If you've experienced Huntsville's first plant truck at the Sunday Mid City Market or the mesmerizing plant shop on Lowe Mill's second floor, then you have encountered Pure Joy Plants. Their motto is "Bring Joy into your home, one plant at a time!"
I chatted with the owner, Yarden Binns, about her plant baby business; I say "plant baby" because she radiates love for plants and a passion for sharing that love with Huntsville! The first time I saw the lovely truck and walked into the Lowe Mill store, I felt energized by the vibrant green growth she masterfully cultivates.
A Little Backstory:
Yarden is married to Casden Binns, and they have one baby together. While her husband works on the arsenal with a contracting company, Yarden is a real estate investor and agent and loves being involved with anything to do with houses, including - ding ding - you guessed it: houseplants! She moved to Huntsville in 2008 with her mom, as they had family here, and her husband is a Huntsville native.
Q: You have a plant shop called Pure Joy Plants. Can you tell us where the inspiration for the business came from and how you landed on the name?
A: My husband and I were stationed in Oahu, Hawaii, in 2018. When we moved back to Huntsville, I missed the tropical vibes. I started collecting plants, and then I came across one of Hilton Carter's IG posts talking about how in Mexico they deliver plants in a truck. This got me thinking, "How cool would it be if we made a plant truck?" So March 2020, I bought a trailer and worked on it, and we did our first pop-up at the Camp at MidCity in September 2020; shortly after, we opened a shop at Lowe Mill in June 2022. The name came when my husband asked, "What do plants bring you?" I replied, "Pure Joy!" and the name was born; Pure Joy Plants!
Q: How has it evolved and grown since you started with first the plant truck and then the Lowe Mill store?
A: At first, it was just a hobby and something I wanted others to enjoy. There wasn't a plant truck in Huntsville, and we were having fun, and the next thing I knew, we were opening a store in Lowe Mill. The growth has been surprising!
Q: Tell us about your classes at the Lowe Mill store and how the education component has enhanced your business?
A: People love the classes! Many people like plants but don't know how to care for them. This is what led us to do classes. We have classes on how to propagate, how to trim back your plant and make new plants out of those cuttings. We do Houseplant 101, where we go over lighting and water requirements. When to repot a plant, signs of pests, and you can ask us questions if you're having issues with one of your plants. We have a terrarium class that people love, and it sells out every time. We have a make-your-own macrame hanger with a terra-cotta pot and a plant. All our classes can be found on our website, purejoyplants.com
Q: What has been your biggest surprise about opening this business in Huntsville?
A: The support of our wonderful customers, how many people love plants, and their willingness to try to grow a plant! When we have a tough day, our customer's excitement about plants keeps us going.
Q: We all know many people who consider themselves to have a black thumb; you obviously are skilled at keeping plants alive and thriving. Can you share with the readers a perspective shift that may help them keep plants alive?
A: The main things plants need to grow are; good lighting, water, and to have their leaves cleaned from time to time. Good lighting is bright, non-direct sunlight. Water only when half of the soil is dry. How do I know if half of the soil is dry? Stick your index finger in the soil as far as possible; if it feels wet, return a few days and check again. If dry, give it a good soak until the water drains through the pot. Clean your leaves from dust and pests; this will help your leaves be able to photosynthesize to grow.
Q: What advice would you give someone who says, "I kill every plant I get," or speaks negatively about their ability to keep plants alive?
A: I always ask these questions; What is the name of the plant you had difficulty with? What was the plant doing? Was it mushy or dried out, or crunchy? This helps me know what advice to give them. Here are some of my go-to tips, if your plant is mushy, it's because it's getting too much water. If your plant is dried out and crunchy, give it more water. But I always tell people they can send me pictures and messages through FB or IG, and I can help them.
Q: Give us a sample day of life at the store in Lowe Mill?
A: On days that we aren't open, we get shipments usually on Wednesdays; we tag them all with care instructions and price. We deliver the plants on Thursdays and prepare them for our Lowe Mill days, Fridays, and Saturdays. Since Fridays are slower, we focus on cleaning all the leaves of the plants and organizing and cleaning the shop. Saturdays are our busiest days when we talk to our customers, sell plants, and answer all the questions.
Q: Tell us a little more about that cute plant truck that birthed this business,
A: We go out about 1-2 times monthly at The Market at Midcity. We have our schedule on our website, purejoyplants.com. This year in July and Aug, we won't be out because of how hot it gets, and houseplants don't like the heat, but we will still be open at Lowe Mill on Fridays and Saturdays.
Q: What about this plant business makes it all worth it at the end of a busy hard day?
A: The thing that makes it all worth it is when customers show us pictures of how their plant has grown, and to see them so happy is the best because you know that feeling, especially when you have a lot of plants and when you have a plant thriving and growing it's all worth it!
Q: What brings you the most joy about this business?
A: Seeing customers be so happy because they found the plant they've been looking for and then seeing the plant they got from us thrive and grow
Q: How has the reception in Huntsville been towards Pure Joy Plants?
A: It's been awesome! The only reason we opened a shop is because people kept on asking us where our store was!
Q: What's a go-to saying about plants or about plant care you find yourself saying often
A: People will say I have too many plants, and I say there is always room for one more! Growing plants is all about experimenting and trying different things to help them thrive in your home.
Our Plant Truck pop-up schedule is on our website purejoyplants.com.
Starting June 1st, we will be open Thursday 12-5 and Friday & Saturday 11-7 at Lowe Mill on the second floor.