Plant-lovers will be overjoyed to hear that the number of green-fingered stores in the city is growing, with a new addition opening this month.
Urban Jungle Coffee House, on Easter Road, will begin serving for the first time next Saturday (20 March), offering takeaway hot drinks from their hatch, before opening fully when restrictions are lifted.
The business’s owner, Sebastiaan Fluchard, first launched his online plant store after being made redundant in the wake of the Covid pandemic.
He hasn’t looked back since as his online following and customer base continue to flourish in lockdown, making it possible for the 26-year-old to open his very own Leith store that combines his passions.
He said: “We started as an online plant shop in September, which was just called Seb’s Urban Jungle, the store is Urban Jungle Coffee House.
“The front part of the shop is the plant store and then through the back there’s a hallway, which is our plant art gallery, followed by a coffee area with a nice big espresso machine in the backroom and we’ll get some nice big palm trees in there too, properly create the jungle vibes.”
The new cafe will be open from 8am-2pm Monday-Friday and 10am-4pm on Saturday and Sunday, serving takeaway coffees, teas and cakes for the time being, as well as plants and pots.
“I’ve been a plant lover for a long time, always had the jungle vibes at home, for the last sort of ten years. At the start of lockdown, my plan was actually to open a normal cafe. It was kind of always my ambition but through the lockdown, I was made redundant and got a bit bored, so thought ‘what am I going to do’?
“I had so many plants and a couple of dozens turned into hundreds, so I thought I should start selling plants. It turned from an Instagram hobby page into an online business, which since then has grown quite a bit, so much so that we can afford to open a physical cafe and shop”, he said.
Speaking of the boom in plant buying since people began working from home, Sebastiaan added: “I think plants just make a space homier and people are becoming more aware of the benefits of plans, like clearing the air and other health benefits.”
Sebastiaan, who gets dozens of pictures a week from customers asking advice on how to spruce up their homes with plants, assures people that he and his team will be on hand to give them tips when picking the perfect plant.
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The store also does monthly plant subscriptions, where customers receive a surprise plant each month for £15 to their door. There will soon be another option for even cheaper “local subscriptions”, which will allow their customers to pick up their plant with click and collect for a price drop.