Homegrown — Alfred Stone Road

Russell Stafford, owner of the specialty nursery Homegrown, will be the first to admit that conditions are not currently ideal for planting, but you can always start planning for the cooler weather coming up, “Fall is the best time for planting perennials.” And he has plenty of advice for those wishing to transition into more drought tolerant native plants, if that has been on your mind. He has many hard-to-find plants which they propagate themselves, mostly from seed. What are some of the natives?

We have penstemon, or beardtongues, which are popular with hummingbirds. We have three different species of Joe Pye weed, including one that’s about two feet tall. We have a white-flowered Aster alatus, which blooms in August, a little earlier than other asters.

And there are many many more. The shop sells houseplants, gardening items like plant food, terracotta pots, and the work of local artists.

On a recent visit, I was immediately impressed with the healthy look of the plants in the sales yard, not an easy task this summer. Homegrown — located just over the line in Pawtucket, off of the north end of Blackstone Boulevard — is a specialty nursery featuring rare and unusual plants. (They simply have no room for hostas and such, but those are readily available elsewhere.)

Homegrown — formerly on Gano Street, opened in this location last April — can also design and install perennial/mixed beds that “coexist harmoniously with their surroundings.” The principals of organic gardening inform everything done at Homegrown.

(The picture of the shop exterior featured here was taken a few months ago; the morning sun better reveals the adorableness of the front with its charming awning. Stafford thinks the building dates from the 1930s.)

Closed Mondays. Tuesday-Friday, 11am to 6pm/Saturday, 10am to 5pm/Sunday, noon to 5pm.

Learn what’s new at Instagram (great photos) or Facebook.

Homegrown, 1 Alfred Stone Road, Pawtucket (directions)

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How about some Opuntia humifusa, or Eastern prickly-pear, the only cactus native to the eastern United States. Obviously tolerant of hot, dry conditions and a real conversation piece. Very cool looking.

I am crazy about the gray terracotta, also available in the standard pots.

The sales yard may not be huge, but it is loaded with interesting, hard-to-find plants.

Mr. Stafford is ready to answer your questions.

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