Doing the Sale

What's New?

Pearls of Wisdom

Did you know that 30th anniversaries are ­considered the “pearl” anniversary? To mark the 30th annual Friends School Plant Sale, we’re offering at least 30 plants with pearl names. For some, it’s in the common name—like pearly everlasting (N155) or our cover plant, string of pearls (M074)—but more often it’s part of the variety name. We’ve created a ­scavenger hunt activity incorporating these pearl plants, and 30th anniversary clothing you can order.

New Plants

This year, there are over 400 new plants:

  • 94 annuals, including six coleus, eight million bells, 13 dahlias, and the return of tuberous begonias
  • 11 miniatures and succulents
  • 140 perennials, including 14 daylilies, 11 hostas, 34 lilies, 23 peonies, and 12 irises
  • 52 shrubs or trees, including seven roses and 16 funky false cypress in a range of shapes, heights, and foliage colors
  • 29 unusual and rare plants, including hardy hybrid lady’s slippers and our first look at ­mangaves, a cross between Agave and Manfreda
  • 48 vegetables (seven peppers, 17 ­tomatoes). We’re excited to offer several vegetable ­varieties from seed grown by the Experimental Farm Network, a grassroots, collaborative plant-breeding and agricultural research ­network focused on bioregional adaptation and mitigating climate change.
  • The listing also has 20 plants we last offered at least 10 years ago, so they may be new to you.

Room Layout

You’ll find the plant sections in the same places they were last year, except Miniatures and Succulents has moved to the back corner just past the Annuals. Also, please note that we’ve moved the checkout entrance, so shoppers now approach the checkout area from the east wall near the ­restrooms, rather than from the center aisle (see the map). There will be signs to direct you.

Garden Fair and Exhibitors

Along with our many outdoor exhibitors, you’ll also find a new exhibitor indoors—Orchids Limited, located near the Info Desk. They’ll be selling nonhardy orchids from around the world. We’re also glad to have the Minnesota Water Garden Society back for its third year, located next to the curbside plant pickup area (see their full plant listing).

Accessibility at the Sale

For people with handicapped parking hangtags, there is marked parking on the streets around the east end of the Grandstand as in the past. New this year: people with hangtags can also park north of the Grandstand (in the area where concerts are held during the State Fair). Please call us at 651-621-8930 or email info@Friends for directions to this parking or with any questions about accessibility.