Arts & Entertainment

L-Stop Musts: The Plant Shop Edition

Olivia SigunickQideas is open 10 6 p.m. daily.

Living in the city, there isn’t much nature brought into everyday life. Luckily, Chicago has quite a few plant shops that could make any living space more bright ­— each one having its own unique take on greenery. Here are a few plant shops The Phoenix recommends along the Red Line. 

Argyle: Qideas (1134 W. Argyle St.)

This quaint plant paradise is just a half block away from the Argyle station. When first arriving, you’ll find the crowd of foliage, garden tools, jewelry, clothing and even a kitchen supply store beyond. 

This store’s a comfortable space for plant lovers with its diverse selection of plants and a semi-secluded plant corner tucked away from the other sections. The plant nook allows for lots of sunshine to pour in, making the store a charming and luminous outing. 

Despite the store’s small size, it holds a wide variety of plants, from bamboo to simple potted plants. Plus, the ceramic pots sold here are accessible for anyone looking to simply re-pot the plant they already own. 

The store is also home to a white dog named Coco Chanel. The store owner is just as friendly as his furry friend — a conversation about the health of a plant or the rainy weather might be on the horizon during this plant outing. For anyone who loves a good conversation about plants (or anything really), this is the place to go. 

Qideas is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Belmont: Plant Stand Collective (3247 N. Broadway St.)

Olivia Sigunick The Plant Stand Collective, open Tuesday-Sunday, is off the Belmont stop.

This eclectic and vibrant shop is the place to go for plant novices on the hunt for a new green addition to their home. Outside of the shop, you will be greeted by a lovely window display scattered with plants and flower pots sitting outside. When you walk in there’s a diverse selection of greenery to choose from, and a display of paper flowers and artwork for sale. 

This spacious store not only offers bonsai trees and flower bouquets but also shirts, stationery, jewelry and animal-themed pots such as raccoons, koalas and hedgehogs. All the extra amenities are outside the box and add a unique feel to the store that’s already bursting with green foliage.

Every plant you purchase also comes with specific instructions on how to care for it. It feels very personal, almost as if the store is anticipating the needs of customers with a brown thumb — making it the ideal place for any plant beginners. The owner knows a lot about plants, from the instructional notes to the care of the plants displayed in the store, and creates a warm and welcoming environment for anyone who wants to just look around or ask a few questions. 

Plant Stand Collective is open Tuesday to Friday 12 a.m to 6 p.m., Saturdays 11 a.m to 6 p.m. and Sundays 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Argyle: Foyer Shop (1480 W. Berwyn Ave.)

Olivia Sigunick Foyer Shop is open Friday-Sunday.

This minimalist plant boutique is the place to go if you’re looking for a straightforward plant shop. This shop is a slightly longer walk off of the train station than Qideas, but there are several other enjoyable stores to venture into as you make your way to the plants – bakeries, antique stores and several clothing shops line the path to Foyer Shop. 

The open layout of the shop makes room for exploration of what the store offers. With an extensive option of plants, the smaller potted plants aren’t obvious at first. The more you look around the more you will find different plants in hidden corners of the store. 

A unique amenity of this store is that a majority of the vases sold separately are glass, as opposed to ceramics, making the aesthetic of the store feel more put together and refined. However, the ceramic pots they do sell are hand-painted, adding an authentic quality. This shop also offers stationary and garden supplies. 

This spotless plant utopia is truly one of a kind. With hidden gems in every alcove of the store, this shop is the place to go if you are looking for a simple and uncomplicated plant shopping experience. 

Foyer Shop is open Friday 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Bryn Mawr: Gethsemane Garden Center and Wild Pansy Gift Shop (5739 N. Clark St.)

Olivia Sigunick Andersonville’s Gethsemane Garden Center is open 9 a.m.-4 p.m. every day.

This delightful plant shop has everything a plant lover could want with hundreds of plants to choose from. Upon first entering the indoor greenhouse, customers are surrounded by plants in every direction. The overflow of plants on both sides of the aisle and the pristinely organized interior makes shoppers want to extend their stay for as long as possible. 

The alluring nursery includes an indoor greenhouse as well as an outdoor garden — there’s an abundance to explore, ranging from hanging plants spilling into the aisles to several different herb and vegetable plants outside in the garden. The greenhouse offers extensive options of vases, plants and even a koi pond. 

On your way to check out, you’ll run into the Wild Pansy Gift Shop, which offers nature-themed wall posters, perfume, garden decorations and more. 

This little corner of the world has so much more than just plants. With new surprises in every area of this shop, this nature excursion is well worth it. Going there and discovering all the different things about this shop is a great adventure for a weekend outing.  

Gethsemane Garden Center and Wild Pansy Gift Shop is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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