How to pick plants and trees at a nursery When you are buying annuals it is best to buy them when they are not blooming and colorful. That way they can bloom and be colorful in your yard. Plants with lot's of tight buds that haven't opened are the best ones to buy. You also want to carefully check the foliage. You don't want any bugs, holes in the leaves, or shiny substances on the foliage. If you pop the plant out of the container the roots should be white and there should be a lot of roots. If the roots are brown or blackened you want to avoid buying them. Also make sure you look for the markers in the plants. Those tags give you a lot of valuable information. If you are going to buy tomatoes and have success you have to start by buying a healthy transplant from the nursery. First you want a very sturdy stem. If it is purple it may have a phosphorus deficiency. You also want to look for the bugs and holes in the leaves on the plants. Tomato plants should also have lot's of roots and they should also be white. The label on tomato plants are important because there are a lot of different varieties of tomatoes. The label will give you a lot of information about the variety of tomato and how to take care of it. It will also let you know whether the plant has any disease resistance in it. Buying ornamental trees is a long term investment. They can out live you. You want a tree that is balanced. Many ornamental trees are grafted into a root stock. The bud union should be above ground so that you can see it. The last thing you want is a nice straight stem. With a little bit of inspection you can make a good investment and your plants will be more successful.