Whether to buy plants from home depot or not is a familiar confusion I see among people. Of course, you can buy plants from home depot, but the question is, should you? I won’t buy plants from home depot unless that’s the last option, and I’ll explain why.
Home Depot doesn’t have the most knowledgeable staff, so many plants are mislabeled, not taken care of, placed in the wrong environment, and they don’t have rare varieties. Many people are happy with their Home Depot plants, but most find it problematic as their plants are not in good shape.
In this article, I will share my experiences and explain why you should not buy plants from home depot.
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Are home depot plants good?
Home Depots with a knowledgable staff that knows about the different plants and the right ways of care have good and healthy plants.
But that is a rare scenario!
Since I have been into houseplants and indoor gardening for years, I recognize many plants and know when they are mislabelled.
I have spotted mislabelled plants at home depot.
And mislabelled plants will not receive the proper care that they should.
This is one of the many reasons home depot plants are not good.
If you want to find a good plant in home depot, you must hunt for it.
Also read: Buying Plants From Home Depot Vs Nursery
5 reasons why not to buy plants from home depot
These are the 5 reasons I don’t buy plants from home depot.
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1. Home depot doesn’t hire knowledgeable staff
Home Depot used to hire knowledgeable staff at one time, but that’s not the case anymore.
They mostly hire local people who might not know much about plants and how to care for them.
They might be taking care of the plants on a superficial level.
Then, the staff keeps leaving, so you might not find the same staff if you visit the second time and want to consult them for anything.
This is one of the major reasons why the plants you see there are often not in their best conditions.
If you need help or advice with any plants you want to buy, you might not get that from these employees.
Sometimes, they might not be able to help you with where to find a certain plant or the section you need to search to find them.
All these can become extremely inconvenient for plant shoppers like you and me.
2. Home depot doesn’t provide the best care to their plants
It is obvious that when you don’t have knowledgeable staff, you won’t be able to provide the best care to the plants.
That’s what happens at home depot!
I’ve seen them placing full-shade plants under direct sunlight.
Since the staff doesn’t know much about the plants, they don’t always know which plant requires what kind of care.
So, the plants receive wrong conditions or don’t get enough water or feeding, and due to all these things, they become unhealthy and susceptible to pests and diseases.
3. Mislabelled plants
You can spot such mistakes when you have been into indoor gardening for a while.
I’ve never seen nurseries making these mistakes where they have mislabelled their plants, but in home depot, I have noticed this issue.
It is not only me who is saying this!
Many indoor gardeners have reported this issue on the internet.
A few people from my circle have also complained about this.
If you are a beginner, you might take home a mislabelled plant and care for it completely differently than it needs.
You will soon lose the plant due to this.
4. Lack of rare plants
Home depot only orders plants in lots, and their goal is to sell those off.
So, they always try to bring the most popular plants that are in demand so they can get sold.
I have never encountered a rare or native plant species at home depot, and you, too, might not.
I am not sure if they get you plants if you order, but I can almost always find these rare plants in nurseries, so I get them there.
5. They use harmful pesticides on their plants
There are many harmful pesticides out there on the market.
That is why, in all my articles, I try to make you aware of this fact and ask you to choose and use pesticides on your plants carefully.
I think it should be your last option while dealing with pests.
If nothing else works, then only opt for pesticides.
But, it has been noticed that many big box stores, including Home Depot, use pesticides that kill the pests but threaten good insects like butterflies and bees.
Can I still buy plants from Home depot?
If you are on a budget or don’t have a plant nursery near you, I understand you might have these big box stores as your only option.
Don’t worry. Many people buy their plants from Home Depot, and you too can.
But, you need to be more vigilant so you don’t end up with an unhealthy plant.
Here are some ways you can find good plants at Home depot.
1. Get the plants as soon as they arrive
This is one of the best ways of getting plants from Home depot.
The plants are in their best condition when they first arrive.
Home depot usually orders their plants in bulk from a nursery, and if you can keep a check or ask the people, you’ll know their arrival date.
It is best to get the plant this time as they will not have received any wrong care at the store.
You can save yourself the trouble of looking around and choosing a healthy plant which is the next best way to get plants from Home depot.
2. Don’t pick the first plant you see
If you are plant shopping on a usual day and not when they have first arrived at the store, you will need to put in some hard work.
Don’t get the first plant you see.
Try to find plants that look not only good from far but also when you inspect them.
- Check the leaves and make sure the plant has young leaves. This indicates that the plant is healthy and producing new ones.
- It might not be something to worry about if the leaves have a white haze. This can be because of pests or hard water spots. You can still get this plant and clean the leaves after bringing it home.
- Inspect the roots. Don’t go about looking at the roots of all the plants. Find one that looks healthy and gently take it out of its pot to check the roots. Congratulations on finding a healthy plant if the roots appear white and crispy.
3. Don’t pick a plant from the wrong section
If you want plants for your garden, get them from the outdoor section but if you want plants for your house, get them from the houseplant section.
You might find a plant outside that can be a houseplant, but grabbing it from there and placing it inside the house might not be the right decision.
A plant that has been living outside might not enjoy the indoor environment.
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Best plants to buy from home depot
If you have decided to buy plants from home depot, I will give you some suggestions.
I spoke to some houseplant enthusiasts who have bought a lot of plants from Home Depot, and these are some plants that have not gone wrong for them.
- Fiddle leaf fig: These are known for their large foliage and are a favorite among many.
- Snake plant: A popular hardy plant that can survive different conditions.
- Peace lily: An exotic tropical species that has gained much popularity due to its dark green leaves and unique white flowers.
- Echeveria: A small succulent, ideal if you are looking for a compact plant that doesn’t require too much care.
- ZZ plant: A hardy plant that can survive different lighting conditions.
Although many people buy plants from big box stores like Home Depot, I will never go with them because of the unpredictability. I might or might not get good plants there, I might or might not get the right support, and I might end up with a loss.
Since I have gone through these, I prefer getting my plants from local nurseries. But I understand that it might seem costly if you are a college student or a beginner. Although there are more reasons to not buy from home depot than to buy, you can try your luck.
If you are getting plants from Home Depot, don’t pick any and every plant you see. Inspect the plants, look around for the best you can find, and then get one. Don’t shop from the wrong section as a plant living outdoors might not do well when you bring it indoors.
Once you have the budget, I suggest trying out local nurseries as you will get much healthier plants and better support there.
Sources: Effects of Plant Growth Retardants and Pot Sizes on Plants, Pot size matters.
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