Meet Ivy May

Golden Garden is so excited to be carrying a new product – IvyMay Redwoods Houseplant & Aroid Potting Mix, soil-free & peat-free! Meet one of the founders to learn more about how this new mix was created, how to use it and how it helps heal the planet.


Meet Tammy Nguyen!


When and where was IvyMay founded?

IvyMay & Co. was founded in San Diego, California in June of 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic. We started out as a local houseplant delivery company & operated out of a small 2nd story apartment. A few months later in October, we needed to move but had few options, so we converted a chicken coop into a greenhouse to store all of our houseplants. We continued deliveries for about 6 months, but due to supply changes, we realized we needed to pivot in order to sustain ourselves long-term. What we found during our time was a lack of sustainability & renewable resources & products in our industry.


What is the newest product you’ve launched & what’s the story & inspiration behind it?

Our newest product that we’ve launched is IvyMay Redwoods Houseplant & Aroid Potting Mix. We consulted with soil experts to learn more about renewable resources in the potting mix industry and found that redwood is our best option.


There are many DIY mixes that plant parents are using that are soil-free such as coco coir & peat moss. However, we found that the environmental impacts of these were still unknown so we went a completely different route with triple ground redwood from sustainably-managed forests.


Were any ancient Redwood trees cut down to create this product?

This is the most common question that we get! The redwoods that are harvested for our product were planted specifically to keep up with the human demand of forest products, allowing the ancient forests to remain undisturbed, protecting their health & ecosystems.


How does this mix help heal the earth?

Every bag sold (whether to consumers or retailers) plants one tree to help conserve the Redwood forest through the non-profit One Tree Planted.


How is the Redwoods potting mix different from others?

Our potting mix is in a conveniently sized (7 dry quarts) recyclable & resealable bag for urban residents who don’t have enough room for large bags of potting mixes or amendments to make their own at home.

It’s ready-to-use as is & is optimal draining to help with overwatering & the possibility of root rot. And of course, as mentioned before, it’s completely soil-free & peat-free & is organic based. This was made for plant parents like us, eco-conscious millennials who value caring for our planet.



What should we know when using IvyMay Redwoods Potting Mix?

Since it’s made specifically for aroids, we’ve added plenty of douglas fir bark & perlite for optimal drainage compared to the average brand name soil mixes for indoor plants. Because of this, you’ll need to monitor your plants at first, most likely will need to water your plant more than you would with regular potting soil because it dries out quicker, depending on each plant’s individual lighting scenario. It’s a great mixture especially for the non-growing season to help prevent fungus gnats who are attracted to consistently moist & wet substrates.


What is your favorite houseplant & why?

I love any plant that is trailing – Scindapsus, heradeceums & pothos. I’ve also really taken a liking to palms as of late. They’re all low maintenance but extremely gorgeous when you stop to admire them! As with all plants, it helps take my mind off everything else & just be more mindful in the moment.


What is your favorite part about being a small business owner?

Collaborating & meeting other passion-fueled small business owners! It’s a dynamic that I’ve learned so much from & have been endlessly inspired by. Take it a step further with the plant community & we’ve just been incredibly blessed to find the most generous and kind-hearted folks that are just here to help people find a love for plants & to help each other.


Owning a small business is trading in your 9-5 to work 24 hours a day (or something like that), but time flies when you’re having fun! Though this life is 10x harder, the quality of life & my working relationships has dramatically increased 10-fold. I’m constantly inspired by everyone I meet and their own small business stories.