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Where to find exotic garden bulbs for cheap

When you live in a big city you may find that you live closer to a number of big box stores. Sometimes they are conveniently located to you in comparison to a quality garden center. This is the case for me here in Chicago, where big box stores are closer to me than an independent garden center.


While out shopping for items this week to rebuild deck I've not been able to pass up some pretty interesting and unique plants for my garden. Last year I bought a couple of boxes of Eucomis, commonly referred to as Pineapple Lily, from Menards. This week I picked up one more box along with a box Nerines. Both of these bulbs were under five dollars and I've found that among the home improvement stores that sell gardening supplies Menards is usually the place that has the lower prices and better varieties in Chicago.

At Wal-Mart I found a pack of three Eryngiums for $3.34 which is a substantially better buy than one of these for $7.00 at Home Depot. The garden center for the Wal-Mart in Chicago is loaded with spring bulbs and they have some plants I didn't find in other garden centers. If you're looking for a Gloriosa Lily they sell a pack with two tubers for under $5.00. I picked up two more Peruvian Daffodils from Wal-Mart on the same day. These bulbs are all tender in Chicago but they make great container plants for a deck garden or can be dug up and stored for the winter.

There are also frugal gardening finds to be had in clothing stores of all places. Most discount clothing stores also have a section of decorative items for the home. In a window display for A.J Wright I noticed many large pots so I went in to take a look. There was a large urn with a faux stone finish for $10.00- I've seen similar looking pots in garden centers starting at $50.00. They also had a selection of tools and small garden art that was very reasonable.

With so many frugal gardening deals to be had I'm glad I'm the kind of gardener that will look around for the best deals.


  1. I signed up (don't ask me why because I really don't know) for emails from "Home Depot's gardening experts" and they just sent me a BOGO coupon for bulbs. An FYI for those who are looking for frugal finds.

  2. Wow thanks for the tip. Last year I bought a black Calla Lily from Lowes and I signed up for their garden club, and they've sent me calendars and some home and garden magazine, but no coupons yet.

    I'll have to check out the Home Depot version of the club. Thanks for the info.

  3. Anonymous1:41 AM

    You've made some great finds! I'll have to see if Canadian home depots are doing anything special too.

    Just popping in for Green Thumb Sunday.

  4. Sounds as if you found some good deals. Home depot sells bulbs cheaply here - the walmarts here have less selection (mostly what bugs me is they sell plants that would never survive in our zone). I doubt that's a problem in most areas, but we have to watch it here (zone 2 and sometimes 3)

  5. Anonymous8:49 AM

    I just thought I would lend a word of caution when it comes to buying bulbs from home depot. I bought around $40.00 worth of Dahlia bulbs from Home Depot because they had the best deal. Then I went to the botanic garden/ dahlia society dahlia bulb sale and bought $20.00 of bulbs. To my unhappy surprise the home depot bulbs had bugs living in the packages foraging on the bulbs and to my knowledge only about one home depot bulb has actually grown into a recognizable dahlia, although still small. The others were so weak, they sent up thin little spindles of plants but nothing like a real dahlia. On the other hand the bulbs from the Dahlia society all came out beautifully. Also the dahlia society bulbs did not turn out to be that expensive. So I will not buy bulbs from home depot because I just wasted my hard earned money.

    1. Anonymous12:26 PM

      I bought one bulb at the farmers market and the next year that bulb produced at least 20 bulbs and the following year I had over a hundred and gave them to whoever wanted them.

  6. I agree with the last comment.... I bought some paperwhites at walmart and they did not hatch at all; the vegetable seed packets are also of inferior quality, so cheap is not necessary best.



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