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Mary370Mary370 Posts: 2,003
I rarely buy plants anymore as I love to grow from seed.  But this year I've been concentrating on planting up my front garden with perennials I have grown......and having been away for 2 weeks, I have lost a lot of seedlings and need to buy some bedding plants for a large planter outside my front door.  I went to Homebase to purchase some petunias, I was scandalised by the cost of some of the flowers.  Cosmos - 5 euro per plant!  Primula vialii - 7 euro per plant!  Both very easy to grow from seed.  I had forgotten how expensive it can be to have a nice garden.....This is the exact reason I started to grow seeds.  


  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,955
    I know what you mean.  What gets me is when the big box GC sells plants completely inappropriate for our climate/most gardens.  Our soil has a pH of 8.. yet they are stocked full of blueberries and rhododendrons to sell unsuspecting gardeners.  Or shrubs that are not appropriate for our zone, that will die off their first winter here.  Our local nursery is much more expensive, and the plants are more likely to be potbound due to slow turnover, but they have their things well marked and zoned together.  Drought tolerant, bog plants, perennials, annuals, and such each in their own places.  They do sell blueberries.. but give full instructions/warning to people at the checkout (if they didn't speak with them already).  
    Utah, USA.
  • Mary370Mary370 Posts: 2,003
    I know and agree with you @Blue Onion.  But who among us has not been lured and ambushed into buying 'a ?? ...... the one with the beautiful (forced) flowers/berries' out of season or as you said, right plant wrong location.  All purchases are a learning curve and help teach us a little more about this wonderful hobby/obsession/addiction called gardening.
  • FireFire Posts: 17,116
    Have struggled under a weight of seedlings this year, without the set up for it, oh the joy of buying a large, well grown plant and popping it in the ground. The air in my garden is blue tinged, with trying to get hundreds of plants to maturity. I've certainly lost a lot more this year than have survived.
  • wild edgeswild edges Posts: 9,383
    Yep big thanks to the volunteer seedlings that just happily turn up in the garden and beautify the place without needing human support. Without self seeders my garden would be looking a lot more bare this year. I have pots full of calendula, nasturtium and borage that were gently teased out of my gravel paths as seedlings and are ready to go places once I've found places for them to go.

    Welsh poppies, teasels, jacobs ladder, erysimum, chives, sedums, comfrey, foxgloves, badgermittens, there are free plants everywhere if you know where to look and what to do with them. I've got a nice display of yellow flag iris this year from rhizomes that I dug out of a field. No idea how they got there but they look great by my pond.

    I've bought one plant this year though; a rather nice variegated brunnera that wasn't that expensive but I still had to think hard before buying it. I'm glad I did though as it looks great B)
    Tradition is just peer pressure from dead people
  • DeeLynnDeeLynn Posts: 18
    As a beginning gardener, I must say I appreciate the potted plants but they are expensive. The benefit is that I get instant color and structure while I figure out what’s what and what goes where. I’m sure any decent gardener would look at my beds and shake their head in dismay at the mix piled in them but I like them for now and I’ll get better as I go along. I’m the type they market to. :) We did plant quite a bit of our veg from seed and I’m reading up on when and how to harvest seed and prepare for next year. Nothing has died so far so even if there is an acid loving plant that loves free drainage next to an alkaline loving plant that prefers it’s feet wet.....I’m oblivious....for now.
  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,955
    Yes.. but a lot of dead plants on a first attempt put many new gardeners off.  You are lucky in the U.K., with gardening clubs and quality gardening publications.  We have neither.  
    Utah, USA.
  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,955
    Welcome @DeeLynn, it's nice to meet a fellow American on this fine British forum.   :)
    Utah, USA.
  • DeeLynnDeeLynn Posts: 18
    Thank you @Blue Onion! I can remember homes opening their gardens and awards being given when I was young but I haven’t seen anything like that in years. I do wish we had more informative gardening programs in the US. 
  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,955
    I'd be happy with a decent monthly gardening magazine.  Anything like the ones on this list would be perfect.  

    Growing from seed can be quite intimidating, with far more failure than success.  Particularly with some of the enticing challenging varieties available.  Like rosemary, lavender, parsnips, etc.  Not too easy for beginners, especially if all they have is a pot, bit of soil, and a windowsill.  

    I buy most my perennials in pots.. from the dead shelf if possible.. and let them seed around.  I've done some from seed before, but my windows are usually filled with veg seedlings.. so never have space for them.  
    Utah, USA.
  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 4,409
    At Chatsworth Show they were selling pots of Yellow flag iris with three or four leaves at £4.50.
    Yesterday I did some clearing in the boggy hollow I call 'The Dell', and carted off 5 wheelbarrowloads to the heap. I estimate that was at least £500 pounds worth, and there's still plenty to go at! Can you start a nursery with just one plant I wonder?
    @Wildedges, Beware!
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