A Modern Plantsman takes root in Pullman

The “Colfax experiment” is over, a new journey for Modern Plantsman



Dominic Villareal, owner of The Modern Plantsman

MIKAYLA FINNERTY, Editor-in-chief

Pothos, Monstera, jade plant and more: Pullman is about to get a little more green.

A new plant business is currently renovating the space next to My Office Bar & Grill on Grand Ave Pullman to prepare for dozens of plants to be transferred from Colfax.

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Owner Dominic Villareal established A Modern Plantsman in 2019 and moved to Main Street Colfax in 2020. In 2021, Villareal grew the business’ roots to Spokane.

Villareal spent the years following thinking about the future of A Modern Plantsman and ultimately decided to relocate from Colfax to Pullman, he said.

“You know, I actually see our brand being a Northwest brand,” Villareal said, “but I want people to recognize the Modern Plantsman and see like, ‘oh, yeah, … that’s where I would go to get plants, where I would go to get knowledge; it’s where I go to have a good time and good vibes.’”

This year, A Modern Plantsman was featured in Inlander’s 2022-2023 Annual Manual, a publication that highlights businesses in the Northwest.

“I feel like for us to be featured so prominently, and how they told our story really well, it makes me feel like we’re finally getting credit for something that we started a long time ago,” Villareal said.

The Plantsman isn’t just plants, Villareal said. It’s a plant shop, botany club and workshop. At the Spokane location, they do workshops and hands-on activities to learn more about botany.

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“We’re going to be leaning a little heavily into the experience portion of our business, which is like workshops, hands-on activities, creating that experience for our customers, or our patrons,” Villareal said.

Bringing new business to Main Street is part of the renovation plan for downtown Pullman, Jennifer Hackman, Pullman’s economic development manager, said.

“The overarching goals for renovating downtown, and the programming that will certainly follow, are to provide an enjoyable and interesting place,” Hackman wrote in an email. “A place where people want to be; to make downtown a signature spot that comes to mind when you think of Pullman.”

Villareal is excited to start the next phase of A Modern Plantsman’s journey and is coming for the spotlight, he said.

“I am super stoked to be able to have the opportunity to be right in front of people,” Villareal said, “I think that with UI, and WSU, like, they’re just gonna see us all the time, because we’ll be right there. And so I think we’ll have a lot more access to mentor people and students, so I’m really excited about that. It’s gonna be a blast.”

The date of completion of the new location is still unknown, said Villareal, but he hopes to start moving plants in as soon as possible.