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Contrary Mary’s Plants & Designs

Picture: Tomato Grouping

You know how a group of crows is called a murder, a group of finches is called a charm, a group of Blue Jays is called a party, and a group of owls is called a parliament??? Welllllll…..What do you call a group of tomatoes…???? Give???
Spaghetti Sauce!

Welcome to Contrary Mary’s! We are a small, family-owned greenhouse located southwest of Chicago, and we specialize in unusual perennials, hostas, peonies, daylilies,  and unique fruits and vegetables that you won’t find at big chain nurseries. We can help you find the perfect plant for your sunny (or shady, damp, dry, etc.) spot to provide color and texture. Our plants are perfectly suited to our Midwest environment in Chicagoland; all of our perennials are hardy to at least Zone 5, and are plants that I think are excellent additions to everyone’s garden (gotta haves!) We pride ourselves in our HUGE selection of Heirloom veggie plants that, although we are not certified organic, grow with only organic fertilizers with NO pesticides (gotta protect our precious Bee Buddies!)

Woo Hoo ‘tis spring FINALLY! Thought she’d NEVER arrive!

As you probably have noticed (kinda hard NOT to!), we have a brand spankin’ new updated website format! Times they are a’changin, and Contrary Mary must keep up (as reluctant as she may be) with all the techie stuff she is so very thrilled with. I would be remiss if I did not take this opportunity to first thank my Wise and Wonderful Webmistress Susan for all of her past excellence. SHE is the reason I got my first website almost 20 years ago (gasp, really that long ago???) and SHE is the reason I have received so very many compliments on the design and the feel of my website. I certainly could not have done it without her and for that I am so very, very grateful. As she is now busy with her own conquests, my friend John is my new Master of the Website Universe! Now HE shall have to put up with my quirks and follies! He has done SCADS of work on the new design (is nothing ever easy?), and it is still a Work In Progress so patience please! And feedback, I’d ADORE feedback!


Picture: Fairies in a box

Fairies in a box

Sooooooo,,,,,,now to the Heart of The Business, the PLANTS! I have gone just a wee bit over the top (to put it mildly) and we are now growing over 100 varieties of Heirloom Tomatoes! If you don’t manage to find just a few “gotta-haves” I just don’t know what to say. I am also expanding our other varieties of Heirloom veggies, including 6 varieties of Eggcellent Eggplants, over 35 varieties of delectable peppers, gobs of Crisp and Quirky Cukes, Mountains of Maaaaahvelous Melons, Herds of Handy Herbs, and many other yumminicious veggies! I am getting Lean and Mean on our Unusual Perennials, but am expanding our offerings of Saucy Succulents and Amazing Annuals! Fear not, we still have our Hellaciously Hot Hostas, Darling and Dramatic Daylilies, and Pretty and Perky Peonies to entice you. Our Nectar From The Bee Gods (aka raw honey) will also be available.  Ya just GOTTA come out and see! I am also expanding our Better Than Fairies (remember, the underdogs of the Garden Denziens that need support too).



Speaking of coming out, our Opening Day Of The Season is (drum roll please….) Saturday April 21, 2018 and we shall have the following schedule:

CLOSED Mondays

9A – 6P Tuesday thru Saturday

10A – 4P Sunday

CLOSED on July 4, 2018


Starting on July 9, 2018 we will be open by appointment only (no regular hours).


I can’t WAIT to see all my Gardening Buds; please feel free to call me at (815)521-9535 or e-mail me with comments, questions, or orders. As always, I am very grateful for you patronage and support…..think Green!

Picture: Duncan


Picture: Jamie & Lexie taking a break

Jamie & Lexie taking a break

Picture: Finnegan and Lexie - Spring 2018

Finnegan and Lexie Spring 2018

Picture: Mickey Always in our hearts

Always in our hearts




Contrary Mary

Contrary Mary’s Plants and Designs
2735 Route 52
Minooka, IL 60447

(815) 521-9535