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Posted on June 23, 2011, updated June 23, 2011
I ordered "in stock" plants 2 months ago. Still have not received, nor do they answer the phone or emails
I think this company is failing and I would strongly suggest you do not use them
I filed a complaint at BBB of WA.
On June 23rd, 2011, shawnolesen changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
I was wrong. It wasn't couple of months but actually only 20 days and I apologize for my mistake. Big Dipper contacted me and told me they were scheduled to be shipped right away and I should receive it real soon
Posted on April 13, 2011, updated April 13, 2011
I order some plants 3 weeks ago. There is no information as to when I would get them. When I call them for information, the staff is extremely rude and unhelpful.
On April 13th, 2011, paulng changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
This is an amazing website as just moments after I posted this message, Big Dipper Farm called me! Based on our conversation, I need to clarify a couple of things.
1. Deidra (sp?) from Big Dipper Farm nicely indicated that she was not rude, just multi tasking and did not have time to help do research to a question I was asking when she directed me to another website, their "breeder" nursery. My expectation of nurseries is that they know the plants and are able to answer questions. Maybe this is wrong on my part.
2. There is no proof that I placed the order 3 weeks ago. Paypal charged my credit card account on 4/3, which I know islater than when I placed the order. How much later, I have no records of. When found out I live in WA, the nursery said they can ship within a few days. My question still is, they got a week and a half (from 4/3 to 4/13) to process my order, if I did not post this message, how much longer would I have to wait?
Finally, thank you for setting up this website - wonderful tool to get response!
I have bought a few times from this company. Not very communicative. Plants are usually small but healthy. Take time to establish. Plants are always delivered well packaged. If the company adjusts the price for the actual size of plants I would purchase again. However, most plants can be sourced from other vendors.
Last year I ordered several plants from this company. They packaged them in a box that was too small. All the plants were bent/broken at the base of the stem where than had been forcibly bent over to fit into the undersized box. They all had to be cut back to the base of the stem. I contacted the company and explained the situation and sent pictures of the broken plants next to the undersized box they were packaged in. They said to go ahead and plant them and wait to see what happens, that she should still grow. Well, I planted them, only one had a chance to show signs of any growth. The others had not before the fall weather came and they all went dormant. I still have hopes they all will show signs of life this spring. Still thought it was unprofessional of them to ship the plants in this manner, but decided to give the benefit of the doubt.
A few weeks ago I placed another order. Web site stated items were available and should ship in about 2 weeks. After waiting for 4 weeks and receiving no word about shipping status, I attempted to contact them. Reaching this company via phone has been very difficult, if not impossible. As with my prior attempts with last year issues, they do not respond to email (never responded to my emails with last year issues and no response to my emails with my current concerns).
I have ordered plants online from dozens of different companies and from ebay. My dealings with this company has been one of the less positive experiences.
On February 6th, 2009, Got_Lost changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
Spoke with Deidre at Big Dipper. She called, and wrote (via email), extremely quickly after reading my comments on this website. She explained the situation, and cleared up all current concerns. She sounded extremely sincere in her explanations and desire to be fair in resolving my outstanding concerns. I would say she went above and beyond what I would generally expect from an online merchant. I changed my rating from negative to neutral based on most recent conversations with this company. I hope that once my plants arrive I will be able to once again change my rating from neutral to positive.
Big Dipper's site reads orders will be shipped 2 to 3 weeks. Don't make any plans on leaving after you place the order for 3 weeks because you do not know when the plants are going to show up. Turns out this was a mistake on my part for ordering, I figured I'd luck out they would show up earlier, nope its been 3 full weeks, now I am wondering if the order has been lost......not worth ordering online if this is the case.
On Feb 8, 2008, LariAnn Miami, FL (Zone 10a) wrote:
I placed an order with Big Dipper for 3 Luma apiculata. They were shipped promptly and arrived in good condition. Only concern I had was that the plants had been cut back to less than 6 inches tall, although lthey looked like at some time they must have been well over a foot tall, based on the caliper of the cut stems. I'd love to have had the larger uncut size and would have been glad to pay more to get them.
I suggest that prospective customers call them and find out the actual size of the plants they will be shipped to avoid disappointment.
On Aug 24, 2007, queenofthegarde Whittier, CA wrote:
I was grateful to find several plants on the Big Dipper website that are generally not available till January in my local nurseries. I wanted to get these plants in the ground now so that they will be established by spring. Unfortunately, the plants are smaller than I would have expected, not dinky, but definitely less vigorous-looking and definitely fragile-looking. It looks like I'll have to nurse these plants along till spring instead of getting a head start :-(
My order was processed relatively quickly (within 2 weeks). No substitutions seem to have been made.
I placed two orders this month- One to Big Dipper Farm and one to Lazys S Nursery- A few slight differences, but almost identical- They had both gotten good reviews here, had a great selection, so I thought I would compare the two-
Regarding THIS feedback- I ordered the plants July 26th, they arrived today, Aug 10th - their Website DOES say that they are expecting orders to take 2-3 weeks. (1) I ordered some ground cover (Soapwart) ONLY because they were offering it at a discount and I have a new large bed that I just put in. I received ONE out of the three I ordered. I would not have ordered it at all if I had known this to be the case. I had only settled for Soapwart because of the deal-
(2) This is MY FAULT, but they are offering Helleborus mix for $34.99- I ordered it thinking I would get a mix of plants/bulbs and I got one- One plant for $34.99 (quart size) - I could have gotten some nice heirloom irises for that! Once again, my fault- dumb me
(3) They did not have another plant that I had ordered- It is missing and just says Unavailable on the invoice-- and REALLY needed this for my new bed- So- I am going back to Lazy S ---Which I did receive almost the same order from Lazy S over a week ago, all of the plants were there and in great shape-, however the order I placed with them was for my father-in-laws house and I have already planted those, so I need to order more from them now!
I am not happy with the deletion of items from this nursery without any notice/chance for subtitutions- and I can say that I will not order again from them. When I layed out the plants that I spent $170 on I was really disappointed with myself.... but live and learn...
On August 15th, 2007, foofranay changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
OK- I was a little bit hasty with my negative feedback-
Although I am still disappointed regarding plants being missing and dropped from my order, I have to say that the plants that I DID receive from Big Dipper Farms seem to be very nice. The root systems are really quite large and established, they seem to give great promise for being hardy enough to survive Michigan winter and will hopefully thrive next year.
I guess that if I wanted plants and couldn't decide exactly which ones, I would place another order and then not be upset when some of them don't come... I still think I'll stick to Lazys though.. their shipping was MUCH shorter, the customer service is excellent and the plants were great too. I decided to change the rating to neutral because there are MUCH worse companies out there!
On Jul 23, 2007, maye20 San Francisco, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:
I am mostly satisfied with my first order from Big Dipper but am on the fence about ordering from them in the future.
I placed a small order (13 plants, $76 including shipping) and received the plants a month later. Packaging was adequate (though not as careful and secure as Lazy S's). Plants were small but in my opinion, were priced accordingly. Two plants that I had ordered were out of stock and I wasn't given the opportunity to select alternates, but they included a free lemon thyme plant; in total, I received 11 plants. I emailed Big Dipper to let them know that I would have preferred to select alternates for the out of stock plants, and I received a courteous and prompt response that they used to do so, but many customers did not bother to respond.
Two months later, 7 of 11 plants are thriving. The four that are not: three bare root raspberry plants have yet to show signs of life (the fourth is doing OK) and an asclepias tuberosa shed all of its leaves immediately and has not yet recovered. I am giving them the benefit of the doubt that this is due to my inexperience rather than the quality of the plants.
Pros: Reasonable plant prices and shipping costs. Excellent selection and informative web site.
Cons: Slightly longer-than-expected shipping time, no opportunity to select alternates when plants are out of stock.
On Jun 29, 2006, bemidjigreen Blackduck, MN wrote:
ordered 4 plants that were not available from any nearby nursery. They took a bit to ship out (2 wks). Plants were much smaller than expected given the price--and I certainly wouldn't have chosen these plants. They were a bit beaten up looking.
But if you must absolutely have a plant that isn't widely available, I would give them a go. Just lower your expectations on the size and plan to plant these the moment they arrive so you have a shot at them making it.
On Jun 7, 2006, LarisaB West Seattle, WA (Zone 8b) wrote:
Plants seemed overpriced for their size and condition. All but one survived shipping, and the DOA was courteously refunded. A freebie was included, but coincidentally it was a plant that's already too agressive in my lawn (just dumb luck of course).