By Teresa Woodard
The plant-buying frenzy is about to begin, and there’s no better place for one-of-a-kind plants and great gardening advice than a public garden’s plant sale. Besides, the sales generate significant income for botanic gardens, arboreta and plant societies. At Ohio State University’s Chadwick Arboretum, for instance, a three-day event staffed by 180 volunteers pulls in more than $40,000.
Like Chadwick’s sale, many sales also feature auctions, pre-sale party nights, workshops and book signings. To get first dibs on plants, check out the pre-sale events typically offered to members. No doubt, the membership privilege is well worth the $25-$50 annual dues.
Also, come with questions. Many of the volunteers have first-hand experience growing the plants for sale. So, don’t be afraid to ask for their favorite tomato plant, native shade tree or miniature varieties. The only danger is you may end up with a trunk full of wonderful plants.
- Morton Arboretum Arbor Day Sale, Illinois (April 26-28)
- Native Illinois Plant Sale (April 27)
- Kingwood Center Garden Discovery Day, Ohio (May 4)
- Holden Arboretum Plant Sale, Ohio (May 4-5)
- Southwestern Indiana Master Gardener Association’s Annual Plant Sale (May 4-5)
- Adena Mansion’s Heirloom Plant Sale, Ohio (May 4-19)
- Chadwick Arboretum Plant Sale, Auction and Gardening Fair, Ohio (May 9-11)
- Olbrich Botanical Gardens Plant Sale with the Pros, Wisconsin (May 10-11)
- Indiana Native Plant and Wildflower Society Annual Native Plant Sale and Auction (May 11)
- Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City Plant Sale (May 11)
- Missouri Botanical Gardens Spring Wildflower Sale (May 11)
- Secrest Arboretum Plant Discovery Day and Sale, Ohio (May 11)
- Bernheim Arboretum Bloomfest Plant Sale, Kentucky (May 18)
- Dawes Arboretum Plant Sale and Garden Fair, Ohio (May 18)
- Wisconsin Herb Society’s Herb Fair (May 25)
- Chicago Botanical Garden Bloomin Festival Plant Sale — on hiatus for 2013