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schoolhouse_gw

Another clearance rack score story....

schoolhouse_gw
14 years ago

At Lowes. I bought a May Night Salvia in a 2qt. container for $1. They have three more May Night, a Purple Marcus (correct name?) and a Freisland. All $1 each. I left the others as I have no real place for them right now, but I'll be kicking myself later for doing it. Sure, the tall foliage is brown and dead looking, but don't people know all you have to do is cut those stalks off? The center of the plant is alive and putting out more leaves.

I saw two Pink Anemones (according to tag) for only $2 each. I saw a lady have one of those on her cart. I should have bought that at least, always can find room for anemones. I kept thinking if someone was trying to start a perennial bed, all they need do is spend $10,and they'd have a great start. But most people overlook a plant when it has brown leaves.

Comments (35)

  • jannie
    14 years ago

    Years ago I bought a mostly-dead red poppy at Franks for 50 cents. I found it on the "clearance" table. Franks is now closed. I planted it as a memorial to my dead dog Poppy. It came up beautifully every year for about ten years, then disappeared.

  • linlily
    14 years ago

    Aren't sale racks wonderful? I hit the Lowes sale racks in the fall of '06 when we moved into a new house, and picked up May Night Salvia, Moonbeam, and Creme Brulee Coreopsis. All are still happily growing here. They were not $1.00 but were still greatly reduced.

    You are going to love May Night. It's one of my very favorite plants.

    Linda

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  • schoolhouse_gw
    Original Author
    14 years ago

    You know, I have a very dark blue salvia that has been growing by the garden gate for a long time, in poor soil that has bits of gravel from the nearby drive and competes with English ivy. I've always called it Mountain Sage and don't remember if a tag identified it otherwise, it's been so long ago. Super reliable and if I deadhead after it blooms, it will keep on blooming until it can't anymore. Just wondering if it IS May Night.
    Lowes had a rosey/red coreopsis on sale, too. Can't remember the name. I have two Moonbeam, so far they both over wintered for me.

  • linlily
    14 years ago

    Watch out when buying some of the colorful coreopsis at Lowes. I had seen some really pretty rosey/pink ones in the spring, and when I checked the back of the tag, they were not hardy in my zone. They have been selling more and more perennials that are not hardy in the zone they are selling them in. Just be sure to check the back of the tag for the zone info before buying.

    Linda

  • linnea56 (zone 5b Chicago)
    14 years ago

    I have had the same experience as Linda as far as pink coreopsis goes. American Dream, Sweet Dreams, several others, all died in record time. Now if itÂs pink I ignore it. I think their hardiness is questionable. There have been a lot of discussions on disappointing pink coreopsis here.

    A couple of years ago I planted a whole new bed all with clearance items from LoweÂs. It was a novelty to me because there were none in my area: but I passed one about once a week enroute to school about 70 miles away from home. I made it a challenge to buy only clearance items for that bed. Now it is full and I derive extra enjoyment knowing it cost me so little. So I was excited when a LoweÂs finally opened in my area. Unfortunately, the garden area in this store is much smaller, and with hardly anything interesting. So they all vary in their stock. The one I used to shop at must have had a more gardening oriented clientele.

    I have several different salvias and May Night is undoubtedly the most floriferous. Deadheading as described, it has bloomed almost non-stop since May. The others will rebloom a bit if deadheaded, but will rest first. May Night is the deepest purple blue of all the salvias I have seen. Good dirt, bad dirt, it keeps blooming. I have now bought 3 for 3 different gardens, all bought for peanuts on sale when not blooming.

    I like a cheap thrill.

  • wyndyacre
    14 years ago

    I have scored from sales racks this fall....2 large rhodos for $17 each, a large clump of river birch for $12, 2 magnolias for $4 each, a "Mr. President" clematis for $4 and today bought 2 trays full of 4" pots of perennials for .99@. They included ferns, ornamental grasses, bergenia, coral bells and hostas.

  • Nancy
    14 years ago

    Love Lowes clearance racks. Our store takes really good care of their perennials & often the clearance plants look as good as what they have full price, just out of bloom. Last year after our summer drought I bought lots of really nice perennials for .25 for gallon plants, including Sundown & Sunrise echinaceas which came back nicely for me. Got some variegated caryopteris which blooms for me soon after I got it & I've enjoyed it far more than I expected.

  • ten_steps_ahead
    14 years ago

    I love clearance racks and what I call the "dead and dying rack". Several years ago in Lowes I found 15 English Primroses for 25 cents each and bought them all. My dh thought I was nuts! Now they happily bloom away in the spring every year. They were the best purchase I ever made.

  • DYH
    14 years ago

    Sounds like you did great with your sale. I think fall is the best time to plant perennials in my zone. Roots get established over the winter without having to put energy into blooms.

    I have salvia 'Marcus'. It's getting lost in the current location...these are SHORT. I plan to move it to a better location in a few weeks.

    Cameron

  • schoolhouse_gw
    Original Author
    14 years ago

    The Marcus is short? That's good to know. Or do you think it's just because of where it is planted right now?

  • rusty_blackhaw
    14 years ago

    To update a late season clearance buy from last year:

    I mentioned finding five Perovskia for $1 each early last fall and planting them out. I was advised that I could expect to lose them since they didn't typically overwinter well with late planting. Turns out every one survived, and they even handled transplanting during a summer hot spell this year.

  • DYH
    14 years ago

    Marcus is actually described as diminuative by some of the catlogs. 10-12" high and wide.

  • linnea56 (zone 5b Chicago)
    14 years ago

    25 CENTS!? Wow. Nothing is ever that cheap here. Well, unless it is certifiably dead (or there is no evidence that there ever was a plant in the pot).

    $1 for a quart pot is my record.

  • schoolhouse_gw
    Original Author
    14 years ago

    One year, the local farm store had all these leftover asters in what must have been 1/2 qt. pots. They were pretty sad looking; when I asked the clerk how much they were, she said "Oh, just take them." !!!!! So I took six. Went home and thought, what the heck I'll be greedy and go get the other eight. So I did. None of them survived the winter. Boo.

  • dirtdiver
    14 years ago

    Stop me before I shop again... So far I've only delved into one nursery's bargain rack but came away with a double hellebore (color unknown), a fancy little white-flowered epimedium originally marked $29(!!), a Twilite baptisia, a slightly crispy 'Pamina' anemone and a couple other things. Three bucks a pop for mostly gallon pots, so not the cheapest ever, and I believe the same nursery will eventually mark them down further, but the selection will likely be nil by then. Last year from the same place I snagged three-gallon Joe Pye plants marked down to a buck that I wasn't able to get into the ground until November. They did great, but I've failed with plenty of late-planted buys too.

    Another local place sold me ten-cent clematis alba last fall--it was more than half dead, and they only charged me the dime only because it was against their principles to give plants away. It lived and flowered a bit this spring.

    When I'm waffling as to whether to buy a clearance plant that might be iffy for me, I think about how I've been kicking myself for two years for not buying a wingthorn rose that was marked down to about $10 one fall. On the other hand, I may be kicking myself when I have to find a place indoors for the new nine-foot-tall banana that seemed such a bargain at ten bucks.

  • linnea56 (zone 5b Chicago)
    14 years ago

    Oh dang! I think I will have to go out tomorrow and see what I can find. It stopped raining after all: do I need another excuse?

    Never mind that I havenÂt finished planting a few things I got in May, not to mention a few remaining annualsÂ.

    If I find anything I will post it for you enablers....

  • rosepedal
    14 years ago

    I was at menards in WI last night. I got sedums in a clay pot for three bucks. Bought two the pots were worth that much. They also had clematis 50 cents. Catus for three bucks. Huge clearance going on right now....... Barb

  • linnea56 (zone 5b Chicago)
    14 years ago

    I can see it now, all us bargain hunters are getting vicarious kicks out of each others dealsÂ

    Sadly, the Menards in my area carries no plants. Bulbs, supplies, but no live plant material. Maybe these stores are too small. Driving through Iowa earlier this summer I stopped at one because I needed some little thing. I ended up in their nursery and came home with lots: not on clearance but less than half of what plants cost in my area. A 3 foot tall tropical hibiscus for $12!! Gallon perennials for $3. Where are you in Wisconsin? Wish gas was cheaper or IÂd go.

    Twice as good as getting a great new plant is getting an overlooked one (appreciated only by the knowledgeable, of course) for a ridiculously low price.

  • schoolhouse_gw
    Original Author
    14 years ago

    I went back to Lowes today for boxwood. All the good deals are gone, the clearance racks are nearly empty except for some annuals.
    I know the discussion of shrubs should be on a different forum, but I just had to share this. I'm always looking for dwarf boxwood, so I find some small ones with tags clearly stating "Dwarf English Suff Boxwood". I turn over the tag to check the height and it's 7'. 7' is dwarf? When other varieties on the same table have their height labeled as 2', 3' or 5'. Weird.

  • vegangirl
    14 years ago

    I haven't been to Lowes this season but last fall and the year before I got some really good deals. In 2006, we stopped in at Lowes and I was looking at a pot of pretty pink impatiens. The garden manager came by and said they were expecting the inspector and he would sell me the whole rack of plants for $5.00 and they had two more up front for $5.00 each. I got them all for $15 and it filled our huge truck bed! I ended up with 20 Kimberly Queen ferns in very nice3 gallon pots, hundreds of pansies in 6-packs, about 20 pots of begonias, dozens of other things: dianthus (these have survived two winters now),lantana, salvias, penstemons and I don't even remember what else.

    Last fall, I got penstemons, salvias (several different ones),5 different hostas, 2 different hardy hibiscus, several different boxwoods, dwarf hollies, a clematis, asters, dianthus,cotinus, spireas, etc. The perennials were .25 to $1 and the shrubs were all under $3 each.

    VG

  • schoolhouse_gw
    Original Author
    14 years ago

    Wow, we should all form a caravan and make a road trip to Virginia!

  • linnea56 (zone 5b Chicago)
    14 years ago

    I just got 3 different salvias on the sale table at Walmart. Salva Marcus, S. Caradonna, and a May Night (to join the 3 other May Nights I already have). Apparently Marcus is short (which I could really use) and Caradonna is tall. The pots were maybe 2 quart size for $2.50: maybe not cheap compared to what some of you are getting (sigh) but good for here.

    IÂm going to LoweÂs tomorrow to see if they have anything, though I may have missed the boat already. Is there any rule of thumb as to when things go on sale there?

  • arbordayle
    14 years ago

    I went to Lowes today to get keys made and couldn't resist stopping at the garden center. All clearance perennials were $1. I purchased all this for $13:

    2 joe pye weed chocolate
    3 astra blue balloon flower
    3 wild thing salvia
    3 goldstrum rudbeckia
    2 plants with no tag, looks like some sort of honeysuckle with very pretty pinkish/coral tubular flowers

    All were healthy looking and flowering. My local Lowe's doesn't seem to have a set day when they mark down plants. Sometimes there's nothing and other times (like today) I get lucky. Now if I can just get them planted before the snow comes...

  • vegangirl
    14 years ago

    Went to Lowes and there was nothing but annuals and some live oak trees. I think we need to go to where ever arbordayle lives :)

    I remembered some other things I got last year : "Little Joe" joepye weed, Russian sage, diascia (this had coral tubular flowers).

    VG

  • mikeygraz
    14 years ago

    I love Lowe's when compared to Home Depot - Home Depots I've been too won't mark down their plants because they apparently send them back to the supplier for refunds (I've heard this from two or three Home Depots) - but Lowes....well heck I can even bring regularly priced plants down in price...

    One fall I bought 14 Astibles of various varieties at Lowe's for 25 cents each - they had NO green foliage on them whatsoever but they did have nice swollen buds. I planted them and next spring 12/14 astibles came up and they all just look amazing.

    I also had a few other plants I've gotten from them - once they had some perennial I was interested in, it was the last one there and had a large crack in the pot and when I went up to the cashier I said "I really want this but I'm a little worry if the plant might be damaged since the pot is messed up so much" and he took off 20 or 30% right there...pretty awesome stuff.

    That was in Ohio, now here in Omaha they start REALLY marking plants down in early October - shrubs that are normally $25 literally were down to $1. I dont think they send their inventory back if it dies so its to everyone's benefit if all the plants go before the end of the season.

    If anyone has a Menards in their area - it'd be wise to go I think. I just bought a Fothergilla major in a 5 gallon pot for...$9 I think (have to get the receipt).

    Love the end of summer bargains - the only thing I don't love is getting home and finding out I have NO place to put a lot of my purchases, hah.

    ~Mike

  • garden_for_life
    14 years ago

    arbordayle, your mystery plant on the end of your list might be Chelonopsis yagiharana (Japanese Turtlehead). I have been obsessively scouring the clearance racks too, glad I am not alone in this! What a pleasure it is to find a perfectly healthy plant at half off or even lower.

  • dirtdiver
    14 years ago

    With all of you talking about your great Lowe's deals, I dropped by the one that's near me during some other errands. Zip. Nothing marked down, and the saddest selection of bulbs I've seen even at a big box store for a long, long time. But the fake Christmas trees were already up and blinking.

    Made me feel even better about picking up a small $5 potted purple tree peony at my most local nursery.

  • arbordayle
    14 years ago

    My mystery plants look exactly like the picture and description I checked for Japanese Turtlehead. It's not a plant I would have normally purchased, but for $1 it will be fun to experiment. Thanks garden for life!

  • linnea56 (zone 5b Chicago)
    14 years ago

    Hearing about the great deals so many of you have gotten: last week I hustled over to the LoweÂs that opened this spring in a suburb north of me, lusting after clearance perennials.

    Get this: NOTHING on sale! I could not believe it. Except mostly dead things, and really dead things, and even those were only half off. IÂm sorry, that does not make the grade for me. SnarlÂ.

    I did pick up some dinky inexpensive mums (only color left, white) because I did not want to completely waste a trip. I asked the clerk if and when things would go on sale, but she knew nothing. I didnÂt see much there I didnÂt already have as it was.

    How do you find the GOOD LoweÂs?

  • vegangirl
    14 years ago

    Linnea, I have the opportunity to check out several Lowes stores because of visiting my MIL. We pass two stores going, check out the store in the town where she lives and then hit a different one coming home by another route. One on the way and the one on the way home are by far the best. I rarely find anything good in her town and the one closest to us sometimes has good stuff. I guess it depends on the management. The garden manager of one is a horticulturist and he buys really nice, unusual plants and shrubs along with the usual stuff.

  • linnea56 (zone 5b Chicago)
    14 years ago

    I had occasion to go to the same LoweÂs I stopped at late last week (the one I was so annoyed at because they had nothing on sale). When I was there before I had run out of time and hadnÂt had a chance to see if they had bulbs. So I went back today with some renovation returns. Hardly any bulbs, and nothing special at all: just tulip mixtures by color, etc. Less than a quarter of what the one I used to go to would have. Phooey.

    This time though they had reduced small tropical hibiscus to $1. Pots are about a gallon. When I was there last week they were $4 each and still had flowers. None were blooming now but most still had buds: very healthy looking too. So I bought 3. No idea what color they are, but hey, they were a $1. I tried to pick ones that I thought might be 3 different colors. Of course this makes 3 MORE hibiscus I will have to winter inside, in addition to the 4 I have already, but hey. You canÂt buy a houseplant of that size for a $1.

    They had a few perennials that I know werenÂt there last week since I had gone over everything very carefully then. Not really clearance priced yet, but not expensive, so I decided to get them anyway. A Red Dragon Fleeceflower, a Black Adder agastache, and a Crème Brulee coreopsis. I have wanted one of those for a long time, as people here have said itÂs a better coreopsis than Moonbeam, which I have not had much luck with thus far. The Black Adder looks like a much brighter blue than the agastache I have now which I think is Blue Fortune. Plus I used to like the TV show of the same name with Rowan Atkinson.

    So IÂm feeling a little less deprived; though not actually feeling lucky yet.

  • dirtdiver
    14 years ago

    Linnea--had you not mentioned your Lowe's was brand-new, I'd be thinking we were shopping at the same one! Our local Home Depot tends not to mark down either, although I did once come across some "living Christmas trees," Frasier firs and Colorado blue spruces, for a penny each right after their holiday window.

  • linnea56 (zone 5b Chicago)
    14 years ago

    I had an appointment today in another town: before I left I checked online to see if there was a LoweÂs nearby. I found one on my route home and stopped. Even fewer bulbs there than in my local one, but I did better on other plants! Focusing on the dry area I have to fill, I got 4 grasses, Morning Light Maiden Grass, Cabaret Grass, Hameln Fountain Grass, and "Old Gold" Japanese Sedge grass, each for $6 for a gallon size (does not sound cheap but much less than I have seen them for before). Also Purple Emperor Sedum, gallon for $3, and an unlabelled gallon clearance Phlox: blooming, very pretty, a light pale pink with a center of darker pink for $5. A "Tiny Rubies" dianthus for $2.

    Bought 2 more tropical hibiscus, huge waist high ones at 75% off, making them $5 each. My son wants large tropical houseplants for his apartment, why not hibiscus?

  • linnea56 (zone 5b Chicago)
    14 years ago

    IÂm sure IÂm not the only one who does this, right?

    I was trolling the stacks of clearance plants yesterday, to see what unappreciated gems might be hidden beneath the declining foliage. I have a new side yard to fill and doing it at little cost has a lot of appeal. They were $2.50. Who could walk away? ItÂs a game really.

    I picked up another Salvia Caradonna (well, 2), a yarrow labeled "Summer pastels" (who knows what color that will be, but it was so healthy, I can always move it later if I donÂt like the color, right? Right?)

    Once a few were in my cart resistance was tumbling fast. In went an unlabelled plant, but I could tell it was a lavender. I passed on some unknown lance-leaved coreopsis ( how strong I am). Then peeping from the back row I saw a very healthy plant with long, deep green, divided, almost lacy, leaves. Some kind of daisy, methinks. So healthy, only lacking one tiny thing to make it truly desirable, a tag, an identity. In the cart it goes.

    But I have no idea what kind of daisy, let alone if it IS really a daisy. I have no daisies (until nowÂmaybe) so how can I really tell? I just know I will have to do some delving to find out what, of the plants that turn out when googling "daisy", will be MY new daisy.

    In return for my rescuing them, I expect stellar performance from all of them next year. Whatever they are.

    When I get home and add yet another cluster to the growing group of red-tagged plants on the lawn, my teenage daughter comes out to look over my pile, and says, seriously, "Mom, you know youÂve got a gambling problemÂ"

  • chills71
    14 years ago

    I was unimpressed at HD last week, but I stopped by a local (and usually way overpriced) nursery and found a nice 1 gal white currant (with 5 stems) for $6. (regularily $30 at this same nursery) and I debated a 2 gal new dogwood variety for $20.00 (reg $60). I would have gotten the currant, the dogwood and a 1 gal fig they had if the dogwood would have been $5 less.

    I went home with just the currant (which I will be planting as soon as I rip out the 5 red currants in the place where I want to put this new one. (I've got more than a dozen red currants and thought I was planting white previously...a trade with someone).

    I know my purchase doesn't seem as great as some listed, but how often do you see white currant in a nursery? And most of my acquisitions are either done by cuttings trade or they need to be purchased frome specialty places at this point in my gardening adventure. Besides, that one currnat I bought will become 5-6 plants once I'm done taking and rooting cuttings. I'll likely even get fruit off of some of them by next spring/early summer.

    ~Chills