Customers will see some familiar faces, such as Alison Verey, who tended plants at the retail spot. Mills hopes they'll meet people they might not know, too, and make connections that will continue to feed the landscaping and design part of the business.
"I realized lots of people know me," Mills said, "but how do we get our other people in contact with the public?"
Among them is Chris Knorr, a landscape designer who can help take clients to steps beyond just thinking about plants.
"Something we like to do is encourage people to get out there and use it (their yards)," Knorr said. That might include furniture, walls or paths that make the space easy to use.
TerraSalis' stock in trade has always been plants and plant varieties that are more unusual, and Mills said that hasn't changed.
"We know many of our plant purveyors personally, and we know growers around the country," he said.
TerraSalis employees also have been busy growing plants from seed or cutting in its greenhouses.
"Many of these are predestined for customers, but the rest we will sell," Mills said.
The garden center is at 4797 Midland Drive in Malden. For information, visit www.terrasalis.com, the center's Facebook page, or call 304-925-4754.
"If this is successful, we'll do it again in September and October and then maybe again at Christmas," Mills said.
Contact writer Monica Orosz at mon...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4830.