When a third of an acre garden became too small for Elizabeth to indulge her plant passion, she looked upon her local nursery with hungry eyes. When the site became available back in 2001 she couldn’t resist. An obsessional hobby became a business. Although she spends a great deal of time now at a desk, she ensures she finds inspiration from visiting nurseries and gardens throughout the country.
Usually found juggling accounts, techie stuff, mail order and the unfathomable complexities of the UJ koi pond filtration system. Keen gardener, fisherman, and chicken keeper, after co running the business for 21 years Malcolm is looking forward one day to less of the former and more of the latter.
In 2011 when a plant-obsessed 15-year-old youngster turned up determined to buy one of our most choice plants, and couldn’t be dissuaded, we just knew that we had to have him on board. Incredibly knowledgeable, and super organised, Chris managed to juggle a plant science degree with holiday work with Urban Jungle. It’s been a privilege witnessing the journey from Saturday boy to manager.
Nursery assistant & maintenance Norwich
Mark joined us for work experience in 2015, was given a permanent position within weeks, and is a much-valued member of the team. He gets stuff done, builds things for us, knows where everything is and how it works, and makes the nursery look lovely. A family man with 3 children Mark is deaf, lip-reads, and never misses out on the gossip.
Nursery Assistant Norwich
Jake joined us as a cafe assistant in 2018, but his horticultural knowledge and enthusiasm meant that it wasn’t long before he was working in the nursery. He can still whip up a pretty mean latte when required. Known as Hoodiculturalist on Instagram, his page is full of interesting and insightful plant info.
Nursery Assistant Beccles
A career change for chef Agnessa. Nessa is crazy about plants and gardening. Latvian, and fluent in Russian, she keeps us entertained with her unique take on regional British accents and colloquialisms. Nessa does everything, including maintaining our gardens, propagation, and serving nursery and cafe customers.
Campbell joined us to assist in propagation just before the world turned mad and we went into the first lockdown. He helped to keep propagation afloat almost single-handedly for a few months – talk about being thrown in at the deep end, and took over the department in spring 2021. He has worked in nurseries in Hawaii and, we think, secretly yearns to return. He loves tropical climates but ironically is hardly ever seen wearing a coat even in the depths of winter.
Nursery Assistant Beccles
Our Weekender. Plant mad Ray is a 6th form student with a bedroom full of houseplants of course.
Musa & Basjoo
Pest Control and Cuteness
Maintenance & building
Jamie joined us in 2007 and has been instrumental in developing the character of the nurseries, building most of what you see on site, as well as behind the scenes. He can’t keep still, has super-human energy, and since we’ve known him he’s worked and travelled in Australia, New Zealand, and Iceland to name but a few countries. Oh, and he managed to squeeze in a degree in Plant Biology. He’ll think nothing of running a half marathon before work. Nutter.
The owners’ daughter. Press ganged into helping out as a surly teenager, she became a full-time team member in 2016. Former stressed-out manager of the 2 Urban Jungle restaurants, now finding life slightly less frenetic as the manager of the 2 Urban Jungle coffee shops. Mother to teenage granddaughter Erica. History may very soon repeat itself.
Always ready with a warm welcome for coffee seekers, Tasha has been with us since 2016 and we’d be lost without her. And now that the plant bug has bitten, Tasha is helping out with the houseplants too (it had to happen eventually).