If the names Tillandsia funckiana, Calathea makoyana or Aglaonema red sun sound like proverbial music to your ears, chances are you would have already paid a visit to hip plant shop Plant & Pot Studio. Offering exactly what its name suggests, the setup opened its main store — in Bandar Puteri, Puchong, Kuala Lumpur — in August 2016 and quickly established itself as a pioneer indoor plant specialist, way before the Covid-19 pandemic began and its ensuing lockdowns brought about a global fixation with houseplants.
The world’s obsession with potted plants, however, has seen consistent and unprecedented growth ever since people began taking and uploading pictures of their foliage family on social media. From cacti and monstera allsorts to succulents, air plants and fiddle leaf figs, houseplant collections are the new “in” things to brag about. Riding on the success brought about by this green wave, Plant & Pot Studio has since opened a second outlet, this time in Ampang, in September 2020.
Founders Jason Tor and Jeff Loh, a marketing head for an F&B chain and bank tax manager respectively, decided to establish a houseplant shop with a cool difference. Not only would it offer beautiful plants of all shapes and sizes, but it would also have gorgeous and trendy planters — from cylindrical pots in glossy gold to matte black ceramic ones sourced from Bali. A well-trained team would be on hand to assist as well as educate customers on indoor plant care as well as plant placement and arrangement design.
This new wave of green-loving urban customers liked what they saw and returned, often with pals in tow. It is not uncommon to find solo shoppers, families or even groups of friends making an outing out of a visit here.
What makes shopping at Plant & Pot Studio special is the fact that each outlet has an on-site garden café. Jauntily named the Sipping Corner, it offers a lovely space where shoppers can take a break between making the hard decision to splurge on a Philodendron golden violin and whether the towering evergreen serpent or emerald tree can fit into the back seat of the Grab car — while sipping a signature cup of freddo latte, accompanied by a slice of cake or a salted egg and chicken floss croissant.
Cakes and pastries are produced by Ikabake, their in-house bakery, ensuring each sip or nibble is unique and special — just like the selection of plants and pots on display. Plant food, assorted vegetable and flower seeds as well as selected plant-themed bric-a-brac are also available for sale while other services offered include the supply of eco-conscious corporate gifts and plant installations for events and weddings.
Given the success of the two outlets, it should come as no surprise that more Plant & Pot Studios are in the pipeline, with at least three slated to open by 2022. Plant lovers in the north will also be thrilled to know one is planned for Penang, with the other two locations most likely to be in the Klang Valley — in Shah Alam and USJ.
This article first appeared in issue No. 102, Winter 2021 of Haven.