What's New
Green Homes Festival

Save the Date!  Green Homes Festival

Saturday, June 20, 2015
9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
NEW location: Butterfly House &
Faust Park Grounds

Celebrate sustainable living with the whole family in this festival of learning, playing, and engaging with local sustainability experts at the Green Homes Festival presented by the EarthWays Center of the Missouri Botanical Garden.

Check out more than 70 Exhibitors and explore home improvement ideas and plant based options for living greener. Learn from expert presentations and demos about the many ways that plants, air, water, soil, and energy sustain our homes, our health, and our living Earth. Plus enjoy music, food, shopping, and more!  

Free access to the Festival, general admission for additional attractions. 

For more information on 2015 sponsorship, exhibitor and vendor opportunities, please email joyce.gorrell@mobot.org or call (314) 577-0220.

EWC is hiring!

Do you love planning events and "wrangling the cats" when coordination is concerned? Do you have experience with "green" events or looking for more? EarthWays Center is HIRING a Part-Time, Event Specialist to help with our Green Homes Festival (mid-February thru June) and our Green Ball (September thru mid-November). 

 The application deadline is February 13. Please share with interested parties you think would be a good fit for our team! Click here for full details and application instructions.

Sustainable Education Update

EarthWays Center education programs for youth and adults explore sustainability topics. Join us to investigate energy efficiency and conservation, renewable energy sources, solid waste reduction and recycling, green building, water conservation and air quality.

Welcome Jim!

Welcome to our new Manager of Sustainability Education Programs!

Jim Biggs, Sustainable EducationJim Biggs joins the EWC team after 14 years as a teacher in the elementary, middle, and high school levels, where he taught science and math. Jim will be in charge of sustainable education programs, developing and implementing programs for schools and in the community. He is an avid athlete and has been a high school volleyball coach for the past 16 years and was honored for winning his 300th match last season.

If you would like to contact Jim about bringing sustainable education options to your school, email him at jim.biggs@mobot.org.

For P–12 Educators: Sustainability Institute Coming Soon!

The Sustainability Institute on June 23–25 at MICDS, will provide educators with the tools they need to give a new generation of young people the awareness, responsibility, and ability to take action for a sustainable future. The 2015 Institute, “Empowering Young Citizens for Sustainable Communities,” will explore how educators can inspire their students to take action to create and maintain sustainable communities.

Speakers and hands-on activities will focus on increasing awareness of sustainability issues, identifying the potential for students to take responsibility for solutions, and helping educators generate and plan for student participation.

The program is sponsored by Webster University and graduate credit is available. Learn more about the Sustainability Institute and register for the program.

Built Environment Update

EarthWays Center programs focus on improving all aspects of our living and working environments. The EarthWays Center is home to the U.S. Green Building Council – Missouri Gateway Chapter. 

Laclede Gas Provides Sponsorship Support

We are grateful to welcome Laclede Gas Company as Primary Program Funding Sponsor for our local Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Program. Laclede has been a leader in promoting and verifying high performance residential construction through its relationship with the Home Building Association of St. Louis for years.  

Together, we look forward to advancing Home Performance in our region. And don’t forget to use Laclede Gas Company rebate and financing options on your projects.

A Greener Garden

At the Garden we strive to put Conservation in Action: from the built environment and employee engagement, to behind-the-scenes operations and guest services. Learn more about our accomplishments.

It's Not Garbage—It's Compost!

Food waste composting collection started in the Garden’s Sassafras Café 3 years ago and since then, composting happens throughout the Garden, including during our large festivals.Composting bins in action

Through the efforts of Garden staff, volunteers and guests, in 2014, over 83,000 pounds of food waste and compostable disposables were diverted from the landfill.

Composting recycles waste into a useful soil amendment. Just think - the food waste generated at the events like the Best of Missouri Market may ultimately enrich the planting beds at the Missouri Botanical Garden.

Special thanks to St. Louis Composting and Total Organics Recycling (formerly Blue Skies Recycling) for providing such an important service to the Garden and the community overall.

For more information about Sustainability in Action at the Missouri Botanical Garden, click here.

Award Winning Green Practices

The Garden received a 2014 Award of Achievement – Champions Level from the St. Louis Green Business Challenge at an awards celebration on January 20 at the Saint Louis Zoo Lakeside Café.

Receiving the awardThe Garden was celebrated for important sustainability accomplishments and innovations: Garden events became “greener” with expanded use of compostable products while lighting displays utilized LED and solar powered lamps CBEC received a cooler white roof and a biodiversity site plan was developed which was  shared with educators and schools; the Garden’s Electric Vehicle Charging Stations use was offset by Ameren Pure Power renewable energy credits. Deborah Frank, VP of Sustainability and Joyce Gorrell, Sustainability Projects Coordinator, received the award presented to the Garden for being a sustainability Champion!

For more information on the St. Louis Green Business Challenge see our write up in the Featured Organization section.

Upcoming Programs

Take a Class – Build Something – Learn Green to Live Green with the EarthWays Center!

2015 Classes and Educational Opportunities
Recycling facility

Interested in learning more about sustainability and green living? Join us this spring for an exciting, fun class on this topic! Our adult classes connect people to plants and range from green living topics such as energy efficiency and solid waste reduction to local foods and building sustainable communities.

Upcoming classes feature: a tour of the ongoing Sunflower+ project site; a field trip to a commercial composting facility; and introductory classes to composting, Rainscaping, learning how to use smarter, alternative transportation to get around St. Louis, and so much more!

Registration for Spring/Summer classes begins February 1, 2015. Check back for descriptions and dates for upcoming Green Living class options. To learn more visit www.mobot.org/classes.

Join us at the Healthy Planet Natural Living Expo!

EWC staff and volunteers will host an information table at the 29th Annual Healthy Planet Natural Living Expo on Sunday, March 29. Tickets to the Missouri Botanical Garden will be among the many prizes at this fun event.

Featured Organization

St. Louis Green Business Challenge

Will your business take the challenge?

Green Business Challenge logoThe St. Louis Green Business Challenge, the Garden’s joint program with the St. Louis Regional Chamber, allows companies of all types to engage in advancing sustainable business strategies. The Challenge uses a point-based Scorecard, supported with customized expert coaching from EarthWays staff, to help companies boost sustainability in everyday operations. Since the Challenge began in 2010, EarthWays has worked with over 150 companies, influencing over 130,000 employees, across the region.

Locally-owned St. Business Challenge participants Office Essentials and The Advertisers’ Printing Company were recently profiled in St. Louis Small Business Monthly. You can read more about local companies that incorporate biodiversity into their businesses. Will your business take the challenge in 2015? Recruitment starts up now!  For more information and to sign up, contact St. Louis Business Green Challenge.

Volunteer Opportunities

The EarthWays Center seeks volunteers year round for events and other sustainability projects!

Upcoming Volunteer Activities 

Green Homes FestivalSolar ovens

​Save the date! Our Green Homes Festival is coming on June 20, 2015 to a new location: Butterfly House and Faust Park grounds, Chesterfield, MO. 

There is more to the Festival than set up and take down. We need many additional hands on deck to help: from making solar oven s'mores (pictured) to assisting exhibitors in our new NatureScaping area,  we need your help to make it the green event of the year! For more information, contact Kat, our Volunteer Coordinator, at katherine.golden@mobot.org.

Spring and Summer Internships 

Looking for a spring or summer internship?  The EarthWays Center has a variety of opportunities available - spend the summer with us and learn about the many areas of Sustainability.

News Rewind

EarthWays Center People & Programs in the Media

Awards and Recognitions:

Jean PonziIt's been a busy time for Jean Ponzi, EWC Green Resources Manager. "Green" Jean was a featured speaker for two events in November as part of Media Literacy Week, an annual educational presentation from Gateway Media Literacy Partners. 

Her report on the biodiversity efforts of St. Louis Green Challenge companies was recently featured on the front page of GreenBiz

She served as Master of Ceremonies for 2014 Gala celebrations of the work of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment and St. Louis Audubon.

And she was a guest on KMOV's Great Day St. Louis speaking about opportunities for local business to help improve air quality through the Green Business Challenge, including No Idling practices and the Try & Ride commuter program.

Thank you, Jean, for all of your sustainability work in our community!


In other recognition news: Richard Reilly, EWC Energy Programs Manager, was a nominee for 2014 St. Louis Person of the Year, recognizing his community-building contributions growing the Sunflower + Project in Old North St. Louis and the city’s Central West End.

Sunflower + Project Before and After

Tune in to Earthworms — environmental talk radio, hosted by the EarthWays Center’s own “Green Jean” Ponzi, Mondays 7–8 p.m. and archived online at KDHX 88.1 FM.

Growing Green St. Louis — Jean Ponzi, Green Resources Manager, EarthWays Center, hosts this engaging radio talk show focused on regional "green" endeavors with a changing line up of guests. Airs Saturdays 8-9 p.m. CST on Big 550 KTRS-AM.

"Friend" the EarthWays Center!

Join the conversation! Follow the EarthWays Center on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter to stay up to date on sustainability in the St. Louis region. 
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Updates Via Email

Sign up to receive our quarterly EarthWays Center e-newsletter.
Everyday Green

Ventilation demo

Plastic Pot Recycling
Help reduce the amount of horticultural waste in landfills

Green Resources Answer Service
Call (314) 577-0246 or email with questions related to green products, services and claims

Rainscaping Guide
Learn how to incorporate sustainable landscaping that reduces stormwater runoff and improves local water quality

Growing Green St. Louis
Listen to the Garden's weekly radio show hosted by our Green Resources Manager, Jean Ponzi, on Sundays from 1 to 2 p.m. on The Big 550 KTRS

Volunteer for the EarthWays Center
A great way to get introduced to the “green scene” here in St. Louis

Special Events
At the Garden and events presented by our partners