Festive gifting amid a pandemic? Go green with Wandering Roots' easy-care houseplants and green baskets
It’s better to give than to receive, and it’s even better to give consciously. Glitzy, luxury hampers have had their day under the sun and green gifting is clearly the way forward. “I’ve never liked the exorbitantly priced bouquets as gifts, people send exotic flowers and three days later they’re in the bin, it’s wasteful. But plants as gifts make so much sense because you can take care of them with kitchen waste like banana peel and rice water. With our plants, we offer instruction manuals about light, water and home care, so they can survive,” Priyanka Sonthalia of Wandering Roots tells us.
The Kolkata-based lifestyle label is taking novel strides in sustainable gifting with their easy-care potted houseplants and smart green baskets. If you’re planning to gift a potted dwarf kamini or a ceramic planter full of chic pink Syngonium to your loved ones this Diwali, read on:
Tell us what led you to start Wandering Roots?
When we were renovating our home three years back, we decided on some greenery and picked some plants from the nursery, totally clueless about how to nurture them. So many people pick the wrong plant but expect them to survive indoors and they don’t have the right expertise about sunlight, temperature or water. I’ve made mistakes in the last three years and I’ve learnt from them, and now I have a 3,000 square feet terrace where I grow plants.
There was a lot of research involved, asking the right people, a lot of YouTube tutorials but the time I got in the lockdown was helpful. In the past I’ve helped my friends plan some green corners in their homes, to help them choose the right plants, help them understand which spot gets the best sunlight. It’s not a consultancy per se, but we help out people with basic know-how, like the difference between terracotta and plastic pots, for instance.
Tell us about your green baskets
They are doing really well for occasional gifting when people don’t just want to send one plant but are looking for something like a hamper. So, these baskets are an amalgamation of 4-5 types of plants, we are sourcing bamboo planters from Assam, and we’re including herbs like ajwain or giloy. People are nervous about gifting edibles nowadays so these make for really great gifts.
What’s your business model like?
I don’t want to go big in scale and have unhappy plant lovers, we want these plants to survive and help people take care of them. As of now, we’re publicising only among our friends and relatives. Every Monday I update our catalogue with a fresh batch and 60-70% of the stuff gets sold out by Saturday. Our plants are stalked at a Kolkata lifestyle store, we make our own mix of soil. Plus, we keep the plant with us for 10-12 days just to see how they will grow in the planter. For Diwali, we’ve curated small-sized planters, for gifts. People of all ages are now going for plants as gifts, like a friend’s daughter whose bestie turned 25 and decided to send her a plant.
You can find them on Instagram at wanderingroots.tgl
For orders, call: 9831242389