Well, it’s official – plants are cool – especially in Columbus. I love a great retail spot and Stump certainly delivers. Located just on the outskirts of Italian Village on 5th Ave, Stump Plants occupies its own 2 story building.
Stump Plants was created by owners, Emily and Brian, as a way to address the urban gardener as well as the millennial – a couple demographics that they felt were missing in the average garden store.
Emily and Brian both have backgrounds in areas other than gardening/plants – Emily is a graduate student in Industrial Design and Brian is a full-time photography teacher. However, they both have incredibly creative backgrounds and a shared love of the simple aesthetic that helped to elevate Stump Plants.
While she was in grad school, Emily did a project where she worked with American Horticulture, which is a US trade organization. They studied garden retailers throughout the country and they studied their best practices and looked at who the customers were. What they found was that most customers were white women over 50 years old. Emily felt that they were missing many other demographics.
They loved the idea of figuring out how to reach those other people and had initially thought that they would have a plant truck (like a food truck) that could travel around town and go to the festivals and events. However, when they began to explore retail options, they found their current space and fell in love.
In August 2015, they were given keys to the current space and the next day, they participated in Columbus Flea. If you’re not familiar with the Flea, it’s an art/food/craft sale that happens 4 times a year switching between Strongwater and Seventh Son Brewing. You can read my post about the Flea here. They sold out that day at the Flea and one month later, they opened their retail space.
Artist Residency Program
In addition to the plant shop, Stump offers an artist residency program to artists looking to create pots and planters. They offer artists the studio apartment above the shop and the artists use the kiln and retail space to create their pieces. Past artists have included: Domenic Frunzi from Philadelphia, PA and Joseph Cauvel of Cauv Design from Columbus, Ohio.
Another thing that makes Stump unique is the variety of events that they offer. They offer educational workshops and have hosted weekend brunches in their space. They have had terrarium workshops as well as vertical planter workshops. The best place to find out about future workshops is on their Instagram. In addition to the workshops, they have hosted weekend brunches with Here to Disrupt, a local business that takes over kitchens throughout Columbus to throw unique events. Another weekend staple at Stump is Lokal Cold Brew, a Columbus-based business that serves, you guessed it, cold brew coffee. They also have a fun Instagram account!
In catering to millennials and the non-typical gardeners, Emily and Brian realized that education would be an important part of their shop. In addition to the official classes that they offer, they educate each customer on the specific plant that he or she is buying.
If you’re looking for a bit of guidance in the shop, they will begin by asking a couple questions:
Which way do your windows face?
What kind of lifestyle do you lead? (how often are you able/willing to water/care for your plants)
For South or West facing windows, a cacti would be great, but it wouldn’t work well in a North facing window, for example. Once you get your plant home, they will even help you with your plant problems if you Direct Message or email them a photo of your plant. They truly want their customers to be happy and to learn how to properly care for their plants. Also, to help the customer with the transition, they give each customer a small card with their plant detailing which window to place the plant in and how often to water.