Plant Shopping at The Sill

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Instantly recognizable by its bright, plant-centric mural that faces Allen Street on the Lower East Side, The Sill is one of the coolest places in New York to buy plants, but it’s also the most friendly.

After featuring The Sill in our recent post, Where To Buy Plants in NYC, I wanted to stop by their Hester Street store to do a little plant shopping of my own. I'm admittedly obsessed with their Instagram, but—for no good reason—had up until now never actually been inside their shop. With recommendations from passersby like Alyssa Coscarelli, Allie Berman, and Holly Mitchell, I knew it was time for that to change.

the sill passerbuys

When you walk into the small LES shop, you're instantly hit with its fresh aroma, best described as amazingly green. Visiting when they first opened on a weekday, the store was pretty quiet, but I could tell that The Sill is the kind of place that manages to maintain its calming energy even when crowded. Even their shopkeeper, Peggy, attested to how much better she feels—and how much more easily she breathes—on days when she's working in the plant shop versus days she's not.

The Sill carries everything from succulents and cacti to palms and ferns. If you’re not sure what you’re looking for, they’re especially helpful in helping you pick a plant that will do great in whatever environment you’re shopping for. And if you’re not in New York—or are just an online shopping purist— they ship to all 48 contiguous US states from their online shop.
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Each month, The Sill names a "Plant of the Month," and hosts weekly workshops taught by their botanist, Christopher Satch, on how to care for different plant species. In addition to learning, attendees get to pot their own plants to take home, which I'm told can be quite comical when the plant of the month is something like say, a Fiddle Leaf Fig (which really did happen). For July and August, the spotlight is on summer-appropriate succulents. 

While at the shop, Peggy took me through some of the most popular plants that they sell, like the parlor palm and the pothos, both of which are easy-to-maintain and hard-to-kill, making them perfect for plant newbies. One of the most unique plants she showed me was the Marimo "moss" ball, a fuzzy little ball that is best compared to a little pom pom you'd find in a kid's craft kit, except that it's alive, and they live in water. Seriously. It was weird, and I definitely need one. Ultimately, I settled on a snake plant after learning that, as a nighttime air-purifying species, it's one of the best plants for the bedroom. But when Peggy started unpacking a new shipment of succulents, I couldn't help myself, and picked out a tiny little Haworthia too. You can also buy pots for your plants from The Sill, which they make in their New Jersey ceramic studio.

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When you make a purchase from, they send you on your way with a card outlining instructions for the care of your plant, and they have a special email address should you ever have a plant-emergency.
the sill passerbuys

After spending a little time shopping and learning at The Sill, I can confidently call myself a newly-minted amateur plant-enthusiast, and I will definitely be returning soon.

Visit The Sill at 84 Hester St, New York, NY 10002.

Words by Kate Palisay, Photography by Caitlin Rance