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Garden Makeover On A Budget

There's been a huge increase in the popularity of garden makeovers. Teams of people come in and transform your garden in less than a day. But how can you save money by avoiding the experts and costly plants and perform a garden makeover miracle yourself?

Planning, research and the quality of plants are integral factors to saving money when buying plants for your garden.

The quickest way to waste money is needing to replace plants after they wither and die.

Perth nursery owner Courtney Babb, from Garden Affair in South Perth, says get it right the first time. "It's important to plan what you want first, then go and buy the plants. It cost's more if you're never really satisfied", he said.

Developing a basic plan and researching the requirements of your garden is essential to saving money. You must determine what plants are suitable to your garden's environment and choose varieties fitting to the climate and soil.

Buying seeds or seedlings is the most cost effective way of starting your garden and this certainly needs planning. It may take a little longer and command more patience but seeds establish themselves faster and develop stronger root systems. Buy seedlings without flowers and always check the quality of seeds by looking for splits or marks and moisture in the packaging.

The quality of the plants you buy is vital. Look for healthy foliage and strong root systems, don't buy plants with roots growing out the bottom of the pot or with discoloured, diseased foliage.

"Buying plants that after twelve months you can lift, divide and then re-plant, can save a lot of money," said Mr Babb.

Perennials and succulents are ideal to divide and re-plant, including ornamental grasses such as mondo grass. The ultimate saving is to gather cuttings from friends and family members, ensuring the original plant is healthy and disease free.

"Native plants and groundcovers are extremely cost effective, especially in terms of maintenance," adds Mr Babb. Plants that easily multiply are a great way to save dollars on your landscaping budget in the long run.

Peta Woods from Southside Garden Centre says to use your local people. "They don't have the overheads of larger chains so they are a lot more competitive on prices. I also find the stock is fresher because they have less to look after," she said.

It is best to purchase at the beginning of the plants growing season and get them established before extreme weather strikes. Buying plants in bulk is always a cheaper alternative as prices can be negotiated.

Landscaping can be an expensive task but there are ways of reducing the cost of establishing your garden. Shop around to compare prices and plant quality to get the best deal.

Transforming the Garden of Desolation to the Garden of Eden need not be budget blowing. Here are ten ideas on how to save money when buying plants for your garden:

  • Plan and prepare your garden.
  • Buy seeds or seedlings rather than potted plants.
  • Buy plants that are suited to their environment.
  • Look for healthy root systems and foliage.
  • Shop at small, local nurseries, they have competitive prices and fresher stock.
  • Purchase at the beginning of the plants growing season.
  • Native plants and ground covers are cost effective.
  • Buy plants you can lift, divide and re-plant, such as perennials and succulents.
  • Avoid having to re-purchase by getting plants established before extreme weather.
  • Negotiate the price if buying in bulk.
  • Thomas Murrell MBA CSP is an international business speaker, consultant and award-winning broadcaster. Media Motivators is his regular electronic magazine read by 7,000 professionals in 15 different countries.

    You can subscribe by visiting http://www.8mmedia.com. Thomas can be contacted directly at +6189388 6888 and is available to speak to your conference, seminar or event. Visit Tom's blog at http://www.8mmedia.blogspot.com.

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