Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Gardenig on a budget

Gardening doesn't have to be expensive.

Tiffany purchased bagged and bare root two years ago from Home Depot for about $3.00. If you have a cutting garden these inexpensive roses are perfect. I grow a huge variety for bouquets and didn't spend a fortune. Hybrid tea roses bloom from late May until October freeze.

Unknown white (purple tinged) clematis. If anyone can identify, please let me know the name.
Home Depot purchase last spring for under $4.00. Early in the season HD often has dozens of clematis in small 3" pots. Clematis are tough little plants, mine have done well planted directly into the garden in early spring. I bought several to let ramble among my perennials. They will bloom the second year in the garden.

Stargazer at Menards about $4.00 for a pack of 6 bulbs. Blooms the same year planted.

Siloam Double Classic from Gilbert H. Wild & Son about $2.50. Most of my daylilies are from Gilbert Wild. Over the years the folks at Wilds have been so helpful and supplied large plants in excellent condition. They arrive mid summer and will bloom the following year.

Blue Chips from Home Depot about $3.99 for a 6 inch pot blooming. I never find rare or unusual plants at HD but they are large and often in bloom. I like to be sure of what I'm getting both color and health.

Stella D'oro from Gilbert Wild about $2.00. Stella is a quick multiplier and soon produces an abundance to give to friends or replant in other locations. Stella blooms all summer.

Sunflower from bird seed. Free. Just like the Master Card commercial;)

A small garden for $20. In these days of economic uncertainty, who doesn't love a bargain? (Apology for the discussion of budgets but I'm an accountant, it's to be expected;).

Often I'll take a chance or push the zone on a bargain plant. That way if I made a mistake, I learned a lesson but didn't lose much money.

I live in a small town, we don't have large, exciting garden centers here to choose from. If I lived closer to the wonderful garden boutiques in the Chicago suburbs, I would be bankrupt, homeless and living in the garden. Now that I think about that option, how bad could it be. With a splendid garden fountain (to shower in), cushy outdoor furniture (to sleep on), and a host of garden statues to keep me company, who really needs a house.

I should mention the early and late season sales at Blue Stone Perennials . It's a good source for hard to find plants. Their plants are very small but usually do well and bloom the second year. I have gotten a few cooked perennials (probably stayed in transit too long). Not the fault of Blue Stone but disappointing all the same.