plantsA Leeds-based online store selling exotic houseplants is celebrating a staggering first quarter of sales which saw over 700 exotic houseplants sold, a 70% growth in new customers and securing a monthly turnover of over £20,000.

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.

Grow Tropicals has also secured 10 stockist contracts including Deans Garden Centre York, Stephen Smiths Otley, Poppy’s Potting Shed in Leeds, Whiteleys Garden Centre and High Trees Garden Centre, all of which will be stocking a range of exotic and rare tropical plants, indoor gardening accessories and peat free houseplant substrates.

Jacob James, 27, started the business during lockdown 1.0 as a side hustle – he held three two-day test sales in 2020 before launching the business full-time, fuelled by a boom in demand driven by the Covid-19 lockdown and increased interest from millennials.

The business launch was supported with investment from York-based entrepreneur Tom Maxwell and Otto Mercer, Grow Tropicals Director and Logistics & Product Manager.

To support the firm’s growth plans and success, Grow Tropicals has strengthened its team with the appointment of two new recruits.

Sam Duncan has been appointed as wholesale business development manager and Tom Ivers has taken on the role of warehouse support.

In his role, Sam will be growing sales of substrates and plants with plant shops and garden centres on behalf of Grow Tropicals, while Tom will be packing and dispatching orders for wholesale and supporting general warehouse tasks.

Grow Tropicals has also been selected to display at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show in September. Jacob and the team will be displaying a large glass terrarium showcasing rare tropical species from South America.

Jacob said the success has exceeded his expectations: “The houseplant and horticulture market has boomed over the past year due to Covid and Brexit, and that shows in the success of Grow Tropicals.

“Since launching our first-ever distribution centre, tropical hydroponics and terrarium plant nursery in Leeds we have seen incredible results, selling over 700 plants in our first quarter, achieving an impressive 70% growth in new customers and building trusted relationships with regional garden centres.

“I am delighted to welcome Sam and Tom to the team. Their industry knowledge and expertise will add real value to our customers and help us in our growth plans for the business.

“We are thrilled to have been selected to display at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show. We will be in the centre of the Grand Pavilion, which is a fantastic location. We will be bringing something new and exciting to the flower show.”

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: