Great Plant Sales This Weekend

Great Plant Sales This Weekend

There’s a lot to do in the Northwest the weekend of September 18 – 19, so here’s a few things to keep you busy:

The Seattle plant sale of the fall season is the Northwest Horticultural Society’s Fall Plant Sale. I was there today as a “Roving Holder” volunteer (or considering how many shoppers brought their dogs, I could have been the “Holding Rover” volunteer). I was busy schlepping boxes of plants for hours! Hundreds of cool plants hit my Hold Cart, headed for the hold area, just so the shoppers could fill up yet another box. Here’s just a few of the many plant selections at the sale:

The NHS Sale continues on Saturday, September 18 from 9:00 am – 2:00 pm at Magnuson Park, 7400 Sand Point Way in Seattle. For more information visit their website at

If you’re an Iris fancier, the sale to attend is the Beardless Iris Sale, brought to you by those Iris fanatics at the King County Iris Society. There will be many varieties of unusual, hard-to-find, and newer introductions, all at amazing prices. And the Iris experts will be on hand to answer your questions too. The Iris Sale is Saturday, September 18 from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm at the Crossroads Shopping Center, NE 8th & 156th Ave. NE in Bellevue. Visit their website at for more information.

A great plant sale this weekend in Portland is the Hardy Plant Society of Oregon’s Fall Plant Sale & Garden FestivalSeptember 18 & 19 from 10 am – 3 pm, at the Portland Expo Center. You’d better clear out the minivan because this humongous sale has 55 vendors, and the range of perennials, trees, shrubs, ornamental grasses, bulbs and winter-hardy annuals is astounding! They will also have 20 arts & crafts vendors, so you can find a special item that serves as a focal point in your garden, or maybe a new book from the HPSO book sale. Visit for directions and a list of participating vendors.

You can always head to Molbak’s, where they will have a Dahlia display brought to you by the Puget Sound Dahlia Association, on Saturday, September 18 from 9:00 am – noon. The PSDA folks will be on hand to answer all your Dahlia questions (like is it pronounced DAH-lee-a or DAY-lee-a?) And horticulturist Peggy Campbell with the Saving Water Partnership will be on hand from 10:00 am – 11:30 am to talk about how to use water resources wisely, and why it’s so important to get plants into the ground now. Go to http://www.molbaks’com for more information.

If you want to plan ahead, the Arboretum Foundation’s Annual Fall Bulb & Plant Sale is coming up the weekend of October 2 & 3. And to help you select from hundreds of choice bulbs, they are holding a lecture and Q&A session about bulbs with garden writer and radio personality Mary Wingate and plant expert Bob Lilly. “All About Bulbs with Marty & Bob” will be held on Wednesday, September 22 from 7:00 – 8:30 pm at the Graham Visitors Center, in the Washington Park Arboretum, on 2300 Arboretum Drive East, in Seattle. Marty and Bob will cover buying, planting, designing with and caring for bulbs. Essentially, everything you need to know to make you a smart shopper at the Fall Bulb & Plant Sale. Admission and parking are free. Check out their website at for more details.

And in case you think that your garden simply cannot hold another plant (yea, right…) it’s great fun to volunteer at these sales. The people organizing them are so friendly and the shoppers are happy and gracious. You know you’re among folks who share your passion for plants! – Janet

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