Glory's Garden

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Monday, August 20, 2012

Garden Full of Money

It has come to my attention that I have a garden full of money. I don't usually see it as such, but when I received an email from a mail order garden center, it was the first thing that popped into my head. I'll explain.

This place--White Flower Farm which oddly enough sells all color flowers-- was selling all sorts of perennials at the awesome price of 3 plants in 3inch pots for $24. WOWEE! Quite a bargain...NOT!

What a in organized crime type racket, that is. You see, if I took a tiny 3 inch pot and put a ity-bity plant in it and sold it for $8 wouldn't you consider me a total thief? I would!

Do you have a clue how many 3 inch pots I could fill from my garden? Well, I can't count that high so let's just start with the usual sized black-eyed Susan plants I would give away, shall we? Just a clump of a diameter of 8-10 inches will do. No exaggeration I could get several dozens baby plants to sell and at $8 a pop...can we say ch-ching?

And that's just those cheap little flowers. What about my unnamed hybrid daylilies which can fetch a $12-25 price tag--once I give them a name, of course. One clump if I divided it to the usual size you get from these mail order places to sell...well, I don't think I can multiply and count that high, either.

Then there are the ga-zillion seeds I collect every single year in my garden. Holy-moly, just one Japanese Iris seed pod would fill ten of those tiny $2-4 seed packets, and if I were to sell them for a mere buck each? My-my-my....I suppose I'd have to start singing... ♫…we're in the money, we're in the money, we've got a lot of what it take to get along 

At the end of a growing season I can have only about as many seeds as could fill a 5-gallon pail--no exaggeration. Again, I can't count that high.

So, this begs the question, why don't I? Cuz... cuz... well, it just doesn't seem right to sell that which I have in abundance. I know! Silly, crazy, nutzo and a host of other things, I'm sure. Just the same, if you were to come to my garden and point to a plant I'm more likely than not going to offer some of it for your own garden with no money exchanging. I'm just funny that way. I figure, if I give you something from my garden, you may in turn give me something from yours. Works well this trading thing. Ask Ms. Julie over at Wooly Acres--she would know!

Gardeners are known for their generosity, not their greed. Look at Raymond A. Kukkee, garlic master and Uncle Mac. Raymond sent me Tomatillo seeds and Mac sent me some of his Hubbard squash seeds and I didn't even ask for them. Of course, Mac didn't ask for the flower seeds I sent him either. No matter! Gardeners just like spreading the wealth...the wealth of plants.

So, really, a garden full of money...I suppose that's okay for some, but I'd just as soon keep them...until you ask for them!


  1. An honest woman who knows her stuff! I have those pods on my lilies, but am not sure I want to work to harvest them...

  2. Hi, Glory, thanks, it NEVER ceases to amaze me how much greedy people are charging for these bulbs and seeds!! I would rather share them and give them away! Calla Lily bulbs for $8.00? As SINGLE GARLIC bulb is $2.00 here and a small 'floret' of tiny bulbils is $10.00 ! Interestingly, I somehow received a shed full of cabbage seed from our mutual friend Uncle Mac too!
    I suspect the garden centers are gouging as much profit as possible--like other businesses. Go figure, huh? Note that they are not gardeners--they're "business".
    WE will continue to collect seeds, keep a list of what you need.":))

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Well, that gives me an idea for a page devoted to what I have and am willing to trade. I'll get on it soon! Anyone with extras from their gardens willing to trade can register, too. Oh, this sounds like fun!

    3. That is really a good idea..I'll keep that in mind too! ":)

  3. Having worked at a number of mail order plant companies (including WFF), I'd add the following thoughts:
    - yes, some places charge crazy prices
    - and, as businesses, plant sellers need to factor in costs for: product cost, i.e. stock grown in-house or bought from other growers, product loss (eaten by deer/rabbits/etc., develops diseases, rots/dries up, etc.), staff to maintain plants and pack shipments, answer customer calls/manage orders, and handle normal business functions like HR, Finance, Accounting, Purchasing, Marketing, Creative (catalog & website), etc. Other costs include catalog printing & postage, facilities (warehouse, coolers, offices, call center), farming type equipment and database hardware/software/updates.

    Plants are perishable, like cheese and produce - most people don't think of these items that way. Still, at the end of the selling season, much of what fails to sell has to be discarded. So inventory management is a key function.

    Just saying. . . not as easy as it looks when we scan our gardens out back. . .

  4. I know the reason to be in business is to make money. Duh! My point is that I have a lot of stuff growing in my garden which I could sell if I chose to, but instead I just give it away. If I did need money, though, I would start selling. I have more than enough to share. :)


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