Our gardens are usually lovely because my husband and I take good care of them.
But there’s another reason we’re pleased: nothing we add costs us much. Some gardening tips to share:
- Look for end-of-season sales. Many perennial plants in our garden were bought in late June or early July. Remember: water generously that first summer. Your plants should thrive and return even stronger in subsequent years.
- Divide mature plants. Hosta, hydrangea, phlox, bee balm — most perennials, in fact — may be divided within 2 to 4 years of planting, instantly creating more mature plants for other spaces in your garden. We got these green-and-white hosta from our neighbours’ garden and have divided them repeatedly in subsequent years.
- Consider gift certificates. If you have a big anniversary and friends ask “What would you really like?”, suggest gift certificates from one centrally-located and reputable nursery. I never remember this until it’s too late. But with a few certificates, you could get a shrub, a tree, or even garden furniture.
- Bargain. We had beautiful clematis plants at the farmhouse garden. Most were straggly-looking at the garden-centre, so we negotiated, got great deals and loved them back to health.
- Keep the good stuff. One of our most cherished pieces was a gift from friends: a cedar bench made especially for us. We’ve lived in three homes since then, and it always comes along.
- Paint the Old Stuff.Our metal tables were old and rusty. Blue paint brought them back to life.
- Work with what you have. We never wanted a pool. But the house-with-the-pool cost much less than the houses-that-had-no-pool. So we bought it. Then a neighbour gave us his old paving stones; my husband created another paved area for seating.
- When you can’t afford what you want, consider a substitute.
I’d like a certain kind of chaises longues for my garden, but cannot afford them. So every spring in the last three years, I’ve bought one of these zero-gravity loungers. Solid and durable, each costs about one tenth of the chair I’d like and is very comfortable too! Happy saving to you!