One of the most frequent questions I am asked is "where can I find this flower?" Honestly, I didn't think it was such a mystery to find these beauties! But, perhaps, it is time to give up my secret source!
I work for a large garden catalog company that sells a variety of plants: annuals, perennials, vines, trees, shrubs, bulbs and seeds. Yep, it is nice! A dozen different flower catalogs come across my desk every month and I drop everything to drool over their glossy pages.
My favorite work day of the year is "free plant day". As the name suggests, it is the day when all the spring flower shipping has ended, the sad little leftovers have been inventoried, and then....that's right, they give the flowers to employees!
These plants are in varying degrees of sadness: some healthy but leggy and in need of pruning, some sorely in need of nursing back to health, some already knocking on deaths door. Some make it, some do not. Last year's haul included lots of butterfly bushes, coneflowers, daisies, irises, lavender(!) and petunias. Previous years have included a lovely smoky leafed barberry, lemon, lime & fig trees, pampas grass, crocosmia (surprise!) and some weird thing with glossy green leaves that shoots up a tiny trumpet of neon pink flowers in early spring. (I still can't figure out what it is!)
Since the pots are not marked and the choice can be some what limited, I try to pick only the ones I really like and whose leaves I will recognize when I plant them. Every year I have a few surprises that sneak into my yard. All pretty flowers are always welcome in my flower gardens. Weeds need not apply!
Below are links to some of the catalogs for the company I work for:
Some of my other favorite flower sources:
What are some of your favorites?