2bithorse Brookhurst, WY (1 review) November 28, 2013
My first order from St. Lawrence Nurseries in the Spring of 2013 for Honeylocust trees and Potentilla shrubs arrived the first week of April. The plant packaging was kind of unusual (the postmaster remarked that it looked like somebody sent me a broom), but they were very well packed and arrived in good condition.
It was still a little early in my area of Wyoming (I have a Zone 2 micro-climate), so I stored them according to SLN's directions for a couple of weeks, even though they were just starting to break dormancy.
After planting, the Honeylocusts grew well for being their first year (they are fast growers) and they are going to be good trees. The Potentillas seemed to get off to a slow start (these are my first, so that is subjective), but at the end of the season, I had well-established plants with good flowers ... BTW: Thank you, SLN, for carrying white Potentillas, they are hard to find!
I eMailed a question to them between ordering and shipment, and received a prompt, courteous reply. All in all, I was pleased with this first order, and will be buying from them again next year.
I ordered from St. Lawrence this spring. We had a long winter...still 4-5 feet of snow on the ground in April. My plants arrived on my doorstep March 31st so I followed the directions on storing them until the day I was able to access soil. When spring finally came, most of the plants leafed out, however several did not, and exhibited no signs of life. They were brittle and dead. I have sent several emails asking for a phone call or reply as well as phone messages requesting assistance but none have been returned. I cannot give them a good review nor can I ever order from them again.
oosa Northbrook, IL (Zone 5a) (5 reviews) April 10, 2013
I just received my order of a dozen Juneberries/Saskatoons (amelanchier alnifolia). They are all alive and well - buds are just starting to turn green. They are 1-2 inches tall, hair-thin. Just very tiny and not as strong and they could be. All is good overall. Why neutral? Not sure if I would order from them again. I've had better quality plants from other online sources.
Great customer service. I haven't purchased yet. I merely inquired about shipping dates and cancellations. I sent an email and received a very friendly and professional response within the hour. I will definitely be buying trees from them.
Having done business with St. Lawrence Nurseries in the past I will say they know what they are doing. As far as answering e-mails well remember it is a small company and most if not all employees including the owners are out tending the various trees and plants for harvest and shipping to customers. I planted bare root apple trees and watered them once per week 10 gal min (live in central Wisc) and they are doing very fine. (two 5 tree plots. one full sun shine on the south east face of hill-Great. and the 2nd set of 5 in very sandy soil 3 doing great and 2 about half as well.) I am more than satisfied with those apple trees I purchased from them and will be buying more this yr as well. I would suggest anyone that wants to plant in the northern area of the states to purchase from them.
5 yrs ago we ordered hazelberts...two..they were scrawny upon arrival and have not grown much over the last 5 yrs..no nuts yet..plenty of 'catkins', but nothing even closely resembling a flower or nut. The plant turns a pretty color in the fall, but I was told these were 3 yr plants when we ordered..and still, we wait.
Not sure I would order from these folks again. They arrived in Upper Michigan a bit early for planting so they had to stay in the dark storage shed for several months.
My experience was very good with st lawrence nursery, i ordered 26 bareroot fruit trees from them and all are looking good. They give you an excellent guide for planting your trees when you get them but make sure to review the guide on there website before ordering so you can make proper preparations. We had a very hot spring this year and was concerned because the trees were budding when i got them, but i did what the guide said and they all are looking very alive. I plan on ordering from them for many years. The trees were packaged very good with no damage.
I wonder how anyone can give a positive rating to this business. I wrote them a short paragraph last year giving a basic description of my ground & climate, and asked them if they had any better recommendation for apple trees other than the ones I was planning to order. NO REPLY. Then I wrote them again about 2 months later. NO REPLY. Then I waited a year, and wrote them again. NO REPLY. Then I asked a friend to write them, and ask if they are open for business. NO REPLY. I seriously doubt anyone that writes them gets a reply, and I can't imagine how anyone can do business like that. I am planning to get a calling-card to call them by phone - I wonder if I will get an answer.
As far as customer service goes, I give them a ZERO on a scale of 1-10.
I've ordered from St. Lawrence a number of times and have never been disappointed by the size and quality of their products. always a good buy.
Dione129 EAST FREETOWN, MA (4 reviews) April 22, 2012
I love the catalog and my plants arrived in excellent condition, well packaged and secure. Would order from again.
FLAGPHARMER Kachina Village, AZ (7 reviews) March 29, 2012
I ordered a variety of shrubs and fruiting seedlings. Hard to find varieties that are SUPER hardy. Smaller plants- but this is clearly noted in the descriptions- nothing was smaller than listed. i had a few plants not make it and the garuntee was honored and the plants are being replaced this year. Very good and timely communication- excellent customer service. Plants were very hardy- I live at 7000ft at 5b- we get snows through May and their plants were troopers. THANKS
Janna Mahwah, NJ (Zone 6a) (26 reviews) October 29, 2011
The nicest people and great selection of unusual varieties. I placed 3 orders with them over last 3 years, and will be placing another one soon. Most of the stuff i ordered from them grows great with exception of 1 or 2 plants that didn't perform well ( but may not be their fault). All in all, great experience and friendly people to del with.
Posted on April 9, 2007, updated May 6, 2011
I ordered eight fruit trees from this company and all were quite satisfactory and performed well their first summer. I wish I had heeded their ample trunk protection warnings before snowfall; somehow I forgot to do it and paid the price with all but two with rodent damage and one completely girdled. The black raspberries didn't do much but am hopeful for growth this year. On May 6th, 2011, seagardener added the following:
I submitted another order this year of 12 plants. The dormant trees arrived very early for us. Fortunately, I was able to break ground in the vegetable garden, wedged fruit trees, blueberries & other plants into a trench (similar to what they recommend in their paperwork & website) followed by a substantial snowstorm that buried the lot.
Everything seemed to have pulled through & I was able to plant them all out where they are to grow a few weeks after arrival. The 'Patriot' blueberries were pretty small but overall I believe that their prices are competitive and the quality of their stock is very good. I've built up quite a nice little orchard thanks to St. Lawrence & have varieties that are quite uncommon in our area.
Ordered Stacey pear trees for spring 2010. Received large healthy trees that have done well.
5finadene3 Lock Haven, PA (8 reviews) June 14, 2010
I ordered several apple trees, hazelnut trees, grapes, blueberries and a red currant plant from St. Lawrence this year. Most of the apple trees were small with a very small root system, and a few were very oddly shaped. One tree was in kind of a "Z" shape and planting that one was a challenge- especially when it came time to add a tree guard. The grapes were all substandard. the hazels (hazelberts), blueberries and currant were normal. I have ordered the same plants from this company in the past, so I have a valid frame of reference. I ordered a little late- 2/20/10, so maybe the choicest plants were gone. If that's the case, the price should have been reduced.About half of the grapes died. I would order from them again, but with caution.
I placed an order for 3 'Carmine Jewel' cherry bushes in January 2010. I clearly wrote on the order form, "Because of our elevation (9,200 ft), our ground thaws VERY late. Please ship fully dormant plants in late April. If not fully dormant, please ship around June 1st. Thank you!" Well, I received my order on April 21st and the plants were already budded out. I phoned the company and spoke to the owner, Bill MacKentley. I explained that my order had specified shipping in late April if fully dormant or June 1st if not. He said they won't ship that late. My order form clearly showed my phone number, e-mail address, and mailing address and yet I received no contact from the nursery to say that my requested shipping dates were unacceptable. I complained that the plants were already budded out, and he said they will break dormancy within 24-hours during shipment. I explained that I did not believe these plants would survive now that they have broken dormancy as we are still having temperatures in the teens at night. (In fact, we had over 18" of snow last night.) He said those were the risks of farming. Well, he is the farmer. I am not; I am the customer. The business risks of farming are his. I paid $69.50 for 3 small cherry whips. For him to be unwilling to work with me after I was so clear about shipping dates is inexcusable in my view. I had the same problem last year and none of the plants I purchased from him survived. I decided to take a chance this year and try again because this was the only source I could find for the 'Carmine Jewel' cherries. What a mistake. Never again.
grampapa Wheatfield, NY (Zone 6a) (8 reviews) July 17, 2009
I ordered 6 blueberry bushes from St Lawrence last year. The plants arrived on time in great condition. They have made it through the winter beautifully and I hope by next year to have at least a few to eat. I ordered from them because they specialize in hardy northern varieties and was not disappointed. I will order again when I am in the market for fruit trees or bushes.
this spring is the second time i've ordered from st. lawrence and both times i've been completely pleased with the results. I've never bothered them for customer service but i've always received exactly what was ordered exactly when it was expected. their prices aren't exactly cheap, but they are very reasonable and the plants themselves are always excellent specimens with large, well-developed root systems as claimed. in contrast i have been disappointed by the pathetic barely rooted twigs often offered by other mail order outfits.
I just finished planting another wonderful order from St. Lawrence Nurseries! I try to place an order every year, and am never disappointed with the quality of the plants - especially the fine root systems - and their expert packing and planting tips.
I'm a zone or two warmer than Potsdam, New York, but, with the fierce windchills here and spotty snow cover, it is definitely worth erring on the side of caution with hardiness. The plants I receive from St. Lawrence Nurseries are always rock solid, and the MacKentleys are a pleasure to deal with.
I have been ordering from St. Lawrence Nurseries for a few years now because of their quality and hardiness. There has never been any problems with their stock. Everything sent was extremely well packaged and arrived in good condition. This spring I ordered 2 apple trees and 2 types of Juneberries, all of which are growing well- the Juneberries have really shot up fast. Deer managed to knock over one of the apple trees' protective mesh cages and badly chomped the seedling; we were afraid it was a goner, but it has leafed back out and is growing well. We are slowly reclaimng an old farm and orchards, and plan on using St. Lawrence for future tree purchases.
Chills Saint Clair Shores, MI (Zone 6b) (20 reviews) April 13, 2008
I have ordered from St. Lawrence twice now. The first time was last Spring and now I am a returning customer. This alone should tell anyone that my experience with St. Lawrence was a good one.
Last spring I bought a cherry, which leafed out but shortly thereafter died. I emailed the owner and was asked to describe what had happened. I offered to pay for or split shipping on a replacement, but he wouldn't accept anything, replacing the tree last fall (it looks great and is close to breaking dormancy now)
This Spring I again ordered from him, this time two other cherry varieties. St. Lawrence offers plants that are difficult to find elsewhere and their shipping is very effective (though a little intimidating to open for the first time.)
As long as I have room I will likely keep St. Lawrence one of the first places I look when preparing my orders each spring.
jfranson Soda Springs, ID (1 review) January 8, 2008
After two years of failure in Idaho trying to grow heirloom apple trees from a California nursery I learned about St Lawrence and ordered 10 trees. They arrived well packaged and in good shape and have done well through one growing season so far. Initially I didn't send enough money for postage, so I got a phone call from a very pleasant young-sounding lady requesting another $15 or so. It appeared she was a family member. While I had her on the phone I asked a specific question regarding my site (6000 feet, zone 3). She wasn't sure exactly how to respond but while I waited she asked and then reported a detailed and helpful answer. This brief conversation with an apparent teenager who was not only interested in horticulture but obviously committed to customer service, a real contrast from some young people, was worth paying the extra shipping charge.
As a former employee, my knowledge is first-hand. The general giste of all the comments I reviewed was about what I experienced as a manager over ten years ago. The MacKentley's attention to detail and personal involvement is definitely amazing. ALL customers get this treatment, no matter the size of the order. A big factor some of you may not be aware of is that all orders, once shipped, are not always treated kindly by the people handling them. The packages are tossed, bumped, overheated or frozen enroute to their destinations. I remember packages (which we took GREAT CARE in putting together) coming back smashed into pieces or "cooked" inside to a smelly mush. As with any business, all factors cannot be perfectly controlled. You would be hard pressed to find a company who truly believes in their convictions or pays more personal attention to what their customers want. Our policy was the customer is always right. I recall replacing the same orders repeatedly, even though we suspected the customer was doing something wrong, year after year. That's when the planting guides were developed. We could do everything on our end right, only to have improper planting or care kill what we spent 3-4 years preparing. Having planted over 10,000 trees and plants yearly at the nursery, I believe the biggest culprit in mortality is improper planting and care on the customer's end. Think of how a seed must force the growing root through the soil. That root's surface then expands and "fattens" over time, keeping intimate contact with the surrounding soil at all times. Now, take it out of the ground with a shovel,(hopefully during dormancy), and send it off to Joe Farmer and he gently places it in an oversized hole and scoops fresh-turned top soil onto the roots. Next comes the water, sprayed on (the worst!) or dumped on with a bucket. That water follows the surface down under the soil, creating an air space between root surface and soil, effectively starving the tree. When a tree dies, grab the trunk and lift. If the tree slides out easily, you didn't plant it correctly. Grab a wild tree and try to pull it out of the ground and you'll see what I mean. They are anchored. When planting, don't be afraid to pack that fresh soil onto the roots. I weigh 250 lbs and I really use my body weight to firm the soil. Of course, you can overdo this, but you get the giste. Lastly, trees want to live and grow like any other living thing. Treat them right and they will flourish for generations to come. They are actually hard to kill. I hope my comments will help. Good luck to all.
I've ordered from St. Lawrence regularly for years, because they give me the cultural, hardiness and harvest date information I need to succeed in my central Alaskan location, and the stock I've received from them has always been stout and healthy. Their catalog, staff and website make dealing with them an anticipated spring pleasure. My crabapples, plums, currants, gooseberries and raspberries are in bloom, and look better than the cultivars growing in a more favorable location at the Univ. of Alaska's Agricultural Experiment Farm nearby (from other nurseries) - I told them about St. Lawrence, maybe they'll have better success in future!
Ordered several plants -- hazelberts, juneberries, highbush cranberry, elderberry. All arived in 10 days from mail order, and before they even cashed the check! Everything all showing growth after 5 days in ground. Amazing. Great condition. Sent along 50 page growing guide.
I ordered several different currants and roses from St. Lawrence this spring. All plants arrived in excellent shape, some of them much bigger than I expected. All but one rosa rugosa are doing great after planting (and I have only myself to blame for the rugosa's misfortune). I had a question about their delivery timeframe and both my call and my email were answered promptly.
After reading the other posted comments and ratings, I am apalled by how my experience pales in comparison. Unfortunately, I found these people to be slow to respond to e-mails, [sometimes 2-3 weeks, if at all], no phone call the day of shipment, and no 'instruction booklet'. I ordered 35 apple trees of unusual varieties to add to my collection of 125 HEALTHY varieties. This property also has 9 old, [over a century, by most estimates], apple trees that are also still quite healthy. 34 trees arrived, with no mention of the discrepancy, or any comment regarding a refund. Of the trees that did arrive, 14 of them showed advanced anthracose infestation, 11 showed signs of various bark breakdown, [flaking and peeling away from the wood with unviable buds along these spaces, and distal to them], 7 of them showed signs of rodent damage at the base, [some older, and some recent], and one had dead wood at the top 2 inches, with another fungal infection. The local extension agent advised against putting these trees in the orchard, and I agree. Pitty, as the time and expense of preparing for them is all a waste....They have some unique apple varieties that, unfortunately, will no longer have a place in my orchard.
I have had much better experiences with Big Horse Creek, Urban Homestead, Maple Valley Orchards, Century Farm Orchards....I would highly recommend any of them, but cannot recommend St. Lawrence Nurseries after this sad experience.
We placed a large order last fall, including cherries, raspberries, lingonberries and chokecherries. The plants arrived today and are beautiful. They are large and well branched and just starting to bud out. They also included detailed planting instructions.
I highly recommend this company!
KathyJo Fayette, MO (Zone 6a) (1 review) April 5, 2007
I got some beautiful healthy looking trees in the mail today.. I'm very excited. They also sent an instruction booklet! and the trees were packed better than anything I've seen..
I would order from them again.
vtfarmer Randolph, VT (1 review) September 6, 2006
I have bought from this company over the past 12 years and it has always been a positive experience. The plants are healthy and well packaged upon arrival, the owners are most helpful, and everything grows very well.
Due to the positive reviews here I ordered two plums from St. Lawrence and was shocked at how quickly they arrived. I had made a mistake in my order, thinking I needed two different pollinator types instead of two of the same - they corrected that instead of blindly filling the order, for which I am incredibly grateful. The trees are lovely, taller and healthier than I'd imagined. The instruction booklet is priceless. I heartily recommend St. Lawrence and am so glad Dave's pointed me to them.
I placed my first order with this company after hearing good reviews from coworkers & a warning from my local nursery. the plants arrived at the end of April (a little late in my book) and had started to leaf out. One of the four plants had a wonderful root size and was as large as described. The others were pitiful--especially the currants that were advertised as 1-2 ft in actuality were 8" sticks with a few roots hanging off the lower 4 inches. Hopefully they will survive....have serious doubts though.On June 8th, 2006, bemidjigreen added the following:
Everything that I have gotten from St. Lawerence has been exceptional. The Red Rasberries were bountiful this year, the Roses are hardy. The goose berries and siberan pea shrub have been hardy and fun. The Bali Cherry tree and apple have a couple of years yet, but the are strong. Everything came packaged well. There is long life in all the plants that I have gotten. I Highly recommend them. The price for this quality, care and dedication to the nursery, and the people take care of you is inexpensive. I intend to order with them again! Rene
greenox New Fairfield, CT (Zone 5a) (7 reviews) May 23, 2005
I ordered 20 hazelbert trees from this nursery. They seemed just a little pricey but what arrived were large well rooted plants which were also sensibly packaged. These were not thin whips, but good sized stock. Now that they are planted, almost all are leafing out now. The real test will be the winter but from the comments below, I expect good results.
I have never ordered from this company before so I started w/ a small order to test the waters. I ordered a half dozen blueberries and an apple tree. I needed them to ship so it would arrive close to the weekend because I live 200 miles from where I was planting them. Not only was the comunication by email good, they personally called me on the day they shipped to let me know that the package was on its way and when to expect it. It arrived as promised and the plants looked great. It even came with a nice planting guide for the novice. About the only thing I didn't like, was they don't take credit cards. I like the protection that you get when using a credit card. As a result you are bound to money orders or check. But, from my experience, I wouldn't hesitate to place an order w/ them in the future. It is really nice to deal with a nursery that caters to the northern grower. My garden is on the zone 3/4 border and hardiness is a must. Apparently all there plants are grown in zone 3 climate. That should prevent the disappointment that happens after a test winter and you lose some of your prize plants.