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Our Story

What started as a newlywed couple reintroducing a few natives to the yard of our proudly purchased starter home blossomed in 2021 into a full-fledged Native Plant Nursery at our century-old homestead. Our local roots keep us grounded and community-focused. We’re proud to provide quality plants that are pesticide-free and locally sourced, backed by the high level of personal service you’ve come to expect from a local business. Peruse our unique plant list, and come away with vibrant additions to your own habitat.

Designs By Nature - Upper Peninsula Native Plants, LLC, is owned and operated by Michelle Wietek-Stephens, a UP native herself.  Michelle left a 15 year career as an environmental consultant to focus on a growing family.  During her career, Michelle consulted on environmental protection, site restoration, and wetland management.

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Our Mentors

Designs By Nature UP is proud to be mentored by Designs By Nature, LLC, located in Laingsburg, Michigan. Their fully licensed greenhouse grows only native plants of Michigan genotypes. Designs by Nature, LLC, was established in 1997 by Vern Stephens and Sue Tangora.  Vern and Sue have over 30 years' experience working with native plants and ecosystem restoration.  They have consulted on projects throughout the state from home landscape design to university/corporate restoration and installation.  Vern recently retired from the Michigan DNR Wildlife Division as a Senior Wildlife Assistant where his work specialized in grasslands and invasive species management.  Designs By Nature, LLC, is an active supplier of quality native plants throughout Michigan and the region.