If you’ve ever taken a drive down Southern Avenue between 24th and 40th streets, you’ve noticed the rows and rows of plants, trees, and cactus on the south side of the road. The area is full of nurseries and garden centers, many of which are family-run and open to the public.
We like to call it Agro Row.
That's where you'll also find several landscaping and wholesale operations. So don’t march in to places like Dream With Colors, Saul Nurseries Inc., and South Mountain Xeriscape looking for retail plants. You’ll just have to admire their selection from the street.
From nurseries and tree farms to The Cactus Doctor, here's your guide to nine places to find indoor and outdoor color and cactus along Southern Avenue in south Phoenix.
Arid Solutions Nursery
3815 East Southern Avenue
This wholesale nursery is open to the public and has 30 acres of actual growing grounds for you to shop through. Established in 1986, Arid Solutions Nursery offers everything from aloe, agave, and succulents to cactus, trees, and shrubs. Most of the plants you'll see have been grown and raised on site at 38th Street and Southern Avenue. They also offer delivery services. See the Arid Solutions Nursery Facebook page for more information.
Botanica at The Farm
6106 South 32nd Street
Part of The Farm at South Mountain’s two-acre organic garden called Gather and Grow, the Botanica patio offers in-season plants and flowers, including geraniums, succulents, herbs, and air plants. This area of The Farm also offers a community learning garden and community workshops like planting classes and making wreaths out of flowers. See the Botanica at The Farm’s website for more information.
J & E Greenhouses
6421 South 26th Street
This south Valley outdoor garden center offers a wide variety of seasonal flowers, trees, shrubs, and more. Seasonal flowers range from Poinsettias for the holidays to bright red Geraniums and Petunia Dream Pink in 4-inch pots while in season. You’ll find it on the left, straight down 26th Street. See the J & E Greenhouses Facebook page for current season specials and offerings.
6550 South 32nd Street
Relocated from The Farm at South Mountain (but only just down the street), Maya’s Farm is a small, certified organic market with a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program to boot. Aside from produce, this seven-acre farm neighboring South Mountain Park offers fresh, local flowers and farm tours. Visitors are welcome to this farm site in an ancient riverbed, which has been owned and operated by Maya Dailey since 2006. Dailey says she has childhood memories of driving down Baseline seeing the flower gardens. “It was beautiful,” she recalls. See the Maya’s Farm website for more information.
Nowell Tree Farm
6440 South 30th Street
Founded in 1981 by Bill Nowell, the Nowell Tree Farm is a vast, outdoor garden center where you might even spot a roadrunner or two. Tucked away from Southern Avenue, this place specializes in a varied assortment of flora and cultivates rare native seedlings – all while avoiding harsh pesticides. English and Spanish customer service is available. Visit the Nowell Tree Farm Facebook page for more information.
Phoenix Desert Nursery
3525 East Southern Avenue
Phoenix Desert Nursery is just that, a desert nursery in Phoenix featuring three acres of desert plants like cactus, succulents, and more. You can really get any cactus here you want, including 8-foot saguaro, prickly pear, organ pipe, and hedgehog species like Mexican claret cup, lady finger, and strawberry hedgehog. You’ll also find a diamond cholla, an array of agave species, and aloe species like blue elf, little gem, and tiger. This place also offers delivery services, and plant care tips on its website. Phoenix Desert Nursery is open to the public from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and sometimes Sunday – but you better call first.
Plant Stand of Arizona
6420 South 28th Street
This 15-acre plant vendor has four greenhouses, lots of annual color and perennials, a wide array of cactus and aloe, and tons of imported pottery. We mean it, tons of pottery. Originating at The Orange County Swap Meet in 1981, the eventual Plant Stand of Arizona is a family-owned and -operated (complete with the family dog, Bentley) business run by the Smith family. It also offers exotic plants, shipping services, and The Little House Boutique with home décor items like candles and antiques. See the Plant Stand of Arizona website.
The Cactus Doctor
6520 South 28th Street
Maybe you’ve already got the succulents on the sill and the cactus in the yard. That doesn’t mean your business on Southern Avenue is concluded. The Cactus Doctor is a service specializing in ill-looking cactus, and can help out with saguaro straightening, cactus disease control, pruning and thinning, and transplanting and salvaging. They also sell a multitude of saguaros, rare plants like boojum trees, and cactus soil and fertilizer. See The Cactus Doctor website for care tips and more information.
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2647 East Southern Avenue
Southern Avenue is home to Whitfill Nursery’s Main Tree Farm and Silver Canyon Nursery. The nursery’s entrance is almost distractingly scenic and welcoming from the south curb. Inside, there is everything from palm, desert, citrus, shade, and flowering trees to shrubs and tropical plants – plus a landscape design service. Whitfill Nursery started after Leslie E. and Floris Whitfill arrived in Phoenix from Lubbock, Texas, and later opened a small citrus tree operation on Glendale Avenue in 1943. For more information, see the Whitfill Nursery website.