by germinatrix | September 3rd, 2010
Unfortunately, another independent nursery in Los Angeles is closing. This time it isn’t because of the bad economy – this was a thriving nursery – but the owners have decided that the property, located on 3rd and Fairfax in Hollywood, would be better if developed into another restaurant/shopping mall complex. Because clearly there aren’t enough of THOSE in Los Angeles.
Of course I understand why a family would want to maximize their investment – nurseries, while incredibly valuable to those of us who patronize them, aren’t huge money makers. But Mordigan’s was an oasis in the middle of a concrete jungle of concentrated retail overload. Yes, it was also a retail space, but let’s face it – a location selling plants and assorted planting supplies is a refreshing difference from the sea of stores selling us clothes, more clothes, fancy knick knacks, more clothes, and even more clothes. It was a little green island of garden goodness.
It is SO sad to see a nursery fold, no matter why it is closing. Seeing everything be sold, bit by bit – all the plants, all the trellises , the pots … yes, they are going to good homes for rock bottom prices, but now another source for good, well cared for plants and solid advice is gone. More and more people in the LA area will have to shop out of big box stores out of necessity rather than because of an emergency or whim. (what do you mean “what kind of an emergency could warrant the immediate purchasing of a plant?” I can think of TONS)
I’ve written before about the sad state of affairs that is the retail nursery situation in Los Angeles, and it is now even worse. One high-end nursery, Rolling Greens, did open up a satellite location in Hollywood, not far from the erstwhile Mordigan’s site – but they are a totally different ball of twine. That is where one would go to get perfect specimens for a photo shoot, or to trick out your “outdoor room” with the fancy things that “outdoor rooms” call for. If you want good plants at reasonable prices with knowledgeable advice to go with them, well – there is one less place to go.
How unfortunate, just when gardening is having a renaissance, the owners of Mordigan Nursery decided it was better to pursue a different way to use that prime piece of real estate. It has always seemed strange to me that this city, which should be chock full of places to buy plants, has so few. I’m lucky – as a designer I have access to wholesale sources and growers – but I love the spirit and energy of a well thought out, well run retail nursery. A good nursery can be a garden hub – a place that is the center of a vibrant community of gardeners and plant lovers – a place to go to get inspired and talk with others who have the same passion you do. I know what these nurseries look like – I’ve seen them! They are treasures. Every city deseves at LEAST one!
Where is LA’s?
Sigh. Goodbye, Mordigan Nursery. You served your community well. Too bad that ended.
** A very special THANK YOU to intrepid reporter and dear friend Carla Denker, who alerted me to the sad event, and took all of the pictures in this post.