Replacement plants (should I really tell?)

Last year was a "weak" one for me when it comes to the garden. I didn't do too much out there and added very few plants. In fact, I had a goal to spend no money on plants last year, so visits to area nurseries were few. I did come very close to that goal by the way.

This year I have no such goal. The garden is more important this year, and it's time for me to get it back into shape. To some extent I'm not concerned about spending on plants this year... but should I really admit to that?


A harsh winter and a year of near neglect have left most of the planting beds looking pretty, well, neglected. I also had more overwintering failures than usual, probably because I didn't water things enough or start bringing things in earlier. In any case, this means that there are more empty spaces to fill, and I chose to fill many of them with...

...annuals. (Or at least what act as annuals in my climate.)

In fact -- and here's the hard part to admit -- I spent about $175 on annuals earlier this week.

I'm not talking about rare or special plants either; these are pretty standard, common annuals. Well, at least for me. Here's what I brought home:

  • Salvia guaranitica 'Black and Blue' (2)
  • Salvia officinalis (Culinary Sage) (2)
  • Salvia officinalis 'Purpurascens' (2)
  • Salvia coccinea (3)
  • Salvia elegans (Pineapple Sage) (1)
  • Salvia leucantha (1)
  • Salvia farinacea 'Victoria Blue'
  • Cleome (6)
  • Basil (2)
  • Thyme (2)
  • Lemon Eucalyptus (1)
  • Purple Fountain Grass (10)
  • Papyrus 'King Tut' (2)
  • Artemesia 'Powis Castle' (2)
  • Sweet Potato vine -- brown cultivars are my favorites! (2)
  • Cardinal climber (2)
  • Hyacinth bean vine (1)
  • Leonotis leonurus (1)
  • Tradescantia zebrina (1)
  • Ruellia brittoniana (1)

Lots of salvias because nothing eats those. Most of the rest of those don't get eaten by anything either. The only thing on this list that I know both woodchucks and deer eat are the sweet potato vines, and those are going up on the deck.

The longtime reader will notice that some of these are plants that I've overwintered before: purple fountain grass, papyrus, tradescantia, ruellia. My papyrus died during the winter (probably not brought inside early enough), and I chose to not try and overwinter the fountain grass this year -- easier just to buy a few new ones. I somehow missed bringing in any tradescantia, and my ruella is slow to emerge -- so I got one just in case. I'll have so much of this by the end of the summer I'm sure.

They came into the garage the first few nights
just in case the baby woodchucks got curious

I even bought a hyacinth bean vine although I have oodles of seeds from last year. I did this because I wanted the 2-week or so head start that a plant would give me over starting seeds. When you're dealing with deer, bigger is usually better. Quantity certainly is, and I'll have that once the seeds sprout too.

So I've fallen off the wagon in a pretty big way. Are dozens of perennials next? I don't think so, but I'm not saying "no"...

It's so difficult to plant shop when you have to consider how likely a plant is to end up as deer or woodchuck poop.


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Anonymous –   – (May 25, 2018 at 8:26 AM)  

Your purchases make me feel so much better. I ordered plants online, then didn't think the order went through and the company wouldn't answer their phone to confirm, so, since another company was holding a big 50% off sale, I ordered plants again. Then I just had to have some False Indigo to replace plants that I know aren't long-lived, so ordered those. Finally, I learned that my original order did go through. I never intended to spend so much money...Oh, well.

Renee  – (May 25, 2018 at 6:53 PM)  

I think there's always room for good annuals, and making the garden look good is always a worthy goal! The fact that youre doing it in the presence of ravenous beasts just makes it more impressive. I hope we get to see how they all get planted out!

outlawgardener  – (May 30, 2018 at 8:52 AM)  

He's baaaack. I noticed a few herbs in there so this purchase could all be written off as part of the food budget, don't you think? Sometimes the garden has to take a back seat but I'm glad to hear that you've got your garden mojo back this year.

Hoover Boo  – (June 2, 2018 at 7:23 PM)  

I do spend money on plants, but I figure it's way cheaper than going to a psychiatrist!

The psychological relief, tranquility, and comfort from gardening cannot be underestimated.

That's my excuse, and I'm sticking to it. ;^)

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