A worthwhile hobby for hopeful green thumbs

If you enjoy keeping plants in your home, but you were not graced with a green thumb, investing in plant terrariums might just be what you need.

Kyle Chow, owner of Plant, a store in Inglewood that sells terrariums and terrarium supplies, has always had an interest in gardening and liked the idea of creating “little ecosystems.”

“I started making terrariums about six years ago,” said Chow.

“I started researching and experimenting on how to grow plants in glass containers to create miniature environments.”

He initially began making terrariums to give to family and friends, and Chow said it got to a point where it was taking over his home.

“We couldn’t keep things in our house anymore,” said Chow. “I decided to try it out in a market and see how people receive these things.”

Chow decided to build a business out of his hobby, and he opened Plant in a small space in Inglewood two years ago.

A graphic designer and instructor at the Alberta College of Art and Design (ACAD), Chow’s evenings and weekends were spent travelling around Alberta and Saskatchewan in search of more ideas for his product.

“It’s a nice excuse to get away and get inspired.”

Besides selling terrariums and indoor plants, Chow also holds workshops for people who are interested in learning how to make their own terrariums.

Karen Lee, 27, has been to two of Chow’s workshops.

“I’ve always wanted to make DIY terrariums,” said Lee, “but I never really knew where to start.”

Last year, Lee came across Plant’s Facebook page, and she decided to try it.

“Although the shop was small, it gave off the sense of being cozy and at home,” said Lee.

“The workshops were held towards the back part of the shop, but it seemed like a nice setting because of all the plants around us.”

Chow said holding workshops was “one of the mandates” he included when he opened his store.

Each workshop consists of eight to 12 people. Chow tries to keep the groups small so he can focus on everyone individually.

Chow plans to move to a bigger space within the next few months in order to accomodate more people during workshops and hold more plants and supplies.

The reward is people come and they enjoy it and they want to have more plants at home. – Kyle Chow

“When I look at my first terrariums, they are like night and day,” said Chow. “They’ve evolved and become something different – something better.”

He wants to let people know that if they are excited about something to just be passionate and pursue it.

“You just need to put the work in.”

About Marcella De Ocampo 5 Articles
As a writing and communications major in the journalism program at SAIT, Marcella De Ocampo worked as a reporter for The Press during the 2015-16 academic year.

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