Since 1943, Primex Garden Center has slaked the horticultural thirst of urban farmers and sustainable gardeners throughout the community. The verdantly thumbed can obtain a wide range of sunlight-loving soil residents, from simple packs of vegetable or flower seeds ($1.79) to vegetable plants ($3–$10) to large trees ($250). Competently cultivate your own gardens with a back-porch composter or rain barrel ($99–$250) or decorate the neighbor's yard with perennial plants ($6.99–$18.99) arranged in the shape of Eleanor Roosevelt. The store’s knowledgeable staff members draw upon their wealth of experience with plants and previous lives as trees to better inform any leafy purchase.
J. Liddon Pennock Jr. treated Meadowbrook Farms as his passion project, honing his talent for garden design on the land's 25 acres for over 60 years. After his retirement, he created its now-flourishing retail arm to share his experiment with the wider world. Today, visitors traverse grounds and gardens dotted with ornate arrangements that fuse symmetry, color, and complex species. The Circle Garden’s water lilies burst open with vibrant pink energy, and at the dipping pool, pear cactus and coleus share ground with Japanese maple and their freshly blooming stacks of pancakes. The house also holds horticultural delights, with the Glass Room’s verdant wreaths tempting visitors during appointment-only tours. At the retail shop, guests stock up on a carefully chosen selection of statuary, pots, fountains, and garden ornaments inspired by Pennock’s work, as well as scented candles and soaps. Live plants from the indoor greenhouse or outdoor sales area help make home gardens more like Meadowbrook, with houseplants, annuals, and perennials that are occasionally whisked off for display in the Philadelphia International Flower Show.
Jason Harris brews classic American pale ales right alongside his own patented version of watermelon beer, illustrating his passion for both traditional techniques and forward-thinking beer recipes. The company he started in 1992, Keystone Homebrew Supply, now employs a staff of similarly dedicated crafters who are wise in the ways and means of making your own beer, wine, cheese, mead, honey, and flavored play-doh. In addition to stocking all the required equipment and ingredients, Keystone's 23,000-square-foot location in Montgomeryville also hosts classes that inspire amateurs to cook up their own tipples and cheeses.