I have ordered bulbs from McClure and Zimmermann for years. Yes, I have had an occasional dessicated bulb in a batch, but never a whole batch dried up or moldy. On the contrary, I have found their bulbs to be large and healthy, true to type. There are 3 things I like about them: they do carry bulbs you won't find elsewhere, they sell only nursery cultivated bulbs, and often there is a surprise "extra" thrown in. This year I got a number of fall blooming bulbs -- they were amazing! Every one of them bloomed true to type and the neighbors were amazed at the display!
I appreciate a small company willing to take risks with unusual offerings. Mistakes are all too human. And e-mails can get lost, so keep at it until you get an answer. We need to support them -- and make sure they give us their best!
charlenenj Fanwood, NJ (13 reviews) December 4, 2014
Posted on December 4, 2014, updated December 4, 2014
Ordered General De Wet bulbs from MZ bulb on 11/11/14. Since I was already on their site, I threw in some Christmas Marvel and Riding Hood tulip bulbs. The package arrived 11/19 but did not contain the General de Wet bulbs. No explanation and no mention of them. I emailed and called the company. No response. I sent my email 11/12./14 It is now 12/4/14. Also, have a look at the condition of the Red Riding Hood tulip bulbs. See link below. Now....I am sure someone from the company will get on this site with some kind of explanation. But, there is no excuse for failing to even mention the bulbs I ordered from the company, and no excuse for failing to reply to an email (yes, it was sent to the right place, not to the \"no reply\" address). This company hoses customers and waits to clean things up only if the customer takes the time to post on websites or publicly complain. The average gardener that isn\'t tuned in to all these resources like Dave\'s Garden? They are just SOL.
Alexander_R Santa Clarita, CA (Zone 9b) (5 reviews) September 19, 2014
I ordered early in March for this fall not knowing what to expect, and just received my order without any problems.
I am very pleased with the 48 Iris latifolia I have. They are healthy, firm, large (about the size of tulip bulbs), and most are even double or triple "nosed". Sure, there is a little superficial mold here and there, but they are all viable.
This once loved species is seldom seen even in Europe and almost impossible to find in North America. The bulbs have a distinctive appearance resembling shallots, so I am certain I have received true stock.
It is also known as Iris xiphioides or as "English iris".
Posted on November 29, 2013, updated May 17, 2014
I ordered four dozen tulip bulbs and some hyacinth bulbs.
They all arrived quickly, packaged well and were good sized firm bulbs.On May 17th, 2014, bryana changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:
The worst - the bulbs I planted last fall (National Velvet Triumph Tulip, Carnegie Hyacinth, Kronos Hyacinth, Red Power Triumph Tulip, Red Diamond Hyacinth) either did not grow or put on a very pathetic display.
The order from this spring - Achimenes,
several Kniphofia, Lilium Tenuifolium, Lilium Martagon,
Star Jasmine, Kniphofia Alcazar, Corydalis Elata, Dodecatheon Collection- the bulbs were extremely small and some were covered with blue-green mold and very soft. The bare root plants were very small - the Dodecatheon were basically small bags with wood shavings and peat - if there were roots, they are invisible to the naked eye. Two items on back order were not shipped.
I am taking my name off their list - complete waste of time, effort and money.
Mitchella Pownal, ME (Zone 5b) (4 reviews) May 10, 2014
Posted on April 5, 2014, updated May 10, 2014
I have ordered bulbs and plants from M&Z for over 20 years without significant problems. A few bulbs are sometimes rotten, some plants are very small or dead, but the fact that they offer unusual native wildflower plants (especially recently) made up for that for me. But as they offered more of these native plants, I noticed that they sometimes noted "Cultivated stock" in a few of the descriptions; I was unable to find any statement about the source of their other plants in their catalog or on their web site. So I wondered about the sources of the rest of the species plants and bulbs; it is extremely important to me that species plants and bulbs I pay for be "nursery-propagated" (and not just "nursery grown" after having been collected.) I emailed them (through their own "Contact Us" page) and received no reply. A few weeks later I sent another email and still have received no reply. I am concerned that, given no information to the contrary, M&Z may offer plants and/or bulbs that have been collected from wild habitats. I hope this is not true but I cannot get them to respond to my concerns. After so many years, I hate to stop ordering from them, but I will have to do so if I cannot get a response from them. (Of course, my concerns do not apply to their many hybrid bulbs and plants, which are by definition almost always nursery-propagated.)On May 10th, 2014, Mitchella changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
I'm so pleased that M&Z sell only nursery-propagated plants and bulbs, and I will continue to order from them. I'm very disappointed that I never received any reply to repeated emails sent directly to them, yet they immediately responded to my posting here. Shows the influence of Dave's Garden Watchdog!Company representative comment on April 7, 2014: On Apr 7, 2014 12:15 PM, McClure & Zimmerman Quality Flowerbulb Brokers responded with:
We are very sorry to hear about the email. All of our plants and bulbs are indeed nursery propagated and absolutely none of our products are collected from the wild. We only purchase through reputable suppliers that only have nursery propagated plants and bulbs.
As for your emails I would like to look into this further. I have personally checked any past emails and I am not finding any in regards to this, but I also don't have your email address directly to search by. I want to make sure all of our customers' emails are answered and in a timely manner.
Please feel free to email me directly Aronh@jungseed.com as I would appreciate the opportunity to check into your concerns further, but as for our plants and bulbs I want to assure you they are nursery propagated and not collected from the wild.
M&Z Contact Center Manager
jardinierla Pittsburgh, PA (3 reviews) October 29, 2013
I have ordered bulbs from many sources. I return to M&Z as they offer an excellent selection of varieties & competitive prices. I have placed 2 orders with M&Z this fall. Both orders were delivered promptly & bulbs sent are of an excellent quality. I did order Spring Snowflakes, which have been back ordered. No other vendor that I am aware of even lists them. They seem to be difficult to get.
Patty57 Wake Forest, NC (Zone 7b) (22 reviews) October 25, 2013
Just rec'd my fall shipment of bulbs and was very satisfied with the bulbs all around. Customer Service was also very pleasant!! A++
I was leery about ordering from this company after reading the negative comments posted here. However, my experience was fantastic! The bulbs were healthy and well labeled and they even sent large lily bulbs as a bonus. MZ carries difficult-to find bulbs, including new cultivars from Terra Nova, at a great price. I will definitely order from them again.
cathy166 Stamford, CT (Zone 6b) (5 reviews) March 31, 2013
When i see the negative comments, I think it is only fair that I add my positive experience.
I ordered some Thai caladiums last year and was disappointed that one was missing from my order. I called them, and within one week they sent the missing variety and actually sent 2 plants to replace the one missing plant.
JoefromDC Brookmont, MD (1 review) September 12, 2012
I had a mixed experience last Fall. 24 each of Cyclamen Cilicium, Cyclamen Coum, and Cyclamen Neapolitanum. I thought at the time, some of the nicest cyclamen corms that I'd ever seen. These are blooming now (or sending up leaves for the C. Coum) and are strong plants with good yield. I also ordered 50 or 60 each of Eranthis Cilicica, Erythronium Dens-Canis Mixture,and Corydalis Solida. These were very poor quality bulbs, mostly dried out, and no more than 10% came up.
I ordered 9 Tropaeolum tuberosum bulbs. 6 Ken Aslet and 3 of another type.
Only one of the 9 looked like it would live. 4 were soft or shriveled or both. Thought I should give all a chance as I had not grown these before.
Only two came up. One died within two weeks.
Called company. They were quick to send replacements. Reassured me that replacement would be looked at to make sure they were in good condition before sending.
Replacement arrived last week... all were of type and size of the ones that didn't make it the first time. ..and two were worse than any of the first batch.
Called company.. could not get refund. Will receive credit letter. Hoping they sell supplies so I can use credit...AND pay more shiping.
Looking at "positives" here to see if there is anything they sell that is of good quality.
considering not even using credit..not sure if it is smart to pay shipping for more things that will not live!
Got an email from M&Z that things were on sale. Ordered 3 kniphofia Nancy's Red (saw them at Wisley and wanted some) for $4.25 each. Also ordered one Lemon Sherbert Gloriosa @ $6.25. I was so disappointed - the kniphofias came in little plastic bags with totally dry peatmoss/shavings mix. They are dried up scraggly little roots about 4 inches long with 1/4 inch shoots coming from a growing point. Will probably take 3 years to get to blooming size. The Gloriosa is also about 4 inches long and smaller around than my pinky finger. The Gloriosas I have grown are about 8 inches long and as fat as my middle finger. Frequently they are two roots joined to make a V!! Altogether a ripoff of a good customer. This is the kind of presentation you see at the dollar store!! And, if someone above was concerned about the $6.00 postage, my order totaled $19.00 and I was charged the same $6.00. :-( What was their buyer thinking when they okayed the size, price, condition and packaging of these items? Did they think the customer would be happy about it? NOT!
esanita TYASKIN, MD (Zone 7a) (11 reviews) May 4, 2012
Posted on April 28, 2012, updated May 4, 2012
Posted on April 28, 2012, updated April 28, 2012
Posted on April 26, 2012, updated April 28, 2012
I ordered several agapanthus, an alocasia, a vigna caracalla, eucomis, and a canna. The packing was one of the worst I've ever seen. The plants were placed in a box, on their side, with nothing to prevent the soil from falling out. Some of the plants still had all their soil around them, but half were showing bare root because the soil had fallen off. Even though I ordered in January, one of the agapanthus was backordered and then not available. MZ sent me some free bulbs, a gladious, but when I contacted them, couldn't tell me anything about these bulbs. The "bulbs" I ordered were actually plants in small pots, extremely root-bound. So I couldn't plant them as deep as recommended for my zone, because I would had to have planted part of the plants under the soil level. I wouldn't order from them again. There has to be better bulb companies.On April 28th, 2012, esanita added the following:
MZ also mailed my plants on a Thursday, which meant the plants sat in a hot truck or warehouse or such over the weekend, since they arrived on Monday.On April 28th, 2012, esanita added the following:
MZ also mailed my plants on a Thursday, which meant the plants sat in a hot truck or warehouse or such over the weekend, since they arrived on Monday.On May 4th, 2012, esanita added the following:
Forgot to mention, 3 of the plants in containers came with slugs in them. The last of my order, 3 agapanthus, was packaged on a Thursday, snail mailed on Friday, and arrived Wednesday, in the usual condition -- the plants on their side with half of the soil fallen out, many leaves yellowed.
I have ordered from M&Z for years now, and never had a problem, so I'm really surprised to read some of these comments. I have not ordered live plants, and mostly I order more "common" bulbs. But I've always been pleased by bulb size and quality, price and service. I've been fascinated by their selection of exotic or uncommon items, and I'd be curious to know if those are the items people have had problems with.
Have been ordering from them, mostly small orders of species and standard tulips and unusuals like camassia, for over 10 years. I don't think I have ever had to throw out a dried or moldy bulb, even after my refrigerating them too long. I gave up on some other firms because they mislabeled/represented their products.
I've only had to call once because my shipment wasn't arriving as quickly as usual. An order from another company was also late; both arrived soon after. I think you do have to consider that the weather where you are is not the same as the states being shipped through. I avoid ordering when temps elsewhere are extreme.
gsteinbe Trenton, NJ (19 reviews) November 7, 2011
Posted on May 16, 2011, updated November 7, 2011
Posted on April 14, 2011, updated May 16, 2011
Posted on March 15, 2011, updated April 14, 2011
Posted on June 21, 2010, updated March 15, 2011
Posted on June 20, 2010, updated June 21, 2010
This winter/spring, I ordered Tropaeolum tuberosum 'Ken Aslet' and Hyacinthoides non-scripta. The latter have been backordered, but the former arrived in rather moldy condition. I planted the three tubers that I received without much hope and waited and waited and waited. Finally, one of the tubers showed some feeble signs of life. Unfortunately, those signs of life quickly passed, and it died. Since neither of the other two tubers ever showed any life, I've complained to the company. For now, I'm giving them a "Negative" here, because the product they sent me really was in bad condition. But if they respond appropriately to my complaint (and I get my Hyacinthoides non-scripta in good condition), I'll change my rating. To McClure & Zimmerman's credit, they did add some free bulbs to my order, and those bulbs (Babiana stricta) seem to be doing fine, though they're very small (and will be at least a year to bloom). They also weren't anything that I would have ordered myself (since I'm in zone 6 and will have to dig them up every fall now).On June 21st, 2010, gsteinbe changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
Got a quick reply to my complaint. Unfortunately, they are giving me a "letter of credit" rather than a refund. I've changed my rating to neutral, but we'll see how the Hyacinthoides look and what happens with the letter of credit before I settle on a final rating.On March 15th, 2011, gsteinbe added the following:
I have ordered the Tropaeolum tuberosum 'Ken Aslet' again. Haven't received my order yet. Because of the "letter of credit," I had to pay the outrageous postage charge out of pocket. If the bulbs don't arrive in good shape this time, I'm not sure what I'll do -- maybe demand a refund? The Hyacinthoides non-scripta bulbs looked okay, but I'll have to wait to see if they come up and how long before they bloom.On April 14th, 2011, gsteinbe added the following:
I've gotten the replacement Tropaeolum tuberosum bulbs, and while one of them looked iffy, the other two looked okay. I've planted them in pots and will update when (if) they prosper. Once again, McClure & Zimmerman included free bulbs with my order -- this time "London" Asiatic Lilies. These are a better choice than the free bulbs they sent last time. But I'd really just prefer strong, healthy Tropaeolum tuberosum bulbs.On May 16th, 2011, gsteinbe added the following:
Two of the Tropaeolum tuberosum came up okay so far, but the third shows no signs of life. I guess I'll cut my losses, but I won't order from McClure & Zimmerman again.On November 7th, 2011, gsteinbe changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:
The Tropaeolum tuberosum plants died again. Free bulbs are nice, but I'd rather have the bulbs I ordered.
Emma75 DeLand, FL (Zone 9b) (7 reviews) October 23, 2011
I just received my first order of 5 amaryllis bulbs from M&Z, and am more than satisfied with the plants I received. All 5 bulbs are top-size with healthy roots and new growth starting after they appear to have been in storage. I also received a gift of 6 iris bulbs, though I've yet to research if they are a variety that will grow in FL. As a first-time customer, I am very pleased, and plan to use this company again (though much of their variety are items that will not grow in this sub-tropical climate).
Chrissycf Columbia, MO (4 reviews) October 11, 2011
DO NOT ORDER FROM M & Z!! I ordered Narcissis bulbs from this company three weeks ago. The shipping charge of $6.00 was a little high for a $40.00 order, but I thought that since it was live material, it would be shipped by a fairly quick method. WRONG! My order was finally shipped after I called them to check on it. To my horror this company, which is in Wisconsin, less than 150 miles from me (I'm in Eastern Iowa,) proceeded to ship my package via FEDEX TO KANSAS CITY! There, my once living bulbs were shuttled to Lenexa, Kansas (even farther South and West.) They spent 4 days seeing the sights of Kansas at temperatures exceeding 85 degrees outdoors (the temps in trucks and warehouses would have been far higher, probably close to or over 100 degrees.) THEN they were shipped BACK more than 250 miles EAST and SOUTH of me to Chicago! It will soon be a week of very warm to hot weather since my poor bulbs were shipped. They have, so far, been hauled about 1,000 unnecessary miles in broiling semi trailers and they are still in another state 250 miles away! They are scheduled to be handed off to the postal service to be delivered, which will add another two days to their long and convoluted journey. I don't know why this is, because the FEDEX truck goes by my house everyday and delivers to my neighbors. By now my bulbs are thoroughly cooked, dead or dying, and while they may look fine when they get here, they will promptly rot if I plant them. My mailbox sits in a hot, sunny location and I cannot pick them until I get home from work-five hours after they will be delivered! I was not offered any shipping options when I ordered, I just assumed an apparently reputable company would use common sense when shipping live plant material! I dread trying to get my money back. Hope I can still get some bulbs this Fall so M & Z and their cheap shipping method don't set me back a whole year! M & Z obviously don't care if my bulbs are ruined-after all they got my money and I'm the one stuck with a box of fried plants.Company representative comment on October 28, 2011: On Oct 28, 2011 8:05 AM, McClure & Zimmerman Quality Flowerbulb Brokers responded with:
We are sorry to hear that you are unhappy with the method that your package was sent. To the best of our knowledge all delivery services have sorting centers that the packages go to and we agree--when tracking a package it sometimes looks like they are going the wrong direction but they normally get to our customers in good time. The delivery services that we use normally do a wonderful job getting packages to our customers in a timely manner but occasionally packages get missorted, which may have happened to your package since it went back to Chicago after being in Kansas. Normally packages sent from Wisconsin to Iowa are received very quickly and we are very sorry for any delay in receiving your package.
All of the packages sent from our facility are guaranteed to
arrive in good condition so if you do decide to keep your package but you have any issues--please call our toll-free number and our customer service reps will be happy to help you.
Mary, Customer Service Manager
McClure & Zimmerman
morgen San Luis Obispo, CA (8 reviews) June 14, 2011
I have been searching for some very dark Agapanthus for a long time locally. I found some on sale for a very decent price with this company. I tested the waters with them and only ordered 2 Agapanthus, Mood Indigo and Back in Black and a bag of Ranunculus. One of the Agapanthus was potted and so much bigger than I expected-I am SUPER pleased with it. The other was bare root in a plastic bag and looked a little anemic, but that's OK because I know Agapanthus and they can grow from almost nothing-it was more of what I expected via mailorder. The ranunculus were pretty good sized I guess. I've never grown them from bulb, so I don't have anything to compare them to. I followed planting instructions from Sunset Western Garden book, so I'll see what happens. Definitely will give this company another try with a larger order. I am very pleased so far and am almost hyperventilating over the potted Agapanthus. I think it may bloom within a year and I'm soooo excited to have found it! Pretty fast shipping too.
pirl (Arlene) Southold, NY (Zone 7a) (33 reviews) May 16, 2011
When I spotted the Japanese iris, 'Lady in Waiting', I quickly ordered it (April 30, 2011) along with another JI and a Melittis. They were shipped within just a few days and they sent bonus Asiatic lily bulbs. I put both JI's in water to start them off right and simply am very impressed and wish I could post a photo here to show how extremely well they are doing. 'Lady in Waiting' has turned into a clump of five fans and the other one has six fans - that's much more than I've received in the past from the big named JI companies! I planted the Melittis immediately and it's been green for over a week now.
Great plants, excellent packaging and fast shipping - who could ask for more? Thank you, M & Z. I'm very pleased.
I had ordered fall delivery bulbs from M-Z before and everything was satisfactory. This was my first experience with them on spring delivery. I placed two orders totaling over $200 of material from them in late January/early February. By late April, having recieved nothing nor heard from them, I checked their website. Expected delivery for my zone was late March to mid April. I then called to inquire about when I could expect my orders to be filled. I was told everything was there except one item from each order, (mixed Caladiums and 1 Dodecatheon of a collection of 4) and that they would ship when those arrived. I requested that they ship what they had and backorder the rest. I had planned to have all these plants in the ground or potted up weeks earlier. (A major reason I ordered so early) These finally arrived at the end of April. Several of the Lily bulbs looked to have been stored too long, judging by the slimey, rotten roots. The Caladiums finally arrived in early May. I then called to express my dissatisfaction with their shipping delays. I was told that the fault lie with their suppliers and they had no control over that. I explained that my business was with THEM, and from whom or how they obtained their plants was THEIR problem. I also pointed out that the planting instructions included by THEM with the Caladiums stated that they should be potted up 6 weeks before the last frost date. As they didn't arrive until a few days before that time, that was impossible to do. Again, the customer service rep insisted that the fault was their suppliers', and seemed completely unwilling to accept any responsibility on the part of M-Z. When I stated that this experience had left me doubting whether I would order from them again, the rep asked if I wanted to be removed from their mailing list. I said that that might be for the best. At that point, without another word, I was hung up on! I then sent an E-mail, through D.G., to them detailing my experiences both with the shipping problems and on the phone with their customer service rep. I recieved a reply from customer service requesting some information about the orders, which I promptly supplied. Since then I have heard nothing except a letter stating that the final item is unavailable and the cost of that item was being refunded. Had M-Z made any attempt to mitigate the problem, either by shipping the material on hand when it became apparent that the order was becoming significantly late, or, at the very least, accepting some responsibility for the problem and apologizing when I complained, perhaps I might have been somewhat appeased. This is a very competetive business as the list of suppliers on D.G. shows. But maybe M-Z feels that a satisfied and loyal customer is not a valued asset. After all, there are plenty of people out there willing to make the mistake I did of ordering from them!
7B_8A Fayetteville, GA (12 reviews) April 14, 2011
Ordered some lily bulbs (Silk Road and Triumphator) and Crocosmia (Limpopo). MZ was the only place I could find both of these lily types I wanted. Crocosmia were on the small side but MZ was absolutely the only place I could find this cultivar. All lilium were fat, moist and healthy with no mushy or moldy spots. Shipping was timely and rates were fair. Shipping doesn't seem to be a profit center for them like it is for others. I will never pay as much or more for shipping than I did for the plants themselves! Last but not least I got three fat, healthy asiatic lily bulbs (London) free! I can't remember ever getting anything free from any m.o. nursery! Will use them again.
joylily514 Staunton, VA (3 reviews) March 30, 2011
I have had nearly all good experiences with McClure and Zimmerman and have ordered bulbs and roots from them for at least 15 years. I only had one problem a couple of years ago with one item and they replaced it. I especially love the detail that they go to in the catalog. and there is a wide variety of offerings. Having lived in TX for years, I found many bulbs for the south that grow well without the extended cool dormant period. All in all, I love McClure and Zimmerman.
I am torn as to how I should rate M & Z, for I have come to respect the opinions of my fellow gardeners. I have, however, read the negative ratings, and cannot relate my own experiences to them. For the several times that I have ordered Fall planted bulbs, each Spring I find myself as satisfied with M & Z as with two of the "Top 30" companies with which I also have done business. In fact, one of those two has managed to disappoint me more often than M & Z and I have still not reconciled in my mind how I should rate that particular company. To put things in perspective, my average Fall order with M & Z has run between $200 and $400. I will often spend the same with other companies for Fall planting and it is not unusual for me to spend more than $2,000 when all purchases are combined. I enjoy Spring blooming bulbs VERY much! You might, thus, infer that my dealings with M & Z are not my major primary experience in purchasing bulbs. Of course, as an home gardener, I do not claim any expertise resulting from my experience. All I can report are my experiences. I must say that I am very disappointed with the recent obvious attempt to bolster ratings. For whatever reason M & Z felt the need to do this, it has backfired and that singular "neutral" rating probably hurts more than any negative. That being the case, I do not feel it necessary to include that in how I rate a company (If one studies the ratings, it becomes obvious that many companies, even some in the "Top 30" have resorted to this [or other such] attempts to help themselves....They just have not been caught.). As for my experiences with M & Z, I have always received a good quality product for a better than fair price. Shipping has not been a rip off and items have been sent on time and without problem. I typically do not purchase items from with in my state's borders, for the taxes combined with the shipping costs negate any savings that the merchant might offer (plus my state already taxes way to high for even living here). So, it says a lot that I continue to order Fall planted bulbs from M & Z . One particular thing that draws me to do business with M & Z is the large variety of the harder to find bulbs. Each year, I will spend a great deal with two or three companies that sell hard to find species priced per bulb. This gets very expensive. M & Z, quite frequently, offers larger quantities of these same bulbs at much more affordable prices. I cannot comment on their Spring planted material, for I have not ordered any from M & Z. Neither can I comment on their customer service when dealing with a problem, for there have been no problems. In summary, despite the experiences reported by others, I find otherwise, and I will continue to order from McClure & Zimmerman.
This company has serious labeling problems and doesn't learn from their mistakes. I ordered a cyclamineus daffodil named Marijke, planted it and up came a huge gold trumpet daffodil that I later identified as Marieke. Ordered Marijke the next year noting the mix up the year before, received my bulbs and low and behold up came giant trumpet Marieke again! The second order also included another wrongly labeled daffodil that was already in my collection. It annoys me to pieces to spend time and money planting bulbs that produce flowers that are not exhibition worthy flowers. I'd stick hot pins in my eyes before I'd order from them again.
reeve1 Plano, TX (Zone 8b) (40 reviews) February 24, 2011
I think when you see companies with reps like "Summerwynde" of McClure & Zimmerman purposely and deceptively falsifying postings on here in an attempt to boost their company's poor image rather than making an effort to be honest with people and honest with themselves, and improving public relations and perception through hard work and genuine customer care, well, it kind of speaks for itself. Who in their right mind would want to do business with someone who lies to your face on an open forum in order to deceive people about an experience they've had? It makes you wonder how many other positive ratings on here are legitimate for McClure and Zimmerman.
Truthfully, this used to be one of my premier "go-to" companies for top quality bulbs and somewhat hard to find plants. But, after Jung took ownership a few years ago as the parent company of McClure & Zimmerman, Roots and Rhizomes, and several other online plant nurseries and seed companies, the past performance and methods for conducting business for all these companies changed drastically and went noticably down the tubes. They've had nothing but complaints since this time and for good reason. I hope you don't have to experience this for yourself. Let the other bad experiences shared here be a sign for you that, in the case of McClure & Zimmerman, the grass IS probably greener on the other side.
Impressive selection, good quality bulbs. Have been a customer since 2007 and have never been disappointed.
Note from the Garden Watchdog editors:
It is the stated policy of the Garden Watchdog that companies can NOT pose as customers in submitting customer feedback to inflate their own rating. The rating, originally positive, was changed from positive to neutral so
Posted on June 15, 2003, updated October 26, 2010
I ordered a few bulbs from McClure and Zimmerman last year, since they had such a nice selection of fall blooming crocuses and some other things that are hard to find. Admit I was cautious and a bit skeptical, since I've had poor experiences with their sister company, Jung's, lately. But the bulbs were all VERY large (including some of the biggest daffodil bulbs I've seen in a long time) and healthy, and everything did quite nicely this spring. They even sent some nice little species tulips as an unexpected bonus. This company seems a little pricier than John Scheepers, which is my favorite bulb company, but a very good experience overall.On May 13th, 2005, AS added the following:
The spring planted bulbs I ordered this year were respectable but less impressive than the fall bulbs from a couple of years ago. The rain lilies, in particular, varied from fat, healthy-looking bulbs (white) to very small bulbs (pink). I would have thought this was just a difference in the variety, except that I later bought mixed rain lilies from Home Depot that were *all* much larger than the pink variety from McClure and Zimmerman. On July 26th, 2007, AS added the following:
My continuing impression is that their fall-planted bulbs are always wonderful, but the spring-planted bulbs can be hit or miss. My mother raved about the tulip bulbs I sent her last fall - huge bulbs and spectacular flowers. Of the summer-bloomers I planted last year, most were fine but the Spring Valley eremerus ranged from miniscule to acceptable (all much, much smaller than the eremerus I've planted from John Scheepers or White Flower Farm, and rather rubbery and dry.) The smallest, most shrivelled roots failed to come up at all, and none bloomed this year, though they probably will next year (again, Scheepers' eremerus have always bloomed first year for me). Their customer service was very responsive, and replaced the ones that didn't come up. On March 26th, 2008, AS added the following:
Last year was NOT a good year for them. Besides the sorry little eremerus, I also had two duds of begonias. One was a good-sized tuber that grew nicely and eventually bloomed - but it was some sort of upright begonia with horrible, coarse-looking, bright orange-red blooms, not the Champagne begonia I'd ordered. They sent me a refund after I contacted them. (That was probably the one and old begonia I've actually thrown out, it was so ugly.) The other begonia was a tiny little bulb, and still hadn't bloomed by the end of the summer, so I have no idea whether it was the right plant or not.
On the other hand, the bulbs I bought from them last fall are coming up beautifully. The earliest bulbs are starting to bloom - so far, they're gorgeous and true to name.On April 4th, 2009, AS changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:
Fall 2007 bulb order was, for the first time ever, a mixed bag. Most of the bulbs were nice and bloomed well, but I had some real duds of tulips - bulbs were small to start with, and too many came up with only a single leaf, instead of a flower and a couple of healthy leaves. Also one rather expensive lily was pretty pathetic. I can't continue to rate them positive. (btw, typo in last update - "...one and ONLY begonia I've thrown out." )On October 26th, 2010, AS changed the rating from neutral to positive and added the following:
Maybe last fall was just bad luck. I ordered from them this year, mostly because I wanted a few things Scheepers doesn't carry, and the bulbs were excellent. Absolutely enormous daffodils, fall crocuses that came up reliably already, and tulips that were about the same size as John Scheepers and Colorblends. One nice thing about buying fall crocuses, colchicum, etc from McClure and Zimmerman is that there's only one shipping/ handling charge even though they send those bulbs early, and send a second shipment with your tulips and daffodils later in the season.
I don't think I have the courage to try their spring-planted bulbs again (too hit or miss), but I'm adding them back to my list of reliable fall bulb suppliers.
I have ordered from this company over a period of several years and have found their products and customer service to be inconsistent. For the most part, bulbs and plants have been satisfactory, but at times what I have received were moldy bulbs in poor condition. An order I placed months ago contained, among bulbs I planted in the fall, six Louisiana iris, three of which arrived last week. The packing slip showed that the remaining iris are on back order, but gave no further information, i.e. when I could expect them to be shipped. I e-mailed the company asking when I might see the three remaining iris. After waiting a few days for a reply, today I received an e-mail response stating that their inventory was checked and this particular iris is no longer available. I was told that I would be receiving a refund on this part of my purchase. What bothers me is that no apology was given and the attitude of the employee who sent the e-mail was something on the order of, "Oh, well, we don't have this any longer." I consider this to be poor treatment of a customer, especially one who has spent lots of money over the years on MZ products. Another thing that bothers me is the fact that I had to contact MZ for details about the back order instead of THEM notifying me when they shipped the three available iris that they had no more inventory of the other variety. MZ lacks the customer service I have come to expect and receive from companies such as Forest Farm, Annie's Annuals, John Scheepers, High Country Gardens, and others. These are nurseries who treat their customers well and they are the companies I return to time and again for the products I want. I will not be doing business with MZ in the future.
bbrookrd Nantucket, MA (Zone 7a) (36 reviews) May 12, 2010
I have ordered a variety of spring bulbs for the last few years from McClure and Zimmerman. I have been most pleased with the quality and service. They have all thrived in my garden.
I did have a group of Hyacinth bulbs come up the wrong color this spring. But a quick email from me was answered immediately by them with the promise of a refund check . The check arrived a few days later, so I got great Customer Service from Linda.
I am always impressed with their selection of unusual Narcissus and Tulips and have found a couple of very special crocus through them. I now want an army of them. I will be placing with pleasure and confidence, my fall bulb order very soon with them this year Patti
I received one of McClure and Zimmerman's catalogs last summer. I saw that they had Cardiocrinum bulbs. I ordered one in early August '09 and check was promptly cashed. There was a note that indicated that these bulbs were imported and, if they were received too late in the year, one would be sent the following spring. Well, I never got the bulb last year and just recently I remembered that I was still waiting for a bulb as none was received. In any event, after e-mailing the company I was told that all of their stock was already sold out and my money would be sent back. While I give them high marks for getting back to me promptly with the e-mail question, I overall would give them a "negative grade" as (1) my order obviously got overlooked from prior year (!) and, (2) if I hadn't remembered to contact them, I would be out both money and bulb. One would tend to think that orders from prior year would have priority (as their own catalog noted).
I order many hundreds of dollars of nursery stock and seeds each year but I'll toss the catalog from these folks in the rubbish from now on.
bjohn1974 West Orange, NJ (5 reviews) April 14, 2010
In general my experience echoes that of may others. This company does have a nice selection but lackluster product and shipping quality.
I placed an order for a Paris Polyphylla bulb and a Blackberry Lily plant. I received both quickly (although they ship via USPS and you cannot track their orders). The Paris bulb was small and a little on the soft side and the plant was very small, with yellowed leaves, and several had been broken during planting.
I contacted customer service and they were quick to replace my order. Apparently though they are just brokers, not an actually nursery. Because of this, even though they requested a larger healthier Paris bulb and larger plant, they do not actually fulfill the orders themselves. The second plant that I received was about the same size as the first but at least did not have broken leaves. The Paris bulb though was even smaller and softer then the first and I honestly do not have high hopes that it will grow. I guess that I could contact them again for a replacement, but that seems redundant at this point.
If there was an option, my experience was probably more between a negative and neutral. I will see how these grow and possibly update in the future. Overall, I am not very impressed with M&Z and do not think I would order from them again. On the plus side, their prices do seem to be lower than average on many items.
ellieblue Colchester, VT (5 reviews) October 6, 2009
Received my order today and was really pleased with the size and quality of the bulbs. The dafs "little gem" were all very large and all were double nosed. What a surprise!
ufslouis Quakertown, PA (1 review) September 13, 2009
I placed an order on August 10th for 48 Crocus Sativus. The website said that they would be shipped by late August. It is now mid-September and I still have recived no shipment. After contacting the company several times I have still not recieved a reply regarding my order status. All I would have appriciated was an e-mail response letting me know what is going on.
I think that respondig to your customers concerns is the most simple form of business etiquite, particularly inlight of the fact that this was my first order from them. You never get a second chance to make a first impression. On September 19th, 2009, ufslouis added the following:
This is what stinks about this company. They sent me an email asking for my information. I responded with the order confrmation number that they sent me as well as the order conformation e-mail that they sent me. I guess that's not enough information for them to figure out what they are doing over there. Now I have to call them to get this sorted out. I work 15 hours a day and now I have to waste my time to help them do their jobs better. I should have listened to the reviews on here and avoided this company. Company representative comment on September 18, 2009: On Sep 18, 2009 4:13 PM, McClure & Zimmerman Quality Flowerbulb Brokers responded with:
We searched our records for an order placed for 48 Crocus Sativus in the Quakertown, PA area and could find none. We also could not locate an email inquiry from you either. There is a possibility that this internet order was not successfully received. Our website says these bulbs are released between late August through September timeframe. Please call 1-800-883-6998 and ask to speak with Mary, Customer Service Manager so she can assist you further.
We are extremely sorry for any frustration this has caused and are eager to help rectify the situation to your satisfaction.
McClure and Zimmerman are probably my FAVORITE company to order bulbs from. They deal in wholesale quantities, so I frequently order and then split with my gardening buddies.
I find their prices extremely reasonable, their bulbs have always been top quality and in good condition. I have never had a problem finding out when things are going to come, but I also have never had to deal with their customer service people because I send an order, they acknowledge it and tell me when it will come, it comes and I plant it.
I have over 80 varieties of daffodils, hundreds of crocuses in my lawn, snow drops, oriental lilies, species tulips, asiatic lilies, turks cap lilies, iris reticulata, hyacinths -- all from M&Z, all returning year after year. The miniature daffodils and species tulips I ordered last year are up now, the early tulips are blooming.
I couldn't be happier with this company and have turned several people on to them.On March 12th, 2009, EllieSmith added the following:
Oh, I forgot to mention that I have also ordered colchicums and autumn blooming crocuses from them that were beautiful when they arrived and performed fabulously.
I ordered over $100 worth of bulbs. Upon arrival the bulbs were undersized and moldy or desicated. I understand that mold may sometimes occur, however these did not grow after planting. The several cannas tubers I ordered arrived either dessicated or without growing eyes. These did not grow either. The dahlia came up stunted and "curly". I am a veteran gardener and have received awards for my landscape. My yard has been on garden tours so am not a "newbie". When I contacted the company and cancelled the rest of my order that was scheduled for later shipping they replied "We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused you. If we can be of any further help, or if you have questions or concerns, please feel free to contact our company." They credited me for the unsent plant material.
I've ordered many times over the years from this company without problem. I tend to order bulbs rather than bare root plants and typically order fall bulbs rather than spring bulbs. However, I've been thrilled to find a number of Pleione species through the years and all have arrived while dormant (best time to ship Pleiones) and have increased well over the years. Thanks McClure & Zimmerman!
helengh Flowery Branch, GA (1 review) November 12, 2008
Ordered Alliums about 200. Took a LONG time to ship like 2 months. They arrived as these tiny little things. 200 fit in one box 6 inches x 4 inches. Do you think they will bloom next year? The looked like mints. I reordered from Jung, their buddies, they shipped immediately and I received bulbs four times the size at a better price. Also ordered Japanese Iris from McClure, planted them immediately, all 3 promptly died, and got thrown out along with the McClure catalog.Company representative comment on November 12, 2008: On Nov 12, 2008 9:02 AM, McClure & Zimmerman Quality Flowerbulb Brokers added:
We are sorry you were unhappy with your order. Please contact us either here through d-mail or regular email you can use email@example.com so we can correct the problem.
Again we are sorry,
Over two years ago I ordered a couple of "Australia" canna tubers. They promptly shipped them and were in terrible condition when I received them (dried and without any obvious growth point). I did plant them but they didn't grow, (no surprise there). Customer service sent out a couple of more tubers, of which one grew (and turned out to be a Wyoming in coloration). "Either mislabled or not true" and was told it was too late to ship for last yr again, so waited till this yr. They reshipped, another totally dessicated tuber without growth points. Customer service said they'd ship another, then another letter came telling me that. "Sorry, it's too late in season to ship now". At this rate, even if they are honorable, it'd be years before they supply the desired product.! I cannot reccomend this company and in fact believe they are fraudulent and are not suppling products as advertised!
McClure and Zimmerman is another bulb resource I use every year. This year I ordered some Callas and 2 Monkey Puzzle trees. They were shipped on time for my area, and the trees were in wonderful, healthy shape. Out of the many bulbs, one was a little moldy, which usually isn't a problem, but it was also very soft.
I meant to email them right away (you should let a company know of any problems immediately), but a week or two slipped by until I finally emailed them. I received a quick apologetic email, and a fresh bulb shipped to me the next day. Great customer service in my book!
McClure and Zimmerman have a very good selection, often offering bulbs and plants no one else carries.
I recommend them strongly. I also recommend that you follow their advice on shipping- it's best if they ship the plants or bulbs to you when it is time to plant in your area. Don't try to jump the gun regarding the planting season!