A Leeds-based retailer selling exotic houseplants is celebrating an astounding six months of business which saw over 1,000 exotic houseplants sold, turnover doubling to £25,000 per month and winning a silver medal at this year’s Chelsea Flower Show.  

Grow Tropicals specialises in exotic and rare tropical plants and indoor gardening accessories, based from a 3,500 sq ft store, tropical hydroponics and terrarium plant nursery in Leeds, which opened its doors in March 2021.

Since launching Grow Tropicals has also expanded its product ranges, becoming the UK’s only supplier of InSitu terrariums and secured 55 stockist partnerships with garden centres across the UK. All of which will be stocking a range of exotic and rare tropical plants, indoor gardening accessories and peat-free houseplant substrates, including the customer-favourite, Jungle Mix.

Jacob James, 27, initially launched the business during lockdown 1.0 as a side hustle, before concentrating on the business full-time.

The team is now six-strong with the most recent recruit being Katie Hunter, who has been appointed in a full-time role to propagate plants.

Grow Tropicals has been supported with investment from York-based entrepreneur Tom Maxwell and Otto Mercer, Grow Tropicals director and logistics & product manager. 

In addition to the financial success and team growth, Grow Tropicals also won a prestigious silver medal at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Jacob and the team displayed a large glass terrarium showcasing rare tropical species from South America.

Discussing the half-year success, Jacob James, said: “Since launching in April 2020, we have seen incredible results with Grow Tropicals, selling over 1,000 plants in the past six months, doubling our monthly revenue to over £25,000 and building trusted relationships with UK garden centres. The value of the business has jumped fivefold in this time.

“I am delighted to welcome Katie to the growing team. Her knowledge and expertise will add real value to our customers and help us in our growth plans for the business, in particular our focus on becoming more sustainable.

“We have ambitious plans for the remainder of our second year of trading and 2022. The Grow Tropicals team is committed to increasing our product offering – with a focus on propagation and sustainability so that we can achieve 70% sustainability as a business by the end of our second year.”

Discussing the future of the business, investor, Tom Maxwell adds: “Since launching, Grow Tropicals has been a success, which has resulted in the value of the business increase five-fold in the past six months. The team already have their sights set on expansion with increased offerings, a new unit and team growth.”

Grow Tropicals is the only UK exotic and rare tropical plants retailer with an ongoing focus on conservation and sustainability.

Plant-lovers have a choice of more than 300 species that can be ordered online then collected or delivered to their door across the UK and EU. There is also a variety of accessories available including terrariums and enclosures, as well as dry goods, pots, and growing tools.

For more information on Grow Tropicals, please visit: www.growtropicals.com