We love to see other brands that are interested in reconnecting humans with nature. It's just human nature ;) Enter, Rooted, an NYC based company that delivers houseplants directly to your door. Founded by three guys who believe in the positive mental, emotional and physical health benefits associated with having greenery in your space.
We sat down with one of the founders, Ryan Lee, to learn more about his roots and the business.
1. Tell us your story with starting Rooted. Where did your passion for plants come from?
Kay and I moved into a big apartment together and wanted to turn it into an indoor jungle. While it was conceptually easy, it was difficult to execute. We had problems finding high quality and unique houseplants for an affordable price. [...] This entire process got us thinking why there wasn’t a brand we aligned with that could help us with all of our plant needs in a convenient and seamless way.
Our love for the outdoors comes from our upbringing in California. Kay is from Southern California while I hail from the Bay Area. We love backpacking, camping, climbing, surfing, and in general just being immersed in nature. This passion for the outdoors, along with an ambition to start our own business together, culminated in Rooted, where our mission is to reconnect people to nature one houseplant at a time.
2. Why do you think plants are important for your personal physical spaces?
It's a scientific fact that greenery in physical spaces makes people happier and healthier. They’re beautiful, they rid the air of toxins brought about by thing
s commonplace in dense cities like leather, rubber, vehicle exhaust and cigarette smoke. In addition, especially for our millennial generation, we’re constantly interacting with man-made objects like phones, laptops, and digital media that consistent exposure to nature and greenery is necessary. It brings us back to earth a bit and makes us realize that not everything needs to be crafted, cropped, or polished.
3. What about for your internal physical health?
As alluded to above, many houseplants are known for removing toxins like formaldehyde and xylene from the air. However, houseplants also reduce carbon dioxide from your home that enter from outside air and, in a time when global warming is increasing CO2 levels, this is incredibly important.
4. With launching a new business, has it impacted your mental or physical health (for better or worse or both)? And how do/did you manage that?
Definitely, in both ways. Mentally, we've learned that our limit is much higher than we [...originally] thought [...]. The downside to that is that there's consistently so much to do and, at the end of the day, the buck stops with us. There's no HR team to deal with that paperwork and there's definitely no legal team to arrange that partnership agreement.
Physically it's also been interesting. On one hand, we're staying in shape because we're moving literally every day. We're getting a natural workout if you will, spending our time potting plants, unloading hundreds of pounds of planters, moving pallets of soil, and fulfilling deliveries all around NYC. The downside is that because there's so many pressing things to do, it's hard to get on a routine schedule of eating healthy, working out consistently, or making time for things like meditation and yoga.
5. What is your personal experience with CBD? How did you discover it? Has it impacted your life in any way?
I take CBD almost every night to relax, and especially after any physically intense day at Rooted. It helps me wake up fresh and I feel less tension in my muscles. It also helps me start the day more even-keeled and react less impulsively throughout the day. I first discovered it in college, like most other substances I've tried :)
6. Can you share one-two favorite tips for integrating plants into your life?
2. choose a plant
3. choose a planter
Think of where you want to put a small plant. Start small, because it’s less of a financial risk and if you’re successful at keeping it alive, they’ll always grow bigger. Think about what kind of light that plant gets, and get a plant that fits that light profile. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you need help with assessing your light or choosing a new friend!
CBD isn't just for founders, learn how to use it if you're an athlete.
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