Have you ever been tempted by those catalogs printed on flimsy, glossy stock and offering standard and not-so-standard plant material on the cheap? We have been working on a hedgerow of mixed plantings out by the entry fence, so what the heck…it was worth a try. Six bare root Hibiscus syriacus for $3.95 plus shipping arrived in ’05. Three survive, and two bloomed for the first time in mid-September. They both produced these double, pinkish-mauvish blossoms (no promises were made about what to expect in that department). The survival rate might have something to do with being stuck out there beyond where anything gets much attention. Anyway, here’s my take on the cheap stuff. The more ordinary the plant, the better its chances (a plain old barberry is going great guns, while paw paws faded away immediately). Given the death rate, shipping costs, etc., it is probably economically more feasible to just hop on down to the nearest nursery or big box store. That is, unless a mission of mercy has some appeal. R has been babying a Ginko biloba for several years, and after the initial dieback, it is almost 10″ tall.