In May, garden center industry professionals Tammy Behm, Laura Tetley and Laura Caldie opened Maypop Coffee & Garden Shop in Webster Groves, Mo., a suburb just outside of St. Louis. Behm, who previously worked at Greenscape Gardens with Tetley and Caldie, says that over the years, she has collected tips and tidbits at trade shows and garden center tours, which she used to help create a new neighborhood garden center and café in a residential area, just down the street from a park.

A meeting of international garden centers in Paris organized by John Stanley in January 2017 inspired her to put her thoughts and ideas into a business plan. One of Maypop’s focus areas is to reach consumers through marketing and emphasizing not the products, but “the experience they have when they get home,” Behm says. The goal is to showcase the results of growing a garden, and “how it makes you feel to pick a warm strawberry from the sun,” for example, or fix a cocktail for friends with herbs you’ve grown. “We’re not trying to take a bigger piece of the pie,” she says, referring to other IGCs nearby who may consider Maypop competition, “we want to grow the pie,” of people invested in gardening. We visited the store two hours after their outdoor nursery and greenhouse opened to the public.

Look for more updates soon, including photos of their soon-to-be-open coffee shop.

Maypop Coffee & Garden Shop opened to the public in the afternoon on May 11, just in time for Mother’s Day. The garden center, which will include a coffee shop housed in a home built in the late 1800s, is results-oriented. “Landscapes aren’t just for looking at any longer. It’s time we interact with our green spaces and let wildlife thrive within them,” reads Maypop’s plant page. “Creating an abundant habitat will bring you outdoors to watch the finches foraging, the caterpillars munching, and the bumblebees fumbling about in perfect harmony.”

MICHELLE SIMAKIS

These rustic, hand-made hanging basket displays provide depth for shoppers and three levels of color.

MICHELLE SIMAKIS

Maypop’s property includes a Nexus greenhouse with various displays of well-merchandized annuals and tropicals, but it will also be a respite from Missouri’s cold in winter. Soon the owners will set up tables and chairs for guests to enjoy their coffee and baked goods surrounded by an oasis of houseplants and fruit trees, even during colder months.

MICHELLE SIMAKIS

Maypop’s plant selection includes natives, shrubs, annuals, perennials, groundcovers, houseplants, herbs, veggies and fruit, all “chosen for maximum purpose and beauty,” according to its website.

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Maypop is located just down the street from Deer Creek Park, and the café will offer to-go packages of healthy snacks like veggies and hummus for families taking a walk, heading to a little-league baseball game or other activities in the park.

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The future “She Shed” is under construction but will serve as space for regular workshops and seminars.

MICHELLE SIMAKIS