Posted on December 27, 2010, updated April 22, 2012
I ordered a single apple tree this fall and requested a spring delivery. Much to my surprise it was delivered this fall. Unfortunately, it has been one of the colder December's that I can remember. The ground was frozen and remained frozen for several days as I was holding the tree. Finally, I purchased top soil, potting soil, and mulch and potted the tree in an old pot I had on-hand. I covered the pot with the mulch to prevent the root ball from freezing. The price of the tree was reasonable, however with the shipping and now the added expense of potting the tree will make it one of the most expensive fruit trees I have ever planted.
I have had to go to extreme measures before to get trees in the ground, but I have never had to pot one. I don't even know if the tree will survive. I was assured by a representative that if the tree did not survive it would be replaced.
I have not taken relating my experinece lightly. But, the more I thought about the aggrevation of dealing with a tree under the circumstances for reasons that were totally unnecessary, the more inclined I was to post this experience. On April 22nd, 2012, lupine changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
My tree was replaced this Spring. The tree was a whip with a nice root system. I set it out about three weeks ago and it is doing fine. I am pleased to say they kept their word to replace the tree. Therefore, I am changing my rating to positive.
I only ordered one tree (Wickson on MM111), and their communication was good, the tree arrived when they said it would, and the tree was of fine quality. The bud union was remarkably clean, and exceptionally well done.
It was only one tree, but I'm very happy with the quality of it.
derekoppen Charlottesville, VA (Zone 7a) (6 reviews) January 27, 2012
Pathetic. Chuck the manager has failed to respond for several years to emails and phone calls and orders. Today his sister said he would phone me. Silence. I don't know why they remain in business with this attitude to customers. Avoid.
Posted on November 29, 2010, updated December 23, 2010
Last fall we purchased close to $1000.00 worth of trees from Vintage Virginia Apples. We had visited the orchard and ciderworks and were very excited about their "local" operation and philosophy. We loved their classes as well- I took 2 of them. We were very excited about the heritage apples that they grow- some difficult if not impossible to find elsewhere. It is a very rapidly growing enterprise and we really want them to succeed. However, we have had problems which they don't respond to and which call for resolution. We had no problem with having calls or emails returned at the front end of the purchase. In fact Chuck spent quite a bit of time helping me select the trees.Our trees did not do well at all. I emailed them twice in July and got no response. So I called them and left a message. No response. I finally did talk to Charlotte who asked me to send a list of the dead trees. No response. So I called again and left a message. No response. I know that they are very busy and they work very hard. The last thing I want to do is develope a negative relationship with them, especially as we are local. But I just don't know how to get them to address or even respond to the problems. I see a couple of issues. One, they do not guarantee their trees in any way. While they have every right to do this, they should say so up front. They charge more than some nurseries and I have yet to deal with any other nursery that did not guarantee their stock, even at a lower price. Their advertising implies that they strive to do a better job than most and it does seem to be a class act- so why not stand behind their product? I realize that trees die for many reasons and I can appreciate that this can be a problem for nursery folk if they are dealing with unscrupulous gardeners. We are good and lifelong gardeners and were very attentive to our young trees. I make the assumption that since they do not respond, they do not feel there is any responsibility on their part. I think if they want their customers to take responsibility for at least some of the failures, they should be willing to do the same. A second problem that I see is that they dig the trees and ship them without holding them over winter in dormancy. At first, we thought this sounded like a better idea as well, and it was part of what we thought made them "better". However, in retrospect, I'm not sure that it's not part of the reason why ours did so poorly. By the time you get them, depending on the weather, which varies wildly in central Virginia, it can be past optimal planting time here and certainly in more northern areas. Last fall was very wet and the winter was very cold. They dug them( some while we waited and completely bareroot) Thanksgiving weekend and I'm not sure they were actually dormant. While failures are usually neither 100% either parties fault, this is part of why good nurseries stand behind their product. It protects their reputation and allows people to buy with confidence. I would not purchase from them again without a guarantee. I do hope that I get a response and positive resolution and will certainly upgrade to positive if they do, and negative if they do not. I would have loved to have resolved this without resorting to a review- I don't think I've ever written one before. But I'm not sure how one can accomplish that if they don't answer emails and phone calls.On December 23rd, 2010, hforchard changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:
Well, it is now December 23rd, 2010 and no response to phone calls, emails and I even made an order for replacements with a detailed comment on the order form hoping that they would have to see that and respond. No response. I just don't know what to say about a company that does not respond to any form of communication and does not back up their products.
rtucker607 Covington, VA (7 reviews) March 16, 2010
The apple tree and root stock arrived in perfect shape. They were all well rooted and I found this company very easy to deal with and most helpful.
VA_Gardener Glen Allen, VA (9 reviews) February 11, 2010
Purchased antique 4 peach and 2 apple trees. All had good root systems and have done well. They have one of the largest selections of old varieties of apple trees I have ever seen. Have taken their grafting and pruning courses at their nursery, that were taught by experienced people in these fields. Very satisfied and would recommend their trees and courses to anyone.
angelfood Talking Rock, GA (6 reviews) March 3, 2008
I ordered a large variety of fruit trees and was completely satisfied with my order when it arrived. This company was wonderful to deal with, very professional and really nice folks. I'll be back next year!
I had very good experience with their online ordering in terms of quality of trees, delivery, etc. However I have sent them quite a few emails that I never heard anything at all back on .. nothing. I finally found I needed to call them to get a response.
Scott On August 5th, 2008, scottfsmith changed the rating from neutral to positive and added the following:
I got another excellent quality tree from them this spring, and once I learned not to count on email have found them very responsive by phone. I am upping my rating to positive.
Ordered on-line, delivered clean, healthy trees with good roots on the rootstock I desired. Wide variety of types of apples - only source I found for some trees. Good e-mail communication. A little pricey for larger quantities, but they provided good value and hard to find stock. An excellent source for heritage and cider apple varieties and information.