Q + A
the voice of little eden’s terry rennolds
As more people are compelled to stay inside, the desire to brighten their home spaces is magnified. Artfully curated furniture and décor can only go so far to enliven a bedroom or living area, so modern homeowners and apartment dwellers alike have taken a greener — and leafier — approach to amplifying their at-home sanctuaries. Cue: houseplants.
The demand for houseplants that are both classic and trendy has skyrocketed even before the implementation of stay-at-home orders — and for greenhouse gurus like Terry Rennolds of Little Eden Plantscaping, the surge in popularity does not go unnoticed. His inventory of stunning, beautifully maintained greenery has enticed businesses — like our new favorite, Wildflower Lounge — and houseplant enthusiasts from around the state to make the trek to his greenhouse and event space in Arvada.
What’s your story? How did Little Eden get its start?
In 1978, I needed a job and started selling plants from a small nursery in Aurora, CO. I enjoyed what I was doing and decided to branch off and start Little Eden Plantscaping. Little Eden had a brief stint in retail for a while then switched to rentals for events and maintenance contracts for commercial and residential spaces. COVID stopped all of the events, so we had to make a quick decision to pivot our business model. Now, Little Eden is open full time for retail, and the greenhouse is stocked with plants for every spot in your home or office.
To what do you attribute your success?
Customer service. I truly enjoy what I do and, more importantly, I enjoy working with people. It’s hard to find companies today where the owner is 100% involved in everything the company does, down to watering and maintaining the plants at our restaurant accounts and customer’s homes. I also owe a lot of my success to my kids since both my son and daughter help me out with everything.
What do you love about what you do? What are the distinct challenges?
I love all of our customers! We have so many cool people walk into the greenhouse every day. Everyone is so friendly and genuinely interested in what we do at Little Eden.
I also love that my business is a family business. My son and daughter, Justin and Lauren, help me out and it’s nice to be able to spend time with my kids while doing what I love. My son works with me full time and runs the greenhouse operations. Everyone loves him and he keeps work fun. He can talk to anyone and makes everyone feel so welcome. My daughter helps out with the event side of the business — from planning events on our farm to pop up events around the city.
It’s a challenge to stay ahead of the “trends.” Like any business, supply and demand is something we’re constantly aware of and we have to keep our prices low and our inventory exciting to keep our customers returning. We’ve been able to supply our customers with amazing plants at extremely competitive prices.
How do you stand out from the big-box stores? Why do customers consistently choose Little Eden?
We listen to our customers. I FaceTime customers regularly when they need help choosing new plants or have care questions for their existing plants. Our social media channels are used to answer questions, share new plants and interact with our awesome customers.
Everyone that works at Little Eden treats our customers with kindness and courtesy as soon as they enter the greenhouse. We have amazing technicians out in the field who maintain our plants for clients in homes, offices, restaurants and hotels. Our employees are always willing to help out, get their hands dirty to repot plants and make sure our inventory always looks amazing. They keep our business running and the focus on the customer keeps the customers returning. Our golden labs, chickens and parrots help too!
We want to keep everyone happy and that’s important to keep our business thriving. We keep our “standard” inventory but also focus on the rare plant market. We like to keep things exciting and love getting new shipments in!
In what ways do you manage a work/life balance?
I love what I do so I don’t feel like I’m working. My kids help me out a lot, so I guess that’s the work/life balance!
In your opinion, why have plants become increasingly popular over the years?
We’ve always had steady business for our commercial and rental side but with more and more people working from home, plants have become increasingly more popular. They liven up any space — and with people staying home, they want to brighten up their homes and home offices. They do make every room better!
What makes a house a home? Better yet, why do plants make a house feel more like a home?
A house is a home when it’s comfortable and you want to be there. Plants provide a nice aesthetic with all the different varieties there are to choose from — any color, any size. As an added bonus, plants also clean the air and have been proven to make people feel happier!
Join the wave of in-home gardeners by visiting Little Eden’s greenhouse in Arvada.