Where can you amble through lush, verdant grounds bursting with blossoms, unique and unusual varietals, and find a great selection of herbs, vegetables, and gorgeous potted plants for purchase? Take a short drive to La Serra Gardens.

Montclair restaurateurs Lisa and Elio Suriano, had another passion – and a vision – to transform an abandoned nursery in Totowa, formerly Olivito’s Greenhouse. Their hard work, loving care, and green thumbs paid off – creating an oasis for plant and garden enthusiasts.

Destination-worthy La Serra recently celebrated its two-year anniversary of opening; located on two beautiful acres on the border of Little Falls and Totowa, it is a gardener’s delight.

What you’ll find: Rows and rows of hanging baskets and artfully composed potted plants, inspired floral displays, imported planters, garden vegetables and herbs, unusual varietals to discover, a fully stocked garden store and gift shop – plus cafe tables and chairs interspersed within the plant beds and along the stone paths, where one can enjoy coffee and Lisa’s famous Italian pastries from the on-site espresso bar.

Favorite find: Curated selections of approximately 10 plants, boxed and ready to plant at home in your favorite container. Sourced by Beds & Borders, the “Arizona Sunset” box makes for a lovely gift.

The entrepreneurial Surianos have more plans for summer weekends at La Serra – additional food offerings, maybe a pizza oven, live music…so stay tuned. You can also follow La Serra (Italian for Greenhouse) on Instagram.

La Serra Gardens, 813 Union Boulevard, Totowa