NW Greenlands' staff crafts a compost blend for vineyards, nurseries, yards, and gardens that the dedicated gardening experts make by carefully balancing temperature, moisture, and microbial activity for a finished product approved by the Organic Materials Review Institute. This is no small feat—six months to one year after it’s created, compost must to prove its quality by passing a screening and spontaneously producing a single red rose. Customers can choose from NW Greenlands’ variety of compost blends, including fine garden compost made with 100% plant matter, or potting soil, which contains pumice, peat moss, and E-Mix, which is packed with extra vitamins and minerals. Sandy loam breaks up stubborn clay and fills in holes. Greenlands’ staff can also whip up custom compost blends for gardeners that are tailored to the specific qualities of their soil.
Urban Farm Store's storied urban farmer Robert Litt quit his job as a landscape architect to form this beloved bucolic boutique—offering the metropolitan masses a chance at their own barnyard bliss with supplies such as organic vegetables (starting at $2.95) and organic fertilizers (bulk, priced as marked). Use your digging skills for good instead of graves when you plant a fruit tree ($12.95 to $27.95). Or nurture a bountiful garden bed using organic potting soil (two cubic feet for $12), which is better than willing plants to grow by rubbing your genie-infested wishing sweater. Urban Farm Store also offers beer-making supplies, cheese-making classes, and pasture-raised meat and eggs far superior to meat and eggs conjured from thin air by starving birthday-party magicians. For the ultimate farm feat, however, adopt and bring home a baby chick ($4.95). These infantile egg producers arrive at the store on certain dates and sell quickly. Urban Farm Store also hosts free classes on basic chicken care every other Thursday at 6:30 p.m., during which they'll explain why it's better to feed chicks with organic chicken feed ($21) than molding clay and clock parts.
Founded by a college student in 1999, Green Thumb Landscape & Maintenance has since blossomed into a full-service yard-care authority, tackling projects ranging from residential landscaping to intricate redesigns at the Portland International Airport and the Oregon State Hospital. The team of professional technicians can transform overgrown lawns into meticulously landscaped works of art dappled with stone walkways, fire pits, water features, and sprinkler systems. They overhaul scruffy yards and dispose of debris offsite during full-scale renovations that encourage new, healthy foliage to bloom, and they revivify dowdy turf with chromatic seasonal flower beds, Christmas lights, and tie-dyed jack-o'-lanterns.
Mustard Seed Farms' summer community-supported agriculture fills veggie-coffers to overflowing with farm-fresh organic produce. With 80 acres of certified-organic farmland and 40 years of farming know-how, Mustard Seed's CSA reaps a literal bumper crop of more than 150 varieties of fruits and vegetables. The bounty includes squash, blackberries, cantaloupes, tomatoes, red and gold raspberries, cucumbers, onions, beets, and more. Each Tuesday between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m., customers can pick up just-picked produce, ensuring ample ammunition for impromptu food fights.
Thatcher Loen, president of the eponymous plant nursery, stocks an inventory of more than 50,000 flowers, shrubs, trees, and other vibrant, botanical life. Lush foliage explodes from every corner of the 3.5-acre nursery, home to more than 1,000 plant varieties in need of horticultural adoption. Row after row of plants ranges from rare and unusual to contemporary and traditional, a selection that includes annuals, perennials, vines, and organisms resembling flytraps fond of crooning Motown tunes. In addition to helping patrons navigate the nursery, helpful staff members can answer any lingering questions.