Bare-root Natives

Every winter the East Multnomah Soil & Water Conservation District (EMSWCD) of Portland has an online native plant sale. The plants are bare-root and fairly small, about 1-2 years old, but extremely well priced. The plants are sourced from local Willamette Valley nurseries. They can, and should be, planted straight away into the ground.  It’s one way I’ve been able to increase my plantings without breaking my plant piggy bank. I’ve had good luck with what I planted last year. Only one plant died which was my own fault. I trounced on it and broke it down.

In mid-January the sale is open for business. The selections get picked over quickly. Pick up is mid-February and today was the day to pick up purchases.  The venue was held in the EMSWCD parking lot on N. Williams Avenue. There was no waiting when we got there and checked in at a table alphabetically by last name. The order was located and given to a runner who retrieved the order and handed it over at another booth. The order had already been checked and double checked. Pretty efficient system.

A friend and I went over together to pick up our plants, and then came back to Vancouver for a chinwag  about plants and life over coffee.

Bare root natives

This is what the plants look like. A few have small buds on them.  The two plugs to bottom left are baby Madrone trees.

Here is a list of the bare roots plants I purchased.

Bare root list

I was able to plant the ten Oceanspray and five Golden Current plants when I got home. The rest I’ve heeled into a bucket of dirt (not potting soil), wrapped with plastic. I’ll plant those tomorrow.

If you’d like to get on the notification list for the annual sale click here and scroll down to the bottom and click on “join our email list.”




2 thoughts on “Bare-root Natives

    1. Thank you, I have great hopes for them. I was planning to get the rest planted today but the weather has become bone-chilling cold and there are some snow flurries. I think I’ll have to wait to plant them now but at least I’ve got them heeled into soil, in a protected spot.


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