New to SW Denver, Garden Center suggestions

Zinnia1(5)March 25, 2012

Hi! I moved to Littleton, CO late last summer (from MI) and this is my first Spring in Colorado. I would appreciate any suggestions for garden centers to visit. I live about three miles from Jared's, which I have visited, and today went to drove to Paulino's to browse. I am wondering if you have any suggestions of garden centers to visit. I really enjoy visiting/browsing garden centers, especially this time of year! Small or large, I love them all! Any replies is greatly appreciated!

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He/she went to Jared's! (Cue corny music)

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 10:12AM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

Hi Zinnia,

If you're into perennials big time, the best place in Denver is Timberline Gardens out on the west side of town on 58th Avenue near Ward Road. That's nowhere near you, but if you're looking for best selection of perennials you won't find another place in Denver that comes close. For a full description of Timberline go to the tread I've linked below and scroll down to my post a couple of replies down.

The closest "real" garden center to you would be Tagawa's on Parker Road just north of Parker. I used to live virtually across the road from them, but I never managed to find my way over there to check them out (I always have tended to start as much of my stuff from seed as possible!). They're a "real" garden center in the sense that they have growing facilities out here and grow a lot/much/most of the plants they sell themselves. Not sure how much since my information is very old by now! MANY years ago my brother, who has commercial greenhouses in Illinois, went to visit one of their growing facilities--in Brighton I think it was--and he was quite impressed with their operation, and he's hard to impress---so I assume they were doing a good job. Have never heard anything to the contrary, so I assume they still do! Not sure about their variety of perennials (can you tell that that's what I'm most interested in???) because they don't post a list online, but whatever they do have should be good quality as far as I know. Not sure of their selection of trees/bushes, etc. for the same reason, but at least when you shop there you're buying the plants from folks who actually DO know about plants! I have heard that their prices are kind of high, but since I've never been there I don't know that from personal experience!

But--most of the "real" garden centers won't have much/most of their plants out yet, tho with the Unusual Warm we've been having lately it's really hard to predict when they'll be stocking up things like perennials and nursery stock, but those that have stock ready will probably be doing it soon, if not already. I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of places are starting to sell annuals/veggies/herbs by now because of the warm weather and "demand," but if you--or anybody else around here--is being tempted, there's a very, very, veryveryvery good chance that if you put tender stuff out already it's going to FREEZE at some point and the only people that are going to benefit from your purchase is the garden center where you bought it--especially when you have to go back and buy it all over again! Any hardy plants you find for sale now--that are being displayed OUTSIDE should be adequately hardened off to put/keep/plant out now, but even for hardy things you find, if they're being displayed INSIDE, they will need to be hardened off before being moved outside. The moderate weather we have right now would make that easy, but if we Very Suddenly go from warm to COLD, they will probably need a little protection for a few nights.

A lot of the suggestions on the linked thread are for mail order places, but there are other local places listed too if you read thru it. Another place that's mentioned that I haven't taken the time to go to is Harlequin's in Boulder. I've heard good things about it and hope to make a trip up there to check it out for myself this year sometime.

I'm curious if Paulino's is getting their perennials up in the retail area yet--that would be on the front and south side of the retail store. Did you see anything out there--besides RIGHT by the front door where they probably have some blooming bulbs and pansies? And let us know what you think of any other places you check out too. Personal opinions are always good info for others, and the more individual opinions there are, the easier it is for others to decide where they want to go.

Happy spring,

Here is a link that might be useful: Favorite seed and plant sources

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 2:26PM
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I also live in Littleton--actually unincorporated Jeffco. Wilmore Nursery on County Line just east of Broadway is a good place. Highlands Garden Center on Holly just south of County Line is also good. I usually get to Tagawa's once or twice a season and like them as well. O'Tooles on Federal south of Belleview has great annuals, wonderful veggies in 2" pots, and 'cookie cutter' perennials. I go there on my lunch hour just to drool. I think most nurseries are pretty high priced.

I love Timberline in Arvada, and wish I could get there more frequently--takes about 30 minutes from my house. They have a great selection of sustainable plants, but also have many other perennials and annuals.

Welcome to Littleton. I've been here 34 years.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 12:29PM
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I'm up near Boulder, so usually go to the many nurseries in the Boulder and Longmont area, but I just went to Tagawa's a couple of days ago for the first time with my MIL who lives nearby and has always raved about them. It is early in the season, but they had a decent selection of shrubs, both deciduous and evergreen. They didn't have much in the way of deciduous tree selection (lots of fruit trees though) and the grounds aren't huge, so I'm guessing trees aren't their specialty. They didn't have many perennials, but then it's probably too early for that. The largest retail nursery I've ever been to is The Tree Farm in Longmont. It can be overwhelming if you don't know what you're looking for, but they are well staffed. Their prices are higher than other places (in my experience), but they do have a HUGE selection if you're in the market for anything that's not carried by most of the smaller garden centers.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2012 at 1:59AM
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Zinnia1 - if you like garden decor I can't imagine you can beat The Gardens in Highlands Ranch - 9542 S University, 80126. They have a good selection of plants too but man, their decor area is off the hook (and I really don't even like garden decor!). Still, it's a fun place to visit and not terribly far.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 6:44AM
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