12 Tips on How to Save Money on Gardening Expenses

12 Tips on How to Save Money on Gardening ExpensesI’ve been gardening for the past 7 years and I absolutely love it. I currently have 6 flower beds, 2 vegetable gardens and 3 berry patches. Over the years, I’ve learned quite a lot and today, I’m sharing some tips with all of you who are looking to save some money on your gardening expenses.

12 Tips on How to Save Money on Gardening Expenses

1. Don’t run out at the beginning of the growing season to purchase your plants! Everyone has spring fever and is buying! The retail stores know this and supplies are priced higher! Starting around the third week in May (about a week or two after Mother’s Day) prices at our local garden centers dramatically drop!

2. Trade plants and seeds with neighbors, family and friends! We have a group that we started 5 years ago and we are all great at growing different things. Every spring season, we let each other know what we have on-hand and can trade with. For example: I had a LOT of chicks & hens (plants) and daffodil bulbs which I traded for bearded iris plants and a lilac bush.

3. Get your name out there with others in your neighborhood and offer to take their leftovers off their hands and/or offer to take the plants that they no longer want or need. My one neighbor didn’t want an azalea bush, so my husband went up there and dug it up, brought it home and planted it at the back of our property. It looks fantastic this year!

4. Talk to your local nurseries and gardening centers to see if they have a preferred customer list. A few of our local places have a customer list where they will call you to sell you leftover plants or plants that aren’t doing well for pennies on the dollar. Last year I paid $1.59 for a blueberry bush that was normally priced at $29.99. I wasn’t sure it would survive (it was in poor shape) but with some tender-loving care, it’s now doing fantastic!

5. If you’re into container gardening, don’t be afraid to use containers that you have on hand and unexpected things to make your gardening & flower planters! Old boots, buckets, wash basins, bird baths, stock pots, crocks, watering cans, wooden crates, etc. make great container growing pots!

6. Join preferred customer clubs at your local garden & home centers! These are “free clubs” that you can join and get member only discounts, coupon codes, etc. Some of them even offer free gardening classes to their members.

12 Tips on How to Save Money on Gardening Expenses

7. Visit yard sales, flea markets and consignment stores to look for second-hand gardening tools, supplies, containers, seeds and plants. I often find GREAT bargains by visiting those type’s of places.

8. Make a list of your friends, family members and neighbors who have outdoor gardening tools and what kind of tools that they have. Don’t be afraid to ask to borrow a specific tool that you may need. Please remember though, you need to return it promptly and in the condition that you received. A few of our neighbors come up every spring season to borrow items from my husband and he will borrow items from them.

9. Try making your own fertilizer, compost and plant foods! You can find all kinds of great homemade recipes, tips and gardening hacks online! For example: I will often brew green tea, let it cool and then water my plants with it. I will put crushed eggshells and used coffee grounds into my flower beds and garden. Instead of buying costly fertilizer and plant foods, do research online for your particular plants and see if you can find some homemade recipes for your particular needs.

10. To get the most bang for you buck…plant perennial flowers and garden plants. These type’s will come back year-after-year. When you buy annuals, you’ll need to buy & replace every year, which can get costly over time. We do mostly perennial gardening, but do add-in colorful annuals when we find them at a bargain price.

12 Tips on How to Save Money on Gardening Expenses

11. Take care of what you have! If you need to prune, trim and dead-head plants, make sure you do it! If you’re getting an unexpected frost at the beginning or end of the season, take the time to cover your plants! If you notice disease, get on it right away, so it doesn’t spread. Always keep your gardening equipment clean and properly stored.

12. Plant some things in containers and bring them inside at the end of the growing season. I plant the majority of my herbs in grow boxes and have them outside during the growing season. Once fall arrives, I move them indoors and keep them alive by setting them in front of two large windows. This gives me fresh herbs all winter season and when spring arrives…I take them back outside again. You can do this if you’re growing dwarf fruit trees too! I have a dwarf lemon tree planted in a large container. We move it in and out depending on the season and that tree is now 4 1/2 years old!

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  1. Jo-Ann Brightman says:

    These are great tips. I want to start some indoor containers for herbs and I shall use some of your tips.

  2. Susan Hartman says:

    I too am a gardener. You have some great ideas. I’ve already sold some of my plants at garage sales too. They multiply & multiply.

    • Susan, that’s a great idea! I had never thought about selling some of my plants at a yard sale. I get so many at times I just give them away, but I like the idea of making a few bucks on them so I can buy more gardening stuff that I do need.

  3. Great post with a lot of great ideas. I never would have thought to check the local garden centers to see if they have preferred customer lists–I love the idea of getting plants that need TLC for a reduced price.

    • Anne,

      I get all kinds of things at a reduced price! Two weeks ago I got 2 large ceramic plants for $1.50 each (normally $29.99 each) simply because each one had a small chip. I also got a new gardening knee pad thing…now when I’m on the ground, I can put my knees on it to keep them clean & comfy. It has memory foam. Regularly $39.99 and I got it for $4.00 simply because it was dirty. I hosed it off at home and it looks pretty now.

      • You are the bargain queen! The trick is getting a good deal on things you’ll actually use, and I’m sure you’ll get a lot of use from your planters and knee pad. Well done!

  4. heather says:

    I am going to have to save this one to my favorites. Thank you for the great money saving tips. I really like the one idea of trading with friends and neighbors.

  5. These are such fantastic tips for gardening. I whole-heartily agree with #1. I also bought a used compost bin for 20 bucks a couple of years ago (which was worth over 100 bucks)so I throw all my veggie scraps in there…and yes, I love saving plants too… I have a rose bush that is now really thriving that I bought about three years ago.