Spring ephemerals - I found an inexpensive source

sbriggs(z7 NC)February 16, 2004

Just an informational posting for all of you looking for spring ephemerals for your woodland gardens, about two weeks ago I was in Lowes buying seed starting mix etc. so I could start some species rhododendron and perennials from seed. Anyway, hidden near the seeds and bulbs there was a small freestanding cardboard display loaded with woodland plants, they were under $2.00 each so I figured, what the heck they are worth a shot.

I picked up trout lily, Hepatica, Jack in the pulpit, crested iris, and 3 types of fern (leatherwood, cinnamon, and ostrich). I was worried at first as some of the bulbs/rhizomes were tiny and the labels directed me not to expect anything the first year from some of the plants. Stuck them in my basement grow area under lights and moved on to other projects. Over the past weekend the following has happened- The Hepatica just flowered! The leatherwood ferns all are putting out new growth, the jack in the pulpit and crested iris sprouts broke through the soil surface. I am still waiting on the remaining ferns and the trout lilies but so far I am very impressed, everywhere else that I have found these plants they are double, even triple the price.

Good Gardening,


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paul299(z4 Minnesota)

These are wild collected plants, and hopefully they will not become to popular and thus put more
strain on our native plant habitats.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 1:02PM
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There have been strings on this exact topic, some quite heated, about picking up spring ephemerals/native wildflowers from Lowes and other chains at ridiculously low prices.
If memory serves, no one can establish that these are wild collected. It was suggested that since most if not all Lowes are selling these types of plants that a source capable of producing large amounts, year after year would have to be behind the growth/propogation of these plants and that more than likely these plants/starts are not wild collected. Enjoy them. I picked up a few round lobed hepatica's last year in a trade and I can't wait to see them bloom. Just hope this extreme cold/heavy snow hasn't done them in.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 3:33PM
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sbriggs(z7 NC)

The label states specifically that these are nursery propagated. I think it would be somewhat difficult to find the quantities needed for just one Lowes store by walking through the woods. There were at least 500 packaged plants in the one display and the Lowes assistant stated that they had two more fully loaded displays in the back. Assuming that they were collected in the wild, cleaned, packed in peat and sold to Lowes you can rest assured they wont be back next year as it would put the company that wholesales these to Lowes out of business.

At the risk of being flamed, who told you or how did you determine that these were collected in the wild?

    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 3:45PM
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paul299(z4 Minnesota)

No nursery can propagate these plants fast enough to supply blooming sized plants to sell to these
chain stores and sell them at even the price that they are selling for retail.

The way this trade in wild flowers works is that the plants are collected in the woods and if the
people are somewhat responsibvle - the plants are put into nursery rows and grown for a year and
then bagged up and sold as "nursery grown" Many do not even do this.

Its faster and cheaper to collect the plants in the woods, than it is to take 3-7 years to grow them
from seeds. A few thousand plants can be collected in day or so from a few thousand squar feet
of land.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 4:12PM
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Soeur(z6b TN)

I know of some growers using tissue culture to propagate spring ephemerals, but unfortunately most of the stuff in the big box stores is wild-collected. I'm familiar with a company in McMinnville that pays by the piece for wild collected stuff, and they sell hundreds of thousands of roots every year to Lowes. Interesting that the packaging says it's nursery propagated. Hopefully they're not lying. I've seen decepetive packaging that says "nursery grown", which means wild-collected stock that they kept for a little while before shipping it on. They just hope the consumer thinks "grown" means "propagated".


    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 7:38PM
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vegangirl(z6 VA)

I saw these too at the local Lowes. Do they really grow? They seem so tiny and dried up.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 8:09PM
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sbriggs(z7 NC)


They seem to, the leatherwood fern, jack in the pulpit, hepatica, and trillium are all growing for me I have had them potted up inside for about two weeks now. I am still waiting on royal fern, cinnamon fern, and trout lily.


    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 8:14PM
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The inexpensive native plants purchased from Lowe's are likely wild-collected. One of the suppliers (Ted Minton) who in the past has sold these plants to Lowe's from CIP Nursery (labeled as Botanical Wonders) is the man cited in the link below for trying to illegally smuggle wild-collected venus flytraps out of the country.

This issue has been going on for several years and Lowes refuses to work with the DNR's in the states where the plants are sold. On some of the rarer plants, neither CIP nor Lowe's has produced the necessary permits.

Here is a link that might be useful: News Article about venus flytraps

    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 8:34PM
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leslies(z7 No VA)

At the rate at which wooded areas in my county are being deforested and developed, it would seem like there's an unlimited supply of wild-harvested plants available that would be just as dead in a year if they were not harvested and sold in a store. "Wild harvested" is not necessarily incompatible with conservation.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2004 at 4:37PM
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Sherry36502(Zone 8 AL)

I seen the same at Wal-Mart this week. They were $2.88 and I had no idea that we shouldn't buy them!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2004 at 5:56AM
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vegangirl(z6 VA)

Simon, glad to hear they're growing.
It is a troubling issue. Leslie, I cringe when I see new roads or house being built through woodlands because I'm sure nobody thought to save the trilliums, etc. I keep telling myself I'm going to keep on the look-out for such and try to get permission to do some plant rescue. Even my dearly beloved father had a friend cut down some trees that were hindering his tv signal, and where he cut them down was right over my grandma's white trillium patch!! I felt so sorry for the twisted trilliums trying to grow through the tree branches that I rescued the ones that were affected. (My grandma is no longer living)

    Bookmark   February 18, 2004 at 1:32PM
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Wacky_Jakki(z5/6 CT)

sbriggs - how did you plant your Lowes purchases? I had picked up a couple of packets a while ago, and was going to put them in the ground in the spring. And hope for the best - I've never had much luck with bareroots. I like the idea of starting them in the basement under lights!

What did you plant them in? Did you use a humidity dome? Do you leave the lights on for 16 hours a day as for seedlings?

I have 31/2 pots and some clear domed trays - would they be sufficient with potting soil?

Your thoughts greatfully received! Thanks Wacky

    Bookmark   February 25, 2004 at 2:50PM
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sbriggs(z7 NC)


I just potted them up in a sterile mix in 4-1/2" pots and watered them in well. I ahve lights on them 18hr on 6 hours off. No humidity domes or tents. I planted them on 7th and so far all the leatherwood ferns have two or more sets of fronds, all of the hepatica are up (2 bloomed the others just put out leaves) the jack-in-the-pulpit are putting on growth, and the other ferns are just starting to break through the soil surface.

The toad lilies do not appear to be doing anything, these were the smallest of the bulbs and I was not expecting much from them, if I don't see anything in another 2-3 weeks I'll do some more investigation.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2004 at 3:04PM
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Wacky_Jakki(z5/6 CT)

Thanks for the information! Look forward to hearing how you get on with the toad lilies - didn't get any of those as I have them growing naturally! I was so excited when I found out...


    Bookmark   February 25, 2004 at 3:38PM
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cindip(z7 NC)

Simon, Don't give up on the ones that haven't shown growth. I bought some maybe three years ago, and one of them finally grew last year. I think it says on the package that it might not grow for a year or so. Good luck. I would like to go and buy some more.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2004 at 4:00PM
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Found some trout lillies growing close to the trunk of a wild cherry which grows near the end of a stone wall on the eastern side of our home. Planted lenten rose there and constantly add soil as it leaks through the crevices of the wall. The trout lilly have spread over a 10 year period but the past couple years, they haven't bloomed. Do you think I've covered them too deeply with soil?
Have talked with some people at DCNR in Pa. regarding collection of wildflowers at construction/logging sites. They seem to make an effort here but it would be difficult to be aware of all the construction sites. Guess it depends on the interest and staff in each county.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2004 at 12:08AM
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autumnmoon(6a/se ks)

I bought some of these plants last year as well, I bought jack in pulpit, trout lilly bluebells and trillium as well as some royal ferns. I saw nothing from the plants last year (except the ferns, they did just fine), but this year they are all up and abounding, so give them a year as the package says and dont forget where you planted them! (I DID! )

    Bookmark   March 31, 2004 at 12:56AM
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jerry_murray(20F/Puget Sound)

I also purchased some of the Botanical Wonders line. The packages state "nursery grown". Not all the plants are viable though. I lost at least 4 of the 10 plants I purchased because they dried out in the package or were spoiled. Some of the fern products were the main losses but Lowes is good about replacements. Just make sure that the plants are alive before you leave the store. Jer

    Bookmark   April 6, 2004 at 11:36PM
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jerry_murray(20F/Puget Sound)

some of you have hit the nail on the head and are correct in your rebuttal about nursery grown versus wild collected specimens. Although there are unsrupulous individuals in the trade, there are also those who "do what is right" by growing wildflowers from seed. Arrowhead Alpines grows, for example, numerous species of native trilliums from seed and offers them at wholesale prices if one desires to purchase in quantity. Their plants are small as is the Lowes' "Botanical Wonders" selections. My suggestion is to scrutinize any indigenous plant purchase by asking questions before buying.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2004 at 12:35AM
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Regarding Lowes...

Here's a phone number to them- 800.445.6937
Press 3 to get to a service rep then press 4 to get to a heartbeat as opposed to an electronic message.

The first time I called, another call came through on my line and I asked the customer service rep if she would hold and she said yes. In the blink of an eye, the connection was dead.

I called Lowes a second time and expressed my concerns regarding their definition of "nursery propagated" and the gal asked me to hold and I was then disconnected.

I called Lowes a third time and asked for the name of the service rep with whom I was speaking. She gave me her name as Tashena. I expressed my concerns and told her I had asked these questions of the store personnel and that the wording on the packaging had been pointed out to me- in other words... no expansion on the term "nursery propagated" had been offered. I again expressed my concerns to Tashena and asked to please speak with someone within their corporate offices who would be capable of addressing my concerns. My call was incredibly directed back to the Lake In The Hills Store where the Operations Manager answered my call. He claimed he was incapable of answering my questions. His name is Greg and he refused to share his last name with me although he volunteered it wasn't too professional to not share his last name. Why no last name... he claimed he doesn't give out his last name as customers have been calling him at home on his days off which he spends with his children. I asked him why he didn't get an unpublished number and he said he wasn't going to deal with that. Here is the phone number to where Greg is the Operations Manager- 847.458.0419.

Specific questions I asked Greg regarding native plants being sold as nursery propagated:
Who are their venders
Are their ferns grown from a spore
Are their other native plants grown from seed
Was Lowes lulling me into a false sense of security by using the phrase nursery propagated?

Greg, who claims he is the Operations Manager and that I don't need his last name as he can be easily identified as the OM, claims he will get back to me with answers. Shall I hold my breath?

Here is my major concern, I had at least 100 trillium here last year and they are all gone, one species was bloody butcher as well as trillium grandiflorum. Perhaps the deer ate them as it isn't as if I have an 8' fence topped with barbed wire around my property. I have long suspected someone was stealing my trilliums. Add to this my neighbor's comments in which he claimed he hasnt seen a trillium lately either. Really makes you wonder doesn't it? I am planting more trilliums here yet again in an attempt to re-establish them. If my trilliums weren't gathered... how long until "vendors" begin looking to privately owned properties if they aren't already doing so? Is this yet another example of the nursery industry being rewarded for being irresponsible? Think about it... I lose trilliums and re-purchase plant material. Wouldn't it be ironic if I was indirectly buying back some of my own plants or plants collected from native habitats? Supply and demand. I suspect there are many unscrupulous venders out there who don't exactly grow from seed or spore although they would have the buying public believe otherwise. Semantics game and if this is in fact what is going on, I believe it is cause for concern for any of us who have desirable native vegetation plants growing anywhere that are accessible.

Now here's what is interesting. Franks Nursery and crafts is standing by their printed statement that the native plants they are selling are being grown from cultivated stock. They came right out and told me that nothing they sold was being wild collected. Franks, another "big box" store had no problems giving me names of District Managers or buyers or vendors. Interesting. Now granted, Franks prices are about $4.99 for 2 plants packed in a plastic baggie where Lowes is considerably less but representatives of Franks had no problems sharing information with me and no problem giving me first and last names and other contact information. Funny, I never even got disconnected once. Kudos to Franks for being what appears to be honorable. Maybe I have been duped, but I doubt it.

In the event any one is wondering...
I do not and never have worked for Franks Nursery and Crafts. None of my family or friends work there either.

Thank you to Paul299 for enlightening me. I had no idea these practices existed.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2004 at 12:05PM
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ahughes798(z5 IL)

What happens is this, and it's pretty much as Paul299 describes...they buy up woods, pay people by the piece for each native plant they bring in, then put them in nursery beds for a year, and sell them as nursery propagated. Once the woods are scoured clean of natives, the company sells the land to developers. Legal? Yes. Extremely un-ethical? Yes. Or they pay people in poor communities (like the Appalachian region) to go out and poach the natives, and pay them per piece.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2004 at 11:21AM
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The same practices are stripping countries such as China of their rare endemics. For example, each year thousands of illegally collected ladyslippers are removed from the wild and shipped abroad, mostly to Japan and Europe. Here in Japan each spring I receive catalogs full of over-saturated color photographs of Cypripediums for sale from China at rock-bottom prices. Many species offered are extremely rare, in fact, at current rates several may be erradicated from the wild totally within a short time. The basic question is this: do you really care if their are native plants growing in the wild or not? If you do, you will desist from buying such plants.

Currently there are numerous growers who are working on the artificial germination of the difficult to grow species of ladyslippers. There has been alot of success over the past 15 or so years with many species while others remain problematic in cultivation. Nurseries such as the Vermont Ladyslipper Company and Spangle Creek Labs in the US are helping to make available these plants and also increase our knowledge of their cultivation.

So what's this got to do with buying wildflowers from Lowes? Maybe nothing. I'll let you decide. I've attached an interesting link of the of the illegal trade of Chinese Cypripediums written by biologist Holger Perner stationed at the Huanglong Reserve, Sichuan in western China.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2004 at 8:33PM
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So sad!

Plantfreak, Thank you for sharing that with all of us.
If you don't mind my asking, where do you reside in Japan?

    Bookmark   April 11, 2004 at 3:00AM
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lrobins(z5 CO)

If you are unhappy with Lowe's irresponsible marketing of wildflowers that are most likely wild-collected ("strip-mined" from their woodland homes, as described in previous posts), I would suggest the following: Obtain the mailing address of your local store or regional Lowe's headquarters. Write a letter to the manager, explaining why you are unhappy about their nursery practices and what you plan to do (such as not shop there in the future). Mail a copy to the CEO of Lowes at:

Robert Tillman, CEO
Lowe's Companies, Inc.
1605 Curtis Bridge Road
Wilkesboro, NC 28697

(see http://finance.yahoo.com/q/pr?s=LOW for the company profile)

Another possibility is to write to a "socially responsible" investment fund, that selects companies based on "corporate citizenship" in addition to financial considerations, and that currently invests in Lowe's. Most socially responsible funds place a lot of emphasis on a company's environmental practices. Ask the fund to explain the issue to Lowe's management and try to work with them to resolve it.

A leading socially responsible fund that invests in Lowe's:
Domini Social Investments
P.O. Box 9785
Providence, RI 02940

    Bookmark   April 11, 2004 at 2:46PM
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Carrie B(6B/7A)

My understanding - and I think I read it on this forum - is that "nursery grown" and "nursery propagated" are two completely different things. The small packets at Lowes (at least the ones I saw) very clearly state "nursery grown". They did not claim to be "nursery propagated".

As ahughes798 stated, native plants are often dug from the wild, left in the nursery for some amount of time, and then labeled as "nursery grown", which is perfectly legal. It would not, however, be legal to label them as "nursery propagated". Think about it as adoption vs concieving/giving birth. We want (to adopt) plants that were BORN in the nursery, NOT that were raised in the nursery after being born wild.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2004 at 4:36PM
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The definitions are so vague and ambiguous to begin with. I suppose we almost have to come right out and ask for something grown from seed. Frustrating. I just received an e-mail from someone and he/she referred to this unorthodox practice as "Anyway you play with semantics and legalities, these practices are just a form of mining of a natural resource that is irreplaceable." I think this about sums it up. I would encourage anyone in a position to do so to take the time to follow the directive of lrobins mentioned above.

Funny thing... I haven't heard back from "Greg" yet. Interesting.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2004 at 8:11PM
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klavier(Z7 Baltimore)

Does CIP nurseries have a web site? I have noticed that the plants sold at lowes varies yearly as I went back to purchase another Catesby trillium, a goodyera pubescense and a few other plants that they no longer carry.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2004 at 1:14PM
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madspinner(z7 WA skagit)

I too, noticed the "nursery grown" label, which does seem kind of misleading. Most folks (including myself) would think that meant that they were not collected from the wild. I have purchased some of them... but will likely not do so in the future. I mean, it is one thing if someone (or an organization) rescuces a few plants from an impending construction site or where they will be destroyed, but a completely diffrent thing to have plants "stripped" en mass from the land.

Gosh, isn't it nice when plants can be propegated from cuttings? I wish that were true of more of them. Or grew like absolute weeds... like iris and bluebells do here in the NW.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2004 at 6:19PM
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Still no word from "Greg".

    Bookmark   April 19, 2004 at 12:57AM
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Hey Laura, I wouldn't wait up nights for the call-I'm sure he's forgotten you by now! In the end its just about maximizing profit margins.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2004 at 9:46AM
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Well. I am not holding my breath but I did call and left message that I was still waaaaaaiting to hear from him.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2004 at 8:47PM
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ahughes798(z5 IL)

Laura and I went to a Frank's Nursery and Crafts today...and all of their native plants in a bag said "nursery grown and propagated." The bad thing is, in these bags of soil.. I couldn't even feel a rhizome that wasn't dried up!

Check out you area's native plant sales, instead. Better quality..

    Bookmark   April 26, 2004 at 12:00AM
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If you wish to do your part for the conservation of our native plant heritage, the New England Wild Flower Society recommends that you ensure that you only purchase plants that are known to be 'nursery propagated', not just 'nursery grown' to make sure that the plants are not wild collected. With so many native species near extinction, (more than 200 in Massachusetts, alone) buyers beware! Many woodland wildflowers, such as lady-slippers, may take 7 years to raise up to bloom size. Therefore be wise-if a plant seems to be too inexpensive, be careful about the sources! We all love a bargain, but your inexpensive purchase is no bargain if its collection is irrevocably damaging natural habitats! For more information, please view the Society website.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2004 at 5:38PM
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I read carefully the Feb 16 post by Es_Ga as well as the link he provided. I think that the only reason Ted Minton was brought to justice was because he was selling plants out of the country. This necessairly involved Federal Govt.
Selling of wild-collected plants continues at Lowes, Franks and many mail-order sources. In these cases the only regulatory agency is the state dept of agriculture. These are notorious for looking the other way, especially in NC & Tenn. "Nursery Grown" is a fraudulent term, intended to deceive. Consumers must demand "Wild-collected" appear on the packaging when this is indeed the case.
Fred Case is a nationally recognized authority on Trilliums. He spoke in March at the National Arboretum. I asked him at that whether or not there is any genuine, commercial propagation of Trillium, he said no.
Lowes is based in North Carolina, even if the NC government says no law is being broken by selling these plants, we still have a right to know whether or not the plants were wild-collected and clearly labled as such. One way this change could be brought about is if residents in NC start putting pressure on NC dept of agriculture.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2004 at 2:03PM
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Still now word from "Greg" at Lowes.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2004 at 1:19AM
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oogy4plants(6B MD)

I just have a comment on this topic. I purchased some of these last year before I knew about their origin. Well the ground was frozen for a while and of course I didn't get them planted very soon. When the christmas ferns started growing out of the bags, I put them in the ground. I also had some mayapples and something else which looked very dry and dead, maybe a small bit of green. Well I planted them anyway in my wooded area and was very happy to see a mayapple and another that I forget what it was this week. I am happy that at LEAST they survived. I am trying to repopulate my woods with native species. I won't be buying any more from Lowes, though.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2004 at 1:44PM
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Linda Eastman

gosh! how long will it be before those ethically challenged folks selling wild collected plants start quadrupling their prices just to make us think they are nursery propagated?!

    Bookmark   February 20, 2005 at 10:31AM
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Very interesting thread. But who are we kidding? At our rate of population growth, development is the likely fate of most land not publicly owned, and that future is not too far off. If someone will take money to have natives collected off their land, then surely they will not think twice about later bulldozing and developing the land when price is right. In this way, natives collected off any but public lands ARE probably being rescued. Many times, I have hiked private land open to hikers and horses-back riding, been tempted to snatch a seed or rooted side shoot from a beautiful native. In several instances (too many), this land was later bulldozed - and I was sorry I didn't do the small rescue. Although not native, I just rescued some blackberry lily seeds from a cabin/barn ruin about to be bulldozed - surely some gardener 50 or more years ago who planted the lily would want that. They may be unscrupulous, and I personally would not buy the Lowe's bareroots, but the plants are probably being ultimately rescued.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2005 at 9:56AM
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Typically plants that are rescued, are replanted in publicly owned woodlands, prairies, etc. or planted in the garden of the rescuer/volunteer steward.

Unfortunately, woodland plants found for sale at discount prices are often collected in publicly held National Forests (where plants should be safe from destruction due to development - unfortunately not from oportunists)by individuals then resold to wholesalers. This has especially found to be true, and documented, with ginseng roots taken in Apalachia.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2005 at 3:57PM
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Hear is a link to the poaching of wild grown ginseng in our national forests:

    Bookmark   February 21, 2005 at 4:05PM
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ahughes798(z5 IL)

Those things you buy in bags at Lowe's and Wally and Home Depot are all poached plants, from National Forests or State Parks. How else could they sell them so cheap? No one is growing Trillium Grandiflorum from seed on such a large scale.

The Appalachian region of our country is probably the poorest in our nation. Lots of grinding poverty. Collecting wild plants from the national forest and getting paid by the piece can buy you a meagre living there. april

    Bookmark   February 24, 2005 at 10:49PM
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I'm not trying to cause a controversy, but I will venture one more contrasting view, for your kind consideration, with the understanding that I am, like you, educated, informed, and fed/sheltered. While poaching from national forests is reprehensible, the COMPANIES responsible should be prosecuted, and destoying our native plant populations gives us bad feelings in the pits of our well-fed stomachs, is the disappearance of trilliums and ginseng actually more tragic than fellow humans poaching to find a meager living? It's interesting that our sympathies and outrage seem directed at what's happening to the plants. Peace.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2005 at 7:42AM
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silverkat(6b TN)

Hi - Just happened to find this list when I was looking for "Bontanical Wonders" which are the plants being discussed that can be found at Lowe's. I am afraid trying to talk with most of the clerks, managers and directors at these stores is pointless. Bottom line is WHO IS "Botanical
Wonders" ? These are the folks someone needs to locate... I am not having much luck... I found you guys instead. The prolem with this country is there are too many people who DON'T CARE what happens to our wildflowers. I have fought this since I was 9 years old. Trailing Arbutis grew wild in our woods... it was protected and illegal to "pick", How ever I would go to the woods with scissors and bring home a 4-5 inch piece of the vine and being scared to death I would be caught by the flower police. But one day when getting off the bus from school.. I broke into hysterical tears... they were widening the road in front of our house... and what grew in the ditch??? A HUGE bed of arbutis... well I have not seen this flower since we left Syracuse NY nearly 35 years ago.

My point is there are the destroyers... we CAN'T stopthem... boycotting by not purchasing will not stop them. There is always someone who will buy it. but my view is - gather up everything you can afford to buy at the store and plant it... Someone will buy them no matter what - why not you...who cares about them vs those who just want something to plant and won't give a hoot whether it comes up or not and whose dog will probably dig it up anyway. Anyway - in the meantime we need to find out who these wholesalers are that sell this package to Lowes and other stores... Sorry to be so "windy".... but I hope this maybe makes some sense.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2005 at 9:17PM
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ahughes798(z5 IL)

Brenda, last I checked...people weren't in danger of becoming rare or extinct. I don't care about their poverty..that is NO excuse for poaching. It is in-excusable for major corporations to buy that which was poached from state and federal lands, which belong to ALL of us, then turn around and sell it for profit.

There are many, many government programs available to the poor...from pre-natal care all the way up to elder care programs and hospice. Including free college tuition, work training, food, medical care, etc.

I have been really poor...I have lived on Ramen Noodles and tortillas and potatoes for months at a time, yet I never felt the need to steal. Heck, I was unemployed and uninsured when I was diagnosed with MS..and I didn't go hold up the corner store to pay for my tests and treatment. I used every government/private program I could use to do that which needed to be done..after all, I had already paid for it many times over.

What these folks are doing is stealing, and what they're stealing is our natural heritage. And they're stealing it from each and every one of us, and our children and grand-children.

People who go on "plant rescues" with reputable organisations don't turn around and sell the dang things to the highest bidder.

Silverkat...If you can't beat 'em, join 'em? I'd rather not join 'em. And yes, boycotts do work. I have lots and lots of ethically collected or nursery grown and propagated native plants. I don't need Lowe's. The ethically collected plants and seeds are out there, all that's required is a little research. VERY little..people who grow natives are usually happy to admit their stock is on the up and up. If enough people cared enough not to buy those little baggies of dessicated native plants..well, there'd be no financial incentive to carry them in the store. Which would go a long way towards solving the problem, wouldn't it? april

    Bookmark   April 11, 2005 at 10:17PM
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I bought some Botanical Wonders plants yesterday at Lowes. I was going on the assumption that they were on sale for $2.50 - I thought Lowes was trying to reduce the plant inventory before winter. Anyway, I did a little checking - I don't want wild harvested plants.

I'm not sure what to believe. The package says 'nursery propagated', and contrary to some other posts I've seen, there is a web site:


The site states that they've been in business for 40 years, using 'minimalistic' propagation techniques allowing for cheap resale.

I don't know what to believe. They wrote up quite a bit on how they propagate the plants, and that only a limited amount of plants are available each year from their 617 acre nursery.

Any comments?


    Bookmark   October 13, 2012 at 11:17AM
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jimbobfeeny(5a IN)

Nobody is going to spend years raising a trillium from seed (or even offsets) just to sell it bareroot for $2.50. Sounds way too good to be true.

    Bookmark   October 15, 2012 at 7:39AM
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I think you're right. I thought I was getting an end of the year sale. No more of those for me. If I'm ever in Dobson, NC, I'll need to try to find the place and see what really goes on.


    Bookmark   October 16, 2012 at 9:16PM
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jimbobfeeny(5a IN)

Then again, they do say they use some tissue culture - Much less expensive for large quantities than raising from seed. Also, many woodland plants can be harvested on a 3-year schedule - If you've got 3 beds for a single species, you can harvest a bed and replace it with young seedlings or offshoots, and move on to the next bed the following year.

This company warrants further investigation - I bought a pack the other day just to see what they look like - Admittedly, the trilliums are young roots that probably wouldn't bloom for another 2 or 3 years. Could be genuine, who knows these days!

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 7:51AM
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