Braggadocios Bargain Bulletin

Every once in a while I hear a little voice that tells me, “You should go to the thrift store today.”  And sometimes all the stars align and I get there and find some really good stuff.  Yesterday was one of those days. 

I had to drive to work and found street parking right outside of the building.  With parking in a parking lot costing anywhere from $24 to $32 for two hours and the meter costing $6 for two hours (or 25 cents for five minutes), I saved a minimum of $18.  Ridiculous, I know to have to pay that much to park a car, especially with gas costing over $4 a gallon.  But when I run late, that’s the price I have to pay.

Anyway, after the job was over, I headed towards my favorite thrift store on Chicago’s north side.  This store is really popular and you usually have to wait around a little while to find a parking space.  But not yesterday.  I pulled right up to an empty meter. 

My pattern is to head upstairs first where the furniture and a lot of the non-clothing items are.  I found this garden cart for $10.


I was really glad to find it because I bent the frame on the wagon I had been using.  I had two really heavy bags of soil in the wagon sitting behind my car which, of course, I forgot about when I went to back out of the garage until I heard a noise.

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I completely bent the frame in the back so that all four wheels won’t roll at the same time.  I feel really bad because this is the wagon my son won on The Bozo Show almost 20 years ago when he made it to Bucket No. 5.  I plan to eventually get it repaired.

I also found a strawberry planter for $5 and a Styrofoam planter that pretty much matches one I already have for $2.

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Plus I found this plastic modular unit that I’ll find somewhere to put for $8.

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Last summer I found one of those large sized hose reel thingies for $2, but my absolute best find at a thrift store was a mahogany colored, solid wood full sized four poster bed for all of 12 bucks.  I felt like the queen of the thrift store that day.

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Happy Gardening!!!!

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Bevy of Braggadocios Bargains

There are few things I love more than a bargain, and the only thing good about this time of the year as far as gardening is concerned is the end of the year markdowns…unless, of course, you’re smart enough and dedicated enough to get your hoop house up and continue growing into the fall and maybe even the winter.

My energy and enthusiasm is waning a little bit.  I’m seriously beginning to wonder if I have a slight case of SAD (seasonal affective disorder).

Anyway, my latest find was the big, heavy Pro-Mix container soil mix for, are you ready?  Drum roll, please…$1.80.  I went to buy the potting soil so I could repot the peach tree.  I bought that and some bone meal and the total was less than $8.00.  I knew something was off, so I asked if the dirt was on sale because there wasn’t a sign near the dirt.  When the cashier told me it rang up at $1.80 I went back and got four more.  I guess it’s in the computer at 75% off, but no signs are posted.

Last year I got my allium bulbs at Target’s end of season sale (20 for $1.99).  I planted them last fall along the garage in groups of three, and they were really pretty this year. 05-31-08 (16)

The tomato trellis was another great buy.  About seven years ago one of the bigger chain stores was going out of business.  I bought three garden arches, even though I had no place to put them.  They were about $5 each.  I gave my mother-in-law one and mine sat in the boxes for seven years until this year when I constructed the trellis.  I used what would have been the side panels for both kits and staggered them front, back, front, back facing the same direction.  06-18-08 (16)Then I used the poles that would have made the arches to join the side panels together.  I think it came out pretty good. 09-13-08

I got a couple of benches from that same going out of business sale for about $10  09-13-08 (4)

I found this little lady marked down to $17.50 about five years ago (end of season again).  I got one for me and one for my mother-in-law.  09-13-08 (5)

Neither one of us use it as a fountain, but it does spice the yard up a little bit.

Aldi’s stores are also a good place for gardening bargains.  I’ve bought two roses at $3 or $4.  One of them died, but I think it was because I didn’t plant it at the right depth in relation to the graft union because the other one that was planted next to it is still alive and kicking.  09-03-08

I got this container rose for about $5 last year (end of year markdown from $35).  It’s a repeat bloomer.  The blooms have many petals and last much longer than the in-ground rose blooms.  If I knew how to prune it it would be so much prettier.06-24-08 (7)

I wish it would stop raining so I can go back and get some more Pro Mix before everybody catches on.

Happy Gardening!!!