Library Auction vs Retail

landlady(USDA 8 or 9)June 18, 2012

Yesterday I bought a couple of hostas from Naylor Creek via the auction and supplemented it with one from their retail stock. Which reminded me that I don't understand the difference between or why a place like NC offers hostas both ways.

The guys at NC were so communicative and so helpful that I know I could just email them and ask them the question and I'd get a response, but I'm thinking if I ask here maybe someone else might be wondering the same thing and ....


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This doesn't answer your question, but I've never checked out the auction because I assume it's just that- an auction where you bid against others for a certain plant? I never enjoyed the stress of bidding on ebay for things- was so happy when more and more sellers offered "buy it now" on there. So I'm one that just prefers retail and set prices, I guess.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 11:28AM
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I think the point is to get more money. When more than one person bids on one item it drives the price up. Plus some people I imagine don't like buying what they can not see and this is a way for people to see the actual plant that they are buying.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 11:41AM
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Babka NorCal 9b

Naylor often has several of the same plant at auction, so if someone has already bid on one, you don't need to compete. When I've looked there, rarely is there more than one bid/plant. I like that they post a photo of the actual plant you will receive, and you'll note that in many of the Naylor pics there are two divisions in the little pot!) The HL Auction is NOT a fundraiser like the AHS Auction where rare plants go for top dollar.

I think that for some sellers, it is a way to offer new plants and see what people are willing to pay for them. Sometimes a plant starts out at $20 and no one bites, so next time they offer that variety they'll try $18 or $15.

Also, some of those new ones just arrived this year, too late to put into those printed catalogs, which come out in the fall for the following year.

When you order normal retail, sometimes there is a minimum order amount. With the auction you can buy just one as it strikes your fancy.


    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 12:39PM
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Babka NorCal 9b

I just checked now and today there is also a Fundraiser auction going on, but those are listed seperately.


    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 12:50PM
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I have the Hosta Finder book now, and so I can compare asking price through the retail channels, and auction starting bid.

Like Babka says, I do not bid on a plant if someone else has expressed an interest in it. (Might have to change that should anyone put up a Color Revolt--it's every man for himself then!!)....

And, the auctions which say, you'll be getting a one or two eye division of "this plant".....I am not interested. I want to see the actual plant before I show them my money. I think the first one I did that way was Half And Half from Naylor Creek, and it was a two eye plant, beautiful, and already has added new leaves and kept its fine blue color and creamy center markings. It is a PPAF plant, and the two eyes separated on me, so I potted them in two pots.

I also have Golden Meadows coming this week and I'm very happy to already know what the plant will look like. NC again. But I have something coming from Jim's Stitch in Time for one, and added more to fill out the box, since he was out of Color Revolt (drats) but Jim is at the convention in Nashville and his wife Karen is holding down the fort. I think that will ship on Tuesday... meanwhile going for more potting mix and more pots....always more....

Oh yes. I had fun with the First Look Auction back in February. I bid on several plants out of the winners top price circle, and wound up with one nice hosta, Afterglow, related to Climax (which I got recently too). I am very pleased with this plant, did not mind the price paid which might be more than retail, but not much, and it was a bit exciting to be part of the action. Maybe one day Afterglow will be a well recognized name in the hosta world, but in my book, it is a winner now. Here is the latest picture of it, just to break up all this TEXT.

Afterglow, donated to First Look by Walters:

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 12:58PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

to put something.. in a catalog.. you have to have what? 20 or 30 of them.. and you have to order them what?? 3 or 4 years in advance ...

so .... some you cant keep in stock.. sell like hotcakes ... bet you rarely see those in the discount bin ...

others.. you cant pay peeps to buy .. lol .. so discount them ... or auction them.. GET THEM THE HECK OUT OF HERE .. lol ...

i figure its just stock reduction on those they have too many of ...

that plus all you bargain hounds.. who cant pass up a bargain .. lol .. its not like they can put a catalog out every other month ...

my theories.. FWIW .... that and a nickel will get me 5 cents ...


    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 2:11PM
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landlady(USDA 8 or 9)

Interesting answers....running the full gamut from glass half empty to glass half full...

Like Moccasinlanding and Babka, I don't bid against anyone else in an auction, so the asking price is all the seller is ever going to get from me, and I assume it is enough or it wouldn't be the asking price. If I don't get it for the offer price....oh well, better luck next time. Being a beginner means there are so many hostas to want that there is always an alternative....:-)))

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 4:21PM
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Ok, sounds like I should check it out after all. Oh wait, I'm out of room- wah!

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 4:49PM
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Steve Massachusetts Zone 5b

Naylor is just trying to get rid of excess inventory. Some of the others just use the Auction as their main way of selling plants. Sometimes Naylor's plants will be a dollar or two lower than in their catalog. I ordered two plants last week. Beautiful large plants.

Annabel Lee


    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 6:18PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

i got distracted ...

so.. afer growing on 20 or 30 of them.. and selling.. say 75% ...

they do not have enough left .. to list them in the catalog the next year .. so.. they have to get rid of those.. but if they dont list them.. how to do it.. especially fro naylor.. since i dont think they are open to the public ...

bingo bango ipso presto.. auction them.. until the are gone..

any money.. is better than holding it for many more years.. perhaps not even selling them .... so even if it sells .... for less than they might prefer.. it is gone.. dont have to water that pot.. and some cash to boot ...


ps: if you ever want to talk to these kind of peeps.. CALL THEM IN WINTER.. many are bored out of their heads .... and willing to talk.. lol ... i think i talked to the gary about this once.. in the dead of winter.. lol .. i doubt i made this up.. or know it gratuitously ...

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 6:23PM
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landlady(USDA 8 or 9)

Ooooh, that Annabelle is lovely.

I guess the bottom line is that retailers are going to have as many different reasons for selling at the auction as hosta growers are going to have for buying from either or both....

Prolly no one answer to my question.

I'm happy to buy from both depending on what I want and when I want it.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 7:09PM
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bentleygardens(z7b GA)

Being there are 100's of plant websites and lots of Hosta Growers, an auction is just another portal to get rid of stuff being new or old, not everyone orders from websites, my biggest portal is Ebay, so go figure, if you have 1000's of hostas and its the buying season, you get them out to every portal you can find, we use Hosta Library, Websites, Ebay, and Amazon, its not any different than what you would buy from the website, just another avenue of fresh faces to sell to......:)


    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 7:58AM
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