A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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“My birthstone is a coffee bean” (3/23)
“Coffee helps me maintain my ‘never killed anyone streak‘“ (3/23)
“If it weren’t for the coffee, I’d have no identifiable personality whatsoever” (3/23)
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Entry from May 02, 2015
“Dig a five-dollar hole for a fifty-cent plant” (gardening adage)

A gardening adage is that it’s better to dig a five-dollar hole for a fifty-cent plant than to big a fifty-cent hole for a five-dollar plant. A good plant won’t grow well in bad soil, but a poor plant will grow in proper soil.

The cent and dollar amounts vary. “"You will get better results from putting a 10 cent plant into a dollar hole than from putting a dollar plant into a 10 cent hole” was cited in 1927. “The old saying about a twenty-five cent plant in a five dollar hole is as good as it ever was” was cited in 1928. It’s not known who coined the adage, although California botanist Kate Sessions (1857-1940) was credited upon her death for the saying “a 25-cent plant in a dollar hole.”


28 October 1927, Denton (TX) Record-Chronicle, “Human Interest Editorials: Her Flowers No Good” by Wickes Wamboldt, pg. 10, col. 2:
“You will get better results from putting a 10 cent plant into a dollar hole than from putting a dollar plant into a 10 cent hole.”
(An exhibitor.—ed.)

6 November 1927, Charlotte (NC) Observer, “Her Flowers No Good” by Wickes Wamboldt, pg. 8, col. 5:
“You will get better results from putting a 10 cent plant into a dollar hole than from putting a dollar plant into a 10 cent hole.”
(An exhibitor.—ed.)

19 August 1928, Tampa (FL) Sunday Tribune, “The Planting of Palms” by Prentiss French, pt. 4, pg. 7, col. 6:
The preparation may easily cost more than the plant, but the old saying about a twenty-five cent plant in a five dollar hole is as good as it ever was.

Google Books
Delphinium, the Book of the American Delphinium Society
1936
Pg. 49:
In sowing seed I have remembered the old saying that “it is better to plant a ten-cent plant in a dollar hole than a dollar plant in a ten-cent hole,” so I make a special effort to have the seedbed as well prepared as I know how.

10 September 1939, The Times-Picayune (New Orleans, LA), sec. 2, pg. 5, col. 1:
Dime Plants Needs Dollar Holes
There is an old gardening saying that “better a 10-cent plant in a dollar hole than a dollar plant in a 10-cent hole.”

Google Books
Sunset
1940
Pg. 24:
“A 25-cent plant in a dollar hole,” was one of her (Kate O. Sessions—ed.) sayings. Miss Session’s own garden was really more of a botanic collection, an example of the ideal planting for a semi-arid region.

Google Books
Daylilies and How to Grow Them
By Ben Arthur Davis
Atlanta, GA: Tupper & Love
1954
Pg. 48:
The time-worn advice about digging a five-dollar hole for a fifty-cent plant holds good with daylilies as well as with other horticultural items.

Google Books
Roses
By Roy Elmer Shepherd
New York, NY: Rinehart & Company, Inc.
1955
Pg. 22:
The time-worn saying that “it is better to place a ten cent plant in a dollar hole than a dollar plant in a ten cent hole” is still good advice, as a rose, properly planted, will more than justify the additional time and effort required.

Google Books
Garden Smarts:
A Bounty of Tips from America’s Best Gardeners

By Shelley Goldbloom
Chester, CT: Globe Pequot Press
1991
Pg 65:
Instead, if a fifty-cent plant goes in a five-dollar hole, we’ll have a five-dollar plant shortly. “A ‘five-dollar hole’ means the total planting environment,” Ralph elaborates.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityBuildings/Housing/Parks • Saturday, May 02, 2015 • Permalink