Grant Stephenson’s fascination with the plant world began at the age of three while working with his grandmother in her garden. After studying landscape design and architecture at Louisiana State University, Grant entered the horticulture industry, selling for one of the nation’s largest ornamental plant brokerage firms at the time, Jenco, in Austin, Texas. While in Austin, Grant gained a reputation as a spokesperson in the local horticulture industry, fielding gardening questions on popular local radio programs, providing advice to community groups and businesses concerned with environmentally sound solutions to landscape problems, and helping provide greenery to decorate the sets of PBS’s Austin City Limits TV series.
Building on his experience working with architects, developers, property managers, and contractors, Grant joined the Spencer Company, then ventured into helping develop a nursery at Houston’s Treesearch Farms. There he served as plant buyer and helped initiate a re-wholesaling business. Grant offered his expertise and unique services to many of Texas’ best nurseries and brokerages and became recognized locally and nationally as an unparalleled expert on hardy palms, cycads, and bamboos.
In 1991 Grant’s knowledge, passion, and hard work flowered into Horticultural Consultants, Inc. His company is now the preferred supplier of palms and other tropical plants to the nation’s most demanding landscape architects, commercial nurseries, real estate developers, contractors, botanic gardens, and theme parks.
Since the launch of HCI, Grant has consulted for many well-known clients including the following: Mercer Arboretum, Moody Gardens, Pappas Restaurants, the City of Houston, South Shore Harbor, New Territory, the Finger Companies, the Woodlands Corporation, Freeport, Nassau Bay, Seabrook, Galveston County, Walt Disney World, Tennessee Zoo, Phoenix Zoo, San Antonio Zoo, Houston Zoo, New Orleans Aquarium, Corpus Christi Aquarium, the San Antonio River Walk, San Antonio Botanical Garden, Dixieland Theme Parks, and Six Flags Astroworld. Grant has traveled to collect and acquire palms in Texas, Florida, California, Arizona, Mexico, Hawaii, and the Bahamas, and maintains active relationships with growers and plant enthusiasts across the country and overseas.
Grant belongs to the following organizations and is a regular participant in several horticultural events:
- Palm Beach Palm & Cycad Society The American Bamboo Society
- Cycad Society of South Africa
- Palm Society of South Texas
- The International Palm Society
- Association of Zoological Horticulture
- Texas Nursery & Landscape Association
- FNATS Florida Association of Nurserymen
- Gulf States Horticultural Expo
- The Nursery / Landscape Expo, Houston, TX
- Western States Palm Conference