Sometimes, the wish-list only grows down because of clearance racks. It is a reality. We are starting from scratch, and hardscape materials can wreck the gardening budget.
I have found functional and aesthetically pleasing hardscape items of moderate cost, considering the volume of our yard and what will be needed to finish the scope of work over time.
Beyond that, I pay top dollar for the vegetables and herbs; the things we eat. Likewise, the raised beds are cedar planking, likely the priciest per piece material in our garden.
Mostly, I stick to perennials and bulbs (and tubers, and rhizomes). The perennials I typically pickup during spring holiday weekend sales. But bulbs and the like are were I save the most over-all. As garden center species bloom out, the stores tend to mark them down for fast sale. Mostly, I am buying plants for the future state of the garden, not for showiness right now.
For the third year running, I have been able to add new species of Asiatic lilies for three dollars per quart container (three bulbs each). This year, I picked up five Tiny Double You lilies, pictured below from a Google search.
I really like the color selection of the established lilies as a group, so I have plans to groups these new lilies with relocated blackberry lilies and the traditional orange “ditch’ lilies as I mark them for separation for our daylily beds. I enjoy the idea of three varieties sporting the same bright orange, dotted about the gardens.
I also enjoy the idea of expanding a lush full garden from burned out, bloomed-out castoffs and mark-downs. Also trades and hand-me-downs. That hints at the idea of finding beauty in the broken and used that I work to weave into our wabi-sabi life.