Founder Martin Van Raay began growing and selling annuals in small greenhouses across the road from our present location at 56 Creek Rd. He also offered large field grown perennials that he custom dug in huge clumps for local gardeners. His project soon turned into one of the first garden centres to emphasize the use of perennials in landscapes. At 91 years young, you’ll still find Martin enjoying his retirement, mingling with customers and lending a helping hand for many of our Glasshouse Nursery events.
For over 20 years, the Glasshouse Nursery has provided Chatham-Kent residents with landscape design services, landscape quality specimen plants, and hand-selected, large scale trees from quality local specialty growers throughout Canada and the United States.
Currently, Martin’s son, Dave Van Raay, and his wife, Sue Van Raay, own and operate The Glasshouse Nursery. Both Dave and Sue have dedicated their lives to growing the business to accommodate the increasing demand from our local and very loyal customers from Chatham-Kent and our many out-of-town visitors that make a point to visit from all over Ontario and across the world.
Our Garden Club Membership and email newsletter group has grown to over 10,000 members.
Each member of The Glasshouse Team puts their heart and soul into providing our customers with an informed, unique, and friendly experience each time they visit. Whether it be in the nursery, the greenhouse, or the gift shop we’re always available to help you find whatever you’re looking for, answer your questions, and offer up advice.
The family legacy continues with the addition of Betula Boutique to the grounds. Dave and Sue’s daughter, Erin Van Raay, has created an incredible fashion boutique for women of all ages in our recent 6,000 sq. ft addition. The boutique offers the latest trends in fashion and accessories including jewelry, shoes, purses, scarves, luggage, and more.
Dave and Sue’s son, Simon Van Raay, is busy studying horticulture during the school year and joins his family in the nursery and garden centre during the summer months. Simon recently participated in a Skills Canada National Horticulture competition in British Columbia where him and his partner were awarded a silver medal for their horticulture landscape project.