Plans to Putter with Plants Postponed

I thought I was going to get a chance to spend a big block of time in the yard this weekend, but no dice.  I had to give up this weekend to get an assignment prepared.  I did reward myself with a little break to repot a couple of plants I had in heavy clay pots into my latest thrift store find which almost matches one of my clearance finds to get an almost matching set.  Huge difference in the weight of the pots.

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Me and my bargains.  The shrubs were markdowns from last year (this is after my attempt to “shape” them), and the trailing greenery started from a couple of pieces that found their way into my lunch bag when I stopped at one of the city parks last year.  (Of course I have no idea how that happened…wink, wink).  It’s multiplied a lot, by the way.  (Honestly, I only took — I mean only a couple little pieces found their way into my lunch bag.)

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I used to tell my kids if I ever got arrested it would be for stealing a plant from the city.  I admit it.  If I can casually pick up a little piece that won’t hurt the mama plant and I think it will grow for me, I will commit plant thievery in the first degree.  Homeowners don’t have to worry.  I have no problem asking if we can do a swap.

In fact, my irises came to me because I saw some growing in a vacant lot next to a house.  When I’d go to my grandmother’s house I’d have to pass this intersection.  One day I saw somebody sitting on the porch and I asked if I could have a few of the plants.  She gave me a strange look, but she also gave me some of the plants.  I bought a potted fern and drove around with it a few days until I saw her on the porch again and gave it to her as a way of saying thank you. 

We made a winter move from our apartment, but as soon as the weather warmed up, I went back and dug up my plants.  Don’t worry, I did leave enough for the next person, if they were interested, to have something to work with.

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I now have them in five different spots.  They really are pretty.  I only wish the blooms lasted longer.  I have read about reblooming irises.  And I guess 3 for $9.95 to  $11.95 plus about $7 for shipping isn’t bad for something you really want.  Definitely not as good as free, but not bad.

I got this hosta when I was on my way to fulfill a commitment for my son’s school.  I saw it and thought it was one of the big leaf hostas.  The homeowner was outside cutting the grass, so I stopped and asked him if we could do a trade.  I had plenty of the white leaf hosta and he didn’t have any.  The next weekend, I stopped by and we traded.  This is the only hosta that the spikes (or more horticulturally correct scapes) topped out at about six feet. 

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It’s a little hard to see, but they are planted on each side of the white pot and they have the dried stalks/spikes/scapes on them.

This one I just kind of begged for.

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I was in the neighborhood of one of my relatives that I hadn’t see in years after I dropped off a large garbage bag full of hosta to a family friend.  I had removed a tree that was ringed with hosta and I didn’t want to throw it away, so I was giving it to anybody that wanted it.  Anyway, I kept complimenting her on how pretty the hostas were and how big the leaves were and how I just love hosta plants when she finally got the hint and asked if I wanted to dig up some because she had so much.  I thanked her profusely.  One more hosta to add to my collection. 

I took this picture to make her a thank you card to properly thank her when they started blooming, but procrastinator that I am I never got around to finishing it

This was a first year bloom.

Hosta Bloom_Sumer 2006

I hope I get a chance to get things cleared in the yard up before the first snow.

Happy gardening!!!!



  1. frugalwench said,

    October 7, 2008 at 3:36 pm

    I added you to my blogroll on WordPress, and I’m gonna add you to my gardening blogroll on Blogger as well. Check it out!

    I’m way into frugal gardening. I even have a free course on how to get stuff for free for your garden. Check that out too. I’m sure you’d appreciate it.

    I love your blog!

  2. Marissa Mueller said,

    October 25, 2008 at 12:20 pm

    I stumbled upon your site today and love what you have to say! I am only in my second year of the fabulous world of gardening so I am often looking for any advice I can find! As far as Iris go…this past summer, my neighbor gave me a box full of Iris, which I put in the ground right away. Well, now that Fall is here and I’m cutting things back, I noticed they have reproduced like crazy! So, I did some digging (probably should have waited until spring, but I wanted to clear stuff out) and separated the babies. What would you recommend as far as overwintering them? Should I pot them and put them in the garage/basement? Or, is it okay to let them dry out?

  3. gardengoodies said,

    October 25, 2008 at 7:11 pm

    Hi, Marissa:

    Thanks for taking a peek. I’m no expert, I just love gardening and talking garden and I can share what worked for me.

    My preference is to transplant in the summer/fall since irises bloom in early spring. That way they have some time in the ground and are ready to go in the spring. You’ll probably get only a few blooms the first spring. You should plant them just below the soil line so that the sun “kisses” the rhizome. I read somewhere that the rhizomes need the extra heat to stimulate blooming. They’re drought tolerant, so you don’t have to worry about watering them too much. They need well drained soil, so don’t plant in a low spot in the yard.

    For the plants you recently dug up, I think you’d be okay with planting them in the ground, but do it soon and mulch over them with a thick layer of leaves after the cold sets in. Or you could plant in pots and keep them in a cool place and water them occasionally to keep them from totally drying out. As far as just storing them, I’ve never done it myself but I’ve read that you can store them in paper bags or mesh bags in a cool spot making sure they don’t freeze.

    I’m glad you brought this up. I did a little internet search and realized that I need to transplant a few of mine.

    Hope that helps.

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