Shop Specifically For Plant Bargains

A Tightwad Grows Flowers

Someone said I was so tight, I squeaked when I walked. So tight, I squeezed a nickel til the buffalo bellowed. Say what they will, when it comes to buying flowers, being miserly certainly has it's advantages.

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I have an insatiable appetite for plants. There is no way I could have all the plants I wanted if I had to pay full price. Paying mark down prices allows me to indulge myself without feeling guilty (well, at least somewhat).

I do buy plants sometimes without any idea where I will put them. I don't necessarily think this is a bad Idea. It helps get the creative juice flowing. Here's a good example.

I bought 2 false hollies (Osmanthus heterophyllus 'Goshiki'). $7.00 plants for $.70 each. I couldn't resist. Had I known what they were like, I would have bought all they had.

I have been looking for a low growing evergreen shrub for years, one requiring little maintenance. I wanted a row of them to offset the upper end of my property from a busy street.

When I brought the hollies home, I read up on them. I found out they were the perfect plant for my 'hedge row'. I'll need about 30 of them. So I will be on the lookout for more at reduced prices.

I have never grown phlox, though I like them very much. I bought a pot for pennies on the dollar. This particular phlox is new and one of a series called 'Flame'. Of the four colors available, mine is purple.

Phlox provide a beautiful display in the hottest of mid summer when the heat plays havoc with many other flowers. They are as reliable as sunrise, coming back year after year, and add an old fashioned note to the garden.

The $8.00 pot was a steal for $2.00, especially when you consider there were 3 plants in the pot. I always make it a point to notice how many plants are in a pot.

The Flame phlox is one of the paniculata type, meaning the flowers are arranged in panicles, and panicles, put in simple terms refers to a large flower being made up of many smaller ones.

The Phlox paniculata are tall flowers. However, the Flame series is a naturally dwarf plant. Big flowers, small plant. What more could you want.

I couldn't wait to get a picture of a single bloom for my files. When the panicle is fully opened with many flowers, I will post another picture.

So, the 3 pots pictured below, have a total retail value of $24.00. I got them all for $2.00. Yes! This is what you call fun, ThriftyFun. My tip? Don't wait for a plant bargain to happen by. Be on the lookout. And where will you put that bargain plant? You'll find a place, even if it's in the hands of a friend.

Now, where to put my phlox? I don't know. No worry. These babies will be making a bold statement at my place for years to come. No need to rush into decisions of this type.

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June 14, 20181 found this helpful

Granted, these blooms are not fully open, but somehow, I thought of panicles as being long and slender and somewhat drooping; pretty much like a lilac bloom.

No matter, the blooms are beautiful. They look as if they should be in a small cottage garden in the countryside of rural England.

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June 14, 20181 found this helpful

Phlox are amazing and so versatile!! We use them to keep dirt on our steep front slope from washing down to the sidewalk.

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They spread nicely and look amazing in the spring and are still attractive when the flowers are gone.

I just wish I had better luck getting the "babies" to start for when I want to add them to another zone.

They spread great where they are planted (these were from the original store bought ones)...but when I try to root them myself...I seem to have epic fails.

I am good at starting most anything else from root or seed...just phlox don't like what I am doing...which is a shallow container like a vitamin bottle...warm water and the same sun the planted ones get. They turn brown and die quickly. Any hints?

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June 14, 20180 found this helpful

Thank you for your comment. As I stated above, this is my first time to grow phlox. As you might guess, I know nothing about propagating them.

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You said you try to root them. I don't know how the nurserymen increase their stock, but unless you want hundreds or thousands of new plants, I wouldn't bother trying to root them.

When I bought the plant, there appeared to be three in the pot. When I tried to separate them, I found they were joined by roots under the soil. I just cut through the roots and potted them individually. They all lived.

Since you asked, I decided to see what I could do. I looked at one of the plants and here is what saw. Phlox readily make offshoots. These offshoots have roots. Propagating them should just be a matter of separating these offshoots while keeping as much root attached as possible, and potting them.

The smaller one came away with lots of roots. Most of the roots on the larger one were stripped. I potted both in good soil. Because the larger had little roots to feed itself while becoming established, I covered it with a plastic dome to help it retain moisture in the leaves til it does.

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These will be placed out of direct sunlight for a couple weeks, keeping them slightly damp at all times. They can then gradually be introduced to more sunlight.

I have no doubts the little one will make it just fine. The larger one may or may not. Time will tell.

Separate your offshoots from the parent plant in late evening. Pot up immediately. Put in shade. You should be fine.

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June 14, 20180 found this helpful

Wow! Thanks. Now I know what I did wrong. I had some broken arms for lack of a better term, thinking they would root like a branch does. I will look at an offshore and find one that fits your description.

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I am going to try this ASAP! This past week has been super rainy and I want to establish some to stop dirt flow near my driveway. The pix and description helped!! Thanks bunches!!

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June 15, 20180 found this helpful

If you have several phlox, you shouldn't have any trouble finding these offshoots. The further away from the parent plant they are (2-3 inches), the more likely they will have developed a small root system of their own.

I used a kitchen fork and was able to dig around the little offshoots and lift them out with most of the roots intact. Today, I am going to look for more offshoots I think I can lift successfully because this thing just gets prettier every day. Post back in a month or so and let us know if you were successful.

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June 15, 20180 found this helpful

Absolutely! I will! Thanks. This has been EXTREMELY helpful!

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June 16, 20181 found this helpful

My last tip, I promise. My phlox are still in pots with soft dirt, so this was easy for me. I don't know how it would be for you.

I'm trying to keep as much roots attached to the offshoot when I take it up, as I can. Today, I took an old paring knife, and being sure the soil was damp, I just cut down into the soil in a circular area around the offshoot. I could feel it cutting through the roots leading to the parent. With no effort, I lifted the shoot out of the soil with the knife blade.

I got lots of roots. You might want to try this, as well.

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June 17, 20180 found this helpful

I love your plant articles. Always such an inspiration. I love my tightwad plants too. Last year my husband and I bought two trees for a couple of dollars. This year our trees are growing like crazy. I bought a bamboo that was on it's last legs for under a $1.00. It is four feet tall now and has a foot tall baby bamboo to go with it. Tightwad plants are the best.

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June 19, 20180 found this helpful

Wat to go!

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June 19, 20180 found this helpful

Way to go!

(Doug gets in a hurry sometimes)

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June 17, 20180 found this helpful

I always look for plants with multiple plants in them also. If there is plenty of space between them I take them out of the container, lay them on the ground and cut between them with my favorite garden too, a butcher knife. If the plants are too close together (like cucumbers or squash often are), I take them out of the pot and set the root ball in a container of water. I gently swish it around every few minutes to rinse all the dirt off the roots. Then I gently tease the roots a apart from each other and plant immediately.

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June 18, 20180 found this helpful

Exactly what I do, Thanks!

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June 19, 20180 found this helpful

Beautiful, thanks for all the information!!!

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Anonymous
June 14, 20200 found this helpful

Where do you find plants with such discounts? What time of year would you find these discounts ?

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June 15, 20200 found this helpful

I see rows and rows of discounted plants at Lowe's and other home improvement or garden stores right now. I bought three perennials last week that were slightly wilted for a bargain price. I soaked them overnight and planted them the next day. They look almost as good as brand new ones.

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