I've ordered from a few native nurseries and I rate these as one of the better ones. This is their first year accepting orders online and while there have been some glitches, they are quick to answer e-mails (BIG +) and are very pleasant on the phone (ditto). They apparently packed my order so quickly I was almost unable to add a plant, but fortunately they read my mind and did it for me before I called. They have an excellent selection and an extensive plant list. Lately I have been trying to go with plants native to my area (as cataloged in 1879) and they had quite a few (too many :)) plants I could buy.
On Jan 26, 2007, BoyneFallsMI Boyne Falls, MI wrote:
I have ordered from Shooting Star Nursery three times since 2003. Their catalog is well organized with excellent discriptions of each item as well as zone, light and soil requirements. Their web site is easy to use and includes all of the above information plus colored pictures.
Each shipment I received was well packed, all plants were labeled and all arrived in good condition.
I have very sandy soil and am frequently away for several days at a time. The few plants that I have lost I blame on my lack of care, deer or rabbits.
I am enjoying the wonderful shapes, colors and scents of the different plants I have received. I highly recommend Shooting Star Nursery to anyone who wants to try something unique or those who choose to stay with traditional plants.
On Dec 18, 2006, postoak7 Statham, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:
I've ordered from Shooting Star several times, and each time have been happy with both the service and the plants I've received. I've had better luck with their perennials than their shrubs, but that's true in general with me and mail-order shrubs.
On the perennials, I've got 100% survival at one year. Shrubs I've been closer to 50/50. Again, that probably means I need to do a better job of keeping the shrubs watered while they get established.
I ordered an Allegheny serviceberry which was beautiful and sturdy and doing fine after being planted.
Two out of three of the wild ginger I ordered are likewise thriving.
The other wild ginger was DOA.
The two Solomon Seal I ordered arrived with their main stems broken, and rapidly died.
The plants didn't seem to have been packed securely. It's entirely possible that this is only a mail-order problem. I regret giving such a negative review, becuase the woman was so friendly on the phone. However -- an almost 50% failure rate is pretty dismal.
On May 30, 2006, Shooting Star Nursery responded with:
On Dec 28, 2006 4:21 PM, Shooting Star Nursery responded:
I was disappointed to see potawotami's rating on this order. We get so busy in the spring that I did not have time to review your web site, which I wish I had. Please call if an order is not what you expect when it arrives. We will work with you. Shipping can indead be hard on plants and we do try to package them to survive the journey, but every so often they just do not make it. I hope you try again potawotami and please mention your order. I have pulled it and have it out by the phone. Marianne"
We just received our order. The plants look to be in fine shape, and each specimen is labeled - some vendors only label one of each specimen. We would have liked to receive a confirmation of the order when it was placed.
On Oct 6, 2003, Ewald Limerick, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:
I ordered two $7 Rhododendron calendulaceum and one $8 Hamamelis virginiana, plus $5 shipping. They were out of the H. virginiana (Common Witch Hazel), but shipped the two R. calendulaceum (Flame Azalea)- which were about 1" tall in 4" pots. They did not clearly indicate the size on their site.
Note: they did apologize for being out of the Witch Hazel, and service was very fast - I believe they shipped the day I placed the order. The plants seemed healthy.
Actually, they did indicate the size of the pots on the website - mine were 3 1/2". Although I was disappointed in the size of the plants, I have not ordered enough online to get a feel for what to expect for the money. It seems a local nursery would have better plants available, but Shooting Star had a wide variety of native plants that I couldn't find locally.