The Pros’ Secret to Saving Money on Landscaping

Spring is coming, and that means gardeners all over the world dream of making their gardens beautiful for their neighbors, their clients, and themselves. But before you head to the garden center to stock up on potted plants, there’s a little-known secret to getting the most out of your gardening dollar that only the pros know. Bare root plants are a huge money saver that gives you all the great quality of potted plants at about 10% of the cost.

What is a bare root plant?

A bare root plant is a plant that is sold with no dirt around the roots. Bare-rooted plants are dug up at the nursery, their roots are rinsed and treated to remove dirt, then carefully stored in a cooler until shipment to their final destination.

Why You’ve Never Heard Of Bare Root Plants Before

Most people are unfamiliar with bare root plants because they are not sold at local garden centers, nurseries or hardware stores. This is because bare root plants have a very short lifespan. They should be planted within 10 days of receipt.

For retail plant suppliers, it makes much more sense to sell plants that can sit on a shelf for weeks or even months, so that they only sell plants in containers. Bare root plants are only sold at bare root nurseries, and if you don’t have one in your area, you can find one online that can ship the plants right to your door.

You may not have heard of bare root plants, but they are incredibly popular among businesses and landscaping companies. While you’re probably not looking to profit from your landscaping, companies need to limit their expenses to maximize their profits. Saving 90% on the plants they buy helps them achieve this.

It’s all about shipping costs

Bare root plants are usually sold for around 90% less than the same plant sold in a container. It all comes down to shipping costs. Dirt is heavy and therefore it is expensive to ship plants in containers to stores. This shipping cost is passed on to the consumer: you.

With bare-root plants, there is no heavy soil that increases the cost of shipping, so consumers can pay pennies on the dollar for the same plant, minus the dirt.

How do bare root plants stay alive without dirt?

Bare root plants survive transportation without dirt because they are packed and shipped while they are in the dormant stage. During the dormant phase, plants stop growing and conserve energy to survive the winter. Meanwhile, plants can be moved and transplanted with bare roots within a certain period of time.

The best time to plant bare root plants

The best time to plant bare root plants is in the spring. That way they have plenty of time to settle in before the summer heat hits.

When is spring ? This is whenever the weather starts to warm up and after the last frost in your area. As for planting, what is considered “spring” in your area may not correspond to the official start of spring on the calendar. If you’re not sure when spring begins in your area, find out what hardiness zone you’re in. There are 13 hardiness zones in the United States, each with its own climate.

Landscape like the pros with bare root plants

Generations of landscapers have appreciated the ease and affordability of bare root plants, and now you can too. After all, when you spend 90% less on your landscaping, it means you can do what every green thumb dreams of: buy even more plants.

Terri S. Tomasini