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Saturday, May 10, 2014

New Plants and a Sweet Potato Vine Rumble

With two auction rings and literal hundreds of plants, the auction can be a mind-numbing experience.  So this year I made a plan.

I went armed with a list of the plants I wanted and scoped out the two building to see what was available this spring.  You never really know what will show up.  For example, last year there were a lot of old-fashioned lilacs.  This year NONE.  No hen-and-chicks or asparagus ferns this year either.

Anyway, here is my haul!

These hibiscuses are request from my Mom.  At the big box stores they are running $20 or more.  At the auction… $12. 

Moss rose.  These will be hanging baskets.

Ice plants.  They are going out on the deck (aka “The Oven”).

These various succulents will be going both in planters and in the ground.

Love this bright yellow one.  That will definitely be in the bird garden.

Impulse buy!  These little Jade plants were only .75c each.  They will be potted specimens in our soon-to-be made cactus garden.

Sweet potato vines.  Love the variety!  These plants led to a bit of a scene at the auction…

When each pallet of plants makes it to the bidding area, they are bid out by type.  In this case, there were sweet potato vines and coleus on the pallet.  Bidding started with the vines and I won the bid.  I wanted 3 flats at the price.  Therefore I have first choice of what is there.  The remaining are rebid, with the second and on winners getting what is left.

I only managed to get 1 of my 3 flats off the pallet before they moved it to the back.  No problem, I just went on back.

As did the second winner (a couple who took the rest of the flats on the pallet).

As I pulled my two remaining flats towards me, the man picked up one of the sweet potato vine flats… and there was on other flat of the vines.  The woman looked at me and said, “I bought 30 vines.”

I’m thinking “So what?” but I said, “That’s nice”.

She replies, “So put down one of those flats!”

“Excuse me?”

She said, “One of those is mine!  Put it down!”

Keeping my cool, I politely told her, “Ma’am, I won first bid… took 3 flats.  So the first 3 flats off this pallet are mine.  I got one before the pallet was brought back here, I’m getting my other two.”  At this the Amish boy who was handling the pallet was nodding vigorously.

Her reply?  “Put it down!” as she puffed herself up.

I told her, “No.  If you have a problem as second winning bid, you need to go up to the auctioneer and get it straightened out.”

She said, “YOU need to go to the auctioneer!  Put that down!”

“No.”  And I walked off with my two flats. 

Even before I took a step away from the pallet she started cussing me… and I mean really cussing me.  The poor Amish boy (who was around 10 years old) was standing there with his jaw dropped.  I mouthed “Sorry” to him as I went by and he nodded at me.

I was kind of careful as I went back to our seats as I half expected her to try to grab one from me.  She didn’t but she did complain to the auctioneer.  He came over and talked to us, checked the records, and told her those were my vines.

Wow!  After that, I made sure I got all my stuff OFF the cart before it rolled!

One of these planters is mine, and the other was a gift for a friend who has done us a great favor.

My surprise of the day was the opportunity to get some herbs for a crazy good price.  The bitter cold spell we had did bad things to my herb bed.

Sweet basil.  Not nearly enough but a good start!


Pineapple sage.  A new one for me.

Regular sage.

Cilantro.  I can’t grow this stuff for anything!  So we ate it!


I also got 3 lavender plants, which I've never tried to grow.  This will be interesting!

Pretty good haul, isn’t it?  Now it’s time to get them in the ground!

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