Among the myriad of this generation’s trends, the intense new-found love for house plants and botanical adventures is maybe the best of the bunch. Houseplants and gardening are worthy hobbies that have been proven to help with stress and to make one happier and healthier.
However, while the houseplant trend is in full swing, many dive deep into the craze without doing enough research and end up killing their overpriced Urban Outfitters’ succulent. Most indoor plants can thrive in Colorado, and the always trendy succulents are perfect companions for our climate, but outdoor gardening is a whole other story. Due to our complex weather systems, dryness and massive and abrupt temperature differences, outdoor planting can be a toilsome experience. Regarding both the complexity of outdoor gardening, and the ignorance of most first-time plant parents, it’s always best to consult experts in the field before starting one’s plant journey.
Luckily, despite its arid, high-plain desert landscape (every tree and shrub in Denver was imported for elsewhere), the Mile High City has a wealth of locally owned, Instagramable plant stores and florists that can provide the green-thumb novice with not only a plant or two, but a wealth of knowledge over different plants, techniques, potting systems and gardening in our unique Denver landscape. The abundance of plant stores in the city make it easy to support Denver’s small businesses and—maybe more importantly— to learn how not to kill your precious plant babies.
Where: 1000 Acoma St., Denver
When: Tuesday – Sunday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m
The Lowdown: Urban Roots‘ Golden Triangle location is a literal oasis within downtown. Its beautiful space — an old mechanics shop — is filled to the brim with an array of plants, with a huge selection of succulents, cacti, indoor and outdoor plants and statues and fountains for any urban garden. As well, the plants are potted in a multitude of unique and beautiful containers.
Paulino Gardens – Closed
Where: 6300 North Broadway, Denver
When: Monday – Saturday, 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m., Sunday, 9 p.m. – 5 p.m
The Lowdown: Talk about plants in Denver and you’re going to hear the name Paulino. Serving Colorado for over 57 years, Paulino Gardens started out in 1960 as a space for the Paulino family to sell vegetables they grew. Years later, it has become one of the largest and most renown of Colorado’s nurseries. Its massive space holds a wide collection of plants from basic houseplants to exotics such as Bonsai and Hibiscus trees. Paulino also offers in-house gardening glasses and its space includes a selection of books and other informative material for the gardener.
Where: 3824 W. 23rd Ave., Denver
When: Tuesday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
The Lowdown: Sitting on a sunny corner just down the road from Sloan’s Lake, Planted provides the enterprising home-gardener with a mix of succulents, air plants, tropical foliage and more. Many of its plants are showcased in custom wood containers, backdrops and frames made from sustainable reclaimed lumber. With a focus on sustainable, “green” practices, and an eye for intense and unique design, Planted offers the quaint Sloan’s Lake neighborhood and Denver as a whole a one-stop-shop for arresting botanical decor.
Where: 819 E. 6th Ave., Denver
When: Tuesday – Friday, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m, Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
The Lowdown: This quaint, family-owned Capitol Hill outpost is a small but fulfilling space providing a wide range of house plants and friendly knowledge. While there are many different types of plants and flowers here, succulents seem to be the name of the game for this cozy shop. Herbery owner Dennis Reedy is an oracle of plant knowledge, and his care and admiration for the plants he provides and the community he serves is evident.
Where: 4443, 2101 S. Washington St., Denver
When: Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (Seasonal hours, Garden Patch is open during planting season and the winter holidays)
The Lowdown: Serving Denver since 1964, the charmingly old-fashioned Garden Patch occupies a beautiful corner space on Evans Avenue, just east of DU. Garden Patch offers a decent selection of indoor house plants, but an even greater selection of outdoor flowers and vegetable plants (its tomatoes are consistently raved about). Garden Patch also offers a fantastic Recycling Program for pots, allowing one to recycle unwanted pots and stay sustainable and green in their gardening adventure.
Little Lula Rose
Where: 1711, 3225 E. Colfax Ave., Denver
When: Thursday – Saturday, Monday, 10 a.m.–1 p.m. , 3–6 p.m., Sunday, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., 3 – 5 p.m.
The Lowdown: The little sister of Lula Rose General Store, young owner Oliver Miller-Finkel’s second shop is a snug space providing a small number of delicious coffee offerings and a much larger amount of beautiful flower arrangements and plants. Providing locally roasted coffee by MiddleState, Little Lula Rose is also dedicated to showcasing local flowers and plants native to the Colorado landscape.
Where: 14 S Broadway, Denver
When: Tuesday – Saturday 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., Sunday – Monday 12 – 5 p.m.
The Lowdown: Rosehouse, owned by herbalist Lynn Flanagan-Till, offers the Baker neighborhood a boutique for interesting botanical arrangements — including an eponymous attention to varieties of roses — and as well a multitude of teas, crystals, art prints and other lovely knick-knacks. The shop was handpicked to take over for beloved Ironwood, an eclectic boutique that previously occupied the space, so one can rest assured that the store provides the same kind of earthy energy.
Where: 3100 N Downing St suite A, Denver
When: Monday – Saturday, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
The Lowdown: Marked by its massive “Flower Shop” cursive signage, and the technicolor mural painted on the side of its building, Bella Calla’s inviting cornerstore exterior beckons many into its Five-Points location. Providing Denver with a selection of houseplants, all stored in beautiful unique pottery, Bella Calla is mostly known for is wonderful floral offerings and arrangements, and its delivery service is a favorite of romantic Denverites.
Where: 114 N Harlan St, Wheat Ridge
When: Monday – Saturday, 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m., Sunday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
The Lowdown: Located a bit away from the city in Wheat Ridge, Southwest Gardens’ large space is stocked with all the indoor and outdoor plant needs a person could have. With a focus on succulents and other desert plants, Southwest Gardens offers a very Colorado-centric, sustainable collection. With great prices,and helpful staff, Southwest has a well-earned reputation in the metro area for its service and the artistry given to its plants.
Where: 1110 Acoma St, Denver
When: Monday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m., Sunday 12 – 5 p.m.
The Lowdown: The aesthete’s plant store, Sacred Thistle follows the philosophy of the Japanese way of Wabi-Sabi, which means embracing the imperfection of a flower’s being. Sacred Thistle’s arrangements are beautiful displays of the power of well designed floral art. Due to the store’s pride over its varied floral arrangement services, Sacred Thistle is worth a stop for those looking for a succulent for the home, but is even more worth the trek for those needing an arrangement for a big life event.
Where: 1525 15th St, Denver
When: Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
The Lowdown: Located in the heart of LoDo, Bouquets has provided Denver with European style floral services since 1985. While well known for its floral arrangements, and bouquets of course, the small urban store also provides an array of succulents and other houseplants. The street side windows of the store provide a glimpse into a botanical world that is needed among the grey and concrete of downtown.