Top ten: Gardening stores

Get inspired by the sky-high greenery documented in pilot and photographer Alex MacLean’s book Up on the Roof (out Wednesday 2), then hit these horticulture shops to embrace nature in your own abode.

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  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Assorted cacti, $4–$20 each, at Chelsea Garden Center

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Orchid plant, $45, at Chelsea Garden Center

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Dig

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Cap Ferrat mother-of-pearl candleholders, $12 each, at Dig

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Mary Lake-Thompson glycerin soaps, $5 each, at Dig

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Dog-shaped topiary, $150, at Dig

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Savon de Marseille rose-scented liquid soap, $24, at GRDN

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Bee Man Candle Co. long beeswax candles, $9–$12 each, at GRDN

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Seed Savers Exchange fruit and veggie seeds, $3 each, at GRDN

  • Photograph: Virginia Rollison

    Susannah Thompson burlap gardening tote, $59, at GRDN

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Victorinox floral Swiss army knives, $10–$14 each, at Jamali Garden

  • Multicolored raffia pot, $9, at Jamali Garden

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

    ARS pastel-colored shears, $45 each, at Jungle

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

    Catie Carter decorative planter carved from bark, $25, at Jungle

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Rustic tole lantern, $50, at Lexington Gardens

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Miniature ceramic vases, five for $36, at Lexington Gardens

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

    Sterling-silver ecosystem locket, $150, at Rose Red & Lavender

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

    Glass teapot vase, $18, at Rose Red & Lavender

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Square glazed-ceramic pots, $14 each, at Shop in the Garden

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Pewter garlic-shaped salt and pepper shaker set, $58, at Shop in the Garden

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Bronnley citrus-shaped soaps, $7 each, at Shop in the Garden

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

    Tesoros stainless-steel cups hand-painted with floral accents, $36 each, at Sprout Home

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Chinese rice basket, $225, at Treillage

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Faux shrub, $75, at Treillage

Photograph: Marielle Solan


RECOMMENDED: Best shops in NYC

Chelsea Garden Center

  • Price band: 2/4

Between this spacious Red Hook emporium and its smaller Chelsea locale, this plant purveyor has one of the largest selections of greenery in the city. While you’ll find gardening tools such as glossy clay pots ($20–$200) and small Fiskars hand shovels ($4), the bulk of Chelsea Garden Center’s stock is comprised of lush vegetation. Apartment-friendly picks include low-maintenance cacti ($4–$20) and air plants ($10–$20), although gorgeous orchids ($45) that bloom annually are worth the extra effort. Proud New Yorkers may claim that no city tops Gotham, but few would knock the beauty of L.A.’s palm trees. To get the best of both coasts, make room in your pad for bright green dracaenas ($17–$200) or kentia palms ($225–$350) sourced from Hawaii.

  1. 444 Van Brunt St , (at Beard St)
More info

Dig

  • Price band: 2/4

Marked by plants hanging from the ceiling and a botanical scent, this lush storefront tops its metal-framed shelves with ornate imported urns ($35–$73) and ever-growing ferns in terra-cotta pots ($12–$25). Opened in 2006 by husband and wife Chuck Dorr and Maggie Morris, Dig carries nature-inspired household items such as Cap Ferrat mother-of-pearl candleholders ($12) and Mary Lake-Thompson glycerin soaps ($5–$10). Most of the shop’s merchandise has a sophisticated appeal, but dog-shaped topiaries ($150–$350) and insect-eating Venus flytraps ($16) are fun, quirky buys.

  1. 479 Atlantic Ave , (between Third Ave and Nevins St)
More info

GRDN

  • Price band: 2/4

Since 2004, owner Susanne Kongoy has filled her sun-soaked store with the tools, plants and accessories essential to maintaining a healthy urban garden. While you’ll find practical items such as Susannah Thompson burlap gardening totes ($59) and Seed Savers Exchange fruit and veggie seeds ($3), the selection is rounded out with a bevy of home accents, including the Bee Man Candle Co. long beeswax candles ($9–$12) and rose-scented Savon de Marseille liquid soaps ($24). Swing by before your next dinner party to pick up a housewarming gift—coffee-table tome Edible: A Celebration of Local Food ($30) or a bouquet of fresh flowers ($65–$150) are sure to wow your host.

  1. 103 Hoyt St , (between Atlantic Ave and Pacific St )
More info

Jamali Garden

  • Price band: 2/4

One of the few Flower District wholesalers that’s open to the public, this two-story shop is overflowing with affordable home accents ($15–$120), candles ($4–$18), ceramics ($3–$188), and both preserved and artificial plants ($8–$200). Bamboo screens ($90) allow privacy seekers to separate rooms in style while three-tiered potted topiaries ($85) bring the outdoors in. If you want your dining-room table to resemble the ones seen in catalogs, head here for glossy faux artichokes (three for $15), sturdy banana-leaf place mats ($50) and bags of polished mini river stones ($7) that can fill simple glass cube vases ($3–$9). Of course, green thumbs will find nitty-gritty necessities, such as multicolored raffia pots ($6–$9) and Victorinox floral Swiss army knives ($10–$14) in a rainbow of colors.

  1. 149 W 28th St, (between Sixth and Seventh Aves)
More info

Jungle

  • Price band: 2/4

You’d never know that this pristine shop lies on the site of a former parking lot: In 2010, owner Amanda Mitchell transformed the area into a lush outdoor sanctuary that doubles as an event space. High walls and vaulted wood beams create an intimate setting where groups can gather year-round for dinner parties, a night of dancing or even a small wedding ceremony ($200–$500 per hour). Although the privileged few brownstone dwellers with backyards may be the only ones interested in ARS pastel-colored shears ($45), Hori-Hori digging tools imported from Japan ($39) and decorative planters carved from bark ($25), which are on consignment from local designer Catie Carter, even studio apartments can benefit from the store’s selection of small, handmade terrariums ($35–$155) and agave plants ($25) that thrive indoors.

  1. 61 Kent Ave , (between North 10th and 11th Sts)
More info

Lexington Gardens

  • Price band: 2/4

Classical music greets visitors at this whimsical boutique, where co-owner Michael Walter peddles dazzling dried-flower arrangements, including decorative spheres ($24–$45) made from berries and heather in short green vases ($210), alongside antiques for both the home and garden. Etched hurricane vases ($36) and rustic tole lanterns ($50) will lend a hint of the outdoors to any abode, while antique garden tools ($30) double as creative decor. If your small apartment calls for equally diminutive home accents, opt for miniature ceramic vases (five for $36) in assorted shapes.

  1. 1011 Lexington Ave, (between 72nd and 73rd Sts)
More info

Rose Red & Lavender

  • Price band: 2/4

Married couple Kimberly and Enrique Sevilla have been helping urbanites spruce up their living spaces since 2008, offering indoor-friendly air plants ($2–$10) that flourish without soil and hanging ferns encased in globes of moss ($30) from their bright blue shop. The focus here is on greenery, and plants such as temperate bonsai trees ($35–$50) abound in the store’s neighboring outdoor space, where the Sevillas churn out floral arrangements ($50–$300) daily. There’s also a smattering of small gifts, including sterling-silver lockets ($150) containing petite ecosystems and glass teapot vases ($18) that can also be used for serving Tea Beyond floral-infused tea ($12). Weekly classes, including one on how to make ice cream using lavender and roses ($35), will change the way you think about working with flowers.

  1. 653 Metropolitan Ave, (between Leonard St and Manhattan Ave)
More info

Shop in the Garden

  • Price band: 2/4

Perusing the New York Botanical Garden’s 250 acres can be an all-day affair, so we suggest visiting the shop first to avoid missing out on its fantastic selection of gifts, books, housewares and plants. A skylight and floor-to-ceiling windows create the illusion that you’re shopping outdoors, inspiring you to re-create a natural environment at home with Filix Botanica fern-print plates (four for $48) and pewter garlic-shaped salt and pepper shakers ($58 for the set) that appear to have been freshly uprooted. Deck out your windowsill with floral galvanized-steel pots ($8) or square glazed-ceramic styles ($14), then keep your plants flourishing with Monty’s organic liquid food ($10). Your long day in the garden will call for freshening up, so be sure to pick up Bronnley orange-and-jasmine body wash ($26) and citrus-shaped soaps ($7).

  1. 2900 Southern Blvd , (at Fordham Rd)
More info

Sprout Home

  • Price band: 2/4

Founder Tara Heibel tapped employee Tassy de Give to open this New York branch of her Chicago store in 2007. Weiss ceramic planters ($10–$100) hang from the ceiling of the sprawling, well-lit shop, where locals convene for free classes on creating floral arrangements (materials $50–$300). Even if you’re not DIY savvy, you can still leave with something equally charming, such as Tesoros stainless-steel cups hand-painted with floral accents ($36), Seletti porcelain milk-carton vases ($17) and hanging glass globe terrariums ($14–$19). To bring a piece of nature indoors, head to Sprout’s neighboring floral shop, where arrangements start at $50 and can incorporate anything from French tulips to seasonal branches.

  1. 44 Grand St, (between Kent and Wythe Aves)
More info

Treillage

  • Price band: 2/4

In keeping with its neighborhood’s affinity for fine things, this sprawling upscale shop is filled with fancy garden accents worthy of the White House lawn. Treillage was founded in 1992 by interior designer Bunny Williams and her husband, antique dealer John Rosselli. Together, their creative backgrounds have made it a go-to spot for eye-catching housewares from around the globe, including stone troughs filled with moss ($180), an antique wooden birdcage from the 1800s ($750) and authentic Chinese rice baskets ($225). Snatch up faux shrubs ($75) for your pad or read about real ones in garden expert Page Dickey’s Embroidered Ground ($26), which chronicles her 29-year journey creating Duck Hill garden in upstate New York.

  1. 418 E 75th St , (between First and York Aves)
More info


Up on the Roof by Alex MacLean (Princeton Architectural Press)
A sneak peek at some of New York’s hidden skyline spaces.

  • Photograph: Alex S. MacLean

    Brooklyn Grange

  • Photograph: Alex S. MacLean

    176 Grand Street

  • Photograph: Alex S. MacLean

    166 Bank Street

  • Photograph: Alex S. MacLean

    The Visionaire

  • Photograph: Alex S. MacLean

    Landmark Arts Building

Photograph: Alex S. MacLean

Brooklyn Grange

Users say

2 comments
Kent C
Kent C

I'm all about saving money. My wife is all about beauty. If we can find a great way to save money and make our garden beautiful, I think that we have found a good middle ground. Do you have any tips for us that don't live near any of these stores? http://www.fabulousdecor.biz/default.asp?dept_id=30110 

Maria
Maria

No gardening stores in Queens? How can that be?