Over the years I've sent for mail order plants from a lot of nurseries, but never before have I received plants that were packed with such care as the ones Crownsville Nursery sent. I'm impressed! Their ferns and perennials are healthy and vigorous and look ready to take off growing once released from their pots.
ljrwilliams annapolis, MD (Zone 7b) (1 review) June 1, 2015
I love this nursery and have been ordering from them every year for ten years. I've only had the best experiences. I have ordered from many other companies and Crownsville Nursery wins in every way. The plants are beautiful, well rooted and lush. The packing is amazing - I've never received a damaged plant. The prices are excellent and the shipping costs are honestly reasonable. I only wished they offered a larger selection so I never needed to deal with anyone else.
Excellent plant material, expertly packaged. Would not hesitate to recommend this nursery!
kkirschbaum Yonkers, NY (Zone 6b) (27 reviews) May 19, 2011
I recently had a very nice experience with this nursery, and I realized that although I first ordered plants by mail from them in 2007, I never posted a review. As noted, I've ordered from them a few times before, generally once per year. In the past, my orders were usually in the autumn. I was never displeased with any of the plants, but as sometimes happens with fall planting and mail order plants that are cut back to fit in a box, some things I ordered never took. I never lodged a complaint or mentioned this to the nursery, because I rather feel that once the plants have arrived safely and withstood their trip, any failure is fate, weather, or myself. My orders from them were always just a few plants, so leaving a review just slipped my mind. I wan't unhappy -- everything was exactly as it should be -- but there wasn't anything out of the ordinary positive either. Just a good, solid, responsible nursery with an interesting and unusual selection of plants. In the last two years I've simply become so busy that I tend not to leave reviews unless there is something egregious to comment on.
2011 was the first year that I placed an order with Crownsville in the spring, mainly because I've wanted to order Strobilanthes atropurpurea several times in the past and by fall they are usually sold out. I have not found other mail order nurseries offering this plant, so this year I made a point to order from Crownsville early in the season rather than late. They also offered a plant I tried to buy at my local native plant sale last year, but then fell victim to a crop failure -- Porteranthus trifoliatus 'Pink Profusion'. As luck would have it, I found a few more tempting things to order as well. Then, about a month after my initial order, I became interested in native Delphinium exaltatum, and added that to my order via email rather than putting a formal order through the site and having to key all my info in again. Crownsville very kindly agreed and offered that I could pay the additional cost by check after receiving the plants in the spring.
My plants arrived yesterday, and sure enough there was a note on the packing slip that I owed $24 and change for the delphinium late addition. I immediately sent the check, but I have to say that I was impressed that they would do such a thing. It seems so decent -- something more like a real human-run small business rather than a faceless corporate entity. I have the feeling that Crownsville doesn't have a "customer service department" but that the owner (or maybe a small dedicated group) wears all hats.
As long and drawn out as this review is, the most important element is really saved for last. I was really blown away by how nice all the plants looked at this time of year. Almost all were not pruned back for shipping, which I HUGELY like, because I think the plant will put energy into settling into the garden rather than also putting energy into replacing pruned away foliage. This was especially nice for something like Solomon's seal (part of my order), which is essentially tuberous and relies on the stored energy to get a good start in the spring. Some plants, like Chelonopsis yagihara, were lush and full. Only the Strobilanthes was cut back for shipping, and I hope it will recover quickly. The pots are a nice size, and the packing was superb -- not a pot or even soil was out of place.
I notice that Crownsville does not pop up as a nursery having a plant if you search the plantfinder on Davesgarden, which is too bad because they have a number of unusual items especially in the salvia and acanthus department. When I search for hard to find perennials, I try to remind myself to look here. Crownsville has a well curated selection of plants. Some are not that rare, some are quite unusual -- you get the sense that they grow what they personally like and are interested in. I've tried to establish Chelonopsis in my current garden from other nurseries but have not had luck - I feel very optimistic about this batch from Crownsville because the specimens are so lush. I think the specimens are better than what I'd get from a comparable nursery. If you find anything tempting in their offerings, they are well worth trusting.
dirthound Cohocton, NY (19 reviews) April 22, 2011
Posted on May 8, 2008, updated April 22, 2011
First order with them, ordering heucheras.E-mailed time they would be sent, came in excellent shape, packing very good, on time.Only wish they had bigger selection.On July 14th, 2009, dirthound added the following:
Received order in June 09,same exceptional plants and service. Suggest Bluestone order to see shipping and ditch
packing peanuts. Do not hesitate to order from Crownsville!!On April 22nd, 2011, dirthound added the following:
Same old story, packing, communication,plants, as always ,were excellent.
I've been ordering from Crownsville for over 10 years. Their plants are beautiful and their customer service is outstanding (I've always had a response to an e-mail with 24 hours). Their plants are packed so well that, despite the box flipping out of the mail carrier's hands and landing upside-down on the pavement (as I watched in horror from an upstairs window), not a leaf was damaged. They always seem to offer something "ahead of the curve" -- before the plant becomes readily available at local nurseries; e.g, I had Ceratostigma plumbagonoides (plumbago) and Veronica peduncularis 'Georgia Blue' well-established in my garden long before I started seeing them offered for sale locally. And their sales do offer "great plants at great prices" -- especially the mid-winter one. A true pleasure to deal with!
winterfox Stratham, NH (1 review) September 4, 2010
I rarely shop online due to some previous poor experiences.
I placed 1 order and was so pleased that when I discovered that they had a sale on, ordered some more perennials.
i'm very pleased with the quality of the plants in the 1 qt. pots, and the swift delivery.
I ordered from this company last year. The plants were large and very robust. Packed with care and shipped quickly. I would order again and recommend them to friends.
Debsroots Northwest, MO (Zone 5a) (25 reviews) May 31, 2009
My first order with Crownsville Nursery and I am very pleased. The plants I received were wonderfully packed, I am very happy with the size of the plants, and pleased with the pricing. I placed my order over Memorial Day weekend and received my plants within 4 days of placing the order. Very impressive.
As always, a pleasure to buy from. I've been buying from Crownsville Nursery for years and I've never been disappointed. Each year, including this year, my plants have arrived when I requested and in excellent health. Their prices are very reasonable and although they don't have as large a selection of plants as some other online nurseries, what they do offer is sometimes difficult to find at other nurseries.
Hi, I have ordered from them for years. I have been happy with my perennial/shrub orders every time. I just finished placing my 2009 order. It's easy to place an online order. The plants you receive are in large pots, well rooted with top growth. The way they pack, the plants are never damaged during shipping. The webpage has good pictures and is easy to navigate. If they have what you want, you'll be happy. The offerings change each year. They should be in the top 30 of Garden Watchdog.
tinga Queens Village, NY (6 reviews) October 16, 2008
I ordered 6 different anemone's at half price. When they arrived, due to an emergency I did not get them into the ground for almost 3 weeks, yet because they were in 1 qt pots, they survived quite nicely, and have begun flowering this first season!
They were extremely well packed and very strong plants. I have just ordered some more perennials from them and will order some more things next Spring. As someone who has ordered from many, many online retailers, I can recommend Crownsville.
dodges7 Alna, ME (Zone 5b) (9 reviews) August 1, 2008
Ordered nine plants - all ferns. Received in three days. Plants were as large, or larger, than any other nursery I've ordered from. Packing was excellent with no damage whatsoever on any plant. Will definitely order from them again.
dpl9222 Dexter, MO (Zone 6b) (8 reviews) July 12, 2008
I just received my first plant order from Crownsville Nursery. I am very pleased with the appearance of the plants. I ordered Agastache and Echinacea. Superb packing, best I've seen in mail order. I haven't planted yet, giving them a couple days to adjust to weather conditions. I ordered after reading reviews on this site and glad that I did. I 'm sure that I will order from them again.
This nursery had come highly recommended to my by some very important in the plant growing circles. I got all excited, until I discovered that they do not ship plants to California..( as well as AK, AZ, HI,ID, MT, NM, NV, OR, UT, WA, WY.)
So few of the thousands of DG gardeners wishing to buy plant at the highly recommended mail order house will only be able to view their plants and order them elsewhere.
This was my first order with Crownsville nursery and through a web search I found that they had a plant I wanted Agave Virginica Spot. To reach their minumum I had to purchase additional plants which was easy to do. The plants arrived big and healthy and packed well. Unfort natly the package was crushed by UPS and the victim of course was the agave. It was snapped right at the base. Not crownsville fault at all and as I was repotting I discovered three pups so I was of course very happy. I will definatly add them to my yearly catalog purchases
Plants were healthy and good sized, although a bit droopy. Shipping was fast. This was my second purchase from the company. I'm pretty satisfied, all in all.
sarazen Glen Rock, PA (Zone 6b) (6 reviews) April 18, 2008
I ordered three heuchera from them this spring. When they arrived, they were big robust plants, and have been the best I have gotten via mail order so far. They were also the best price I found on this variety to boot! I'm really happy with both the company and the plants, and I would definitely buy from them again.
cedar18 Lula, GA (Zone 7b) (3 reviews) November 17, 2007
My first mail order of plants other than bulbs in years -- and it turned out very well. I was able to buy a small Cotinus that I could not find locally. All the plants were in containers and well packed.
Excellent email communication re: status. Order arrived in 2 days, standard shipping. I was impressed and will order again.
jenagain Catonsville, MD (2 reviews) September 14, 2007
I've been on a fall sale ordering spree and placed an order with Crownsville for some Lewisia and Pulmonaria. The plants were the best packed mail order plants I've ever gotten. All the plants look very healthy and the Pulmonaria in particular were of an excellent size.
I just received my first order from Crownsville and each plant was lovingly packaged and in great condition with new growth. Their plants are very good sized, reasonably priced and shipping was also very reasonable. Their communication was excellent regarding a couple days delay in shipping out the plants because "we want to avoid plants sitting in a hot UPS truck over a weekend" (love that!) The plants still came fairly quickly after I placed the order. I will order from this company again. Definitely.
I am a Master Gardener and as such I have ordered plants through other nurseries in the past. Many of these nurseries had very high ratings on Garden Watchdog and I was very disappointed with the quality of the plants, often very small and in terrible shape and with the nursery's customer sevice. I just ordered and received three plants from Crownsville Nursery. The plants arrived within 3 days, were very well packed and are extremely hardy. Additionally, their customer service was excellent. I highly recommend Crownsville Nursery and will order from them again in the future.
I ordered three veronica blue Georgia Speedwell plants in late March. They were considerably more expensive than the local nursery.
I received them just after the spring "freeze" and planted them right away.
all three plants died. I have tried to contact the company, which wasn't all that easy to find again.
They have not responded to my e-mails asking for a refund; I have even offered to return the dead plants.
When I call their non-toll-free number, I get a message asking for my phone number, but that's not gonna happen. (Once it's out there, it's OUT there)
Things just should not be this difficult for an old lady!
Never again--I would not recommend. Caveat emptor!
nanny_56 Putnam County, IN (Zone 5b) (20 reviews) April 25, 2007
I placed my order online in January. Found their website very easy to use. I ordered 7 different Echinaceas. Their prices are very reasonable and found the shipping charges to also be reasonable.
The order shipped 4-22 and I received it 4-25, so excellent delivery time. Top of box was a little dented which had me concerned. But, when I opened it, I was pleasantly surprised. No plant damage what so ever. 3 were very nice size plants, 3 more nice size that I expected, and the last was small. It is also the very shortest variety, so that probably accounts for the small size.
I would definitely order from Crownsville Nursery again.On July 6th, 2007, nanny_56 added the following:
This is an update to say that all the plants have had tremendous growth so far. 4 or in bloom and have been for a couple of weeks now. The other 3 have flower buds getting ready to open. Very pleased with Crownsville and would recommend them!
pinnae Silver Spring, MD (5 reviews) April 23, 2007
Five stars. On par with past orders, the most recent delivery from Crownsville contains nothing less than large, well-grown, vigorous plants anxious to take off in the garden. I have ordered from numerous mail-order sources (including many of the Garden Watchdog Top 30) over the course of 30+ years as a professional horticulturist; the consistent high quality of Crownsville's material makes them my first choice every time. Prompt shipping at reasonable rates (gratis if $250+), good communication.
Now, if they would just expand their selection to include more of the rare and exotic, I'll remove that last scrap of turf to accomodate.
ppiper Rockville, MD (Zone 6b) (3 reviews) April 15, 2007
I placed my first order with Crownsville Nursery in spring of this year using their website. The website was easy to navigate and contained useful information about the products offered. I ordered several Heuchera 'Hollywood' and received a prompt e-mail confirmation of my order and estimated shipping date based on my plant zone. My order arrived within the time period Crownsville had estimated in my order confirmation.
I have, over the years dealt with several mail order nurseries. I do not exagerate when I say that the plants I received from Crownsville were the most conscientiously packaged nursery shipment I've ever received. If you have mail ordered nursery stock before then you know that no matter how exotic or unique the plant material may be -- if they are poorly packed and shipped it can make or break your joy in receiving them.
Each of the heucheras were identified with their Terra Nova plant stakes. They are large, vigorous plants. I got them into the ground the day after receiving them and they look just great interplanted with some 'Sparkling Burgundy' heucheras. I will certainly order from Crownsville again and encourage all serious gardeners to give them a try!
The plants that came this week from Crownsville were beautiful---green, lush, healthy, larger than I expected,
Crownsville also offers very good value. Their plants are larger than most mail order nurseries, and their shipping rates are modest. For some very nice plants, they offer a reduced price if purchased in groups of three.
I ordered a number of Euphorbia characias. Not only were they about a foot tall, but they are very full and well developed. The Heuchera Caramel were beautiful, bursting with new leaves, and larger than any Heuchera I have seen in mail order plants.
The Acanthus 'Summer Beauty' is stunning. It is very full, and arrived without so much as a broken branch.! This is, in my opinion, an exceptionally beautiful Acanthus, and can be hard to find.
The customer service at Crownsville is excellent. Orders are confirmed via e-mail almost immediately. I actually made three changes to my order, and these changes were cheerfully made.
I am totally pleased with my first order from this company. I have never seen such great packaging. Plants arrived as if they had just been potted up. Unbelievable !! I highly recommend anyone to consider purchasing from Crownsville !!
clairew Chestnut Hill, MA (3 reviews) October 15, 2006
This nursery packs its plants more carefully than any other place I have ordered from. For the past several years I have ordered a few times a season. All the plants I have tried (ferns, astilbe, lobelia, some small shrubs) have been beautiful. By that I mean healthy and good size for the price. I have also purchased a number of their specials, which I have found to be of particularly good value. Communications are good and shipping is fast. Have also ordered from the related Bridgewood Gardens with similar satisfaction!
There is something to be said for small business. I have repeat ordered from Crownsville and everytime I have received very nice plants, and great customer service. There prices are better than most and each plant has been a great value in my estimation. Try them, you won't be sorry.
I ordered from Crownsville because of all the favorable comments here. They have excellent, responsive customer service. Would definitely order from again.
rucereus Carpentersville, IL (Zone 5a) (14 reviews) April 28, 2006
Received my plants yesterday. One word, AWESOME.
Was a little disappointed that the heuchera caramel is back ordered for 2-3 weeks,but the plants I did receive were well packed and very healthy.On May 11th, 2007, rucereus added the following:
I hope I have bettter luck than happyhannah. I just e-mailed crownsville to let them know that 5 of the plants I received last April failed to return. 2 echinacea twilight and all 3 gaillardia oranges and lemons. I won't change my rating until I hear from themOn May 14th, 2007, rucereus added the following:
On Mayt 12th I was sent an e-mail from Crownsville explaining that they could not replace my plants, but would send me a refund check. Now that's what I call good customer service. I would not hesitate to order from them again. The quality of their plants and the great customer service is the best I've experienced.
CT_Ohio Millfield, OH (Zone 6a) (4 reviews) April 23, 2006
I placed my first order to Crownsville this year after seeing my daughter's order last year. I have ordered from a number of mail-order nurseries, including some of the very pricey premier mail-order companies, and have to say that this was one of the most positive experiences I have had, . Packing is outstanding with no broken leaves or decaying foliage. Plants are quite large and considering the prices, a tremendous bargain. Staff was very easy to deal with. Try 'em, you'll like 'em!
received small order from crownsville today (only four days after ordering online) and i am very impressed. communication from the company was very good; the plants were perfect and an excellent size; the packing was simple and completely effective.
as a professional gardener and grower i deal with a lot of seed and plant businesses and i could not be more pleased with crownsville...they make most of the companies i have dealt with in the past seem like amatures.
crownsville should be in the watchdog top 30.
nutmegnana Adamstown, MD (Zone 6b) (9 reviews) April 13, 2006
I have ordered from Crownsville three times, my most recent order was received last week. I had placed the order onlin in mid-March and promptly received an email saying that they start shipping to my zone in April. Their packing is impressive and the plants always arrive in excellent condition and are very healthy. I have never bought anything there that didn't make it. Their website is always the first place I check when looking for a particular plant. If they have it, that's where I buy it. I highly recommend them for healthy plants packed and shipped so they arrive timely and in excellent condition.
Great company! Each of my experiences with Crownsville Nursery has been positive. First ordered from them sometime between 1997 to 1999. I decided last year to mainly grow plants that attract Hummingbirds and Butterflies in my garden. Placed my second order Spring 2005 and all the plants were healthy and great. Packed well too. My third and fourth orders are coming this Spring. I'm so excited! Love all their selections on Salvias, Agastaches, Echinaceas and Heucheras. Love their website, service and plants! I highly recommend this company!On May 4th, 2006, Marilynbeth added the following:
Another order arrived today, with the 'Twilight' coneflower as back order. Plants came very healthy looking and were packed well. Expecting another order in 2 weeks, will report back regarding them.On May 24th, 2006, Marilynbeth added the following:
On May 17, I received two of the 3 Echinaceas (Harvest Moon and Sunset) that I had ordered to be shipped Monday, May 15. Today, May 24 I received the third one (Twilight) that they stated was "backordered". All three plants were planted the same day that I received them & they looked great when opening the boxes. I'm looking forward to seeing all three of them in bloom this summer! On May 24th, 2006, Marilynbeth added the following:
Oops, I was wrong! LOL! The first two arrived here on May 4, not May 17. Just wanted to state
dax080 Cedar Rapids, IA (Zone 5a) (3 reviews) February 20, 2006
LOVE this company - have ordered from them for the past two years, and have been extremely pleased with size, health, and condition of plants that I have received. I've only seen one other company pack as well as they do - Bridgewood Gardens - their sister Hosta company. Last year I ordered so early that when they were processing, they had trouble with the credit card I was using (I had dropped the account). They called personnally and we got it taken care of immediately. Great service! I'm just getting ready to order again, and wanted to put this rating on DG before I forgot. -
xjnc West Harrison, NY (9 reviews) October 21, 2005
Received very nice quart pots echinaccea Hope nicely packed. Would definately order again