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Budget Gardening

By: H. Iacobacci-Miller

If you're like most people, you want that expensive, lush looking garden or landscape design without the high costs. Here are just a few tips and ideas for getting the look you want without breaking the bank.

  1. Buy Seeds - Seeds can usually be found for less than $1.00 for a package. You do have to plant them earlier and seedlings can be tender, but it certainly beats paying the prices for flats of mature plants.
  2. Save extra flower seeds - Don't throw away your unused seeds! If kept in a cool, dry place, they can remain viable for four or five years.
  3. Plant seeds directly in the ground - This may not seem like a cost saving tip, but think of the money you'll save on potting mixtures, plastic trays, or peat pots.
  4. Propagate your plants - One way to get more bang for your buck when gardening is to divide the larger clumps of perennials such as chrysanthemums or bulbs like daffodils into multiple plants. You can also take root cuttings from some of your shrubs such as azaleas.
  5. Mix annuals with perennials - Perennials can get pricey, so one way to save some money is to purchase some of the super cheap, but oh so pretty petunias and impatiens. They won't last the whole year, but they will definitely add a splash of color to any garden or landscape theme.
  6. Comparison shop - This is an important and truly cost-saving tip. Remember, nurseries can often differ not only in price, but in quality. A little bit of research can pay off well in the end.
  7. Buy in bulk - When buying fertilizer or mulch, bulk is the key.

Having a beautiful lawn and garden doesn't mean spending a fortune. With a little research and patience, you can have a professional looking garden without spending a fortune.

For some great online gardening sites, check out Michigan Bulb Co., and Gardener's Supply Co.