Aka that time I died and went to plant heaven. Do not resuscitate.

For those unaware of Crystal Star Nursery, they are a East Gwillimbury/GTA/Canadian-based plant nursery that grows/sells rare/hard-to-find plants. Their selection is unlike anything else found in Toronto (maybe even nation-wide), and it's pure magic. (For my beauty peeps, I think the appropriate metaphor would be if you were a non-American stumbling into Ulta for the first time and in a frenzy, end up hoarding up $350 worth of products to bring home....not speaking from personal experience of course.)

Their nursery is currently unavailable to the public (except by appointment), but they've had many popups in Toronto such as through the CNE, Toronto Flower Market, and Toronto Botanical Gardens. They offer a limited number of greenhouse tours that sell out fast, and I was finally able to snatch one up for a Saturday after months of waiting. That Saturday also happened to be the day I was celebrating my birthday, so it was definitely a memorable birthday! Tours are one hour each, with a maximum of 4 people per group.

Anyways, I got to meet founders Eric and Ellen, a husband and wife duo, and they showed us around the property and talked us through their operations and planned/potential future projects. (Retail space! More plants! Alternate sourcing methods!)

There are several greenhouses here, each dedicated to different types of plants (e.g. succulents, hoyas, orchids, etc). There are ~100 thousand plants here. Hundred thousand.

Crystal Star Nursery Hoya selection Crystal Star Nursery succulent varieties
Crystal Star Nursery Begonias
Crystal Star Nursery Succulents
Crystal Star Nursery Orchid greenhouse
Crystal Star Nursery Thai Constellation Monstera

Image of Anthurium Clarinervium and Warocqueanum


The amount of rare plants on this property is astounding—hyped, trendy plants that I had only previously seen on Instagram were actually here. Their site selection feels like a tiny fraction of what they currently have growing in their greenhouse. They do have a few upcoming popup events, and mentioned they may bring some of this new stock depending on plant adjustment periods.

Numerous philodrendron (Birkin, gigas, Florida Ghost), variegated plants (albo syngonium, Thai Constellations, whale fin sansevieria), various types of angel wing begonias (My Special Angel, Maculata Wightii), anthurium (clarinervium, warocqueanum) were some of the specimens I recognized and saw here.

Needless to say, I mentally crapped my pants.

Image of Rhaphidophora tetrasperma
Image of Florida Ghost Philodendron and Thai Constellation Monstera image of variegated syngonium
Super albo variegated cat
Image of woman taking photos at Crystal Star Nursery


Overall, it was amazing to learn more about the nursery through its founders and talk about plants with them.

Learned a lot of fun facts, such as pricing variability with the Thai Constellation monstera due to availability in Thailand, the complications of introducing and executing national plant shipping, and we even got the chance to smell some orchid flowers (a diversity of scents, and some smell citrus-y)!

12/10, would love to go again, had the best time of my life, talked with amazing people, etcetc.

You can find more info about them on their site!

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