As the Clover Valley Farm Trail wraps up for another year, Shoreview Natives of Two Harbors becomes my last farm to feature for this year.
Shoreview Natives is owned by Dan Schutte and Kristen Pless. Schutte and Pless have lived in Two Harbors for eight years, and in the Duluth area for the eight years prior to that.
Pless attended the San Francisco Art Institute for her graduate studies, and now works as a professor at the University of Minnesota – Duluth in the art department, where she teaches photography, graphic design, and studio lighting courses.
Schutte served in Paraguay as a Peace Corps volunteer in the beekeeping program. After his service, Schutte organized a fund-raising campaign for a national park in Paraguay. This campaign took him on a 4,000 mile bike journey across South America, and led to the purchase of 500 acres of the interior Atlantic Rainforest in southeast Paraguay. When Schutte returned to the United States, he earned a masters’ degree in education. He has worked in various environmental education settings and natural resource management positions on the North Shore.
Schutte and Pless have two children that “share our love for the outdoors, pollinators, and this great place we live.”
Schutte’s interest in growing native plants was cultivated when he was working at an environmental charter school in rural Duluth. At the school, he used seeds and plants as educational tools in science, math, and reading classes with elementary students. Later, Schutte transitioned into natural resource management with the Lake County Soil and Water Conservation District and “became more familiar with forest health issues and how native plants are used to solve erosion control, shoreland stabilization, stormwater management, and pollinator habitat goals.” Schutte has grown native plants since 2009, and each year “the scope of plant production and project completion has grown.”
Shoreview Natives currently has two commercial greenhouses that operate from March to October. The greenhouses produce over 100,000 native plants from seed each year. There are plans for expansion in the area of tree and shrub production.
Schutte and Pless chose the name Shoreview Natives because, “our home, retail, workshop, and production facilities are located on Shoreview Road just outside of Two Harbors, and it seemed like an appropriate place to start with a business name!”
Shoreview Natives grows plants native to northeastern Minnesota from seed, including flowers, grasses, sedges, trees, and shrubs. “We have over 90 species of plants available in a variety of sizes, and are starting to expand our tree and shrub production and avail-ability as we develop our new retail [and] educational site.”
Beginning in 2024, Shoreview Natives’ retail site will be open from Thursday to Sun-day, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Hours will likely expand in 2025 when the new retail, workshop and event space is “up and running” at 1240 Shoreview Road.
People are encouraged to check social media for updates on hours, or to call to schedule an appointment outside of regular hours to browse plants and consult with Shoreview Natives staff. Shoreview Natives also offers speaking services, commercial and residential site consultations, and full garden installation and maintenance services.
“We are dedicated to supporting declining pollinator populations by getting as many native, chemical-free plants in [the] ground as possible. We accomplish this by selling plants at our retail location, providing wholesale opportunities of native plants to regional greenhouses, offering educational workshops and events to help people learn how to grow their own native plants from seed, as well as designing and installing residential and com-mercial pollinator gardens from Minneapolis to Grand Marais.”
Learn more about Shoreview Natives at https://www.shoreviewnatives.com/ , or find them on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.