Friday, July 18, 2008

Show and Tell: Rescuing plants nobody wants

One of my favorite things to do is check Lowe's for the plants that are on sale. All during the day they add plants to the markdown carts at the Lowe's in town. Throughout the years, I've gotten lots of good buys on plants that come back each year.
I checked the cart the other day, and found these coleus plants for 29 cents each! They were pretty leggy, and needed to be trimmed. I know they won't come back next year, but I just hated to see them on that sale cart baking in the hot sun with no one paying any attention to them!
Coleus is really easy to root, so after I trimmed the plants, I put the cuttings in these containers to give away or make another pot. So I ended up with 18 extra plants! And all I had to do was stick them in the potting soil, water them a little each day or so and keep them in a shady spot.
I didn't see any pots that I really liked enough to spend money on, so I picked up a can of black spray paint while in there, and dug out these old fiberglass pots from under a table in our shed.
After lightly spray painting the pots black, I gathered everything needed to plant the pot. I did splurge and buy 1 pot of purple fountain grass for height in the pot. It wasn't on sale, but worth the 4.99 it cost.
Here's a picture on the finished product! I used one pot as a base, and stacked the one with the flowers on top of it to make a pedestal type planter. It fit in nicely with other pots at the end of the walkway.
I really like the contrast of the colors and the texture in the coleus. I love the way they blend in with the purple fountain grass. At one time, I really didn't care for coleus at all...but some of the new varieties are so pretty and look great in containers. This planter will last until fall and fill out nicely in the days to come, and I rescued some plants that probably would have been thrown away! And I am now 'hooked' on a new plant!
For lots more Show and Tells visit Kelli at There is no Place Like Home. Have a great day!


Dawn said...

You are great! I would have looked at the plants and said, "no thank you". My daughter always looks for the cheaper, almost throw away plants! I used to have coleus all over my house. I haven't had one in about 20 years. Maybe I should rethink and go buy one of these days.

I really like what you did with the pots too. You are a clever lady.

take care,

Kathi~Lavender, Lace and Thyme said...

What a master gardener you are and so thoughtful to think of others to give them to. I'm sure a lot of people are finished planting for the year and your pots are now gorgeous!

Have a wonderful Friday!
Kathi :)

A Hint of Home said...

You did a great job on the plants, the pots and are very thrifty. You do have a green thumb.

pammiejo said...

You are a gal after my own heart! I lurk around those same racks at Lowe's and have saved several plants from doom and had them grow just great in my yard. I agree about the coleus - they have so many different colors that they enhance any combination of colors! Guess I should head for Lowe's again this morning - you motivated me!

Anonymous said...

Diane, I love to save plants marked down and sad looking. I have to save my own plants when I rely on my sister to water them when I am out of town.:) The containers look very nice painted black. Good job my friend.

Warning, this week I am going to be frantic with nine grands and the wedding reception for my son's wedding on the 26th. If you don't hear from me that's why. The reception is at my home, about 30 will attend.

Have a nice weekend,


Anonymous said...

What a great idea! You did a beauitful job with them.

Ceekay-THINKIN of HOME said...

What a great idea! And they look great!

Anonymous said...

Wow, you made something inexpensive into something beautiful! I wish I had a green thumb like that. Your arrangement looked lovely and so summer-y! :-)

Southern Lady said...

You're so smart, Diane! Would you come "rescue" my plants? Poor things, some of them look like little orphan plants.

I enjoyed your post and love your new plants -- and planters, too!

Hope your weekend is good. Try to stay cool in Meridian.


Jean said...

Great way to rescue plants and save money! They should be really beautiful for fall.

Anonymous said...


You are so sweet. I'm probably the one that brought them back to the store. I try but I just don't have a green thumb. I can grow annuals but kill everything else.


Steve Buser said...

A great horticulture lesson. I have done the black-paint-on-old-pots thing before -- it works wonderfully, just like you said. I wished I had learned it -- or had enough courage to experiment -- twenty years before that.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Great job Diane! I rescued some geranium hanging baskets from Home Depot a few weeks ago -- they were half dead because they let them dry out, but for $4 each I knew I could bring them back and they are now full of flowers and look great!

I never thought to spray paint planters -- good idea!

Alexandra MacVean said... are too good. You did a good thing and the results are beautiful!! :)

Susie from Bienvenue said...

I too rescue plants from time to time... It makes it all the more fun... Some make it and some dont... yours looks great! Susie h~

Anne Fannie said...

I have some plants that need rescuing from all this heat!
I never knew Lowes had plants marked down that much. I am going to have to check that out next time! I also never thought of spray painting my pots...hmmmm, thanks for the ideas!

Love Bears All Things said...

What a bargain. Coleus comes in so many colors and varieties and is always a good filler.
Mama Bear

Darlene said...

Wow that is a great idea. The pot looks wonderful and the plants look great together. I once sponge painted some pots when that was the going

Gone said...

I've had some success with those plants at Lowe's, too...yours look GREAT!!!

Thanks for the visit and comment about my "finds". GREAT BUYS, for sure!!!

I can't wait to get started...but so many things to do!!!


Anonymous said...

You did a wonderful jobs on the plants and pots. You remind me of my sister....she would have done the same thing. You are very created. You have a wonderful weekend.

Tammy said...

How great that you are able to do this!
I, on the other hand, take plants that are just fine and seem to accidentally kill them.
I truly admire your green thumb!


Kelli said...

You got some great deals and how wonderful that you were able to rescue the plants! I love Coleus!

Kathy said...

They look great - the pots and the plants!
Kathy (

Jon said...

Way to go, Diane! I sometimes thnk I am a charter member of the Vicksburg Plant Rescue League as I can't stop myself from "saving neglected plants" at nurseries. I can't pass them by anymore than I do when I see abandoned kittens or puppies on the street in danger of being run over. I love how you made striking and winning combo planters with your "orphan" plants! Not only kind and merciful but beautiful! Jon at Mississippi Garden on 7-20-08