of flower and veg-
etable beds, saving time and money. You can pur-
chase  up to 100 percent postconsumer
recycled-content edging, which is made from scrap
rubber, milk jugs, and other plastic containers.
                                  LANDSCAPING PRODUCTS
                                           PAGE 4

How  Can  I  Get  More  Information?
        Information Available
        From EPA
     his fact sheet and the following publications
     on buying recycled-content products can be
     accessed on the Internet.

   EPA Amends Comprehensive Procurement
   Guidelines (CPG). This fact sheet provides general
   information about the CPG and the development of
   affirmative procurement programs. See

   Federal Register (FR) notices promulgating CPG I (60
   FR 21370/EPA530-Z-95-006) and RMAN I (60 FR
   21386/EPA530-Z-95-007), May 1, 1995. FR notices
   promulgating CPG II (62 FR 60961/EPA530-Z-97-
   009) and RMAN II (62 FR 60975/EPA530-Z-97-010),
   November 13, 1997. FR notices promulgating CPG
   III (65 FR 3070) and RMAN m (65 FR 3082), January
   19, 2000. FR notices promulgating CPG IV (69 FR
   24028) and RMAN IV (69 FR 24039), April 30, 2004.
   See .

   Composting Publications, including the following
   compost fact sheets, are available from EPA at

       Innovative Uses of Compost—Bioremediation
       and Pollution Prevention (EPA530-F-97-042).

       Innovative Uses of Compost—Erosion Control,
       Turf Remediation, and Landscaping

       Innovative Uses of Compost—Disease Control
       for Plants and Animals (EPA530-F-97-044).

       Innovative Uses of Compost—Composting
       of Soils Contaminated by Explosives  (EPA530-F-

       Innovative Uses of Compost—Reforestation,
       Wetlands Restoration, and Habitat
Other Sources of Information

•  Buy Recycled Business Alliance. The Alliance
   includes over 3,200 companies and organizations
   committed to increasing their use of recycled-con-
   tent products and materials in their day-to-day oper-
   ations. The Alliance offers educational materials, a
   quarterly newsletter, and product-specific guides.
   Public purchasing entities can join for free. For more
           information, contact the National
           Recycling Coalition, 1325 G Street NW
           Suite 1025, Washington, DC 20005-3104.
           Phone: 202 347-0450. Fax: 202 347-0449.
           Web site:  E-mail:

   U.S. Composting  Council. The United  States
   Composting Council offers educational materials and
   workshops on composting and seeks to develop stan-
   dards for compost. For more information, contact the
   U.S. Composting Council, 200 Parkway  Drive South,
   Hauppauge, NY 11788. Phone: 631  864-2567. Fax: 631
   864-3796. Email: Web
   site: .

   U.S. General Services Administration (GSA). GSA
   publishes various supply catalogs, guides, and sched-
   ules for recycled-content products available through
   the Federal Supply Service. For copies of the follow-
   ing document and other information, contact GSA,
   Centralized Mailing List Service (7CAFL), 4900
   Hemphill Street, P.O. Box 6477, Fort Worth, TX
   76115-9939. Phone: 817 334-5215. Fax: 817334-
   5527. You can also access GSA Advantage!, GSA's
   Internet-based online ordering system,  to order any
   GSA product at .

       Environmental Products Guide. This guide is
       designed to help procurement officials identify
       environmentally preferable products and services.
       It contains nearly 3,000 items,  including many
       recycled-content products. An electronic version
       can be viewed at .
                                     LANDSCAPING PRODUCTS
                                              PAGE 5

Green Seal. Green Seal is a national nonprofit label-
ing organization that sets environmental standards,
including those for garden hoses, and awards a
Green Seal of Approval to products meeting those
standards. For more information, contact Green Seal
at 1001 Connecticut Avenue, NW., Suite 827,
Washington, DC 20036. Phone: 202 872-6400. Fax:
202 872-4324. Web site: .

Greening the Government: A Guide to
Implementing Executive Order 13101. This guide
provides detailed information on the requirements
of Executive Order 13101 and the benefits of achiev-
ing compliance. Updated in Februray 2001, it is
available from the Office of the Federal
Environmental Executive. Phone: 202 564-1297.
Fax: 202 564-1393. Web site: .
Email: An electronic version of
the document can be accessed at .
          Internet Sites—Product

•   Recycling Data Network Information Services:
    . This com-
    mercial Web site provides access, on a subscription
    basis, to a recycled-content products database of
    over 4,500 listings in 700 product classifications. It
    also provides a reference library and a newsletter.
    Managed by the publisher of the Official Recycled
    Products Guide, the product database is considered
    to be the largest of its kind.

Internet Sites—Government

•   The Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines:
    . This site describes EPA's effort
    to facilitate the procurement of products containing
    recovered materials, including information on CPG,
    RMANs, and an interactive database of manufactur-
    ers and suppliers of designated items.

•   Environmentally Preferable Purchasing (EPP):
    . EPA's EPP program encourages
    and assists federal agencies in purchasing environ-
    mentally preferable products and services. The site
    explains EPA's guiding principles for including envi-
    ronmental performance  in purchasing decision-mak-
    ing, and posts case studies of successful pilot
    projects  in both  the public and private sectors.

•   Federal Trade Commission: . The Federal Trade
    Commission issued Guides for the Use of
    Environmental Marketing Claims in May 1998.

•   Jobs Through Recycling: . EPA's
    Jobs Through Recycling program stimulates eco-
    nomic growth and recycling market development by
    assisting businesses and supporting a network of
    state and regional recycling contacts. This Web site
    provides information on financing and technical
    assistance for recycling businesses as well as other
    market development tools.

•   California Recycled-Content Product Database:
    . This site contains infor-
    mation on why to buy recycled-content products,
                                   LANDSCAPING  PRODUCTS
                                             PAGE  6

how to procure them, and provides access to a
database with information on products, as well as
manufacturers, distributors, reprocessors, mills, and
converters across the country who procure or pro-
duce these products.

King County Recycled Product Procurement
Program: . This
site includes information on recycling, source reduc-
tion, and reuse. Contains state  municipal solid
waste data and the latest facts and figures on waste
generation and disposal.

WasteWise: . WasteWise
is a free, voluntary EPA program through which
organizations eliminate costly municipal solid
waste, benefitting their bottom line and the  environ-
ment. The program provides hands-on assistance to
members to help them  purchase or manufacture
recycled-content products, prevent waste, and recy-
cle solid waste materials.
                                    LANDSCAPING PRODUCTS
                                             PAGE 7