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Ask Me About My Plants: Andrea

Ask Me About My Plants – Andrea

Yesterday, May 30th, was the one year anniversary of Art Terrarium officially opening our doors! Woohoo! It’s been so wonderful meeting and talking plants with you all. Many of you have asked us what our homes look like and this felt like the perfect time to tell you a little more about ourselves, our plants, and the inspiration behind the shop.

Photography by:  Meanz Chan

Andrea in her home with plants

Hi! I’m Andrea, co-owner of Art Terrarium. So, how did this love of plants get started? About four years ago I moved back to Des Moines after many years of boppin’ around from city to city. A friend of mine gave me a Golden Pothos (that beauty on the shelf behind me) and some succulents as a housewarming gift.

Living room with plants

Growing up, my grandma always had Christmas Cacti on her fireplace. She passed away shortly after I moved back to Des Moines and I adopted several of her Christmas Cacti, as well as a beautiful English Ivy. I was living in a small apartment downtown and the addition of these well loved plants instantly made my apartment feel more homey and alive. I was hooked.

Fridge with plants

Around this same time, I discovered an amazing little shop in Chicago called Alapash New Home. Their collection of handmade ceramics, cacti, and houseplants had me delighted and in awe.

Succulent and Cacti in pots on windowsill
I knew I wanted to bring a similar experience to Des Moines and the idea for Art Terrarium was born. The original Art Terrarium was a pop up shop in the skywalk, in a retail space that was all glass walls. We filled it with art from local artists and plants from Harvey’s Greenhouse and said to ourselves, hey, this is like a terrarium filled with art, an Art Terrarium! And the name stuck.

Hanging plant near dresser with artI’m not an artist myself, but I’ve always loved art and admire the amazing artists we have here in Des Moines. I met Shylah while working on the Skywalk Pop Up. She had a similar passion for supporting local art and joined the team!

Hanging pot with plant

Even the youth in Des Moines have incredible artistic talent! I love this hanging planter made by a Central Academy pottery student.

Kitchen with potted plants

In the year since we opened, I feel like I’ve been learning right alongside our customers. This is my new little propagation (and coffee!) corner. Spider plants are not only pet friendly and low maintenance, but they’re also incredibly easy to propagate. Just clip off one of the pups, stick it in water, and once it develops roots, pot it in soil. Easy peasy!

Propagated plants growing in glass jars

I’ve also learned a lot about plants and the benefits to having them in your home (besides the fact that they look so dang awesome).

Snake plant next to bed
After learning more about how Snake Plants clean air and release oxygen at night, which helps promote deeper sleep, I now keep this guy by my bed.

Cacti in pots on bench inside house
This room with south and west facing windows is perfect for my partner Kent’s succulent and cactus collection! My little Rubber Tree seems to enjoy hanging out with these guys as well.

I hope you enjoyed this little sneak peak into my home. If you have any questions about my plants, stop by the shop or send me an email at I’ve love to chat! And stay tuned for our next Ask Me About My Plants, where we’ll go into Shylah’s downtown jungle apartment!