African Garden + work

The Best Garden Center in Chicagoland

This is it, the one I make a special trip to at least once a season, The Growing Place, in Naperville. There is a second location in Aurora, but it is even farther from home, so I haven't been there yet. The Naperville location is the original one, and on a sunny morning late in May it took me about 40 minutes to reach plus a couple of tolls.

It was definitely worth it.

Why do I think The Growing Place is the best garden center around?

It could be because of the incredible selection of plants, many of which can only be found at mailorder nurseries. This year's catalogue is over 170 8"x 10" pages long of listings, and many of the offerings at the nursery aren't even listed in the catalogue. I saw that Whale's Tongue Agave that is Pam at Digging's signature plant for sale here. (Of course it was much smaller.) Those gorgeous annuals that Jodi at Bloomingwriter is always posting about, but I couldn't find? Also at The Growing Place. This is where I got my Calycathus floridus 'Athens.' The catalogue lists 27 different Heucheras. They have Eryngium 'Jade Frost.' (I'm still kicking myself for not buying it. I had it in my hand!) Not only does The Growing Place have a large selection, but the plants themselves are properly displayed and well cared for. Nothing that I bought was rootbound or stressed.
But are those are the only reasons? No, The Growing Place is worth visiting for the display gardens alone. What's your dream color scheme? It's probably there.

Ruby and gold with a shot of blue. Purple and green?

I've got to get some of these Alliums. How about peach and blue?

In the background is a brown theme. There are all different types of gardens on display: a water garden with a Japanese bridge,

a formal Rose garden,

a shade garden

sunny gardens,

a shabby chic/recycled items garden,

and a rock garden.

There's just so much here to inspire.

And then there are all the containers and ornaments for sale. (Click on any photo to enlarge.)

I'd really like this dog.

I saw rustic high-backed chairs for plants with a tiny birdhouse on each.

There was also a narrower, taller bottle tree.

The Growing Place is also a fairy lover's delight.

For those not as talented as Frances, there are lots of pieces of fairy furniture for sale for creating a fairy garden.

Need a place for your fairies to live? There's a wide selection, from the secure

to the quaint

to the grand.

One can't forget about plants for the fairy garden

or tools and garden ornaments.

You can even get minignomes to do the work for the fairies. I think another trip is in order, this time with my daughter to pick out things for a fairy garden of our own.

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The Best Garden Center in Chicagoland + work