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I'm amazed at the price of perennial plug plants.  They are not cheap, usually will not flower until next year and are pathetically small

I recently bought 2 agastaches for £6 99 each plus £7 99 postage.  I could have bought 3 plugs for £14 99 plus £4 99 postage....this was the cheapest I found. My plants are large and bushy and about to flower.  The plugs would not have arrived yet, will not flower until next year and would cost almost as much

My agastaches will be split in autumn to produce several large plants to flower next year.

Amyone argue a good case for PERENNIAL plug plants?


I only buy them when there is some sort of offer on that makes them cheaper.  Having said that I have had quite a good success rate with them - and some do flower in the first year.  Clematis from plugs always do far better for me than the GC ones.

Woodgreen wonderboy

An annual, but I bought some tiny, tiny plugs of gazanias in spring... almost too small to ease out and pot on. About £5 for 50. Almost all now great plants.

Saw a single Gazania in a pot today in the GC for £6.99p. Ouch!


I bought some blue poppies from T &M at £15 for 3 plants. I got  3 plugs, one of which died immediately, 2 were potted on into ericaceous compost, struggled through the summer and then never emerged in spring. I then went to the garden centre and bought 2 plants in 6 in pots which flowered within 6 weeks. ( £5.99 each.) One flowered blue, one was purple. I took seeds off both. The blue ones havn't germinated but I 've got 12 plants from the purple seeds. I won't buy plugs  again by post.  Can we start a campaign to get  a picture of the plug size as well as the  example plant in catalogues?

Ah, gazanias locally are very cheap.  I can get full size plants in flower for £1. 

I really refer to perennials that won't flower this year.  My point is that a plant in a 2 or 3 litre pot can produce 3 reasonable size plants now....very often, e.g. Rudbeckia .....or many more in the autumn.  And, this year is not devoid of flower in the meantime?



Support your local garden centre. They've has a rotten spring.

Woodgreen wonderboy

Sorry V. didn't mean to divert attention from your rant. I ordered, several years ago, several plants/plugs from T&M which they said would flower that year. I was sceptical but decided to give it a try. How wrong I was. Stuff arrived late, if at all, and I had several unsuitable substitutes, and ended up with a large number of lavenders having ordered various yellow and red perennials!! The flowers I was sent were so different to my order that I asked for all my money back, which was done. I haven't had anything to do with T&M since, on principle.

The small plants sent out by Chrysanthemums Direct are excellent and should flower first year as most are late flowerers.

The price for your plugs does seem exorbitant, especially as you pay postage anyway. I paid £12 for 3 largish perrenials todayin the GC, which are already in flower.


They only time i ever buy them is when they are "free" so basically the 48 plugs for a fiver type offers. 

The best ones i've gotten are the recent 48 lavenders offer, these are probably the strongest little plants i've had from T&M. I've got a stoney bank to plant so they will eventually go in there, probably after a year in the greenhouse though. 

Many of the offers though are daft, as they usually contain things that are so easy to grow from seed (foxgloves, echinecea etc) that you'd be better off germinating your own on a windowsil. 

Must admit i fell for the plum poppies T&M are selling recently but only because i had a fiver off voucher, like everything else they are tiny, but as i have a greenhouse they will be ok. They really should say they all need to be overwintered in at least  a cold frame though as without a greenhouse or coldframe you'd have no chance. 

I have just complained to J Parkers , I sent for an oriental poppy collection These looked lovely in the catalogue . £12  96   for  4 . plus about £4 p. p.

Okey  I thought to myself  I dont expect them to be massive plants but even if they are only a couple of inches they will grow on quickly and at least once I have them they will grow each year , make a good clump that I can split in future years . So when they arrived I couldnt believe what they had sent  Im sure they had got mixed up or something . I got 4 bits of very dried up rubbish that I supposed was root at one time, root  in a bag of 3 tblsp of powdery compost ( Yes I did measure it ! )  The longest bit was 3 inches long . So planted these bits as instructed in my border of sandy soil with well rotted manure ( which describes my soil conditions to the " T " ).That was  3 weeks ago , checked today and even the 3 inch bit of dried up root has dissintegrated. .  I have just emailed them . When you think the size of a poppy plant and then they send you a bit of root for xnumber of pounds - crikey! they are making a fortune. I feel that when they are sending root cuttings it should be stated in the description of the plant .

, Picking up the thread of  plug plants I get mine from jersy direct, and Im well satisfied - free postage too !

But I also agree with fidgetbones , the garden centers so at least you see what your getting.



The agastaches were new ones.  Expected to pay more. They are not readily available in large pots so to get them now and to see them flower soon is lovely

I do agree about supporting locally.....I always check with local nurseries first ....I enjoy the chat and exchanges of experiemces with the growers too. One grower even calls ME sometimes to look at a plant or two.

for me, it's going to be plants of flowering size this summer.  Next year is too long


I find with perenials they will always be poor from mail order. I keep an eye out while on my trips and if I spy something nice, I'll knock the door and ask for a root cutting in autumn. It always helps when I tell them the stock I can offer too! This year I've really gone mad with the seeds, everyday I'm primping, watering, pricking out and potting on. Running out of space, so hopefully make a good few quid at table-top sales and carboots over next month or so. Use the cash to spend on pots, exotic equipment, compost and poly pots! Oh and I made the mistake of offering to grow 200 russian giant for my daughter's primary school to sell!

dont shop at i ordered a large perennial collection ( 72 plants) which arrived with more than half dead and covered in dead growth pathetically unhealthy small plants, on phoning to complain i was told i need to wait til august to see if they come back up, ive popped them all out in the border with miracle gro compost and fertiliser so hopefully they will come up im not holding my hopes high though i also ordered a standard tri colour rose which is in crap condition, no buds,half stems were dead, and unprofessionally pruned, no cuts above knuckle or anything in very bad shape ive potted up and trying to coax on buds keeping it in heated conservatory, will put outside when bit warmer i dont hold many hopes for it most likely will return and get money back come august, on the other hand ive ordered several shrubs for and all the shrubs have been in good shape im happy with them but i also ordered a cottage perennial collection of holyhocks,delphiniums and foxgloves was told "large plug plants" they arrived and are lucky if they are 3cm they are tiny so im disappointed in that, either way i will not order plants online again i will stick with garden centres or b & q

hollie hock

No not really, too expensive for me. I'd grow from seed

Why are African violet plug plants from Russia selling on ebay for £45?. I'm getting a grow on.............



The French nursery I get them from is doing Agastache Red Fortune x 6 plants for about £10. Postage is about £5. But I never order just a few plants. I order lots of summer annuals at about £9 for 35 plants at the same time. Postage is still £5. I got Salvia Love and Wishes from them end of March and they are quite bushy now with flower buds, just need some warm weather to plant them out.

Tiily - You're right! Get your grown on.

Screenshot of the "Sold" listings for African Violet Plug Plant - One Plug Plant!



Bought Love n Wishes from local nursery as a 3 litre plant and planted out in early autumn and now putting on new growth.  I took cuttings in autumn and  now have 4 more young plants.  Had I purchased plugs (available as 3) they would have cost me much more, would have been netted and would be smaller   Mangthan the size of my plants grown from cuttings.  Of course, they would not be supplied until April or late May

African Violets are now in demand again hence why they may be expensive.  However, many people down here have them growing in their gardens and will give some away . Many of my gems were bought from tiny back garden nurseries so shop around 

support any local nurseries as well as buy online.  Superb quality plants at a fraction of the price of the garden centres.  Plants I rarely see too

I bought loads of perennials at Cherry Lane GC in Pulham Market, Norfolk at 6 for £10.00 mix and match.  Really healthy and I will plant them straight in the ground.