Words by Erin Botten
It’s been a week since students have been let loose in Manchester, with the city returning to its bustling self. That being said, it’s also been the University of Manchester’s (UoM) students’ most expensive week, hunting for ways to make their flats feel like home. A great way to do this? Plants. Lots and lots of plants. They’re an easy way to brighten up any flat – even Oak House. So, if you missed the Student’s Union (SU) Freshers plant sale, or simply can’t get enough, we’ve got you covered. Here are some of Manchester’s plant shop havens.
NICE THINGS NQ, Oldham St. 10:30-18:00
Opening recently 2 minutes from Piccadilly Gardens, Nice Things has made its The Mancunion debut. Set to be a hit with Millenials and students alike, the store is a plant paradise. With a peachy exterior welcoming you to a Mediterranean mini market inside, plants range from £3.95 – £400. The store does replicate Boots however with shopping trolleys and a plant pharmacy section. Along with modern warm tone pots, dried flowers and funky vases, it can be confirmed that Nice Things definitely has some nice things.
FRED ALDOUS LTD NQ, Lever St. 9-17:30
At first glance, Fred Aldous may not strike you as a plant shop, but don’t be fooled: the store is a hidden gem. Ranging from £4 – £35, their art-pop pots are gorgeous and super sturdy. They even have plant pot bookends – something I might invest in…for study purposes obviously. Alas, if a Frida Kahlo pot isn’t for you, there’s more. Just below the store, there are two huge DIY floors to get lost in, enabling you to spice up old pots or completely make a new one. Whatever you’re looking for, Fred Aldous can supply it.
NORTHERN FLOWER NQ, Tib St. 10-17:00
Half florist half-plant shop, Northern Flower has tons of affordable options that look high end. The shop smells amazing as you walk in, with ‘make your own bouquets’ lining the walls (£25 – £100 depending on how “Sorry” you are). Close by there are a small array of plants: Marino balls, air, hanging – available for £2 – £30. But, at the back, there’s a secret basement with guess what… even more plants! The basement is lit by a single neon sign, reminiscent of AHS Coven’s witch greenhouse. There you’ll find rustic ceramic and glass pots for £15 at most.
FLOURISH NQ, Tib St. 9:30-17:30
Now, this is our absolute favourite here at The Mancunion. Situated on the west side of our beloved Debenhams (RIP), Flourish is an outdoor market with the coolest pots and plants. As manager Iain George puts it, “We’re not pretentious, plants are for everyone!”
That couldn’t be more true at Flourish, with tiny cacti, affordable Marijo balls and bouquets available from £3 upwards. Even their quirky and colourful pots are just £4 – £12! Over the years, the store has flourished and expanded across Manchester, with their warm personalities luring you back every time. So, if you’re looking to buy on a budget, or just seen what outfit Iain is wearing that day, Flourish has got you covered.
OKLAHOMA NQ, High St. 10-17:00
A stone’s throw away from the Arndale, Oklahoma is full of multicultural vibrant homeware items, including plant decor. Here you can find alternative pots consisting of cans, fabric, and woven baskets. The upcycled art aesthetic can be seen throughout the store, particularly in their mugs, doubling as small plant pots. The few plants that are available to buy in-store range from £30 – £60, along with flower bombs for £4.95. Additionally, Oklahoma stocks numerous plant posters and cards – brightening your room without the risk of it dying!
GLASSHOUSE Gay Village, Princess St. 11-18:00
Sister store to Nice Things, this industrially sleek pink shop caters to everyone’s budget. Along with books, tote bags, plant hangers and gift cards, Glass House has plants from £3 – £70. Its monochromatic pots are lightweight (75p – £10) and can be easily paired with a stand (£20). The store is a great place for pictures too, with pop music humming in the background as you waltz around the pink basement. Don’t worry about trying to find the store, it’s a literal glass house open seven days a week. If you love Urban Outfitters, Glass House is definitely for you.