Need budget ideas for outside flowers

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by Chicago526, Apr 11, 2006.

  1. Chicago526

    Chicago526 <font color=red>Any dream will do...<br><font colo

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    It's our first year in our own single family home. I want to put flowers in the flower bed in front, along one side, and in the back.

    Buying flats of flowers and just transplanting is easy (I watched my parents do this, heck I helped!) and they usually "take" and grow nicely. But it gets real expensive, real fast for the amount of space I want to fill in.

    Seeds are very cheap, but I've never started flowers from seeds. How difficult is this and is it worth whatever extra effort it might take. Target had a lovely seed collection when I looked last week.

    We're going to have to spend a lot of money this year just getting the soil in shape for the flowers (landscaping was neglected for several year prior to our buying the home) so I won't have a lot in the budget to spend on plants themselves.

    Any ideas are welcome! :flower3:
     
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  3. Chickysmom

    Chickysmom Sadly....tagless

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    You might want to check out the freebie threads for some free sample packs of flower seeds! Not sure how well these do, but heck, free seems like a cheap investment!
     
  4. jennifer293

    jennifer293 <font color=green>SHHHHH , but we live in the stic

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    My MIL owns a horse boarding business so she has plenty of "POO" and she has always started her seeds in a pile of "POO" and she has some of the most beautiful flowers I have ever seen. So if you know how you can get your hands on some manure for free that should be an easier route to getting them started. You can buy bags of it at Lowe's I believe but I think it is kinda pricey..

    When we moved into our house we had nothing but red clay for dirt and very little grass, so we got trailer load after trailer load of "POO" and sprinkled grass seed on it and it grew in sooooo fast and sooooo thick we have to mow it about every 4-5 days or so to keep it down at a reasonable length.

    It smelled REAL NICE out here for a few weeks.. :rotfl2: Luckily my nearest neighbor is a far away from us.
     
  5. Chicago526

    Chicago526 <font color=red>Any dream will do...<br><font colo

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    Several horse farms in the area do have free manure, but I don't think my neighbors would appreciate that....but thanks for the tip!

    Edited to add: Oh, but I guess we wouldn't need as much as what you had! Maybe it would work, I'll ask DH, he grew up in the country and knows all about poop!
     
  6. Chickysmom

    Chickysmom Sadly....tagless

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    Maybe you could get some manure for free and mix it into your soil to add nutirents, which will get things growing nicely. Doing this is does not have as bad of a smell as using manure only...and it only last a little while anyway.
     
  7. vanyel

    vanyel Mouseketeer<br><font color=db28a5>I like to escape

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    A lot of flowers wouldn't like straight horse or cow manure - it can burn delicate plants.

    You might think about perinnials. Do you have any gardening friends that could divide some plants for you?

    If you live near me - I've got some hostas I could share ;)
     
  8. Chickysmom

    Chickysmom Sadly....tagless

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    Things like Shasta Daisies grow like crazy and people are always thinning them out of their beds. Or ask some friends/neighbors to divide some bulbs for you too! they are not instant color, but just wait til fall or next spring, what a surprise!
     
  9. Hannathy

    Hannathy <font color=darkorchid>When I stop laughing I will

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    If you have sun think marigolds. very very easy to start from seed, it's usually what we give kids to grow. You can even get the cheap seeds at the dollar store(4 for a dollar or cheaper) and they will grow. If shade get some impatiens and leave space between the plants they will spread and grow into big clumps and then you will have clumps of color and can mulch between them and end up with a lot of color for little money and a pretty garden. Have Fun
     
  10. Grumpy's Gal

    Grumpy's Gal <font color=coral>Of course, who wants to get gold

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    I have a friend who moved to another state a few years back. She emailed all of us and told us that she missed us and said she wanted to start a friendship garden -- would we all send her our favorite flower packet of seeds or some bulbs etc.

    We all sent her something -- I sent her bulbs from my garden. They arrived fine and she planted everything. She has a great garden now.
     
  11. Grumpy's Gal

    Grumpy's Gal <font color=coral>Of course, who wants to get gold

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    you also might want to post this over on the gardening board -- might be some people who live near who would be willing to share when they divide their existing plants.
     
  12. pamouselover

    pamouselover “Have faith in your dreams and someday your rainbo

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    I want through the same thing a couple years ago. I made a flower bed along our wooden fence.It is a very big fence that outlines are back yard, but faces the street.
    I first started out with a lilic bush,Purple coneflower's, lavender and some Liatris's. I have over the last four years purchased some more perennials, but I usally get flowers from friends.If I see something growing at a friends house I like, I ask for a peice of it.
    I bought two new plants every year and after four years I still have spots, but it's looking full, like a english garden.
    My favorites I have growing are the bee-blam and Black eyed susans! They both do great,and mulitipy quick.Coreopsis is great too, It takes over your garden.
    If you think you would like to do perennials in your garden, let me know.
    I could try and ship some peices of a few flowers to you! :rose: :daisy: :flower1: :flower:
     
  13. clh2

    clh2 <font color=green>I am the Pixie Stick NARC at my

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    Just a couple of thoughts for you.

    There are several nurseries around Milwaukee that "blow" there annuals out for cheaply starting around Father's day. If you can hold out that long, you can still find some nice ones, and they will bloom the rest of the summer!

    I also agree with the poster who suggested starting a perennial garden. It'll just keep growing year after year. Most nurseries also start to mark those down in mid-july.

    My DD wanted to start her own perennial garden last year, and while we were out and about, we ended up passing a bunch of signs that said "perennials". This was a sale at someones house. Apparently they had been doing this for years, they divide up their perennials every mid-May, and sell them. We got tons of stuff for about $30. An advantage here was - you know the stuff will last through the winter.

    Spread the word at your work - that if anyone is dividing up perennials, to let you know! You would be surprised that some people might just through out, because they don't know could use some of their plants.
     
  14. AlaskaMOM

    AlaskaMOM <font color=blue>BL II - Blue Team<br><font color=

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    You didn't say if it was a sunny, shady or both. But since sunny or part sunny is the norm, that's what I'll go with. I'd start with a few GOOD perennnials like daisy, brown-eyed susans, cone flowers, veronic, or achillea. Then I'd buy just a few "clumps of annuals to fill in big empty space. Lastly I'd sprinkle seed around all the beds. I'd use a wildflower mix OR any of these will grow easily and reproduce themselves: bachelor buttons (centaura), oriental poppy (not golden they're a little more difficult), sunflower (dwarf varieties), alyssum, lobelia, violet.
    Also have you thought about putting in an herb garden? You could easily incorporate one into a flower bed.
    Good luck and have fun!!
     
  15. Plantlady

    Plantlady <font color=darkorchid>I eat a lot of pringles whi

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    We are just in our second year at our house, so, I understand where you are coming from. Perhaps there is a freecycle in your area, people give away perenials on my local freecycle.

    Seeds are very easy to grow, just keep them misted. Don't let them dry out, and they will do great. Follow the back of the package for the best time to plant them. You can also start them inside, and transplant them, just like you do the flats you are familiar with. (I have a window seat currently filled with seeds myself).
     
  16. Chicago526

    Chicago526 <font color=red>Any dream will do...<br><font colo

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    It's the east, north, and west side of our house we're working with this year. The south side we are planting lilac bushes, but not until we move our a/c unit, it's going on that side and we don't want to plant bushes until we know exactly where we are putting it.

    I figured impatients for the north side, they do great in shade. Sounds like they'll do okay from seed, so I'll give it a shot. I also wanted to plant some rose bushes (I love roses, they're my fav! :goodvibes ) so I'll be sure to incorperate those. I'll check at work to see if anyone divides out flowers to fill in some spots. And we can afford a few flats, so that will help. I was planing on an herb garden, I didn't think to mix them with flowers, that's an interesting idea.

    Thanks so much for all of your suggestions! Can't wait for the end of May, when it's finally safe to start planting outdoors in NE Illinois!
     
  17. pamouselover

    pamouselover “Have faith in your dreams and someday your rainbo

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    :rose: Roses need a lot of TLC, and well drained soil,mulch and more TLC!
    I love roses also, and Have a couple planted in a row. I also have a mini rose bush.
    impatients love the water...the more more water the bigger they will grow.
    impatients can also be planted in the full sun, as long as you water them at night.I know new guinea impatients are for sun, but all impatients can be plant in sun if given enough water.
    impatients are my favorite annual! :)
    If you plan on starting them by seed, you might want to get on that ASAP.
    I already have ones growing, along with veggies.
    It takes a good month and a half before they are ready to go in the ground.
    You might be better, getting the bed ready and buying some mircle grow soil in the bags, and starting the seeds in the bed ASAP.
    Up here in north PA., they have annuals out already. :confused3
    I dont plant anything till after Mother's day, unless I can bring it in the house. :rolleyes2
    Frost was on my car this morning! :furious:
     
  18. swilshire

    swilshire DIS Veteran

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    Check your local schools for greenhouses. Two nearby highschools here sell plants for $7 a flat. They are very healthy. We usually buy vegetables, but they actually have more flowers.

    We also found a greenhouse at a school for the handicapped last year that had very good prices on plants.

    Sheila
     
  19. snowwite

    snowwite DIS Veteran

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  20. hsmamato2

    hsmamato2 <font color=magenta>Tink in Training-Good Girl,Bad

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    also keep this in mind, you said a large part of your budget will go to making the soil workable, that honestly should be your lowest cost of all, amend the soil with rabbit,horse,chicken or cow poo, which can be gotten for free in many places,also rake upi last years leaves, run your mower over them and mix them inot the soil, this is the best compost I've ever tried,and it's free- I don't spend any money on commercial growing products, i hate chemicals anyway- and it's not cost effective- my gardens always grow well with free soil amenders- you can contact your local agricultural college or state run place,they'll give you tips for growing in your area-
    I like to buy the small inexpensive flowers, mix annuals which bloom a lot, but only last a season with perrenials which don't bloom as long but last for years-
    check anyplace that will let you dig up pretty stuff and haul it home and plant it- it pays to know what flowers grow where,i.e. sun or shade-
    freecycle is great
     
  21. ajksmom

    ajksmom DIS Veteran

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    Besides asking friends/family to divide some plants to share with you -
    Check with any local garden clubs - the ones around here have sales scattered over the 1st 3 weeks in May and you can get things really cheap!! Great big pots of perennials, flats of annuals, even small bushes sometimes!!
    Also, local churches and senior centers often have them as well. Senior centers are the best, you find lots of good solid performing "oldies" being sold. Keep your eyes peeled for ads in the newspaper, or signs by the roadside.
    Here in CT we have a regional farmers market thats HUGE. During the month of may they also have flowers, shrubs, and trees. BIG bargains there. If you have something similar in your area, plan on going early - I've got to be there before 5am to get decent parking and the best deals!
    Good luck, been there, done what you've got ahead of you. It'll be beautiful.
     

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