The top 10 garden centres in Toronto
Garden centres in Toronto are a gardener's best friend. Every great urban gardener will tell you that sourcing your plants and gardening supplies from a quality garden centre is key to your planting success. So what makes a good garden centre? A few key ingredients are imperative; a large selection of plants and/or other gardening essentials, helpful and knowledgeable staff, and a well-organized store, so even novice gardeners can find what they're looking for.
Here are my picks for the top garden centres in Toronto (in no particular order).
East End Garden Centre
1395 Queen Street East, 416.469.4925
This full service garden centre literally bursts onto the sidewalk with an array of seasonal plants and accessories. In addition to annuals, perennials, plants, trees, shrubs and every type of gardening gear you could possibly think of, East End Garden Centre also carries hardware, electrical and plumbing supplies and offers landscaping services. Ask to visit the back lot for a seemingly endless supply of soil, mulch, wood chips and gravel.
East of Eliza
1960 Gerrard Street East, 416.691.8038
A traditional florist shop with a hidden secret garden centre, East of Eliza is perfect for finding that pretty little something for a special event or a permanent fixture in your garden oasis. Owner Reed Russell is known for her earthy and whimsical approach to planter boxes and floral arrangements. She also offers landscaping services.
200 Christie Street, 416.537.1244
Fiesta Farms offers grocery shopping and gardening all in one place. What could be better? Although most known as a great independent grocery store, Fiesta Farms also boasts an awesome garden centre, which is open seasonally. A large selection of organic herbs can be purchased in the garden center to compliment whatever yummy delicacies suit your fancy.
4000 Eglinton Avenue West, 416.241.9174
If you live in the west end and are in need of a gardening fix, Plant World is the place to be. With 5 acres of retail space, and year round greenhouses, this store truly has everything your green thumb is itching for. Plant World's location has remained a hub for the gardening crowd since its inception way back in 1889.
1000 Islington Aveneue, 416.503.3339
Islington Nurseries offers a well-rounded selection of seasonal plants and gardening accessories. The store includes 2500 square feet of indoor and outdoor space. They are well-known for carrying a range of mature trees at reasonable prices. Head to their stone yard at 270 Evans Avenue for a large selection of landscaping materials and supplies.
Lee Valley Tools
590 King Street West, 416.366.5959 and two other locations
What good gardener is complete without a high-quality set of tools? Lee Valley Tools has three locations around the city that provide every possible gardening tool imaginable. From axes, hoes and rakes to trowels, mowers and shears; you name it, they have it. In-store seminars are hugely popular and sell-out quickly.
Veranda Home and Garden
2493 Yonge Street, 416.481.9998
Every great garden paradise needs appropriate furnishings to feel complete. Veranda Home and Garden, in the Young/Eglinton area, is a sweet little shop that boasts a wide variety of garden furniture and accessories. Veranda has turned the interior designer outdoors and gone wild. There's a variety of items to spice up an outdoor space, like fountains, outdoor rugs, and hand carved plaques.
Woodhill Garden Centre
320 Steeles Avenue East, 905.889.2917
In operation since 1976, Woodhill Garden Centre provides a variety of garden needs and services. The prices at Woodhill are generally a little cheaper than the average garden store and there is a wide selection of annuals, perennials, trees, shrubs and vines available. Woodhill also carries specialty products, tools and accessories.
1340 Bloor St. West, 416.504.1653
For sustainable urban gardening that gives a nod to our "roots", Urban Harvest can't be beat. This seasonal store operates online when it's not gardening season. They carry a variety of heirloom, organic and non-genetically modified seeds and plants that you won't find in most other garden centers.
BONUS GARDEN CENTRE!
Grow It All Inc.
165 Geary Ave, 416.588.9595
As their name suggests, this store will help you "grow it all" using hydroponic methods. They carry a wide range of starter kits and can help you grow tomatoes, peppers, herbs, flowers and mushrooms in a variety of unique and visually interesting arrangements. Visit their showroom to browse the large selection of seeds, plants, lights, grow systems and fans.
Writing by Julie Palmer