My garden is filled with hardy plants suited to our hot summers and cold winters. I used to spend way too much money on plants that died or didn’t reproduce themselves well on My Little Farm in Town. Although I still buy a new plant to try out now and then, I mainly trade with other local gardeners or buy plants at backyard and garden club plant sales in my area.
There are a number of advantages to adding to your garden this way:
1. These are plants that have already made it through the winter here and will probably make it through the summer, too.
2. They are accustomed to the soil type and pH of the area.
3. The price is a lot less then retail prices.
4. I can talk to the person who grew the plant I am interested in buying for cultural information and sometimes can even see where he or she dug it.
5. There is an opportunity to trade plants and no money changes hands.
6. Goodwill and generosity are common—sometimes a fellow gardener will just GIVE you free plants.
7. Often if you get a plant locally and lose all of it one winter, your neighbor or the person who originally gave it to you will be able to give you another piece to replace it.
So next time your neighbor offers you a plant you consider local or common, just take it, smile, and say thank you. It may just become the anchor in an area of your garden that never fails to produce color and inspiration. Begonia