Looking For Plant Shops On Our Trip

 For some reason I just couldn't find Grow Nursery during our visit to Cambria last week.  I could have looked it up on the internet; why didn't I?   Perhaps it was because I was recovering from a cold and wasn't sleeping well:  a bit of a brain fog.  We did search for "SLO county plant shops" at one point and it brought up...Home Depot.  Oh, dear.  

On our first visit to Cambria in 2014 we found Grow and bought an Aloe fosteri, which is growing and blooming on our front slope.  

We stopped at the San Luis Obispo Botanic Garden, which has a plant shop.  The shop was closed because the area adjacent to the Botanic Garden was holding a hard cider festival.  
Bad timing:
  We also missed the annual Botanic Garden plant sale by a week.
More bad timing!
However, we ended up finding a great little garden shop in San Luis Obispo called Growing Grounds.  It's right across from the Mission in downtown.  I was busy shopping so Beloved took some phone-toes
 The shop is just a breezeway between two buildings, but they had some beautifully grown plants.  It was a fine use of space.    
 Growing Grounds is a non-profit run by a local mental health charity.  Some recovering clients work with plants at the growing field as part of their recovery efforts.  Great idea--what is more soothing to the mind than working with beautiful plants? 
 They had a fantastic selection of Tillandsias, and even more amazing, the Tillys were all clearly labelled!
Aw, heck!  They had T. capitata 'Peach'.  Why didn't I get one?
 Some Tillandsias were "planted" in sea urchin shells, and they also sold sea urchin shells for DIY.
Is that the Fish Under The Sea Dance decor?  
 Ah, what that mild Central Coast climate does for plants...
 I didn't want to overdo it on the plant shopping, but I did bring home two beautiful plants from Growing Grounds--a long-searched-for Agave bovicornuta, and an Aloe capitata 'Yellow Hoodie'.  Excellent prices.  
Agave bovicornuta does not offset, nor does it produce bulbils on the flower stalk.  It does not self-pollinate, so this wonderful species can be hard to find.  I've seen a few for sale in sad shape, so I kept looking. Growing Grounds had a flawless plant for sale at an excellent price.

So we missed a gem of a nursery in Cambria, but we found one in SLO.  

Comments

  1. What a nice shop! I am amazed by the tillandsias planted in sea urchins, so cute! There are several types of Tillandsias native to my area, with the constant high humidity they grow spontaneusly on trees, walls and even utility poles. Tillandsia Aeranthos has the prettiest flowers, Tillandsia recurvata is very common too but their blooms are not so showy. Have a wonderful weekend!

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    1. Wowza! Your area must have incredible levels of humidity if Tillandsias sprout on walls and utility poles. To me in the land of little humidity, that is mind-boggling. I'll be thinking about your comment with amazement for some time to come!

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  2. Great find! The quiet pun/truth in the shop name reminds me of several of the cases in Oliver Sacks' books, where people with a wide range of disorienting neural conditions were at their calmest in the garden. The effect can be achieved even through a phone-to: that table of happy plants under the green man produces an inner "aahhh" whenever it's in view; I can imagine how refreshing they'd be in a live encounter.

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    1. The green man table put a smile on my face--the whole place did.

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  3. What a cool little shop, and a great idea for a non-profit. Working with plants is indeed good for mental stability. For me in the PNW, even a trip to Home Depot in California would be interesting.

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    1. It would be tough without the comfort of our green friends.

      I wonder if the HD plant selection is any different in your area? Guess they don't sell Impatiens at Christmas--or do they?

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  4. I couldn't find Grow either when I was out in that area last spring. I think it was Gerhard who told me the entrance is kind of behind another business. I'll be more diligent in my searching when I am next out there. It really doesn't seem there are many nurseries in that region-sadly- especially considering the fabulous plant climate. I found one in Los Osos that was good sized but not much plant inventory-I think it was an offshoot of a design business.

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    1. I've been there, and yes it is behind another store, but I just couldn't remember where. Should have looked! Me dummy. There really isn't a lot in the area. The Central Coast doesn't have much of a water supply. Ironic--I've never seen such happy succulent plants. They love that climate. (I do, too.)

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  5. Great purchases and that does indeed look like a very nice little nursery. I'd been holding off on my usual flurry of fall plant-buying splurges due to the persistent heat but my husband and I broke the spell yesterday with a visit to the Huntington's plant sale. I half expected to run into you there but then concluded that, if you went, you entered before the garden opened to non-members. I came home with a haul! Now I just have to find appropriate spots for them. Happily, the temperature is on a downward trend here. I hope it's cooling down in your area too.

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    1. So you braved the Huntington sale? We'll expect a full report. ;^) I've never been to that sale, believe it or not. And of course it had to be 95F. Just not a fan of crowds--even the members-only sale is reportedly very crowded (maybe even more so). Did you get some good stuff? Do tell! Cooler here but still way too hot to garden. Tomorrow, perhaps, Monday looks promising...

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    2. Well darn it! I’m bummed for you that you missed Grow and the Botanic Garden sale. Thank,goodness for Growing Gro

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    3. I've got a few previous purchases to place plant, so nothing to complain about! :-)

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  6. Isn't Las Pilitas in that general vicinity? That's my native encyclopedia. I've not been to that location, only the one formerly in Encinitas.

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    1. Well, duh! Yes it is! Inland from the point between Atascadero and San Luis Obispo. I was really amiss, but there was a lot going on...

      That would have been an interesting place to visit. Will just have to visit the Central Coast again. (Hardly a bad thing.)

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  7. Some of my faves are the little shops I just stumble upon.

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