Yes, I spent $140 dollars on flowers this year.
This is one of my indulgences! Obviously if Yankee Bill and I were having trouble making ends meet we would not be spending that money. We are, however, comfortably situated at this point, paying what needs to be paid, saving what needs to be saved. That means that we can indulge. You all know that my philosophy on frugal living is to save money on the things that really don’t matter to you so that you’ll have money to spend on the things that really DO.
I try very hard not to make judgment calls on what those things that folks do or don’t care about are
For me, one of those things that DO matter is having lovely flowers around my home. There is just something about driving or walking up to my house and seeing the wide, white wrap around porch lined with cascading flower boxes and framed in by hanging flower planters that makes me happy and proud. It gives me a goofy little grin on the inside and makes me say “wow, that’s MY house”.
Now I know what some of you are thinking. Why not do the frugal thing and start my own plants from seed? Number one, you’d need to think that far ahead. Number 2 you need some good south facing windows in a relatively warm room to keep the plants in. There are only 3 accessible south facing windows (the other 4 are on 2 different stairwells). one is in the unheated front entry, one is in my husbands study, and the other is in the kids playroom. None are convenient for having a bunch of soil and water etc. Finally (aka number 3) in order to have the plants big enough and mature enough to be blooming when I want to plant them out, I’d have to start them months in advance and nurture them along, transplanting a couple of times etc. I just can’t handle it!
So I went out and purchased my 12 6-packs of wave petunias (red & white) and my 3 large buckets with Gerber Daisies and I headed home.
Ok, if you have eagle eyes you’ll also see an Early Girl tomato on the right there. The big planter is one I had unsucessful green peppers in last year. . . but a few weeks ago a tossed some lettuce mix seeds in the planter and voila, baby lettuce seedlings
Aren’t they cute? They won’t be good eating for quite a bit longer, but I can wait. It’s about time to start a second batch going in the garden. That’s the thing with lettuce, you need to sow it over time. If you do it all at the same time you’ll be overwhelmed with lettuce for a week or so and then be lettuce-less. . .
One of the ways I save money on my planters is by using the same window boxes and soil each year-just topping it off a bit if I need to. I do use an all purpose “bloom” fertilizer liberally in the boxes, and every couple of years I dump all the soil out onto a tarp & mix in some compost.
Another way I save is by buying the less expensive plants that are not all filled out yet. I figure with time and care they will get more lush. It would be fabulous for them to start right out at their peak of growth, but they look sweet now and will get there. . . I’m willing to wait in order to have some monetary savings.
Here they are all planted up. I put 3 red & 3 white wave petunias in each. I also planted up 2 hanging baskets with the remaining wave petunias. I’m not getting a lot of contrast between what’s in the boxes and whats hanging above them, but that’s fine. I might as well use up what I bought first ya-know!
One more note. Over the last couple of years I have invested in those planters with the water reservoir underneath. I don’t have a spigot in the front of my house, so I have to fill watering cans & walk around to the front, or attach 2 hoses together and drag it all the way around. . . this led to my not watering as frequently as necessary, which led to dead plants. Killing my plants is NOT a frugal move Now with the reservoir ones I only have to water every 2 or 3rd day. * Plus it’s a one time purchase that can be used over and over.
Here they all are, planted and placed. I know it’s a bit shady in the picture, but can you see how cute it looks, and how fantastic those wave petunias will be as they grow and spill over the front of the planters?
What do you like to do for flowers at your house?
*note: If you live where mosquitoes are a big issue, you may not want standing water in a reservoir.