A Chattanoogan’s Guide to Gardening

Spring is just around the corner, and gardeners everywhere are impatiently waiting for the last frost to come and go. For those ready to get their hands dirty, there are several plant shops and nurseries around Chattanooga that are eager to lend a helping hand. These brick-and-mortar shops are rounded out with several plant sale events, and for those looking to expand their gardening knowledge, there’s no shortage of continuing education to be had.


Houseplant lovers unite! You don’t have to wait for spring to add a little greenery to your life. With a location inside Fox & Fern and an online shop offering pickup, delivery, and shipping, The Secret Garden is a great place to shop for indoor plants all year long. Yet another dedicated houseplant shop is Plant Candy Collective. This store offers up everything from prayer plants to pothos, and it even shares its space with The Green Bean Coffee Co. for those who need a little pick-me-up while shopping.

Another local favorite is The Barn Nursery, which is conveniently located off I-24. While this store has its fair share of houseplants, it offers so much more, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better selection anywhere in Chattanooga. This gardening paradise is also home to the Pottery Outlet, making curating your containers a breeze. Not far away, The Backyard Nursery is a colorful oasis that’s open every March through October. While this company has plenty of native plants, shrubs, trees, and flowers for sale, it also provides select services such as sod, fence, and landscape installation.

Those residing outside of the city need not fret. Several Chattanooga suburbs are home to some of the best nurseries around. Signal Mountain Nursery has been in operation for over 70 years and continues to provide a wide selection of flowering annuals, perennials, trees, shrubs, ground covers, and tropical plants to this day. The company also offers a suite of landscaping and maintenance services. At the base of the mountain in the community of Red Bank, America’s Gardens offers plenty of houseplants, trees, shrubs, annuals, perennials, and more. The nursery even sells bulk products and has a gift shop containing plenty of home goods items. On the other side of town, Ooltewah Nursery and Landscape Co. has been operating for decades and has even been named a Revolutionary 100 by Garden Center magazine, in part due to its green initiatives. Aside from supplying customers with everything for their landscaping and gardening needs, this shop also hosts a weekly farmers market and occasional events.

While not a dedicated nursery at its core, Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center maintains a plant nursery, which is open to visitors each spring. Customers can view a list of inventory online that includes information such as wildlife details, bloom periods, and exposure, water, and soil requirements.

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Crabtree Farms plants in A Chattanoogan’s Guide to Gardening


Native Plant Sale & Expo

March 25

Join the Tennessee Valley chapter of Wild Ones and Tennessee Naturescapes for this annual plant sale. Held at the First Horizon Pavilion on March 25, this event is great for the entire family. Local and regional vendors will line the pavilion, and 10 regional native plant nurseries will also be in attendance. The event runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and is free to attend. For those looking for a lunch break, local food trucks will be ready to serve up tasty treats. Don’t miss this opportunity to connect with hundreds of Tennessee Valley gardeners looking to start or expand their native plant gardens!

Crabtree Farms Annual Spring Plant Sale + Festival

April 21-23

If you’re looking for a one-stop shop for all of your summer gardening needs, look no further than Crabtree Farms’ Annual Spring Plant Sale. Not only will you have access to sustainably grown veggie annuals, perennials, landscape flowers, and fruit plant starts, you’ll also have everything you need for a fun day for the entire family. While Sunday’s programming is limited to plant sales, Friday and Saturday’s schedule of events will also highlight arts and crafts vendors, children’s activities, live music, and plenty of food. Over 200 plant varieties will be represented, and all proceeds directly benefit educational and community programs.

Creekside Flower Farm’s Spring Plant Festival

April 15

While not typically open to the public, Creekside Flower Farm is inviting residents and visitors out to its property on April 15 for its Spring Plant Festival. Patrons are invited to shop online and pick up orders during the festival. Those shopping online gain free entry to the festival, and day-of attendees can expect to pay $10 per car. Visitors can also look forward to a gorgeous backdrop as the farm’s nearly 6,000 ranunculus flowers will be in bloom!

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Learn how to identify winter trees with Audubon Acres A Chattanoogan’s Guide to Gardening


For those who would prefer to learn a little more about gardening before loading up on the area’s available plants, check out one of the classes below.

Crabtree Farms

           Intro to Permaculture – Feb. 25 / $60 / 9:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

           Spring Herb Walk – May 20 / $25 / 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

The Secret Garden

            Moss Frame Workshop – Feb. 27 / $75+ / 6-8 p.m.

Plant Candy Collective

            DIY Potting Mix Workshop Series – March 4 / $7.50 / 2-4 p.m.

The Chattery

           Organic Pest Control – March 28 / $25 / 6-7:30 p.m.

Wild Ones

            All About Pawpaws – April 10 / free / 6 p.m.

            Native Plant Garden Tour – May 20

            Gardening Is for the Birds – June 12 / free / 6 p.m.

            Invasive Plant Removal – July 10 / 6 p.m.

            Plant Disease & Tree Health – Aug. 14 / 6 p.m.

            Medicinal Plants & Ethnobotany – Oct. 9 / 6 p.m.

            Rare Plant Species – Nov. 13 / 6 p.m.

Chattanooga Audubon Society

            Winter Tree Identification – Feb. 24 & 25 / $10 / 1 p.m. & 10 a.m.

Signal Mountain Nursery

            Fairy Garden Class – Feb. 25 / 11 a.m.

            Get Wild in the Garden – March 4 / 10 a.m.

            Nursery Walkabout – March 11 / 10 a.m.

            Veggie Gardening 101 – March 25 / 11 a.m.

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