ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota officials advise consumers to check for health and hardiness when buying trees, shrubs and other landscaping plants.

The state Agriculture Department says nursery inspectors already have found dead and damaged packaged plants in some Minnesota stores. They’ve also found stores selling plants in poor condition.

And they’ve found stores carrying plants labeled as hardy for Minnesota that probably can’t really survive cold winters. Plants not meant for Minnesota’s climate are unlikely to thrive. Fruit trees that aren’t hardy may live but likely won’t produce fruit.

Plants packed in plastic bags should be kept dormant until planting. But retailers often display dormant packaged plants inside the store where temperatures encourage growth. Once that growth begins, the plant isn’t likely to thrive and retailers are required to remove them from sale.

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  1. MAJ says:

    Support our Minnesota Nurseries. Products sold at Big Box stores are not always Minnesota Grown. If buying bedding plants from Wal-Mart, etc. check the tag to make sure they are from our area. I personally do not shop for plants at Big Box stores.