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if you wanted to do a perrenial garden

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Is it cheaper to order perrenials(grown or seeds) online, or locally?


If you order online, where is the best place to purchase?


And is there a website where you can do a "virtual" perrenial garden so you can plan on where to place the plants, which ones to buy so you have continuous blooming all summer?


Yea, I know it is cold out and winter is coming, but at least this way I have summer to look forward to again!

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Good for you for planning ahead. Talk to your friends about gardening. You can split perennials in the spring and I bet many would be willing to share. Free is always good.


How quick do you want your garden to be in bloom. If you want it to fill in quickly, your best bet is your local garden center for potted plants, but this is also the more expensive option. If you don't mind your garden talking a few years, seeds work fine but you won't see blooms on most perennials for at least a year. I don't have any experience with mail order.


To get some of the great varieties of Hosta or Daylilies you will need to purchase them potted or bare root.


Enjoy the planning and the planting but be warned it can become addicting!

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Is it cheaper to order perrenials(grown or seeds) online, or locally?


If you order online, where is the best place to purchase?



It varies with th perennial.

some grow very easily from seed, and will easily self-seed. (i.g. alchemilla/lady's mantle, digitalis/foxglove. dh hates lamb's ear because it spreads like a weed.) You do need to protect seeds from birds.

some have been a pain for me and I just bought the plant.

some herbaceous perennials do better buying starts. e.g. peonies. (they are dependent up on their root system, so if you buy a bare-root plant it can take a few years for them to bloom after planting. the bigger the root system, the sooner it will bloom.)

also remember, some "annuals" are actually tender perennials. i.e. snapdragons and violets.

I have no one place where I get plants - I've bought seeds and conifer cultivars off e-bay, my local high end nursery, the box stores, etc.

Edited by gardenmom5
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I just don't know where to start!!! I have a nice area in my backyard to fill in, and perrenials can be expensive!


I find it helps to pick one area, one bed, to work on at a time. Fix it up and enjoy it for a season, then add another bed or area the next spring (or fall here, too.) A couple of years I got out of control and did three new beds at once. :D Do some perennials in every bed and fill in with inexpensive annuals by seed. And mulch everywhere. Even bare beds look good with mulch.


The best thing about perennials is that after about three years or so, you can dig and divide your own plants. In addition...I know when I break ground on a bed that it is not going to look like I want it to for three full years--maybe longer. It's a great lesson is patience, growth, and in an odd way...wisdom.


I second the idea of making gardening friends...gardeners are generally generous with their plants and seeds.


Happy gardening...dreaming of new beds and new plants gets me through winter every year.

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I second bluestone perennials but there prices have gone up recently since they switched to sending out bigger specimens. I also second the opinion of not trying to do too much at once. I am in the same situation where a lot needs to be redone. I am using mostly annuals now and in pots to see what is growing there already next spring (I moved here in late July so I don't know what spring bulbs or ephemerals may already be here). Then I will do one section at a time per season and maintain that section. Since there are a lot of beds and plants already here, I am working on maintaining that and adding a few pots right now and will work on a bed next Spring.


Some resources for plans are the Better Homes and Garden site has lots and lots of plans. Also. the magazine Garden Gate comes with several garden plans each month along with articles on plants and methods. I would check out your library too. You can check several books out with plans and then decide which designer you like.

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I would make a plan of some of the plants you want. And try to figure out how many of them (like do you want one daylily or a big clump of them). I would buy the plants you can find in your local store, but the ones you can't find locally get from on-line/catalog. Also I would not fill up the whole space, because the perennials spread and you can divide them and save money. So for the first few years, I would fill in the gaps with annuals. A big mistake to putting too many plants in a space.


You may want to think about when flowers bloom and pick flowers for spring, summer and fall.

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Will be looking into all of these suggestions. I really want to fill that back area in. I know it will look beautiful once I get it done(and the right way of course).


If I get it done, I will post a picture. Of course, not until next year. Hopefully, summer will be here again very soon!


Thank you:D

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I agree with all of the other posters.


Also, don't neglect online boards.


http://allthingsplants.com has lots of forums with helpful people who love to give advice. There is also trading, and you can often find people who are willing to share their plants with you for the cost of postage. Also, the database (under "plants" at the top) is great for finding the perfect plant for the perfect spot (and to drool over all of the other plants that you "need"!)

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I am in a garden club that holds a large pass-along plant sale every spring.

I would use caution, though, buying plants through garden clubs, eBay, Craigslist, etc. It truly is Buyer Beware. Most plants that people are wanting to pass along, well... they reproduce freely, which is why the original gardener has some to spare. :D Yes, that little pot of mint may look cute and containable, but it can turn into a thug in a blink of an eye. (Not just saying that about mint, but any perennial can spread like wildfire.)


A few of my favorite on-line sources:


Daylilies - http://www.oakesdaylilies.com/

People always have daylilies to share, but they are generally the 'ditch lilies,' which are very aggressive. It pays to be selective and actually buy nice, well-behaved daylilies. They give you a lot of bang for your buck.

Oakes is one of the best, in my opinion. They send huge transplants and you can select 'bonus' plants that you are interested in.


Argyle Acres - http://www.argyleacres.com/

A lovely source for bearded irses. (Hm. I just noticed they are selling their business. Wonder if I can talk my DH into buying it?! :lol:)


Antique roses are my main garden interest -





Sadly, many on-line and local plant vendors are going out of business, as few appreciate the special nature of the business any more. They would rather buy generic cheap plants at a box store. :glare:

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