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Glen McCombs, the owner of Plant Fair Nursery in Star Valley, has more than a green thumb. He may very well have gardening genes. "I’m a fourth-generation nurseryman,” he says, “my great-grandfather, Jeremiah McCombs, started a nursery in Ontario, Canada in 1890."
McCombs Nursery covered 160 acres and was passed from father to son, all the way to Glen’s father, who later moved to Phoenix in the 1940s. Don McCombs continued the family tradition at Arizona State University and Wheat’s Nursery. Glen started working with his father at age 16.
“Dad was a front-runner at propagating native Arizona plants so they could be sold. He used to drive the family around on Sundays, looking at the trees and repeating the names of each. I knew how to pronounce all the botanical names when I was in grade school.”
Glen has worked in the nursery business all his life, except for four years in the armed services. Thanks to years of experience at Tip Top Nursery in Phoenix and people he came to know in the industry, Glen says he was able to increase significantly the plant palate offered in Payson when he opened his store in 1983.
As our nursery has grown over the years, Glen's son Rob and his wife Lisa are keeping the family tradition alive and play important roles with their individual areas of expertise. Several of our staff have been with us over 25 years, and over thirty years in the nursery business.
Glen’s wife, Linda, is the other big key to the business’ success. She was selling garden supplies and had managed a nursery in Albuquerque when they met and married. She is the one that found Payson and told her husband that it was the perfect place to grow their dream. She knew what grew well in a dry, mountain climate. Linda continued to sell garden supplies the first five years, supporting them while the business grew. She also handled Plant Fair’s finances, a job she still holds today; along with incorporating and expanding on our wonderful and garden-centric, unique gift shop.
They started at a feed store in Star Valley across the road from their present location. A year later, they bought their first acre, eventually growing to three acres and is where they built the garden center you see today.
Glen and Linda offer their customers gardening insights and experience gained from years of active gardening and operating their nursery. Their goal is to assist Plant Fair customers in becoming more successful gardeners and are proud to be a part of this industry, firmly dedicated to the enrichment of our environment.
"Success takes commitment and loving what you do, with no illusions of grandeur. You never have to remember what you’ve said if you’re 100% honest.”
– Glen McCombs
Come in and talk to our knowledgeable staff. We can advise you as to what plants to select for our diverse climate and micro-climates and works well at elevations from 3,000 to 8,000 feet encompassing all of Rim Country to Tonto Basin. Our knowledge extends to water-wise and native plantings as well.