NORFOLK, Virginia — IKEA isn't just in the business of interior design, but apparently gardening, too.
The Norfolk retailer donated $100,000 to the Norfolk Botanical Garden to grow more native Virginia plants.
The Garden already has some indigenous plants, but the money will go to expanding their native plant communities with the build of efforts going to recreating a native Virginia forest in the Virginia Native Plant Garden.
This includes increasing their Longleaf pine collection. The Norfolk Botanical Gardens said that Longleaf pine forests are among the most diverse ecosystems in the world supporting a vast array of wildlife.
“A rapidly changing world calls for urgent action, Michelle Stephenson-White IKEA Loyalty Manager said. “Climate change is no longer a distant threat - it's a visible, tangible reality. It is one of the biggest challenges that humanity faces. At IKEA, we feel that we have a huge responsibility - and opportunity - to make a difference.”
IKEA team members alongside Norfolk Botanical Garden horticulturists will start this expansion on Nov. 5 when they plant longleaf pine seedlings.
The population of longleaf pine forests has drastically reduced over time, even though these forests are home to the most diverse ecosystems in the world.
Horticulturists say these forests are known to be incredibly resilient to severe weather systems like hurricanes and are expected to withstand changes brought on by climate change.