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The scoop on 'Plant Delights Nursery'

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  Company Profile  
Plant Delights Nursery

Mailing Address:
9241 Sauls Road
Raleigh, North Carolina 27603 (United States)

Phone: (919) 772-4794
Fax: (919) 662-0370

Catalog Order Page: Hyperlink
Paper Catalog Cost: Free

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Recent reviews:
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Positive 0 2 2
Neutral 0 1 2
Negative 4 7 7
This company offers a variety of plants.

This company specializes in:

  Company Comment, posted on December 12, 2011:  
Since 1988, Plant Delights Nursery has been the choice of serious gardeners and plant collectors looking for the best and rarest perennial plants. We are pleased to have received the Perennial Plant Association Retail Award in 2011, the American Horticulture Society Commercial Award in 2002, and to have been selected as one of the Best Mail Order Plant Sources - Garden Design Magazine 2010. Welcome to our family of plant lovers!

  Feedback History and Summary  
294 positives
26 neutrals
42 negatives

Comments:

Displaying the 50 most recent comments:

RatingAuthorContent
Negative knoxgal
Knoxville, TN
(4 reviews)
May 21, 2017
I ordered 7 plants at an average price of $18 per plant. Of these 7 plants only 4 were in average to good condition, the other 3 looked diseased.

I contacted them and told them about my problem. They did get back to me quickly but said I should plant them and then contact them again if the plants didn't recover.

I told their Customer Service agent that their plants were expensive and if I had known the poor quality of plants I would receive, I would never have purchased them.

As instructed, I planted them to see if they will recover. However, I planted them in large containers because if they are diseased I don't want to pass the problem on to my other plants.

I will update this if the plants recover and are healthy, but the fact remains their prices are much too high to send such low quality plants.
Negative Tiaramisu
West Hatfield, MA
(2 reviews)
May 15, 2017
First time ordering from them, Didn't ship one of the plants I'd ordered three of in the winter and now in May I will not be able to source them. An apology or advance notice would have been nice, but the only communication I got was a brief refund notice with no explanation. I had outstanding products I was waiting for from them, and additionally had just ordered another item before I realized that order with the three plants was inexplicably cancelled. I asked them to cancel all open orders. Not only did they not respond, they promptly charged my card and shipped anyway. Won't buy from them again.
Negative haika
Snohomish, WA
(14 reviews)
May 9, 2017
I admit that some of the plants on offer are difficult or impossible to locate elsewhere, which can lead the plant addict down the path of despair if they receive the type of package I received on 4/27/17. I've ordered roughly 18 times or so over the years, and results have been mixed. To start the tally of bad-things-happening-from-Plant-Delights, I received a package containing Trilliums etc in 2016 that was packed in a way that allowed most of the soil and labels to jostle out of the pots. I opened the box to a mess but could re-ID most of the plants except for 2 Trilliums. I immediately contacted Plant Delights and was told that they were experimenting with packaging strategies and that I should wait until the Trilliums bloomed to re-ID. Based on the rhizome size, that could have taken years, so I was not comfortable with that answer. We ended up coming to a mutually agreeable solution and I moved on. I made several more orders after that without problem. Then, on 4/27/17 I received another order in a similar state....unlabeled plants upended in a mess of soil and labels. This time I ended up with 2 Asarums I could not match up with the appropriate label. I also ended up with an unlabeled Trillium but, because I'd only ordered ONE Trillium, I could re-ID it. However, it was basically unpotted (I could see the dormant rhizome in the pot) in a mess of very wet, mucky substrate. I cleaned it off since I was afraid it had started to rot in the muck, but it was firm so I repotted it in a substrate more suitable for my condition. I have another T. underwoodii in tight bud so I was surprised at the dormant stage of this rhizome. But, I can deal with that if it's not a rotted mess. Another worry. I immediately contacted Plant Delights by e-mailing them using the plant order e-mail address on their website. No response. I e-mailed them again on 5/3/17 using the address on the invoice for plant order problems. No response to date. Luckily, I uploaded the photos of the mystery Asarums with 2 potential IDs to FB Planet Asarum and got some useful hints to matching up the plant with the loose labels....but no guarantees till they bloom (sound familiar??). Plant Delights has not provided any response to the ID problem OR the packaging issues. The other issue preventing me from further orders is the recent increase in shipping charges. In 2016 I was able to order 3 plants with shipping $28.75. Now the price breakdown for my area is $40.50 for 1-6 plants. I cannot justify further purchases from a nursery that does not provide adequate customer service, does not respond in a reasonable time (at least last time they DID) to problems, charges very high prices for both plants and shipping, even though I see plants I feel I can't live without. I'll just wait until local collectors or specialty nurseries bring in similar plants (sigh). By the way, when the $50+ plants I received in dormancy never appear and I e-mail them asking what to look for etc, I've rarely gotten any response. And if you look at their fine print about replacements etc. for problems reported AFTER 7 days, they indicate that if the same plant is doing well in THEIR nurseries, it's the buyers fault even though the nursery plants have not gone through a potentially disruptive shipping process. Yep....I really think I'm DONE with them.
Negative Marleneboegli
Loveland, OH
(2 reviews)
May 3, 2017
I splurged and ordered two flowering gingers from Plant Delights. Gingers are slightly difficult, and twice I have bought plants that turned out to be the wrong cultivar, and deeply disappointing. So I spent a bunch of money to a company I trusted to send me the correct cultivar. They were listed as being in three quart pots, so it seemed I would get fairly large plants. I did not. One was the smallest possible division, the other only slightly larger. They had been freshly shaved from a parent plant, potted in a huge pot, wrapped and shipped. Shipping must have been brutal, because both plants were shaken until almost all the soil was loose in the box, and both the plants have broken stems. I have emailed PD, and so far have not had any sort of response. I believe the plants were obscenely over priced, there is NO justification for up potting to that size, let alone what must have been the day of shipping. I paid more for shipping two big pots of soil than for either plant. I do not believe either plant will bloom this year, they are so small. So for close to eighty dollars I have two huge pots of soil, and two fresh divisions with broken stems. They will probably live, but I am deeply dissatisfied, and after reading the comments I am wondering if I will even get a response. If I do I will update this review.
Negative pterostyrax
Seattle, WA
(4 reviews)
April 25, 2017
Posted on April 13, 2017, updated April 25, 2017
Great plant selection, and I would be willing to pay their premium prices if the plants were premium quality. But very disappointed in quality and customer service. One of my half-dozen plants arrived completely decapitated. Two were tiny and both had their single stems broken, in one case by a piece of cardboad packing that was supposed to be a divider but had been pressed down on the tiny plant\'s neck (!). I wrote to complain but more than a week later have heard nothing from them.
On April 25th, 2017, pterostyrax added the following:

It is now three weeks since I complained, and I still have heard nothing. The two puny little plants did not make it. I doubt the one with the broken-off foliage will bloom this year.
Positive Mid12nt
Stone Mountain, GA
(11 reviews)
April 24, 2017
Posted on April 26, 2012, updated April 24, 2017
Ordered cat thyme and White Surprise Caryopteris, received call from Diane that due to weather damage the caryopteris was no longer available, but that I could substitute another plant, which I did (a form of Salvia Guarantica). All plants arrived when I requested very healthy and larger in size than expected.

Great customer service, very proactive in preventing customer dissatisfaction. As always, I\'m glad to be a customer and highly recommend them.

One sad note, my cat loved the cat thyme too much and in rubbing all over it, he broke almost all its branches.
On April 24th, 2017, Mid12nt added the following:

It's 2017 and I have received my order from Plant Delights, more Cat Thyme (the cats always eventually find and either crush it to oblivion or devour it, which requires me to buy more), and some variegated Dutchman's Pipe. The plants arrived in excellent health and of a very good size.

Although expensive, Plant Delights offers plants I can't easily find elsewhere, and I know when I buy from them, the plants will be of good size and good health.
Negative Fimiano
Minneapolis, MN
(1 review)
April 17, 2017
I really wanted to like this place: good catalog, great selection of plants...BUT I spent > $700.00 on plants, and hardly any of them are still alive.Oh, I called and complained, and they offered to replace a couple and give me a small credit, but I still feel I got screwed. 1.) plants sent are puny-little teeny starter plants 2.) culture and zone info are not accurate- plants listed for my zone 10 couldn't take the heat. 3.) WAY overpriced. The reason I shopped with them was to obtain varieties not available at local nurseries, but what a waste of my money. And, by the way, I have a huge, thriving garden... with the exception of Plant Delights stock.
Neutral Timden
(1 review)
February 10, 2017
I usually order a couple hundred dollars each year (last 3yrs) but upon receiving their most recent catalog i will not be a returning customer ...

It's really not smart to mix business and politics.
Seeing your un-American defamation of President Trump in your plant catalog is just really super dumb on your part.

Way to alienate 50% of your business.
I support and voted for Trump and proud of it.
Positive keithwadams
Angier, NC
(1 review)
January 25, 2017
unlike the vast majority of people commenting on here, I buy in person on open house days as I live only 15 miles from PDN. That being said the best part about PDN is being able to visit their display gardens, and view in person all the plants for sale on the grounds and in greenhouses and being able to talk to their staff. And I might add, their display garden is amazing..... Never ordered and got deliveries via mail so I cant comment about that...
Negative MikeRath
Austin, TX
(1 review)
December 3, 2016
Posted on August 16, 2016, updated December 3, 2016
I made my first order with Plant Delights (PD) about 2 months ago. I am happy that they have a wide selection of hard to find plants. I am disappointed however that the plants depicted on PD\'s website and their catalogs are fully grown and the ones you actually receive are very small in comparison. There is no indication of the plants\' sizes other than that the ones I ordered were coming in 3 1/2\" pots.

I am happy with the 7-8\" across Agave ovatifolia \'Vanzie\' and Agave nickelsiae plants I received in terms of health and size. However the most expensive plant purchased -- a $35 rare Agave \'Shark Bite\' -- is only a 3\" across pup. Also the Echinacea \'Pixie Meadowbrite\' flower plant I received is only a 4\" juvenile plant that may take a year or more to mature and flower. I would not have purchased the latter 2 plants for the prices I paid if I had known they were baby to juvenile plants.

I also purchased a Yucca curnea -- which was larger than I expected (12\" leaves) -- but within a week its center leaves died which killed the plant. PD did send me a replacement though after i sent them pictures. Where I work they have dozens of these same yucca plants and they are very hit and miss -- some die and some flourish in the exact same soil and sunlight conditions.

I just received a Fall 2016 PD catalog and on page 5 there is a 3/4ths of a page large picture of a 18\" tall Agave lophantha \'Quadricolor\'. The plant description also describes an 18\" tall x 2\' wide plant. I know the plant you actually receive will not be that large -- which is misleading. PD should describe accurate plant sizes and show inset pictures of an example of the actual size plants you will be receiving like most sellers do on EBay and other websites. Just showing professional pictures of mature plants gives buyers no idea what size plant they will be.

Overall I am very happy with some of my plants and less so with others. They all arrived healthy and neatly packaged by FedEx. Accurate pictures of what size plants you will be receiving and buyer reviews (as Yucca Do Nursery allows on their website) would let buyers make more informed buying decisions and know what they are actually going to get.
On December 3rd, 2016, MikeRath changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:

Plant Delights plant sizes and pictures listed are false and misleading. My $18 Echinacea Pixie Meadowbrite advertised as 34" and pictured with blooming flowers was actually about 3" tall with no flowers and died within 4 months in part shade. My $14 Sempervivum 'Unicorn' died within 4 months in part shade. My $35 Agave 'Shark Bite' advertised as being 11" tall and pictured as a fully grown plant is in reality a fragile 3 1/2" pup (baby plant). It has lost 2 of it's 5 tiny leaves and hasn't grown at all since I purchased 6 plants which arrived July 3, 2016. My $19 Agave ovatifolia 'Vanzie' and $19 Agave nickelsiae have each lost about 5 of their 12 leaves have barely grown and are much smaller than the advertised pictured plants. My 1st $19 Yucca cernua was dead on arrival and was replaced by Plant Delights but the replacement plant does not look healthy. Going into Austin's comparatively mild winter I'm not confident that any of the remaining 4 of my 6 plants purchased at Plant Delights will survive. Buyers beware: Plant Delights sells plants that are much smaller than advertised and not suited for hot climates such as Texas. I will be buying locally from now on.
Neutral BJames1
Elizabeth City, NC (Zone 8a)
(14 reviews)
June 19, 2016
Plants are small and very expensive. Recent marketing shenanigans have been a big deterrent from supporting company. Good educational resource that has taken a turn to the dark side.
Positive Gortom
Santa Cruz, CA
(1 review)
May 26, 2016
I ordered 9 plants from this company - three different kinds of flowering maples and hellebores that I couldn't find locally. The plants arrived in about a week. Was impressed with how well they were packed. All plants were in good shape even after being shipped across the country! The flowering plants all had buds and blooms on them. A brochure about caring for plants after unpacking, as well as return policy and contact information was thoughtfully included. Very good overall.
Positive PhillyLover
Philadelphia Suburbs, PA (Zone 7a)
(11 reviews)
April 21, 2016
Returning customer. Ordered several perennials. Shipped on time, packed well for shipping. Most plants were a good size for the container except Amsonia Georgia Pancake which was very tiny. I notified PDN and they noted my account in case the plant doesn't make it.
Positive rdtjr05
Franklin, TN
(30 reviews)
April 1, 2016
I am happy with the several plants I ordered and received. The prices are not the cheapest on the internet but the quality of the plants was good. I would like to single out the Spiranthes cernua 'Chadds Ford' as being an extraordinarily good value and I've never seen a peony lactiflora species strain offered anywhere else before.
Positive HaydensFamily
Austin, TX
(2 reviews)
November 8, 2015
This is our family's first time ordering from Plant Delights Nursery and we are very happy with our experiences. The staff was very kind, knowledgeable, and patience with every questions and changes we made to our order. Shipping was very prompt and a tracker number was provided. When our plants arrived, our family immediately inspected the package and we were very pleased at how carefully everything was packed and how generous in size our plants are. We're glad we discovered and gave this nursery a chance.

We look forward to ordering more plants from them again next spring! Yes, we would recommend this nursery!
Negative ala58
Allentown, PA
(1 review)
June 30, 2015
I was so excited last year to find and place an order for not 1 but 3 Clematis glaucophylla 'Panhandler'. Arrived timely 2 out of 3 looked poor (strike one) was told it's a vive not to worry new shoots from base will come but they never did on the two. Mulched for the winter in case of a bad weather as we had the year before. Now Spring arrives and the 1 that was in good condition came up just fine and is beautiful. The other 2 never came up. I called and they said give it sometimes, after another couple weeks nothing, called back and (strike two) I was told "Tony only guarantees they will get to you in good condition (which was not the case anyway). They put a big Hoopla about there customer satisfaction!! It's simply not there from my experience, I am a very experienced gardener and g found them to be a company who toots there own horn and does not stand at all behind there product. At high price, higher shipping and absolutely NO caring. I would have been happy if they extended an olive branch and offered me a reduced price on a replacement, ANYTHING. I would NOT recommend them to anyone. Also I did state to the woman answering phone that I would appreciate how deeply upset I am with their lack of Guarantee Directly to Tony. Never heard a peep back (strike three) It was very clear I was not a happy customer and my concerns were are are still legitimate. I don't normally leave anyone negatives reviews but this company really deserves it from me. I will share my story throughout internet land and among fellow gardeners. I almost ordered another series of vines but my husband reminded me of the problems and as much as I would love the vines I cancelled. If you cannot count on customer satisfaction guaranteed what can you count on after all we are blind to picking our specific plants...
Company representative comment on July 8, 2015:
On Jul 8, 2015 1:43 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

Dear ala58,

I'm very sorry to hear that not all of your Clematis came back from this past winter. We've talked with many gardeners this year (and last) who have experienced losses in their garden as winters were harsher than years past. Plant loss over winter usually has little or nothing to do with the quality of a plant or whether the plant makes it through a winter as advertised. Plant death of zone appropriate plants can be influenced by many different winter conditions, not just temperatures. For instance, It can be too little rain in the fall, too much rain in the winter, ice vs. snow, warm-ups in January or February and the list of conditions and combinations – well, you can see the variables are many.

We understand how our limited guarantee policy can be puzzling given the extended guarantees that are prevalent in the green industry today. A customer can forget to water, plant in poor soil, neglect to provide winter protection to mention a few, and large garden centers/big box stores will replace or refund with no questions asked. Plants are our only source of income which is why we cannot compete with these long-term guarantees.

If we ship a plant that left with undiagnosed problems, we will gladly replace it, even beyond the initial 7 day period. We check our nursery notes in cases such as yours to see if we have experienced any failures here that might indicate a problem with the crop. In this case we have not lost any of this clematis from 2 months before your order was shipped all the way through this spring.

We want to be fair, and in every case we want to replace or refund any plant loss that is our fault. We guarantee our quality, but we do not guarantee that everyone will be successful gardeners. We have killed our fair share due to improper drainage, too much sun, not enough sun, neighborhood dogs, insects, vermin, improper plants for our zone and a myriad of other reasons including quirks of mother nature that no one has control over.

I apologize for the lengthy note, but it is important to us that our horticultural friends around the circle understand our logic when questions arise about our limited guarantee policy. I do hope you find this information helpful. I'm sorry to hear that you have decided to cancel your newest order. Please let us know if we can be of assistance in the future.

Kind regards,
Virginia Meehan
Manager of Customer Service & Shipping



Negative garden_ny
New York City, NY
(1 review)
June 1, 2015
Posted on May 26, 2015, updated June 1, 2015
I ordered 10 Echinaceas “Fatal Attraction” from Plant Delights last July 2014 (I am a big fan of Piet Outdolf). Two of the plants came in horrible shape, perhaps due to transit damage. I called the nursery, and while they were initially almost rudely questioning my ability to identify a “damaged plant” (i.e. it will eventually recover, so just go ahead and plant it), after I provided photographs showing the state of the two specimens they agreed to graciously replace them. They were nice and apologetic.

It is now almost June 2015, a year later, and NONE of the 10 plants grew back. I have a large terrace garden in NYC, and have been growing plants for a long time… this is the first time that I plant 10 perennials and zero make it. I just called the nursery to ask what is their policy in such cases. All other places I have dealt with (Romence Gardens, Santa Rosa gardens, Joycreek, Lazy S’S farm, and Bluestone Perennial) have always found a way to solve problems with fair solutions. Regrettably, Plant Delights just brushed me off: in essence “this is no longer our problem”. Too bad, this is about the joy of caring for our plants and gardens, and a big part of the mail-order side is the relationship between gardeners and providers.
On June 1st, 2015, garden_ny added the following:

I am afraid the response is not quite correct. I called, explained in the nicest way what the issue was, described the facts (left out that it took me 3 calls and 2 sets of photographs last year to have them agree to replaced the two echinaceas), and was told matter of factly " it is no longer our problem". There was never an offer to discuss it further, to talk to their growers, to explore options or solutions, or to even suggest other plants. I would be happy to engage. I strongly believe that growers should be supported for their efforts.
Company representative comment on May 30, 2015:
On May 30, 2015 1:21 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

Dear garden_ny,

As you stated we did replace the 2 Echinacea last year that arrived damaged. Since we did not hear from you further last year, we can only assume they performed for you the remainder of the season. Our guarantee policy does not make provision for plants that fail to emerge due to the many cultural factors that are generally the cause of a plants failure to thrive. Plant loss over winter usually has little or nothing to do with the quality of a plant or whether the plant makes it through a winter as advertised. Plant death of zone appropriate plants can be influenced by many different winter conditions, not just temperatures. For instance, too little rain in the fall, too much rain in the winter, ice vs. snow, warm-ups in January/February followed by colder temperatures and you can see the variables are many. Growing in a terrace situation at a higher elevation presents its own set of challenges such as more variable soil temperatures, increased wind exposure, etc. We do not sell plants as a loss leader as the big box stores do and offer a 1 year guarantee no questions asked.

We are always available to discuss plants with you. It is about the relationship as you stated which requires a two way conversation. I’m sorry that you did not have a desire to discuss further with our horticulture staff to help learn what may have occurred. Instead you quickly hung up and posted here instead. While we can’t replace every plant on every occasion, we will continue to offer exciting plants and top notch cultural advice. The offer still stands if you have some time to speak with our garden supervisor to help with your future growing seasons.

Kind regards,
Virginia Meehan
Manger of Customer Serivce
Plant Delights Nursery, Inc.

Neutral jmcarolina
Greenville, SC
(10 reviews)
May 16, 2015
Posted on May 29, 2006, updated May 16, 2015
This is not a cheap nursery but their plants really are top notch. I have ordered from them three times and will do so again. They will not ship you a plant that you will be disappointed with. As a bonus, the catalog cover art and plant descriptions are witty and humorous and we could all use a bit of humor in our lives. The only negative is that they will charge your credit card as soon as the order is put in the computer rather than when it ships. If a plant is not available at shipping, you will be given the choice of a refund or nursery credit. Keep in mind this is not a discount nursery. They obviously try to keep the emphasis on quality rather than price.
On April 27th, 2008, jmcarolina changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:

I was less than thrilled when I received my latest Plant Delights order. Some of the plants were leggy, some were bone dry and others were wet to the point of being very difficult to unwrap and plant. They have all been in the ground for over a week now and most seem okay but, considering the price of the plants and the nursery\'s reputation, I was not happy about the state of the plants I received. I did email this info to them and am sure they will make good on any plants that do not survive. But still.....
On October 4th, 2008, jmcarolina changed the rating from neutral to positive and added the following:

The problem I had with the spring shipment was probably at least partly due to FedEx and their less than speedy shipment. Plant Delights replaced the unacceptable plants with no problem and they have done well this summer.
On May 16th, 2015, jmcarolina changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:

The change in my rating is due to problems I had with Plant Delights last year. I really hate doing this but it bothered me enough to cause me to stop ordering from them this spring and I have been a good customer for several years.

Last spring I placed 3 orders in March with them to be delivered after mid April. I realized around the end of that month that I had never received my first order. I called the office and asked about it. I was told they had new software and that a malfunction in it had caused their shipping department to never process my order. It was shipped but 2 or 3 weeks later than I had wanted. Subsequently, I had the same experience with the next 2 orders and plants that I wanted to put in the ground no later than early May were not received till the end of the month when planting is more difficult. I have a hard time understanding that this did not happen to others and I felt like I should have been given a discount or some other form of apology but none was offered even after I expressed my frustration and feelings that this would be fair. Plant Delights always has a nice selection and I had been a very good customer for a long time but my heart is not with this company anymore.
Positive Kylie2x
Millsap, TX
(6 reviews)
April 28, 2015
I have purchased from Plant Delights for many yrs. I have Always received Healthy Large Plants.. I recently received an order that did live up to my expectations.. Customer Service was Amazing and the issue was handled Promptly and with my Satisfaction being their Goal.. Outstanding Company with the Utmost of Integrity!!!
Positive bonsaiguydw
Mendenhall, PA
(5 reviews)
April 24, 2015
Best plants I've found and I love the variety. Everything was healthy, larger than other suppliers and just beautiful. Generally good packing. But shredded paper is a pain and dirt not as contained in pot as I liked. Still one of my top two suppliers and I bought 150 plants this year.
Positive bobbi_s
Richland, WA (Zone 7a)
(21 reviews)
April 20, 2015
I placed an order almost two weeks ago, and these arrived last Thursday. The plants were very large for a mail order, and were protected very well. They were packaged nicely, and were in great condition. The plants I ordered were: Tiarella 'Pink Skyrocket, Pulmonaria 'Dark Vader', Begonia grandis 'Heron's Pirouette', and Pulmonaria 'Raspberry Splash. I am very pleased with all of these plants, an d would recommend this mail order nursery to anyone.
Positive Suzkling
Bandon, OR
(5 reviews)
April 3, 2015
have ordered several times from Plant Delights......initially worried that plants needed to travel across the country.....NC to OR.....but they carry varieties I couldn't find elsewhere................usually I simply order from Annie's or Far Reaches Farm (both highly recommended)......but surprise!....plants were fabulosity! good size and uber healthy............they arrived wrapped in several layers of careful care..........
Positive Auryla
Norfolk, VA
(6 reviews)
October 9, 2014
I have ordered many times from this company and have never been disappointed. I knew they were having problems with their new system, so I expected somewhat of a delay. I will never stop ordering from them because they are the only company that has such unusual plants! Every plant I have received has been full, and packaged well.
Positive Lovehum
(11 reviews)
October 9, 2014
Shipping for my small order was expensive however it was lightening fast. I ordered two clematis glaucophylla. I couldn't find them anywhere else. They arrived small but healthy.
Positive matthewhg
Charlotte Hall, MD
(4 reviews)
October 2, 2014
I just received an order of mostly Epimediums and Hellebores, and am very pleased! They arrived in 1 day after being sent, and arrived safely. I recently became interested in Epimediums, and am looking forward to the blooms this spring!
Neutral LarryR
South Amana, IA (Zone 5a)
(3 reviews)
August 18, 2014
Posted on August 18, 2014, updated August 18, 2014
Posted on August 17, 2014, updated August 18, 2014
Posted on August 13, 2014, updated August 17, 2014
I\\\\\\\'ll preface my comments by saying that I have been a longtime customer of PDN and that I admire Tony Avent\\\\\\\'s accomplishments and goals.

My problem is with quality control. In the past I\\\\\\\'ve always been impressed with the size and quality of plants I have received. Unfortunately, this spring was an exception. I ordered three plants of the same species and received them jostled out of their pots, dry, and slightly wilted. The reason for this was that the plants were barely three inches tall (mature plants are 18\\\\\\\") with a very small root system. I would have expected this from Michigan Bulb Company, but not from Plant Delights. They were potted in 3.5\\\\\\\" pots that were much too large. Had the plants been larger and had the root system filled much of the pot, there would have been no problem. These plants should never have left the greenhouse. I was charged the full price of $14 each.

I note that a similar problem has been mentioned before in these reviews.

Like several other reviewers, I also received no response to my emails, so I called instead. The lady I spoke to was very accommodating and happy to make things right. I questioned her about the reason I hadn\\\\\\\'t had a response to my emails. She said that they have been having computer problems. That would make this the second year that that reason has been given for lack of response. I would like to urge PDN to get its electronic systems in order ASAP. The bad PR that this situation generates could endanger their customer base.
On August 17th, 2014, LarryR added the following:

These comments are in response to Virginia Meehan\\\'s reply to my earlier post here.

I posted my comments AFTER I had contacted Plant Delights because the gardening community needs to know that the problems I referenced are ongoing (see also other posts in this comment forum). In the interim, I received an email from Virginia. It detailed the problems Plant Delights is experiencing but offered no detail about resolving the problems, how they would go about doing that, or when they expected some sort of resolution.

Here is an excerpt from my response to Virginia\\\'s email:

Virginia—Thanks much for taking the time to explain your problems in more detail. Would it be possible to assign someone the duty of checking the junk mail folder once a day? Would Anita be willing to do this? Or a volunteer? If done daily, the task wouldn’t be so onerous.

While I sympathize with your nursery manager, he needs to find out how to grow Euphorbia corollata to a decent size before it’s made available for sale. I have received this same plant from other mail order sources, and the plants were a very nice size, certainly a lot larger than three inches. The three-inch plants that I received would not have survived if I had planted them in one of my beds. The established plants in those beds would have quickly overwhelmed those tiny plants...Best—Larry

On August 18th, 2014, LarryR changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:

Owners Tony and Anita Avent have become personally involved in the problems I outlined in my earlier posts. They pledge to \"monitor all process (email, chat, written correspondence) with a more watchful eye and have restructured some roles and responsibilities to that affect.\" Regarding the Euphorbia corollata, \"Tony corroborated that it is a tricky plant in a black plastic pot in a nursery setting and will be revising his description accordingly.\"
On August 18th, 2014, LarryR added the following:

I failed to add earlier that I also just received a generous credit from Plant Delights to make up for the condition of the plants I received.
Company representative comment on August 13, 2014:
On Aug 13, 2014 5:06 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

Hello Larry,

We thank you for bringing your concerns to our attention, although I must admit I am surprised that you would go to this forum AFTER speaking with someone in person today, who you've stated was happy to work with you to make things right. This particular Euphorbia is not happy growing in a small nursery container and will typically send roots straight to the bottom of the pot, but not fill in the pot. It is a tricky plant to ship successfully and is much happier if in the ground where it fills out quite vigorously.

While email is now the preferred method for most folks to communicate, email is not perfect. Email addresses can be typed incorrectly and spam & junk filters can capture all manner of correspondence, based on a particular word or phrase or attachment. Technology is great when it works, but a real pain when it does not.

As you are a long time customer, I assume you are getting our newsletters and are aware of the myriad of computer issues we've run up against this year. Our new software which was supposed to make things better has actually had a detrimental effect on our ability to service our customers at the high standards we've had for years. Please know that we are working diligently to fix these issues because we know that this has a negative effect on our customer relationships.

I hope that you will take our many years of positive interactions into consideration when making future perennial selections. Going forward, I would implore you to give us a phone call if you do not get a response by email in 48 business hours . We can't fix a problem if we don't know that a problem exists, so I thank you again for letting us know about your Euphorbia. Please let me know if you should have any additional questions or concerns.

Kind regards,
Virginia Meehan
Manager of Customer Service & Shipping
Plant Delights Nursery, Inc.


Positive sdanler
Corvallis, OR
(1 review)
July 31, 2014
I rarely order plants from across the country, since different growing conditions often cause failures. However Plant Delights has so many unique plants, I took a chance and ordered some that I couldn't find anywhere else. Their prices are high, but the quality of the plant material made up for it - everything was very robust (its not their fault that a critter dug up one plant the night after I put it in the ground, and it didn't recover).
What I most wanted to comment on was their packaging. Extraordinary! These plants were shipped, in summer, from North Carolina to Oregon, and arrived with the soil, and the newspaper wrapped around it, still damp! The plants didn't appear to be stressed at all, just a little crumpled (very temporary).
Positive virginiarose
Portsmouth, VA (Zone 8a)
(64 reviews)
July 17, 2014
Posted on March 14, 2012, updated July 17, 2014
This company was a delight to work with from beginning to end. I was able to find plants I wanted at a fair price and was very happy to find they are close to my zone. I had a little problem with my bank and received a polite email from Diane who worked with me professionally and did not make me feel like I was ruining her day. Actually I felt like she enjoyed helping me. I got email next day telling me everything went through and my plants were on the way. Next day I received 6 beautiful plants that are just breaking dormancy, they look very healthy and have big healthy root system. I found the packing to be very unusual but effective, no dirt missing and they were still moist. I just love this nursery and would be happy to order again and recommend them highly.

On July 17th, 2014, virginiarose added the following:

Another delightful order from Plant's Delight! Love the website, customer service, strong boxes, packing method, and fast shipping. The plants are a fair price for the size and they are very healthy with big roots. Establish quickly and that is what I like the most.
I will definitely order from them again! Thank you Plant's Delight, keep up the good work!!
Positive saturnalia
Winston Salem, NC
(3 reviews)
July 13, 2014
I ordered 6 heucheras of 3 different varieties from Plant Delights. The company was easy to communicate with--they answer their phone and their representative was polite and helpful--and the plants shipped promptly and arrived exactly when promised. Some were smaller than others, but all were acceptable size and are beautiful and healthy. Would definitely order from this company again.
Positive jbf16falcon
Owasso, OK
(3 reviews)
June 6, 2014
Posted on May 26, 2014, updated June 6, 2014
Posted on May 24, 2014, updated May 26, 2014
I have been a customer of this company since the early 90's and happy with the company and their customer service. This year was different. I placed 2 orders with them and one came in fine but a few of the plants were quite small for a price of 24 dollars each. The second order was missing a plant I ordered so I called customer service and they said they would check on it and get back to me. I found that pretty insulting that they would "check" on and get back to me instead of taking care of the problem and get the missing plant out to me ASAP. I then found the number of plants was one too many and they had shipped me two "Miss Ruby's" buddleia instead of one, so I immediately called back and talked to another customer service rep and told them what had happened and they said they would get the "Miss Molly" in the mail to me and they were sorry about the mix up. It's bee about a month now and nothing was sent. Guess I was supposed to just forget about it. Not a happy camper in Owasso, OK!

On May 26th, 2014, jbf16falcon added the following:

At any rate the number of plants shipped was correct, but one too many of one plant ordered and missing one of the plants I had ordered. Two follow up emails sent asking for status went unanswered.
On June 6th, 2014, jbf16falcon changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:

Plant Delights contacted me and said they were having problems with their new system and assured me they would take care of my problem. Today the missing plant was delivered as promised and was in very good condition. For that reason and the fact that for 20 years they have delivered my orders properly I have changed my rating from Negative to a Positive one. I hope they have their problems figured out as good mail order plant companies are far and few between.
Positive MDepicci
Silver Spring, MD (Zone 7a)
(4 reviews)
June 1, 2014
Posted on May 22, 2014, updated June 1, 2014
Posted on May 22, 2014, updated May 22, 2014
Let me state first off that my quibble with Plant Delights is not with the plants, which are fabulous. I am a garden designer, and like to experiement in my own gardens with different cultivars. I ordered well over $1000 of plants this year alone - only one looked sort of sad, and it is now recovering.

Their service had always been excellent. Even earlier this year, I made a mistake and ordered some items twice. They contacted me to make sure that I really wanted both orders, and changed the orders with no problem.

Then things went downhill.

One of my orders was about $600, including shipping. It was scheduled to go out 4/28. On 4/22, I got an email saying my order was rescheduled to go out on 5/14. This was kind of upsetting. I had wanted to get many of the plants started earlier, and I might have gotten something else (or the same plants from somewhere else) to fill those spaces had I known. I wrote back asking if there was any chance we could make it earlier. I got ZERO response to my email.

On 5/18 (four days after the already-more-than-two-weeks-late order was supposed to go out), I got a generic email saying that they were very sorry, they had been busy, this isn't how they usually do business, etc. etc., and my order would now go out on 5/19. I wrote back saying that I was pretty upset about being delayed a second time. Again, ZERO response. Certainly no offer of a discount!

I was notified that the plants shipped on 5/21, still later than the second delay.

It has taken more than a month to receive my order that was supposed to arrive in 11 days, with no response to any of my emails. Totally unprofessional. I wish I had not given them nearly so much of my money.

The only way I could ever see using them again is if they have a plant absolutely no one else has.
On May 22nd, 2014, MDepicci added the following:

This order situation gets worse and worse. Today I was sent a fedex tracking number. I clicked on it; it claims the order was delivered. All I actually received were 5 plants. There are 26 that I have NOT received.

It is now 33 days after I placed my order. I still have received no response to my initial two email enquiries. I sincerely would have liked my plants to have had this past month to grow and establish themselves. I sincerely would have liked a response to my emails. Let's hope they respond to the third email I wrote to them.
On June 1st, 2014, MDepicci changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:

Plant Delights readily resolved the situation (with a hitch or two). Since most transactions other than this one have been positive, I am changing my rating.
Company representative comment on May 23, 2014:
On May 23, 2014 10:38 AM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

Hello MDepicci,

We want to address your concerns posted about the delay of your orders. While your first 3 orders from us were shipped without delay, we were unfortunately unable to meet our originally scheduled ship date for your most recent order. Since our new software folks seem to break something every time they try to fix something. During the busy spring season, we schedule the maximum number of plants that our two car garage shipping department can process so the perfect storm of errors created a backup that we are working diligently to correct with additional staff and man hours. I see that your emails asking for multiple changes to your orders were addressed by myself or other customer service individuals , but could not find the email you refer to regarding asking that we ship sooner after getting the delay notice nor the email you reference in your second post yesterday. I hope you can let me know to which email those were sent so that I can investigate further.

Your order this week does show delivered, but I'm afraid not all of your plants were correctly addressed since your tracking information shows only 1 box, when there should be multiple boxes for 31 plants. So I have left you a telephone message and sent an email to you directly so that we can determine which plants you have not received and get them shipped today or with your remaining order scheduled for next week.

I would like to reiterate that this is not how we normally conduct business and hope that your prior experiences are evidence that we have no interest in delaying plant orders at any time of year. I look forward to hearing from you so that we can work to resolve any and all issues.

Kind regards,
Virginia Meehan
Manger of Customer Service & Shipping
Plant Delights Nursery, Inc.
office@plantdelights.com

Negative ToddStevenson
Rochester, NY
(1 review)
May 30, 2014
This spring I was excited to place my 1st order with Plant Delights as they have a great selection of rare plants. Unfortunately one of the plants was damaged in transit. Three emails to customer service were all ignored. Very disappointing. I purchase a lot of plants by mail order and have never had this experience.
Positive GaGrandiflora
Smyrna, GA
(1 review)
May 12, 2014
While I have placed small Plant Delights orders in previous years with satisfaction, 2014 has been my first year for significant purchases. Plant Delights prides itself in unique specialty plants, well researched, test-grown in their NC gardens and grown under expert care. Their catalog is a horticultural education course in itself; it can usually be found on my nightstand (or bathroom vanity).

Their prices are not for the faint of heart. These are “show-stopper” plants! By all means continue to support your local nursery/ garden center…learn and purchase locally. But when you find yourself wanting to go to the next level (which usually occurs about the same time you spend hundreds of dollars to amend your garden soil), Plant Delights will be your Mecca! That’s right, these aren’t your Home Depot caliber plants and the responsibility of the buyer is greater. Do your own research, know your zone, your sun/shade, summers/winters, your successes/failures and mindfully select.

Over a two month period, I made three purchases totaling almost $500.00. Every plant is healthy and I am very pleased; no regrets. Three plants arrived dormant (and they are normally dormant for the time of the year they were shipped) but with warmth, sunshine & time, they are awake and flourishing. It’s not time for anything to be blooming yet but growth is evidence that they are acclimating well to their new home. Plant Delights have done a great job with my new “garden amusements” thus far, now it’s my turn to foster them to my best ability.

I must confess that I do suffer from mild case of sticker shock when I see their shipping costs. But when each order has arrived, those doubts quickly disappeared. They try to anticipate any common shipping problem by impeccable packing and experienced shipping practices. Why cut corners during the final step with cheap & risky packing and shipping? Most of these plants are grown in their entirety at Plant Delights; pride and uncompromising quality is evident.

I’ll be back next year for more!
Positive Sequoiadendron4
Lititz, PA (Zone 6b)
(26 reviews)
April 29, 2014
The selection of plants from PDN is fantastic. The packaging was great and the plants were all in excellent condition save for one that I may have broken when unwrapping it. I was so pleased, I immediately placed another order for plants that were unavailable at another mail order. Their prices are high in comparison to their nearest competitors but it's worth it to get a hard to find plant. I really only purchased from PDN what I couldn't find elsewhere but I'm definitely glad I did purchase from them :)
Positive sehanley
Rancho Cucamonga, CA
(5 reviews)
February 7, 2014
I've only placed one order with Plant Delights, and it was initially a bit rocky, but I am so immensely impressed with the quality of their plants and their customer service that I believe the positive rating is well-deserved.

For the sake of transparency, I should admit that I've never really been a fan of the infamous Plant Delights catalog covers, or their "colorful" plant descriptions (the domestic violence one springs, violently, to mind). The "helpful" instructions on how to conduct oneself as a customer are glib, condescending, and a little too pleased with themselves. The website (though recently lightly re-designed / re-formatted, making things somewhat easier to read) is a lesson in poor design and amateur coding. Photographs are mangled, poorly-lit, and laughably edited.

None of this really matters to me. They offer plants I can't get anywhere else, and their reputation for gargantuan, healthy specimens at reasonable prices makes up for any distaste I might have for some of their "hilarious" marketing "quirks."

I kept minimalist for my first order--again, a bit wary of those instructions--and limited it to three plants. My order was confirmed and processed promptly. A third e-mail confirmed shipment, with a helpful tracking number attached. The day it was set to arrive, I received on my door a form from my local ag commissioner's office: the shipment had been seized, suspected of harboring delinquent, out-of-state live pests. In addition, the package itself was rejected for delivery by the California FDA because accompanying certification stamps were illegible. It was with a touch of trepidation that I phoned Plant Delights to inform them of the problem.

To reiterate, their customer service is superb. I was immediately in touch with the manager of the customer service and shipping department. She assured me that Plant Delights acts in accordance with the North Carolina Department of Agriculture protocols concerning pests and quarantines and that orders sent to California are packaged and treated according to prevailing inter- and intra-state regulations. She followed up our phone conversation with an e-mail, restating this information with greater detail, and contacted me again when she got word from California quarantine officers concerning the insect found with my order. The insect turned out to be benign and was probably associated with one of the three species I had ordered. Plant Delights' on-site pathologist and nursery manager suggested to her that I might prefer to select an alternative to this plant, whereupon they would ship a replica of my order immediately. I did so, she overnighted me that order, and it arrived in excellent condition. In addition, and to prevent a potential problem with their printed certification stamps, a full size copy of their certification was included in a pouch glued onto the outside of the box along with my invoice.

Throughout this experience, the manager was polite, informative, and helpful. We exchanged a number of e-mails, sometimes overlapping, but she sorted out any potential confusion, and was concise and detailed throughout, quick to return e-mails. Although I missed two of her phone calls, she phoned me to expedite the second order and e-mailed again following delivery to ensure that my order was in good condition and that I was satisfied.

The plants I ordered are thriving. I wouldn't hesitate to order from Plant Delights again, catalog be damned.
Positive yehudith
silver spring, MD (Zone 7a)
(6 reviews)
October 16, 2013
Last night I received my first ever order from PDN. The only negative thing I can say about it was a nasty comment from my husband about my plant buying habits. As I pulled one plant after the other out of a box that I just knew was too big for the number of plants I ordered I just kept saying "Oh my, Oh my!" When they were unwrapped they were beyond gorgeous! They were huge!! They were green!! They were so beautiful it brought tears to my eyes!! Yes they are a bit pricey for mail order but "Oh my!!!!" A botanist friend came over and she just kept ooo'ing and aahh'ing over them. PDN you've not only earned a place in my heart you have a place in my favorites list as well. PDN, well done!
Negative AJNYC
Astoria, NY
(2 reviews)
August 22, 2013
Absolutely dreadful experience. 2 out of the three plants I ordered arrived in OK but not in perfect condition. According to their most condescending return policy, these plants were not deserving of a phone call to them within the 5 day window they provide in order to complain about an order so as to be guaranteed a replacement. The plants deteriorated thereafter and are both now dead. The third plant I ordered was so small in size it was shocking. It was basically a very poorly rooted leaf growing in a loosely packed container of "soil". Although this plant is still hanging on and arrived over 2 months ago it is not even close to being even half way grown and can't possibly flower this season. The company never bothered to respond to an email I sent them expressing my dissatisfaction with the plants I ordered and with their return policy.
Company representative comment on August 22, 2013:
On Aug 22, 2013 12:21 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

Dear AJNYC,

I'm very sorry to hear that you have had a bad experience with our plants. While our guarantee policy is very limited, especially in light of larger big box companies which offer no questions asked, 1 year guarantees, you may have missed the sentence that reads "Of course, if a dormant plant fails to emerge, or if there is a problem related to a cultural factor here at the nursery, we will guarantee against such problems outside of the 5-day time frame."

I'm glad to you took the time to reach out to us by email and I must apologize that your email was not responded to. We've had a very overactive spam filter in place which has cause many delays in correspondence this season. Thankfully just this week we have a new, different spam filter in place and trust this will help resolve most of those issues. I would ask that you email me at office@plantdelights.com and I'd be happy to review the particulars of your order and check our spam folder for your original email sent. I will follow up with a D-mail as well and hope that we can make a better impression. It is certainly never our intent to ignore customer correspondence and we want you to be sucessful with your plants.

Kind regards,
Virginia Meehan
Manager of Customer Service & Shipping
Plant Delights Nursery, Inc.
919-772-4794
office@plantdelights.com

Positive goodgrowing
Dexter, MO
(4 reviews)
August 5, 2013
I placed my first order with Plant Delights this Spring and it was a resounding success. The plants arrived in near perfect condition and very well packed. One of the two raspberry hibiscus I ordered arrived with a broken stem; I called and was assured it would throw up another within a couple of weeks. I did and both are already blooming and 4 feet tall. I was assured they probably wouldn't bloom until next year. These people are very knowledgeable and super to work with. I can't wait to order more treasures next year.
Positive brianaucuba
PEQUEA, PA (Zone 6b)
(16 reviews)
July 11, 2013
I can't say enough good things about Plant Delights. They always have the most unusual, quality plants. I ordered Kniphofia 'Lola' a few years ago even though I was a little skeptical about the mature size listed. I was amazed at just how large it grew. Their catalog is always a good read because of the plant material offered and Tony Avent's humor. My only problem is that my budget doesn't allow me to order all of the cool plants from Plant Delights that I want to.
Positive trackinsand
mid central, FL (Zone 9a)
(47 reviews)
June 14, 2013
Posted on May 10, 2012, updated June 14, 2013
Posted on September 7, 2006, updated May 10, 2012
i just received my plants today. i think this is my 3rd or 4th order from PDN. they are terriific. their selection is awesome, communication is first rate, they ship right on time (your choice of dates) and i love how they package with the shredded paper. i also get a kick out of the box itself. it says, "help, let us out of here". best of all, of course, are the plants themselves, big and healthy. thanks to all of you at PDN....a job well done.
On April 1st, 2009, trackinsand added the following:

just received another order today (april 1, 09) and as always, they are big, fat, healthy, happy plants. always a great experience!
On May 10th, 2012, trackinsand added the following:

just received an order and the entire transaction was perfection. why oh why can't other companies pack plants like PD? love that the peanuts are gone and love the paper "netting" stuff.
i shall return!
On June 14th, 2013, trackinsand added the following:

received four Hedychium recently and they were huge and very well rooted. this order completes my plant purchases for the year....what? did i say that? lol

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