I found this nursery because they had a particular plant I was interested in. Of course, you can't just buy one plant...LOL...so I bought a couple others. The prices were very fair. I got many emails updating me with the status of the order and, what really blew me away, was that I got a personal phone call from a representative saying my order had shipped. That was an excellent personal touch. The plants arrived in good shape and I'm excited to get them planted and have them for years in my garden :)
bradman79 Grovetown, GA (Zone 8a) (5 reviews) May 5, 2014
I placed a couple of separate orders with Shooting Star this past Spring. They responded quickly to my emails; all of the plants were shipped in a timely manner and arrived healthy- including the dormant ones. I will likely use them in the future.
Have made several purchases. One very large. Picked material up at nursery each time. Great variety of hard to find plants. Went out of their way to provide plants for a mid-winter pick up. Pleasure doing business!
Lumberjill Arlington, VA (2 reviews) June 21, 2013
After talking to Shooting Star, I decided to drive there to get larger plants than shipping would economically allow. I was met promptly after getting out of my car. We talked about my "wish" list, and we went in search of the items. Some of them were a bit hard to find, but I honestly enjoyed meandering and searching. I gave me the chance to see what else I might need! With their great breadth of stock in various stages from seed to maturity, I can understand why it's hard to know where everything is at each stage of development.
In the end, I left with all I wanted plus a couple of complimentary herb plants and a bag of basil "trimmings" that made fantastic pesto. Yes, I will do business with Shooting Star in the future.
shimer Marietta, GA (Zone 7b) (6 reviews) May 24, 2013
Posted on September 14, 2012, updated May 24, 2013
I learned of an interesting plant in mid summer, found it offered by Shooting Star and e-mailed them to see if it could thrive in my climate (zone 7), it is rated as a tropical. Had very informative e-mail correspondence about the likelihood it could do alright here and if it dies back due to freezes, at least it propagates well by seed. Now that our weather has cooled down, I contacted them again and ordered 2 plants. They were very well packed and healthy. Am headed out to plant them asap, as the soil in the pots is quite moist. On May 24th, 2013, shimer added the following:
I ordered new plants this spring, as those flowering in my garden last fall had not survived (I knew they probably wouldn't). I had neglected to collect the seed pods, which were numerous on the plants that I received in Sept.
My new plants arrived a couple days ago, extremely moist and well packed entirely in paper pack (promptly put in with recyclables). I appreciate the earth-friendly packaging.
As the plants have yet to flower and were grown from seed, it will be a pleasant to surprise to see if I have both blue and white flowers: I am sure I will be happy with any flowers at all from this amazing little plant.
I will definitely do business with Shooting Star again when I need more plants for my garden.
lissyrae Old Hickory, TN (1 review) September 26, 2012
Posted on December 20, 2007, updated September 26, 2012
This summer I ordered 2 shrub and several perennials. The order came incredibly fast, and I was very pleased with the packaging. None of the plants were broken or crushed, despite the delivery person just basically throwing in the boxes in the general direction of my porch. The only problem was that they had shipped me the straight species Itea shrub, and not the cultivar I had ordered. However, they promptly shipped me the correct shrubs. The plants were a great value for what I paid. Will order again!On September 26th, 2012, lissyrae added the following:
Just received another order from this nursery. Cannot say enough good things about them! The plants (6 ferns and 4 prarie dropseed grass) are a very nice size and all look great. The packing was amazing. Very prompt delivery, with email communication the whole way. Will definitely be back!
janerx Haubstadt, IN (Zone 6b) (6 reviews) May 7, 2012
very nicely packed, all plants arrived in very good condition. Nice selection, will order from them again.
I ordered 4 native plants from this company. They were shipped promptly and arrived when the company said they would. The plants were healthy and attractive. I received several emails from the company on the status of my order, when they were shipped and when to expect delivery. I am very pleased with the plants and service of this company and highly recommend them.
I ordered on Wednesday and received the plants on Friday! That's great service. And the plants appeared to be in good condition. I planted them late Friday afternoon. I will certainly order from this company again.
A great little nursery. I emailed a question and received a prompt response. My order was packed well. The shredded newspaper is a little troublesome, but if it means I get plants in good shape then I can not complain.
agroff Camp Hill, PA (6 reviews) September 8, 2011
Posted on August 28, 2010, updated September 8, 2011
My experience was very positive. Communication has been great, the shipping was fast, and the plants arrived in excellent condition. I see the negative rating below and yes the plants are shipped packed with fine paper, but it is the middle of summer and that paper kept the moisture in and allowed my shipment of plants to stay secure and intact. It's similar to the shipping material used by other mail order nurseries that I have ordered from and seems to work very well. I would recommend this nursery and will order from again. Thanks!On September 8th, 2011, agroff added the following:
Ordered additional plants in August 2011 and all arrived in nice condition and are doing great in my garden. I ordered Tilia, Morus, Cocculus, and Neviusia--the Morus and Neviusia have already put on some new growth. I recommend this seller and will order from again.
Heres is the skinny people. They ship fast. That is really fast. I may be close to their nursery but still I received my plants within a week. For 3 purchases. I have 9 trees and 2 vines(pasiflora) and all are not only happy, but growing. The Kentucky coffees have grown 6 plus inches of good growth since they have been in the ground, which has been less than 4 months!!!!!!!!!!!Every single plant came out of the box in perfect condition and packed with love. All plants are thriving. Seriously. Good prices, GREAT stock is key. I'm very happy with my experience
KCClark Hilliard, OH (Zone 6a) (1 review) August 15, 2011
Placed a decent size order with them in April 2009, including plants, bush and tree. Two years later, all of them are doing great.
Recently bought a couple more trees and some plants. They showed up quickly and in good shape.
I'm a happy Shooting Star customer.
Terry Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) (122 reviews) July 5, 2011
I ordered several marginal and pond plants from Shooting Star. The plants were well-packed and good size topgrowth and roots. The communication was excellent and the plants arrived exactly when I was told they would - thank you!
I received my first order a few weeks ago and have mixed feelings. The selection of plants is great, the communication and shipping time exceptional. But, I was disappointed when I opened the box. I really dislike the way the plants are packed --the shredded paper gets everywhere and is hard to disentangle from some of the plants, especially given that they are naturally small and not that strong. I bent two stems that way. The plants are living, but I won't say thriving, at least not yet. In comparison to other plants I've ordered this year they don't seem as strong and healthy. But, they are mostly different types than I've ordered elsewhere so that may be the reason. I'm keeping an open mind and waiting to see how they do over time. I might order again to get specific plants but will hesitate for sure, purely because of the horrible shredded paper packing.
I was really impressed at the super fast service and great communication.The plants arrived in great shape. and I was very pleased .So pleased that I made another order....when I saw how nice the first plants were.They are a great source for asclepias and other butterfly plants for my garden that I cant find locally for sale.. I recommend them highly.
Mima56 Thayer, MO (Zone 6a) (10 reviews) May 12, 2011
I ordered 3 Asclepias Incarnata from Shooting Star Nursery, telling them the period of time I wanted my plants shipped. I immediately received the nicest email giving me my choice of two dates. Later, I received another email informing me that my plants had shipped. They were so well packed and they were robust, healthy, and happy! After a couple of days on a porch to readjust to the light, they were transplanted to their nursery bed. Now, two weeks later, they are doing well. All in all, this was an excellent ordering experience!
I had to leave a comment to indicate how pleased I was with Shooting Star. I ordered a ladyslipper orchid for an early mother's day present. Since this was an in vitro propagation, I wasnt sure what to do. Marianne was great with advice. But what really impressed me, and what comes across even in reading their responses to the (very few) negative feedbacks here, is (for want of better terms) the complete lack of defensiveness and ego, coupled with an abundance of real friendliness and human interest. It can be seen even in plant selection -- take Quercus marilandica, the blackjack oak. There can't be a ton of people out there interested in this quirky small native oak, but there it is on their list, and will soon be planted in my garden, where I will look at it and remember the terrific nursery that made it possible. Really, this is one of the best.
braun06 Peoria Heights, IL (Zone 5b) (10 reviews) November 2, 2010
I ordered a Prairiedock plant. The item never arrived due to problems with UPS or theft, not sure which but Shooting Star has kept in contact with me and given quick responses with information whenever I needed it. The experience makes me nervous of having packages delivered to my door. Having said this though, given the attitude of this nursery, I am content with the business and would recommend ordering from that point of view to anyone. They were as equally dissapointed as I was, which is good to see a business that takes pride in what they do.
Posted on August 27, 2010, updated October 9, 2010
I ordered one plant which arrived packed in a box completely stuffed with *very* finely shredded paper (a real mess to clean up and incidentally not recyclable). The upper part of the plant was wrapped in brown paper, which in turn was also stuffed with the shredded paper. The plant (in a 6" pot with minimal soil) had been severely cut back (not bad by itself), but there was well over a foot of tangled roots growing through all the holes in the bottom of the pot. I had to cut the pot into numerous pieces in order to extract the plant. It remains to be seen whether the plant will survive. I will revisit this review in the spring and consider a change in my rating.On October 9th, 2010, enviroplanter changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
It looks as if the plant will survive, so I'll upgrade the rating to neutral.
TexasTam Plano, TX (Zone 8a) (16 reviews) September 23, 2010
My first experience with this company was positive. Plants were certainly reasonably priced ($5 per coneflower) and good sized - one is even blooming. Communication upon ordering was frequent and much appreciated. I threw the shredded newspaper used for packing into my compost pile, so this wasn't a problem for me.
My only (small) gripe was that the ladyslippers are very small, even for bareroots, so I'm a little concerned about putting them in the ground. The website had stated that ladyslippers wouldn't ship until spring, so that's what I was expecting. I do prefer to plant them in the fall, but not at this small size. They are staying in the fridge until I decide what to do. I appreciate not having to pay $40 for bareroot ladyslippers like other sites offer, but I also don't want these new ones to perish. I may plant them in containers and allow them to develop a bit further before planting in November.
lissabird San Francisco , CA (Zone 10b) (6 reviews) August 8, 2010
We were trying a more "native" garden and looking for plants that would naturally occur on long island - we ordered geraniums, butterfly peas, nicotiana and flax. They arrived in variety of pot sizes in a standard box with shredded newspaper surrounding.
I was surprised at how low-key the packing was compared to several other mail order nurseries (Annie's, Lazy S, Park's) that either ship wet with the soil carefully protected or in specially made containers. The plants from Shooting Star arrived bone dry but perked up after a weekend out of the box. On the whole we were pleased in the end.
PlantMomto3 Nevada, MO (Zone 6a) (24 reviews) June 2, 2010
Recently ordered milkweed plants and a tree. Received timely communication regarding the status of my order. My order was held a very short time in order that the milkweed could have additional time to root. I was expecting small plants. However, I received very nice-sized plants that were well-rooted. The tree was small, but that was expected. I was very pleased with my order.
Ordered a number of plants. All arrived in excellent condition and are doing well.
cardenorr Chagrin Falls, OH (1 review) May 8, 2010
Recently received my first order. I was very pleased with the size and overall condition of the plants. I was able to find a couple plants that I had difficulty locating elsewhere. Customer service maintained close communications during the ordering and shipping process. I will definitely go here first when I am ordering on-line again.
I was looking for a special fern for my husband for a gift. Marianne was very helpful and showed me around, asking me questions to help us decide on just the right one. The fern is doing great! A lovely place with very nice staff.
Karyl7b Dawsonville, GA (Zone 7b) (8 reviews) July 12, 2009
I placed an order in summer. Plants were well packed, arrived in fine shape and were shipped quickly. They transplanted very well in good soil with plenty of water and are thriving. Shooting Star's customer service was great as well when I had questions. All in all I am quite happy and will buy from Shooting Star again. They carry some nice natives which can be difficult to find.On September 9th, 2009, Karyl7b added the following:
Update: All of the original plants I ordered from Shooting Star continue to do well. A second order recently arrived and I am equally as pleased. The plants are in great shape with healthy roots and have transplanted with no trouble. They were watered daily at first, which is expected with any plant, and responded well. I will continue to order from Shooting Star.
My first experience with this company has been very positive. I ordered wisteria, elderberry and cranberry plants. The staff was helpful and the plants were healthy, shipped in a timely manner and received in good condition
I've just received my second order from this company. They have a very large selection of native plants which are hard to find anywhere else. Trees and shrubs are generally rather small, which I consider to be positive rather than negative; small ones seem to settle in better and do just as well in the long run. Everything I have received from them has been in excellent condition and packed well. One tree in the first order had its terminal bud broken off, but the owner assured me that it would recover without any problems, and it did. I'm very satisfied -- this will be where I go first for native plants.
Finally found the trees and herbs I had been looking for at Shooting Star!! I enjoyed touring their landscaping ideas as well as looking at the plants for sale. A nice little outting tucked away in Scott County.
I drove an hour and half to get to the nursery after reading some of the reviews posted here. I did my homework by visiting the web site and making a list of potential plants that I wanted to purchase. When I got to the nursery, I was a little overwhelmed by what I perceived to be a huge lack of organization. When I arrived, no one met me or asked if I needed help to find anything. I had to go ask around and find someone to help me locate specific items on my list. There were no signs for designated areas or a site map to tell me what was what, and I found myself aimlessly wondering the site. I was frustrated.
Once I found someone (Tina) to help me, I asked for a price list because none of the plants were price labeled. She explained that the prices on the print-out were the shipping prices which were normally for tiny seeling trees. To get the "real" price of a larger tree, one had to add about 5 dollars for every six or seven inches of tree height. So basically I had to guess for pricing. I was further frustrated.
This was NOT the excellent service that I had read about and driven so far to receive. Basically I got the impression that I was being a burden to the busy nursery staff.
That aside, the plants looked healthy and I was bound and determined to buy a few things after driving the distance. So I loaded up my little wagon and found the check-out building (although I really had no idea what my plants were going to cost me). Tina checked me out by looking at each plant and saying, "oh this a good one, that's a tall one, and you picked out some strong plants!" Then she told me the price which I thought was a little high (compared to Lowes or Home depot), but not outrageous.
The one positive about my experience was that they had plants that I haven't been able to find at some of the commercial stores. That being said, I will probably not return to Shooting Star. Company representative comment on May 6, 2009: On May 6, 2009 2:05 PM, Shooting Star Nursery responded with:
Before replying to our recent negative rating on this web site; I wanted to sleep on it. We have always been a shipping company first and foremost; the most important aspect to us is healthy plants. Our plants have such diverse needs, we have to over winter them grouped together according to their needs, not ours. Once we catch up with shipping plants to spring customers, (some having waited months for their plants to get to them at planting time) we get more organized.
We have added limited retail sale days just in the last few years because our customers have requested them, but we always welcome and encourage them to make an appointment if individual guidance and design help is needed.
What appears as a complete disaster of organization on our part; pretty much actually is! We are currently growing over 1000 different plants and we have them spread out everywhere. We grow our own plants; meaning we have many stages of the same plant, from seedling to one of several years of age. This number can range in the hundreds for each stage of each plant and again this means grouping each plant stage together according to their needs (shade, sun, and water) not ours. To make things more difficult most plants needs change as they mature; this means a new grouping in a different part of the nursery. (Yes we are constantly moving plants around.)
I agree, we need to have better signage for our plants. We do have for most of them and are doing our best to get them out on the plants. Pricing on trees is difficult, that is my fault, there just has not been time to go out and mark each plant. No matter what you hear about permanent markers, they only last about 3 to 6 months then fade into obscurity.
As many small business owners try to be competitive with big box stores, especially with pricing, I have to be honest and say we just cannot compete.
The working people at Shooting Star are the best that anyone could ever hope for. As far as I am concerned we all own this little place together and it shows in their enthusiasm and enjoyment to be here, working in all kinds of weather. I am afraid it is just a fact that we cannot wait on every customer for the whole time they are at the nursery when we are open for retail sales. We do our best to check back with them, some need more help than others. We encourage making an appointment for those that know they will need individual attention. Many customers do not want our help; they would rather explore for awhile then get back to us. I can only assume that is what happened in your case. I greatly apologize for any perceived slight; that is certainly not what we are about.
alchemy_1300 Pittsburgh, PA (Zone 6a) (7 reviews) April 20, 2009
I have to give Lisa a excellent mention here as the company will honestly work with you on certain things and I deeply respect those type of people who still have that policy of standing behind your word, and even though I am embarrassed as all heck over my debit card I want everyone to know about how flexible and honest this company is.
Got_Lost Thomasville, GA (4 reviews) February 6, 2009
November 2008. Ordered 4 milkweeds (Asclepias) and one Goldenrod. Items were well packaged. Shipped quickly. Exactly as described. I would not hesitate to order from this company again.
I just received my first order from Shooting Star and am very pleased. The plants were packaged very well, were good sized for the $$ and in excellent condition.
I will certainly order from them again.
PAMSPACE Temperanceville, VA (Zone 7a) (4 reviews) April 16, 2008
I ordered three Washington Hawthorns from Shooting Star, because they had the best prices with shipping. The three trees arrived promptly and in excellent shape. They were all starting to leaf out. Could not be more pleased. Will order from them again.
CaptMicha Brookeville, MD (Zone 7a) (27 reviews) November 11, 2007
My purchase from Shooting Star was satisfactory.
I purchased a Canadian Yew from them. They were the only company who carries it.
While the root ball was small, I wasn't too disappointed because A) I had a very shallow area to plant and B) The plant was robust and is doing very nicely.
The prices were a little on the high side for my taste, for the size you receive.
I would probably purchase from Shooting Star again if they are the only source for something I need.
Communication was very good.
indianna Bloomington, IN (1 review) October 16, 2007
Three weeks ago I went to Shooting Star (3.5 hr drive each way) because I only want native species (no hybrid cultivars, no exotics) and I was having difficulty finding them locally. Yes, I was shocked how small most items were but was truely impressed by the vast choice,reasonable price, and health of their plants. When buying items like giant wood ferns (mature size 3-6'), it's peachy to take home a whole forest in a small Toyota. Natalie willingly pulled out many individual trees or shrubs until I found one or a group with the conformation that I wanted. I was picky and demanding; the staff were always helpful and friendly. My only regret was not buying more!
Cearbhaill Russell, KY (Zone 6b) (14 reviews) October 13, 2007
It's difficult for me to decide how to rate Shooting Star, so it had to be neutral by default.
The plants were small.
I know on the homepage it states the 3½-4½" container size so the size of the plants should be understood beforehand, but some of my plants were small even for that. A few of them (the Roseshell and Carolina Azaleas and the Redbud "trees") should have been labeled "rooted cuttings" because that is what they are- small rooted cuttings.
So on the positive side they are very cheap and a good variety of hard to find native plants. Marie was more than helpful to me and responded quickly to email questions even after I expressed my concerns with plant sizes.
Shipping was extremely fast and the packaging was done very well. I am happy that a nursery is interested in preserving our natives and providing me with a source so I want to support them with my business.
But all of these positives were tempered by my extreme disappointment when I saw the plants themselves. I've shopped online for plants for years and these were by far the smallest and raggediest I have ever received. It was a fair amount of money for such a small pile of plants- I just stood there wondering how I was going to justify the cost to my husband.
If everything lives I will come back and perhaps change or ammend my comments. But when we plant some of these plants this weekend we are going to have to cage them simply to remember where they are and not mistake them for weeds.
So order in good faith but understand that you will could possibly receive very tiny cuttings. On April 30th, 2008, Cearbhaill changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:
Update Spring 2008- a large percentage of my tiny plants did not survive the winter. I notified Shooting Star Nursery in the hopes that they would at least offer me a credit of some sort on replacement plants, even offering to buy additional items to help offset the shipping and other costs. I never received the courtesy of a reply.
With the plethora of good vendors who actually stand behind their plants, I see no need to spend any more money with those that do not. This is a huge disappointment to me as I had hoped to do an entire garden of natives.
Guess not.Company representative comment on October 13, 2007: On Oct 13, 2007 11:01 AM, Shooting Star Nursery added:
Dear Cearbhaill, Sorry that you did not like your plants! Yes they are small, but none were reproduced from cuttings; all were grown from seed. The Azaleas were over three years old, short (5" aabove ground) well rooted but multibranched and fully leaved out. Because the redbud were small, which I said they would be, giving exact height to the customer when ordering, we sent an extra plant at no charge. They were all well rooted in their pots. (They grow very rapidly and should be several feet tall next year.) The time and care involved to get some of these plants to a size that will grow on for our customers is certainly not reflected in our prices. Cheep is a word that is never used here, we try to make our plants accesable for those who do want to use natives. The image of someone opening a box and being disapointed is a hard image to shake, that is not our intent. We want every one to be as excited and pleased to receive as we are to send them. Marianne
janerobie Malden, MA (2 reviews) September 29, 2007
I ordered a Dutchman's Pipe and two Bearberry plants. The nursery held off mailing until the weather was cool enough. The plants arrived well packed and in very good shape. They're all now planted in my garden and are doing well. I'd definitely order from Shooting Star again.
sadie_mae Central, KY (Zone 6b) (42 reviews) September 13, 2007
I just received my 1st order from Shooting Star (3 Lonicera sempervirens) and they are very large and in excellent condition!! I'm making a list of more native plants that I "need" to add and will hopefully be able to make a trip to the nursery next spring.