Meagan Francis

Meagan Francis

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Gardening may be one of life’s simple pleasures. But between purchasing garden tools, seeds or plants and all the accompanying supplies, it can also be a pricey venture. But if you think outside the box, watch sale fliers and are willing to do a little driving around, you can save on sod, shovels and more.

1. Check out discount stores. Your local garden-supply store, nursery or home-improvement megastores aren’t the only places to shop. Take a look at the discount stores in your area, like Aldi, Big Lots, or Family Dollar. You might be surprised at what they have to offer – and what a deal you can get on everything from tomato cages to planters to garden hoses.

2. Look at your hometown hardware store. I often find great values and rebates on certain lawn and garden items at my local Ace or True Value hardware stores.

3. Swap to save. There’s no need for both you and your next-door neighbor to have a full arsenal of tools and supplies. Consider setting up a barter or swap system with a friend or two that you trust and get along with (since I’m sure you’d like to get that edger back in a reasonable time frame.) Seed and plant swaps are another great way to save money by seed saving and sharing with friends and neighbors – do a web search on “seed swap” and plug in your city or county to see what’s in your neck of the woods.

4. Gardening, gently used. Another man’s unused mulch could be your treasure. Look on Craigslist, check the newspaper classifieds, or scour local yard-sale listings for mention of gardening supplies and tools.

5. Save at the Restore. Have you been to a Habitat for Humanity ReStore? They’re chock-full of bargains on building supplies, household items, appliances…and, yes, garden tools and supplies! Better still, proceeds from the store’s sales go to support Habitat’s work in your local community.

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