Peninsula Perennial Nursery in Northport, Michigan is an incredible place to live and grow. On our 20 acre nursery, we cultivate and care for a variety of perennials, flowering shrubs and trees, groundcovers, and ornamental grasses. Our farm, in the Great Lakes State, is a return to our roots and a display of the beauty Leelanau County has to offer.

We're grateful to be able to grow and garden our plants in northern Michigan and add bloom to the natural landscape that surrounds us. 

"It's not a home until it's planted"

Our history in horticulture goes back many years ago to Eaton, Ohio where Kris's great grandfather began a fruit orchard. The orchard flourished into a nursery business which turned into Kris's father creating his own greenhouse-nursery in Indiana. That greenhouse in Muncie was where Kris first gained a love and understanding of plant production. He then continued his education with a Bachelors of Science degree from Michigan State University specializing in ornamental horticulture.

After graduation in 1977, Kris and his wife, Betsy, first experienced Leelanau County, as many do, by camping and hiking the picturesque lake shore. Feeling a unique sense of home and heart in Northport, they moved in and within three years bought a greenhouse what was then known as Charters on Mill St. They named the business North Country Gardens and started a tea room after visiting National Trust Gardens all over Great Britain. Returning to Michigan State gave Betsy the opportunity to receive a certification in Landscape Design, complimenting her B.F.A. in Art. At North Country Gardens, Kris and Betsy brought in new ideas in landscape gardening and plant combination pots to the peninsula.  

In 1991, the business sold and the Ernst's moved their family to Grand Rapids, Michigan. Kris pursued a career as a wholesale broker in Michigan horticulture working with a variety of nurseries all across the country. Betsy continued in landscape contracting through two commercial and residential landscape firms.

Their love of the Leelanau Peninsula came calling and in 2014 the Ernst's purchased land on North Swede Road to return to their roots. This time they have started a specialized farm of carefully cultivated plants called Peninsula Perennial Nursery!  The choice of plants for the nursery are selected and curated for the northern climate on the 45th parallel. With the recent addition of their youngest daughter Megan, from New York City, the business is growing into the 21st Century!

For more information or questions, please feel free to contact us at: peninsulaperennials@gmail.com.

Our hours can be found here, but we like to say, "if you hear our dogs bark, we're open."

Kris and Betsy Ernst