This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

Dirt-Cheap Ways to Grow a Garden

These days, it's money that makes a garden grow.

Gardening has long been one of the top leisure activities for many Americans. But green thumbs are finding that this hobby can quickly become quite expensive.

It doesn't have to be. With a little bit of effort and keeping an eye open for plants that are looking for a good home, you can fill your garden without emptying your wallet.

In fact, beautiful gardens can be created at a very low cost, and many plants can be obtained at no charge.

Here are 10 great ways to build your garden with plants that don't cost a dime:

1. Look for Unloved Plants

You probably think your local nursery will have the highest prices for garden plants. That's probably true if you are looking for plants in the main retail area. But frugal gardeners look behind the building to find free plants.

Plants that don't look healthy won't sell and take up valuable retail space, so they usually end up back by the trash bins. Most people who run nurseries hate to throw out any kind of plant -- no matter what condition it's in -- and will usually let you take any plant you'd like.

Simply ask the manager if there are plants that can't be sold, and if you may claim them. While they won't look as beautiful as those on the retail floor, these plants (especially any that are native to your area), with a little bit of care, can be nursed back to health in no time.

2. Bartering and Trading

If you want to be a little more choosy when it comes to plants for your garden, consider bartering with a neighbor. This works especially well if you have junk lying around the house that you no longer want or need.

The stuff doesn't even have to be garden-related. This is also a great way to get gardening tools and supplies that can cost a pretty penny when purchased brand new.

3. Plant Rescues

Simply keep your eyes open when driving down the street, especially on trash days. Many people move during spring and abandon their plants in the process.

While you are likely to find more houseplants this way than garden plants, they are still worth rescuing, even if you don't plan to keep them. These plant rescues are excellent for trading and bartering. While it may be an extra step, it still will allow you to get free plants.

4. The Internet

The Internet is a wonderful place to pick up free plants. FreeCycle will allow you to make requests for free plants, which should get you plenty.

People who are moving who are a bit more organized will try to find homes for plants they won't be talking with them. Most gardeners love to share extra plants that they have when preparing their own spring gardens.

1 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 17,804.80 +26.65 0.15%
S&P 500 2,070.65 +9.42 0.46%
NASDAQ 4,765.38 +16.9840 0.36%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs