Mike's Plant Farm Releases How to Best Take Advantage of End of Season Plant Deals

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Tips on how to best take advantage of end of season plant deals as well as how to know what truly is a good plant deal when you see it.

'Waterfall' Japanese maple, fall color.

'Waterfall' Japanese maple, fall color.

The best gardening deals of the season are the inventory reduction sales that take place at every garden store in the country in the fall. Sometimes, it’s really hard to spot the most spectacular plants in the garden center because they don’t always look spectacular at the end of the season. “But,” says gardening expert Mike McGroarty from Perry, Ohio, "if you know what you are looking for, you can take home some incredible deals.”

According to McGroarty most garden stores want to clear their sales lot of all plants before they button things up for the winter. “Most do not have a means of overwintering plants, nor do they want to”, says McGroarty. “They want to start out in the spring with all fresh nursery stock.” That means that as we get closer and closer to winter, the deals get better and better.

According to McGroarty the most informed customers will get the best deals because the most valuable plants on the sales lot don’t always jump out and say; “Buy me.” McGroarty calls them sleepers. Plants that have extreme landscape value, but until they are properly placed in a landscape and given a couple of years to mature, they just don’t have great sales appeal. But that doesn’t make them less valuable, it makes them more valuable.

McGroarty has at least a dozen of these plants in the landscape around his Perry, Ohio home that he picked up at deeply discounted prices at the end of the season. “Today when people see these so called “scraggly” plants that I brought home a few years ago at the end of the season, they go completely gaga over them,” says McGroarty. “All they needed was a little TLC and some time.”

Recently McGroarty added a post to his popular gardening blog, http://MikesBackyardNursery.com, titled “Plants with Spectacular Fall Color” and couldn’t help but notice that at least five of the plants featured in his post were plants that he picked up at the end of the season at deeply discounted prices.

McGroarty has prepared a shopping list for any gardener that wants to go on a gardening treasure hunt and that list is made up mostly of rare Japanese maple trees that just don’t sell well because people just don’t understand them. “Most people don’t realize it but there are over 250 different kinds of Japanese maples on the market and many of them get over looked during the regular buying season because they are expensive and many of them don’t have the striking red color that people expect to see in a Japanese maple”, says McGroarty. “Therefore, at the end of the season they get deeply discounted when in fact they are the most valuable plants on the sales lot.”

Here are some things you should be on the lookout for. Lavender Twist Weeping Redbud tree, Lion’s Head Japanese maple, Coral Bark (Sango Kaku) Japanese maple, Butterfly Japanese maple, Orange Dream Japanese maple, Waterfall or Virdis Japanese maple and Orida Nishiki Japanese maple.

Here’s a super valuable tip from McGroarty. “Garden store managers are often open to any offer that you are willing to make on plants that are left on the lot at the very end of the season. Often times selling them far below even the wholesale price because they just don’t want to deal with left over plants.”

McGroarty invites you to visit his blog and ask any gardening question that you may have. Here’s a link to his “Plants with Spectacular Fall Color” post.

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Michael McGroarty
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