The last few weeks of spring, I put on my radar and start scouring my favorite nurseries for bargain plants to add to my garden. Plants that others have walked by and discarded are the ones that draw me close. You’ve seen them. The cart of discounted plants that look all weathered and wilted pushed to the back of the garden center waiting to be thrown away. I am urging you to look past their outward sorry state and open your mind to the possibilities that await your garden.
I have learned that I can stretch my garden dollars, and add more lovely color to my garden, by shopping the discounted racks. I usually save up to 75% off the original price. This year my bargain shopping allowed me to buy three full-price new rose bushes from my favorite nursery, while I saved a great deal on annuals and filler plants by shopping the discounted racks.
Most times these bargain plants look a little sad, but after some tender loving care, my best buys perk up and flourish after just a couple weeks.
- Choose plants that have not flowered yet.
- Prune blooming annuals by a third to encourage bushier growth and more blooms.
- Massage the root ball when removing a plant from its pot to release tangled roots.
- Plant you buys as soon as possible, and water in good.
- Fertilize annuals using a high phosphorus product. I use Jobes Organic All Purpose Fertilizer
- Examine the roots by sliding the plant out of its pot. Look for healthy white roots.
- Inspect leaves and roots for insects or diseases that will weaken the plant.
- Look for thick stems and fresh green growth.
- If container gardening, plant in the largest pot you have. More soil means more room for the roots.
- Read plant guides carefully and group your plants according to sun or shade requirements.
After a few weeks of tender loving care no one can tell which plants I have purchased at the beginning of the season and which one I bought from the bargain bin!
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