You don’t need to be a gardener to grow

Ask people if they’re a gardener or if they like to garden and chances are they’ll say ‘no’ or ‘I have no idea how to garden.’ Maybe even ‘I don’t have time to garden.’ That’s probably because they see gardening as a big undertaking. And it can be if you’re creating your own raised beds, managing your own compost heap, weeding, fertilizing, staking, watering and more. Add overalls, garden gloves, a floppy hat and the entire afternoon one day a weekend and this is pretty much the general impression of ‘gardening.’

Here’s the thing: you don’t have to be a gardener to grow. And you don’t need a floppy hat either. Although there are some really cool ones.

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Have the Days Been Getting Shorter?

It’s not like the hours in a day have progressively diminished over the past 30 years. It just seems like there are so many things to squeeze in, doesn’t it? More choices are supposed to be a good thing, but instead we end up feeling overwhelmed and exhausted.

So it only makes sense that busy people—and who isn’t?—don’t feel like they have time to garden. We’re out to change that perception. We like to say that busy people deserve to have beautiful yards, patios and porches, too. They do. And they can. We’ve spent years rethinking what people like about plants, the things they don’t and the idea that it’s not really gardening, it’s growing.

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We’ve Got Good News and Bad News (and More Good News)

Almost everyone loves a healthy, pretty and interesting plant or tree. And research shows that spending time in nature, even if it’s just among a few plants on a balcony, lowers our heart rate, our blood pressure and our stress level. There’s something restorative about plants and trees, their natural beauty and resilience.

This is when the modern-day anti-gardener stops us and says ‘I can’t grow anything to save my life.’ So all the beauty and resilience is a little intimidating because you feel like it’s only a matter of time before you kill it.

We’ve all been there, done that. Once a black thumb, not forever destined to be one.

Take heart over these discoveries:

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Succulents

Pinterest-worthy style, character and charm and incredibly forgiving housemates. If you’re easily annoyed by needy plants, you’ll love succulents like jade, aloe, stonecrop, echeveria and so many more for their ability to look fake and be almost as tough to kill. You can wait until your succulents dry out completely between watering (which means if you travel for work, you don’t need anyone to water your plants) and you can fertilize just once or twice a year. We’ve planted up succulents in everything from terra cotta pots to pumpkins. They look great in just about anything, especially topped off with decorative stone.


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Grab & Go’s

If you hate to get your hands dirty and have no idea or inclination as to what you would plant and how you would plant it, Grab & Go’s are for you. Just because you aren’t an ace in the planting department (it’s not that you can’t, you just don’t really want to) doesn’t mean you don’t want your patio or porch to look pretty. In fact, you really appreciate the way it makes you feel to drive up at the end of the day to a porch that’s flanked by beautifully planted containers. Or to lead your company back to your patio that’s filled with fragrant potted herbs, a thriving container tomato plant (where you plucked your salad tomato for the evening, thank you very much) and matching seasonal containers on either side of your seating area. Take all the credit because Grab & Go’s can be your best-kept secret.

And if you’re worried about how to care for them, spend a little time with a growing expert in the garden center who will walk you through the recommended exposure (we’ll only plant varieties together that require the same amount of light and moisture), watering and other tiny but powerful tricks to keep them looking gorgeous (think fertilizer).


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Workshops

So what if you don’t know the difference between a spade and hoe, you can grow something beautiful. You can. And we’re going to show you how in a relaxed, fun space dedicated to demystifying things like pruning, planting and caring for a terrarium and making and transitioning your seasonal containers without having to switch everything out.

We offer free instructional workshops that run through techniques, tricks, maybe even cooking with herbs demonstrations (taste tests, included). We also offer fee-based Make & Take workshops that provide everything you need—including materials, the space to spread out and make a mess and the encouragement and instruction—to leave with something you created with your own two hands. Bravo!


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Trees & Shrubs

The ultimate long-lasting perennials, people are starting to ‘landscape’ (don’t let that word worry you, it’s really just another word for planting) with trees and shrubs instead of including more labor-intensive annuals and traditional perennials.

There are so many reasons trees are for you, especially when you buy the right tree for the right spot, help we wouldn’t dare skip when you’re looking for yours. Trees can come with a 2-3 year warranty, especially when we plant for you and once they’re established (normally after a year or two) they really require little care, even in the hottest, coldest, driest and soggiest conditions.

You can plant for shade, privacy, fruit, curb appeal, property value and plenty of other reasons but you’ll never regret that you did.


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The Minute Clinic

So that feeling of panic you get when you think about mysterious brown spots or curling leaves is normal and we have an easy solution: The Minute Clinic, which is basically you stopping in with a photo or two or even a sample sealed in a bag. We’ll walk and talk as we ask questions and diagnose, share tips or products to help or break the news that you might want to move on and try again. Either way, you’ll get expert advice in a minute or two, because we know you have a lot on your To Do list.


Good Things Come to Those Who Create

So think of growing as creating. You’ll experiment. You’ll ask questions and learn new techniques. You’ll stumble upon something you’re really good at, something that looks amazing. And you won’t believe you actually made it happen. But you did.

That’s when you know you’re growing right along with your plants.

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