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Gardeners love to say that gardening is a thrifty way to beautify your landscape, raise a lot of your family’s food, get plenty of exercise and commune with nature — all at the same time. But, despite our love of economy, some of us know in our hearts that we succumb to pretty plants in the nursery like some people cave in to pretty shoes.

I’m in the midst of landscaping a steep hillside to keep my husband from having to mow it. After foraging among the discount centers for good deals on junipers, yews and boxwoods, I head to a local independent nursery that’s known for its high-quality plants. They love to see me coming, because they know I’m a sucker for interesting specimens. An hour later, my collection is increased and my bank balance is decreased.

Still, I’m all about saving money on the nitty-gritty: I save seed, take cuttings, divide plants, convert plastic food and beverage containers into seed beds and container plants. And I love checking in at Compost Confidential to see how Joe Lamp’l is progressing with his “Quest for a $25 Victory Garden.” Joe, a nationally known lecturer and TV personality, has laid his garden out for all the world to see. His biggest single expenditure to date has been $7 for seed-starting mix; he got people on Twitter and Facebook to send him free seed. A month ago, after a prolonged period of rain that put the damper on the garden’s (and his tomato seedlings’) progress, he splurged ($5) on two large tomato transplants. It was a hard decision, he said, but one based on reality: the growing conditions were awful, and he needed to start producing food soon.

Which just goes to show you, a large pretty plant can be a hard thing to pass up.

FILED UNDER:

Gardening, Shopping

3 Responses

  1. Lynn Coggin says:

    ***typo…hostas not hastas*** I obviously so need my editor, Mary, to help me out! ;)

    Have a nice night!

    Living the Dream!

    P.S. My plug for the day…watch me on the SuperFan audtitions…titled "Living the Dream!" Sorry, but I can't resist…love HGTV!

  2. Lynn Coggin says:

    Hi Marie Hofer! Nice to read your article! Believe me, I have spent a lot of dough on my garden…fortunately, recently though, my neighbor who has a beautiful perrenial garden has been splitting his plants and sending them my way. I have been planting them in my garden and, lo and behold, they come up beautifully! I have also split many a hastas and have given them to my friends…they are an easy and hardy plant to split and share.

    Anyway, thanks for this article…I enjoyed!

  3. Thank you for yet an other great blog to visit. Thank you for the recommendation of different blogs. Enjoy your blog and tv shows.
    Overspending on gardening, been there done that. It must look really good now on your hill.
    Dan and Deanna "Marketing Unscrambled"

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