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Where to buy cheap 9cm pot perennials?

msqingxiaomsqingxiao North LondonPosts: 347
Read some old posts on the forum about buying 9cm pot perennials and pot them on as a good way to save money. I've got a garden full of weeds and slugs at the moment, waiting to be filled out with perennials (cottage style ideally). Wondering where would be a good place to buy them? I saw a lot of varieties selling for £3 at Secret Gardening Club (plus £5 delivery). Dobies also has some but I read that they were bought by T&M so not sure. Would other places have better prices? We are nowhere near a garden centre and we don't drive. The nearest B&Q is also a bus ride (£1.5 one way) away. I've bought some dianthus (£1) and fuchsia (£2) from my local Sainsbury's, but they don't have many other varieties. Any suggestion please? Thanks!
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  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,083
    If you keep an eye on some of the sites for big suppliers they'll often have end of season sales where you can save 20% or more.
    I guess if you sign-up to the newsletters you'll be informed - but it's not something I've done.
    I bought 12 pittosporums from Coolings earlier this year in their Spring Sale £5 each instead of £17 each
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 20,596
    When I first started doing this garden, three quarter acres of ground elder, small conifer forests and every other weed in between,  in the first year I sowed seeds, I bought a cheap pack of plug plants from J. Parker’s,  asked people for cuttings,  someone on this site responded to my plea of plants and sent me lots of different geranium roots, someone else sent different coloured Achillia,  daffodils bulbs from Parker’s,  then by the following year I’d cleared enough of a bed to make a start. 
    I’d potted on the plug plants and kept them in over winter so they were ready to plant out and flower that year. 
    It can be done on a shoe string.   You need very forward thinking as the seeds you sow now will be the following or even the year afters flowers, you get used to doing that.
    Its an achievement when you done it all yourself,  I love to say I’ve grown all this and not just been out and bought it.
    Don't try to do too much in one go,  get one good bed going first then you can move onto another patch. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • SueAtooSueAtoo DorsetPosts: 244
    If you have a local Nextdoor site or Freecycle you can often find people giving plants away free or cheap. Drive/walk about the neighbourhood looking for plants outside peoples homes for sale. Whereabouts are you?
  • msqingxiaomsqingxiao North LondonPosts: 347
    Thanks all for the great advice!!
    Pete.8 said:
    If you keep an eye on some of the sites for big suppliers they'll often have end of season sales where you can save 20% or more.
    I guess if you sign-up to the newsletters you'll be informed - but it's not something I've done.
    I bought 12 pittosporums from Coolings earlier this year in their Spring Sale £5 each instead of £17 each
    I've already ordered some from various sites' end of season sales, a mixture of shrubs and perennials. Think I'll need more perennials though.  :p

    Lyn said:
    When I first started doing this garden, three quarter acres of ground elder, small conifer forests and every other weed in between,  in the first year I sowed seeds, I bought a cheap pack of plug plants from J. Parker’s,  asked people for cuttings,  someone on this site responded to my plea of plants and sent me lots of different geranium roots, someone else sent different coloured Achillia,  daffodils bulbs from Parker’s,  then by the following year I’d cleared enough of a bed to make a start. 
    I’d potted on the plug plants and kept them in over winter so they were ready to plant out and flower that year. 
    It can be done on a shoe string.   You need very forward thinking as the seeds you sow now will be the following or even the year afters flowers, you get used to doing that.
    Its an achievement when you done it all yourself,  I love to say I’ve grown all this and not just been out and bought it.
    Don't try to do too much in one go,  get one good bed going first then you can move onto another patch. 
    That's really sweet Lyn. I'm looking to achieve the same, planting all the stuff by myself little by little rather than buying big mature plants. Just getting a bit impatient doing the weeding over and over again  :D

    SueAtoo said:
    If you have a local Nextdoor site or Freecycle you can often find people giving plants away free or cheap. Drive/walk about the neighbourhood looking for plants outside peoples homes for sale. Whereabouts are you?
    I'm in north London. That's a really good tip as my neighbours on this street all have amazing plants in their front gardens, esp hydrangeas. Guess I'll need to stop being too shy and go to ask for cuttings this summer!  :D  
  • LoxleyLoxley NottinghamPosts: 4,640
    edited June 2021
    Too often online retailers sell 9cm stock for a fiver or more, which is what you'd expect to pay for 1-2l stock at a decent nursery/GC. Sutton Nursery does cheap (for online) 9cm stock (2.99-3.49) and they also do bare root which is a good option for the dormant season, and much more environmentally friendly.  

    Most perennials can be planted direct at 9cm, the only exception are things that take a long time to establish. 
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 20,596
    Try the Pound shop, B&M, Lidl, Morrison, you can get small perennials there that just need a bit of TLC to bring them on. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • FireFire North LondonPosts: 15,669
    edited June 2021
    Where abouts are you in North London?  Practice taking cuttings and don't give up.

    Hayloft can be good for buying plugs, if you are prepared to do the work to look after them.

    Also Longacres. Be careful of delivery costs.

    I believe SGC is not as great a bargain site as it used to be.

    The next few months are great for sales. Look at the major sites - they will often give 50% off certain plants, as the season ends. If you look for perennials you can get some good bargains, if you don't mind more tatty stock that you care carefully for over winter. Again be careful of delivery. And it might take many weeks before the plants reach you. Patience is all.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 79,488
    And don’t forget, buying one decent plant can be better value than buying several cheaper ones. 
    Split it into two or three and Pitt them up to grow on. Cut them back to increase business and use the bits for cuttings. One plant can become a dozen in just a few months. Bargain! 👍 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • msqingxiaomsqingxiao North LondonPosts: 347
    Lyn said:
    Try the Pound shop, B&M, Lidl, Morrison, you can get small perennials there that just need a bit of TLC to bring them on. 
    Thanks Lyn. Had a look and sadly none within walking distance... I've explored my local Aldi and Sainsbury's. The latter does indeed have a lot of sorry-looking plants, but not selling for a discount... 

    Fire said:
    Where abouts are you in North London?  Practice taking cuttings and don't give up.

    Hayloft can be good for buying plugs, if you are prepared to do the work to look after them.

    Also Longacres. Be careful of delivery costs.

    I believe SGC is not as great a bargain site as it used to be.

    The next few months are great for sales. Look at the major sites - they will often give 50% off certain plants, as the season ends. If you look for perennials you can get some good bargains, if you don't mind more tatty stock that you care carefully for over winter. Again be careful of delivery. And it might take many weeks before the plants reach you. Patience is all.
    Thanks Fire! I'm in East Barnet. Will keep an eye on the end-of-season sale. I'm prepared to sacrifice a lot of my living space for plants in the winter! :P

    And don’t forget, buying one decent plant can be better value than buying several cheaper ones. 
    Split it into two or three and Pitt them up to grow on. Cut them back to increase business and use the bits for cuttings. One plant can become a dozen in just a few months. Bargain! 👍 
    Thanks Dove! Totally agree. :)
  • FireFire North LondonPosts: 15,669
    There are a lot of great gardens opening on Sundays as part of the National Open Gardens Scheme. They usually have a plant sale, offering great plants very cheaply. Going along to an NGS garden will give you loads of ideas too.

    Allotments often offer this too. Convince friends with cars that they really, really want a trip out to Clockhouse nursery (and Forty Hall) quite soon. It's in Enfield, not that far. They grow their own plants and are super cheap.
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