On my recent visit to see the purple martins ( http://tinaramsey.blogspot.com/2008/03/quite-pair.html#links) on the south side of town, I met a friend at the local Kmart. Seizing the opportunity to check out Kmart's new stock of plants, I took a look around to see if I could find something good.
And just look at what I found! Can anyone see what I see? This Japanese maple was labeled Japanese Red Maple. Now I ask you, looking at the tree this label is attached to, can anyone see a Japanese Red Maple other than in the label picture? I hope you all answered no. These trees actually appear to be the cultivar 'Sangu Kaku', aka Coral Bark Japanese Maple.
I have posted about this tree before because it is my favorite cultivar of this wonderful little tree. These trees at Kmart were 3-4' tall and very healthy, as you can see. Normally Japanese Red Maples will sell for $40-$80 for a tree of this size. When you add in the fact this is a special cultivar and not the ordinary run of the mill red Japanese maple (no problem with this as I grow quite a few unnamed varieties), you can see these trees priced at a mere $24.99 were a steal.
I actually emailed the Green Valley Growers in Texas about the mistake just to let them know. I haven't heard back from them but I hope they pay closer attention in the future for their benefit. These trees should've been priced in the $60-$90 price frame.
in the garden....not relying on labels.