On May 12, 2008, Tarragon Beverly, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:
In mid-January 2008 I ordered over $100 of bulbs on-line and requested a ship date of mid-April. No bulbs arrived in mid-April. I sent an inquiry note to Customer Service. A pacifying answer said, ":Your order is being processed". I waited patiently until first of May and wrote to Customer Service at McClure & Zimmerman questioning the status of my order. The sentence said: "Your order was shipped May 5". The bulb order finally arrived May 9. The bulbs were good sized but were covered with mold. They did not look healthy but I planted them anyway. I think I'll start praying to the Greek rustic god of the garden, PRIAPOS, and hope for the best.
My garden has won several awards. Many people pass by and admire all the variety and always ask where I get my plant material. When it comes to bulbs, I tell them to skip McClue & Zimmerman -- there are several other excellent sources. In the future I plan to skip this company and use the others who do a better job of processing orders.
On Apr 2, 2008, hopflower Santa Rosa, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:
Sorry, but no matter how wonderful their bulbs might be, I have not had nor will I have the chance to find out. I looked forward to some Gloriosa lilies, dahlias, and some other bulbs, but will not have time to plant them now and have them come up. It is April and my dahlias should have been planted here in CA at least a month ago. I will not order from people too lazy to to even say what their company hours are on the telephone, either. Instead, they tell you to check their website.
I am cancelling my order.
On April 3rd, 2008, hopflower added the following:
I finally got a reply from McClure & Zimmerman stating that I needed to check out their shipping times. I did this when I ordered and even called to find out my order number. Last month I finally recieved an order number and comfirmation through the mail. I had to call them after I sent my payment in to see that they got it as I had heard nothing. This morning I was told by email that the bulbs were shipped yesterday.
It seems that the company is rather late in getting pertinent mail out to people, which leaves us hanging. I did not know the status of my order or when it was being shipped, other than a vague period of three months, for months until I called. This is too late for my area; the nurseries are clear of bulbs now and have been for weeks. I have not had this problem with other companies at all. I am sure they have lovely bulbs, but I do not care for the service here and will not order again. Everyone else has shipped to me by now; and everyone else is back East as well.
Also, what if a person does not have a computer? Operating hours and shipping dates should be an option by telephone. I will plant the bulbs and hope they come up for next year's garden.On April 3rd, 2008, hopflower changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
We are sorry you are dissatisfied with our services. Our phone number and hours are on page 3 of our catalog and under the customer service tab of the website.
Our shipping schedule information is located on the back of the order form and also under the customer service tab on the website. We can not ship bulbs or plant material when the temperatures are freezing, therefore our shipping can not start before mid-March, weather permitting. This year weather conditions in WI were extremely harsh, making shipping difficult.
If you would contact me with your name and zip code I will cancel your order, or call us at 1-800-883-6998 between the hours of 8:00 am to 4:30 pm CST or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Which ever is the most convenient for you."
McClure and Zimmerman has been a great company to deal with. I have been pleased with their bulbs. This past fall (07) I was missing a bulb in one package and another package had a rotten bulb. I called the company and they quickly replaced the bulbs. I will definitely order from them again
On Oct 24, 2007, soapwort243 South Milwaukee, WI wrote:
I love this company. They have beautiful bulbs. I had alot of trouble with getting on their website this year.--I don't know if it was on my end or theirs. I finally was able to and I placed on order, and in 3 days, I received my bulbs!! I could hardly beleive it !! They are all beautiful bulbs- top grade!!
On Oct 22, 2007, DeborahLink New Canaan, CT wrote:
I have ordered a lot from McClure and Zimmerman for five years or more. Each set of bulbs has come and been fruitful. Since I share my garden with a woodchuck family and roaming deer I have turned seriously to the Allium family of plants. This catalogue has a wide variety and is responsible ecologically about its sources. My garden is a (very local -- to my street) allium showplace. I recommend this source tops. I personally, like the hand drawn pictures of the flowers -- in fact I leave the catalogue in my office waiting room.
On Oct 22, 2006, gdionelli Huntington, WV (Zone 6a) wrote:
I have ordered small quantities of bulbs several times from McClure & Zimmerman. The bulbs have always been good quality. I recently ordered tulip bulbs to be shipped to my mother in another state. She just called to say that they had arrived and that the bulbs are enormous and healthy.
On Oct 21, 2006, soapwortcrazy South Milwaukee, WI wrote:
I ordered alot of WONDERFUL looking tulips and lilies. All the bulbs received are large and healthy looking. I even got a great free gift, which was tulips that I almost ordered. All is planted and I am SO excited for next year !!!! (They had the Rembrandt tulips that I had been looking for.) Their catalog is very interesting and different.
I will have been at my "new" house for 11 years this summer and I have ordered bulbs from them every fall but 1!!
My daffs have been specatular - both when received and when they bloomed!
And I think I have 20 or more bulbs of almost every species tulip they carry - and I can't see where even 1 bulb planted has failed to delight!
There have been very few mishaps - with 1000 or better ordered, I have called with a problem only 3 times. One of which was my fault(put in the wrong item #!) and when I called to order the correct item - they insisted on sending it at no charge!!
Can't ask for better than that ..............:)
In fact, I'm going to put a wish list together NOW for this fall!!!
I purchased some dinnerplate dahlias from this company and another. M&Z was less expensive, allowed me to choose the colors I wanted, and sent larger, healthier looking tubers. I did have less luck with some other varieties I purchased (tuberose, peruvian daffodil, and a couple of colors of spiderlily), but I cannot be sure that the company was at fault, because I waited too long to plant those, and also, Florida is tough on bulbs. In any case, the dahlias were so stunning in the yard this fall that it more than made up for those that were smaller than I would have liked or didn't come up.
On Jun 9, 2005, Eric_OH Columbus, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:
I have ordered from M&Z several times in recent years with good results.
My most recent order this spring was for dahlias and another summer-flowering bulb. Prices were reasonable and all bulbs/tubers were viable and have developed into healthy plants.
Shipments have been on time and packing is good. I have found M&Z to be a reliable company with some interesting offerings.
On August 9th, 2006, Eric_OH changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:
A spring '06 order for Louisiana iris resulted in my receiving very small rhizomes, many of which were in poor condition. For one variety, all were soft and largely rotted. Replacements were similarly rotted and did not sprout.
My order for Canna 'Australia' was not completed because the company claimed its expected supply did not arrive.
I've ordered from McClure & Zimmerman for several years now, starting back in the late 90s when I had an extra fridge available to force species tulips and muscari for indoor bloom.
More recently I've ordered bulbs both in the spring and fall for container gardening and have had no problems with customer service or the shipments I received.
I've had occasional disappointments (bulbs here and there don't perform as expected), but overall the quality is consistently high. I always receive what I ordered or a refund for unavailable bulbs, since I specify 'no substitutions' on the comment line.
On the one occasion that I asked for a refund (one of my Eucharis amazonia bulbs did not sprout) they refunded money for the single bulb and apologized.
Amaryllis bulbs from M&Z are champs and consistently bloom twice a year, once after the dormant winter period and again in summer in a sunny location.
Last year I ordered four begonias and all of them overwintered and have put up new shoots for this summer.
I'm very satisfied with my experience and now that I'm moving to a house with a yard, I look forward to planting bulbs that require conditions my apartment wasn't able to provide.
On Feb 18, 2005, Sally_Denver Denver, CO (Zone 5b) wrote:
I ordered lots of bulbs in the Fall of 2000 and again in 2001, so this is not recent information. However, both times I received some (total, 4) bags of bulbs labeled to be what I ordered (choice and special), but which came up as more ordinary/totally different varieties that I did not want. One example was N. hawera, a very delicate daffodill for a naturalistic garden area, and what I got was "Cheerfulness", which was double, stiff and artificial-loooking, compared to what I had wanted. Another substitution was ordinary paperwhites (whose smell I cannot stand) instead of Grand Soleil d'Or .
I was drawn to this company because they offered quite a variety of daffodils. (I was trying to "match" a mini-cluster variety to a set of bulbs I already had but didn't remember what they were.) Most varieties I ordered are OK and doing well (though I never found my match--that's OK). However, they sent me one much more expensive variety instead of a cheaper one I had ordered (but I didn't bother to call and complain). I also ordered Lily Tulip mix, but they turned out to be some other tulip variety entirely. I'm waiting on alliums and another wild daffodil to show signs of growth and bloom. This company is far more expensive than other bulb companies, so I probably won't order from them again.
I wish there was a rating between neutral and negative, because my experience wasn't really awful, but I doubt I'll buy from this company again. I ordered six different tulip bulb varieties two years ago. The bulbs were smallish, but I've seen worse, and all appeared healthy, so that was OK. The problem was in the spring when the tulips bloomed, four of the six varieties I ordered were not what I had ordered! The biggest disappointment was the bunch of supposed Parrot tulips that I planted in a prominent spot in my garden. What came up were some plain pink tulips. They're pretty, but I was expecting (and paid for) Parrots. Everything grew just fine, but I want to know I'll actually get the bulbs that I ordered.
My mail-order experience with this company has, I feel, set the standard by which all others will be judged. Two orders of lilies were sent quickly (within a week) and well packaged. Of 18 bulbs ordered, two were unusable. I contacted Customer Service and was promptly told replacements would be shipped as soon as possible. They, too, arrived within a week, were larger and more plump than the bulbs I had ordered previously. I even had a stowaway bulb that wanted to live in my garden! Cheerful, friendly staff, excellent quality product, followed by quick delivery goes a long way in building a loyal clientele. I will definitely be ordering from McClure and Zimmerman in the future.
On Oct 27, 2003, nevadagdn Sparks, NV (Zone 7a) wrote:
I've been ordering from McClure and Zimmerman for a few years now, and the vast majority of plant failures I've experienced have been my own danged fault (putting my bulbs in the garage and forgetting about them until March--that kind of stupidity). The most recent shipment was received about when I would expect to receive it, and the bulbs were of good quality and in good condition with the exception of one daffodil bulb which had rotted. Since I let the entire shipment sit in its original box for two weeks prior to planting/discovery and the rot wasn't far advanced, I can't fault the company for that either.
I keep going back to McClure and Zimmerman mostly for the selection, and the ability to purchase small quantities of bulbs. Prices are okay, not excessive and not wonderfully inexpensive.
On October 23rd, 2007, nevadagdn added the following:
I placed a web order for some bulbs tonight. I know it's late in the season, and I can only hope that the bulbs will be delivered soon and in decent condition. On October 26th, 2007, nevadagdn added the following:
The bulbs arrived today, in good condition and of decent quality to begin with. Included was a nice bonus of 6 'Baby Moon' daffodils.
My mother ordered two of the dwarf Agapanthus collection (collection = 1 white, 1 blue) for me as a Christmas gift and was told they would ship in March. In May I received only the white half of each collection. They arrived with an invoice that showed prices even though she had made it clear this was a gift and the billing and shipping names/addresses were different. Of the two bulbs one was very mushy and neither one grew. By the end of June the blue ones had still not arrived and I called to cancel the order and request a refund (which I don't know whether or not she's received). All in all not much more could have gone wrong with this transaction; and, although the variety available in their catalog is enticing, I would avoid ordering from them in the future.
I hate to make a negative comment about a company I've heard good things about, but I ordered from them for the first time this spring and was very disappointed. First off, the bulbs were tiny compared to similar ones I've received from other companies, or can find in stores and nurseries. Tiny cut-up sections of Kniphofia rhizome with a single bud each barely grew, and finally gave up the ghost after putting out a few small leaves. Minuscule bulbs of Polianthes (tuberose) have put out foliage but I doubt they will bloom this year. Finally, the bulbs I purchased as Lilium 'Citronella' grew well and budded heavily but when they bloomed they were an obviously mislabeled orangish asiatic lily. I will not order from this company again.
MZ Bulb publishes a catalog twice a year. They have an extensive offering of bulbs - many more varieties than I have seen elsewhere.
My first order was placed over the internet, confirmed next workday, shipped on a timely and prompt basis (one week after order), and with notification and access to trace the shipment; but the exotic which prompted the order was not available upon shipment. I revisited the website, and identified that this status had not been posted to their website, and responded to their customer service e-mail line, as it was not clear if the stockout was a temporary issue. I also expressed disappointment in that the company offers bonus shipments on orders exceeding $20, but they did not comply with this offer in filling my order.
The response I received merely indicated that the website should have been updated, and that I was not billed for merchandise not shipped. No response was made regard the non-shipment of the bonus product.
The website was updated regard to product availability when I checked it again a week later.
It is apparent from other reviews that the stockout problem is not a unique one - I would recommend that orders be placed months before the shipping period, and would hope that in the future, product availability would be included as part of order confirmation.
Great place to find heirloom and unusual bulbs. Purchased many from them and they shipped quickly. All were large and healthy and are growing well. Good prices too. The catalog is for people that know plants - which is OK with me. Will buy from again. A+++
On Apr 6, 2003, mngardenaddict Minneapolis, MN wrote:
I ordered several amaryllis from this company and was very happy with my purchase. They offered many singles and doubles and the prices were very reasonable. The bulb sizes were very large. They were shipped quickly and all bloomed well. I'll definitely be back for more.
On April 30th, 2004, mngardenaddict added the following:
I ordered fall bulbs that were good size and shape. One of the packages was a little short of the 25 bulb amount so I contacted customer service. They were very friendly, understanding, and immediately sent me another whole pack of 25.
I again purchased bulbs for Christmas of 2003. They are even larger than my original purchase. One of the 6 was a little mushy so I again called customer service. They quickly sent me another in replacement. I will continue to order because they are willing to quickly resolve any problems and offer such good merchandise at a reasonable price.
McClure & Zimmerman has a great selection of bulbs: common and rare and Heirloom. Their prices are quite good (a lot better than many places who also have poorer selections, Brent $ Beckys Bulbs prices tend to be better but you must order larger quanities). The largish order I placed arrived in excellant time and the bulbs were all good size and good quality (a couple were soft, I called them and received repkacenents in less thana week!). They are professional and seem to be a very good outfit.
This is my second time ordering from them. I was happy with my first order. This time I'm ordering lily bulbs. The varieties I ordered are usually very expensive when I've been able to find them. Price has kept me from ordering them from other companies. Their prices were very reasonable. I'll have to wait and see how the bulbs arrive and grow.
Great place to order those hard-to-find bulbs, especially natives, some of which sell out quickly. Most of my bulbs didn't show up the first summer and I called them. They said to be patient as most natives take up to 2 years to start growth. This spring WOW, what a show. Worth the wait. Trilliums I ordered for this spring came right up as did the Virginia Bluebells (w/o flowers, which is to be expected).
I've ordered from McClure & Zimmerman over the years, and though I've generally liked what I've gotten, they can be unreliable and sloppy. One year I ordered ""Roman hyacinth,"" but instead they sent me regular Dutch hyacinth bulbs that had been split so that they would produce multiple stalks. Twice I have ordered Achimenes, both times they have failed to grow. And another year I ordered 6 mixed Early Spring tulips, but what I got appeared to be 2 Mentons (Single Late) and 4 Golden Apeldoorns - nice, but not what I ordered. When I've complained to them, they tell me they don't grow the product, they just sell it. But despite the problems, I keep ordering from them, off and on, because they have such a great variety of interesting varieties, and they sell small quantities at reasonable prices. I think that John Scheepers actually has the best prices, but they require a $35 minimum order, and I don't always need that much. That's when I order from M&Z.
I ordered Lily of the Valley late this spring when most mail-order companies were already sold out. McClure & Zimmerman filled my order with smaller than usual pips but gave me a discount for the reduced size. Every one of the 96 plants I received has flourished despite the late planting, and one even bloomed - in late June! I am more than pleased with their plants and service.
I placed an order for the first time last Fall. My eremurus and iris are coming up now right on schedule. This is a bare bones catalog in that it is black and white paper with only random sketches of plants.
This is not the catalog to go to if you are unfamiliar with botanical names or need a picture to identify the plant. However, you will receive great descriptions of plants and their requirements. You'll also see lower prices than other companies! Your order will be shipped at proper planting time, too. I'd rather know what I'm shopping for, find it in a catalog and then pay a lower price for a quality product from a trustworthy company.
I really like the McClure and Zimmerman catalogue, and placed an order for spring planted bulbs. I got three kinds of bulbs and a small species iris. I was very disappointed with the results. One kind of bulb never came up at all. Another kind came up, but not a single plant bloomed. The third kind came up, but only one of the six plants bloomed. The iris was perfectly healthy, but had been stored upside-down before shipping, so the leaf sprouts were facing the same direction as the roots, making it very hard to plant. It is doing fine, but is growing at a strong slant. I called and complained, and they have refunded most of my money. However, the woman I spoke to did not apologize for my disappointment. She did not act as though she cared that their company had disappointed me. I will not order from McClure and Zimmerman again.
In the fall of 1999, I ordered a variety of bulbs from McClure & Zimmerman. The bulbs I promptly received were large, fresh and well-packaged to protect from shipping damage. Although I still don't have the results of the bulbs I planted, those that I forced produced lush, fragrant blooms.
Another one of my favorite catalogs--a wide variety of unusual bulbs, many of which I can't order from other bulb catalogs at the proper planting time (many spring-planted bulbs are planted in the fall here in my zone 9 Gulf Coast garden). The bulbs I've received have performed beautifully, arrived at the proper planting time and were reasonably priced. The customer service staff couldn't be nicer or have a better sense of humor (I called back four times after my initial order to add to it.) Great catalog, great company, order from McClure & Zimmerman if you've never tried them.
I recently ordered in excess of $400.00 from McCLure & Zimmerman and I couldn't be more satisfied. Not only do they have a beautiful, well-organized catalog, but their service can't be beat. When I had questions about which bulbs I could force indoors the operator almost gave me too much customer support! (I'm fairly sure I was speaking to a master gardener.) Although my order has not yet arrived, I have heard the praises of McClure & Zimmerman from many friends and family, I can't wait for my order to arrive.
I recently ordered from them as well. This was my first garden, even though I come from a long line of big gardeners. My mother remembers ordering from this company when they were operating out of an apartment building a couple of blocks from her house in Chicago. She has always loved them and told me to order from them. Because my yard had not been tended to for some time before we moved in, I had large,empty flower beds. I ordered in excess of $100 in bulbs in August. Because I was doing my bulb beds in layers, I needed to have everything in order to begin planting. I received one package here, and one package there for 2 ½ months, but I still had not received everything.After 2 months had passed, I began calling and e-mailing every week, only to be told that the rest of my order would arrive the following week. After more than three months since I had placed my order, I was informed that the rest of my order would not arrive because it was not it stock. Not once during any of the 8 or 10 times that I called and e-mail did anyone mention this. Each time I was told that the items were in stock and would be arriving the following week. If this wasn't bad enough, I never once received an apology, nor was there any attempt to make it up to me. Because they had waited so long to inform me that they were out of stock, I was unable to purchase what I wanted anywhere else because other nurseries were, by then, out of stock. As a result, I will have huge holes in my garden next year. I guess the holes will keep me from being tempted to order from McZ, because each time I look at them, I will be reminded of this experience. I guess this is just a case of a small company trying to grow, and losing sight of what made itsuccessful in the first place. Incidentally, a few days after I sent this, I received a notice that I would not be receiving the rest of my order. In short, that means that in the first week of December they decided to let me know ( I live in Chicago) that they weren't shipping the rest of my bulbs. That doesn't make any sense since it would have been too late to plant by then anyway.
When I made the decision to make only one bulb order each Fall, I choose McClure & Zimmerman. Although there are no color pictures, they include detailed plant descriptions, good zone information and excellent cultivation instructions. I find this last point unusual where bulbs are concerned. There are many things which wont grow well where the soil doesn't drain in the winter and you will find this information in the M&Z catalog. The bulbs are top size and I have had mostly good results from things I planted. In addition they offer many items that you won't see elsewhere.