I have ordered from HCG several years. I have their poppy mallow, plumbago, prairie smoke, and butterfly milkweed. All except the milkweed are doing very well. The plants arrive in great condition and take right off. They winter over great with no help from me. I just ordered more plumbago and wish I could buy everything in the catalog.
Oh, the milkweed? My husband and a line trimmer, need I say more...
By far the best looking, largest and best maintained plants I have received, and they allowed me to choose my shipping date...the other companies I bought plants from (except Bluestone Perennials, my other favorite) shipped in April and many of their plants are not going to make it; Montana's planting date is post-Memorial Day. Their cost is well worth it, even to those of us with limited means.
On May 14, 2010, plantgnome1 nowhere land, NY (Zone 6b) wrote:
i have ordered numerous plants from High Country and other than 1 or 2 which did not survive (which were promptly replaced free of charge) I have had great luck with their plants. Their irises bloomed this year-are the most gorgeous immortality irises I have ever seen. They are a bit high on shipping charges, but all the companies seem to have increased their shipping charges recently. No companies have reasonable shipping charges anymore. I purchase from HCG because they carry plants I can't find locally, So I pay the shipping. I will continue to purchase from them. Their customer service is also very good and are prompt with answering email questions as opposed to others which never bother to answer.
On May 10, 2010, mctinsley Woodland Hills, CA wrote:
My plants were very health when they arrived. I questioned wheather I recieved one wrong plant so I took a picture and sent it to customer service. They responded right away with a discription of what the plant I ordered should look like. It matched exactly what I recieved. Great plants, great customer service, will order more plants in the future from this company.
These folks are from New Mexico. They have a beautiful catalog with a large assortment of drought resistant plants which interest me. And they have items that are of interest to us gardeners in other parts of the country. (They're good about noting which are appropriate for what parts).Their delivery was very fast, the plants I received were healthy and robust. And their customer service very promptly answered an e-mail I sent them about the use of the plants I ordered from them. All in all, a VERY satisfactory experience.
High Country Gardens is the best plant supplier I have done business with on the internet. Plants always arrive in good condition and they respond quickly to email questions. I recommend this company without reservation.
On May 1, 2010, DarwinGardener Bismarck, ND (Zone 4a) wrote:
It's been a few years since I have ordered from HCG but I again placed a small order this spring. The plants were carefully packed and arrived with no damage; they were healthy and well-rooted. Packaging is a huge issue for me because our local "brown delivery people" inevitably leave boxes upside down in the sun.....
I purchased quite a few plants this year. I had them shipped the first part of March. The weather would not allow me to plant them outside for awhile, it was to wet and snowy. So I had to grow them in a window. All the plants did really well, but three. I filled out a claim form from High Country Gardens and e-mailed it in. I recieved an immediate response that those plants would be replaced and when to expect them. They followed through! The replacements are beautiful.
On Apr 30, 2010, SwimmingJewel Southold, NY (Zone 7b) wrote:
High Country Gardens is one of the best places to buy rare and unusual plants and natives.
Just received the last part of my order and all plants were big, healthy robust plants.
EVerything was planted right away and growing already!
Customer Service is EXCELLENT too!
Thank you High Country Gardens!
I have just received my first order from HCG. I was pleased with the packing and the plants. I will look forward to the blooming of the Salvias and Agastache "Ava" which I bought. I have 4 more orders to come. This is a new garden plot as I have moved from SE Michigan to SW Michigan.
On Apr 22, 2010, MartBright Centre Hall, PA wrote:
Posted on January 15, 2009, updated April 22, 2010
I bought two preplanned gardens for my new property, which receives full sun and a LOT of wind. Probably a quarter of the plants arrived in poor condition, but I only asked for a few replacements--I guess I didn't feel right about asking for replacements for as many as were in poor shape; I thought I could coax them along as I am a very experienced gardener. All of the lemon thyme plants died, and thyme is not that hard to grow! Many of the other plants remained rather stunted (they were small anyway to begin with, which was rather disappointing) but some of them really took off--the yarrows and the catmints and the roses were doing super-well in the summer and fall (now they're under snow). The roses are tiny plants but they're own root and they take off. Beware of witches brooms though on rosa eglanteria; I've had two I had to destroy in previous years. I did order one again though because I like them, foolish as it sounds.
Overall the customer service was good and the plants middling--I would not order again unless there was something I could not find locally that I really really wanted. It's just too risky--not just with this company but with almost any mail order company, except for Select Seeds Antique Flowers, which is the best company on the planet!!
On April 22nd, 2010, MartBright added the following:
Just want to add that despite claims that many plants are rabbit-proof my experience is NOT. I talked to them about this and they acknowledged that yes, if the bunnies are hungry enough they'll eat a lot of the plants advertised as rabbit-proof. I think they should change the copy in their catalog to reflect this fact. After all, I don't live in the desert where there's literally nothing else to eat. I live on the east coast.On Apr 22, 2010, High Country Gardens responded with:
"On Apr 22, 2010 2:00 PM, High Country Gardens responded with:
We are sorry for this misunderstanding. We offer many plants that are rabbit 'Resistant', not rabbit "Proof". All deer or rabbit resistant plants need to become established before they either emit an odor or taste that critters find unappealing. We recommend protecting young plants until they can build up their resistance.
On Apr 22, 2010, mocatmom Driftwood, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:
I order most of my plants online since I'm not interested in many of the varieties available for retail sale locally. Because of this, I expect smaller plants at a higher cost, but I really appreciate the variety and vigor of many of the plants available via mail.
This is my first order from High Country Gardens, but it won't be my last. The small but extremely vigorous-looking plants arrived very quickly and packaged perfectly - not a leaf out of place! They are all plants that should do extremely well in my location, but are not easily found anywhere in the local nurseries.
I was extremely pleased with every aspect of the purchase and delivery of these plants, and I'll be a return customer many times in the future.
Being new to gardening in the West I was relieved to find a company that provided plants that grow in my climate (Zone 5). The plants are beautiful and performed as advertised. Their shipment was packed well and arrived on the day promised. I had a few plants that needed replacement and this was done promptly and without "haggling". Great company!
I really wanted to like this company but I didn't. I think what it really comes down to is by the time you buy the plants and pay shipping it averages to more than you have to pay locally.
If I went to a local nursury and tiny pots were $10.00 each I would pass them by. Also the fact that a cockroach crawled out of the carton when I opened it. Customer service said don't worry. No more for me....
On Apr 17, 2010, High Country Gardens responded with:
"On Apr 20, 2010 11:52 AM, High Country Gardens responded with:
We are sorry for the experience you had with your plant shipment. Our plants are nurtured by hand in our greenhouse to be hardy, beautiful and long lasting. In addition we have a plant guarantee so if you are not 100% satisfied, we will do everything we can to make things right. Please call us to discuss how we can assist in both your satisfaction and your spring gardening.
I live in a climate similar to that of the High Country nursery, so the xeric, cold hardy, plants that they sell are perfect for me. I love this company, their selection of suitable plants is great! The customer service is good and the plants arrive healthy, well packaged, and quickly. They are however, small, and they need to be a babied for the first year. However, now that the first spring is arriving after having planted some of their plants last spring and then more in the fall, I'm really pleased. The spring planted ones struggled last summer, but after some time to get established they are now looking great, and the fall planted ones came through the especially cold, snowy winter very well and are now really taking off.
I ordered and planted 7 Penstemon pinifolius 'Nearly Red' along with 7 Aquilegia 'Red Hobbit', and 33 Pulsatilla 'Rote Glocke' last fall. Planted all immediately upon arrival. Two of the Penstemon did not make it through the winter. And one of the Aquilegia was carried away by squirrels. Unfortunately, the little identification tag that came with the Penstemon was gone, (I usually stick one into the ground next to one of the plants), and I did not remember the cultivar. I e-mailed High Country Gardens, and asked if they could check my order last fall. They did better than that. They offered to replace the Penstemon for free. I wrote back that I didn't mean to imply that I wanted "free" plants...nature was a bit cruel to those of us in the Northeast last winter. Carrie Smart at HCG sent me the two plants, (correct cultivar), anyway. The Aquilegia I'll replace myself. After all, there's Mother Nature, and then there's those darned squirrels. Thanks HCG.
Posted on October 6, 2009, updated March 24, 2010
In March '09 I order a couple dozen plants (Agastache, Perovskia, Gaura, Achillea, Gaillardia) from HCG...I received them in a couple of days and they arrived in excellent condition...the packing is very good. Due to health problems it took me about 2 - 3 weeks to get them all planted which is a little longer than they suggest. They have been in the ground for 6 - 7 weeks, survived 15 triple digit days already and excessive wind storms (I live in a rural area out in the desert).....I had 2 agastache plants with blooms within 2 weeks and at this time all the plants are at least a foot high (except the gaillardia!) and 13 are blooming big time.... These plants had the healthiest roots I have ever seen and I could not be happier with their exceptional performance....the prices are a little high but you definitely get what you pay for and I am already making my list for fall planting.
On October 6th, 2009, desertdweller5 added the following:
Received my fall plant order a couple of weeks ago....30 plants carefully packed in four layers in one box and not a broken stem to be found! Took me about six days to plant them all and I have already been rewarded with flowers on 2 of the plants...an unexpected surprise! I can not say enough about their wide selection of plants suitable for my sandy desert soil and the superb quality of all plants I have ordered from them. It is easy to distinguish the HCG plants in my garden as they are the biggest, healthiest and have more blooms than any of my locally purchased plants. Thanks to HCG my garden has new life and I am more excited than ever for the continued success and joy of desert gardening.On March 24th, 2010, desertdweller5 added the following:
I received my Spring planting order last week and as usual all plants were carefully packaged and arrived in excellent condition and they are now happily enjoying the company of the rest of my garden. The plants I ordered and planted last Fall woke up last month and I already have many flowers!!!!
On Mar 2, 2010, jyaroch Fairacres, NM (Zone 8a) wrote:
I've ordered three times; all three times they were prompt in delivering good products. I like ordering from them, because they are familiar with the needs of gardeners in my area (Chihuahuan desert, zone 8, very dry), and seem to offer good advice.
On Mar 1, 2010, TX_gardener Brady, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:
I've ordered from HCG twice (now waiting for my 2d order to arrive) and feel they are doing a great job. Selection of plants is terrific; love the availability of native species. My previous order arrived in a timely manner, in great condition and packaging. Plan to order as long as planting space (and my aching back) will allow!
On Feb 26, 2010, Miria2 Columbus, NM (Zone 8a) wrote:
The quality of the plants and the packaging are excellent and I have had nothing but a positive, quality experience with customer service. I placed a larger order for fall planting here is southern NM, and, although just February, the earlier plants are already looking wonderful.
Plants are extraordinarily healthy, and High Country Gardens' packing is a genuine marvel. The plants are just the perfect size for transplanting. There are many good plant companies on the Internet, but in my book, this is the best.
I have been a regular HGC's customer for several years and have found there catalog, selection of plants, packing and service to be excellent. I have never been disappointed in the plants I've received and have found their Yum Yum mix to be perfect for my Colorado garden. I especially appreciate the new additions to their catalog and eagerly await each new addition.
In June I ordered 3 different sets of agastache. They were a nice size when they arrived. The last set I ordered were planted in the sunniest spot and grew to 3 feet this first year. A week ago, which was late November, in Yorkville, IL, they still had fragrant blooms which I picked to dry in the house. High Country Gardens is my new favorite mail order company.
On Nov 20, 2009, Badgertalk Nashville, TN (Zone 6a) wrote:
Excellent source of penstemons and agastaches. Plants are packed well. Only issue is that their shipping seems high. I would STRONGLY suggest that people order online - not through the catalog. The reason for this is that it is much easier to make sure that you get plants that will work in your area. Many of their plants are specific to desert and dry areas. At the bottom of each page - online- you will see a guide that specifies the conditions that the plant will thrive in. I have planted several plants that were borderline for my area and the key is to plant them in fast draining soil - a raised bed with sand mixed into the soil.
Posted on October 10, 2009, updated November 09, 2009
I ordered 3 plants from this company at the end of the spring shipping period. They had not been secured in the box, and arrived with many of the branches broken off. They offered to replace them in the fall, but I said Iíd see what I could do. The roots were in good shape, and the plants recovered (one later died but it was while I was on vacation so I count that as my fault).
I decided to give them another try. I ordered 11 plants and some bulbs for fall shipping. The bulbs look good (shipped separately at appropriate planting times with no extra shipping charges). The plants were well-secured in the box. Of the plants, 6 look good, 2 look healthy but poor form (long branches with foliage just near the ends), 1 looks wilted and hasnít recovered in 48 hours, and 2 look terrible (pale, wilted, tips of leaves dried out, no roots seen at the edges when carefully taken out of the pot) Ė Iím not hopeful that the last 3 will survive, but Iíll do what I can for them.
When I buy plants I want healthy plants. I donít want 3 out of 11 to look like they'll probably require replacement/refund - even if that process is easy, and I donít want plants that will probably recover if I give them extra care, (or that Iím embarrassed to have in my garden because they look so unhealthy). Their selection is wonderful, but I don't think I'll order plants from High Country Gardens again.
On November 9th, 2009, socal24 added the following:
Of the three plants that I thought might not survive, only one died. One put out nice new growth, and one is just sitting - hopefully it will put out new growth in the spring.
I ORDERED 1 BUDDLEIA DAVIDII ROYAL RED. THEY KEPT ME UP TO DATE, AS TO WHEN THE PLANT WOULD BE SHIPPED, IT ARRIVED FRESH AND GREEN, I'M VERY WELL PLEASED WITH THIS COMPANY. I WILL ORDER FROM THEM AGAIN.
I have had occasions to purchase plants from this vendor for my own home and have had other occasions to recommend them to friends. Plants that my friends and I have received have proven to be sturdy and visually delightful. I am especially pleased with the premium pot that provides greater root depth. I greatly appreciate having a ready source of xeric plants, especially plants cultivated from the wild. I live on the boundary of two zones in OK and deal with extremes of temperature, moisture, and wind, so I need plants that can withstand such variation in conditions. I also enjoy getting emails announcing seasonal sales since my dollars are in short supply these days.
I moved from NY to CO and found myself in a zone with different planting times and a whole new world of plants. After a few years of struggling with flowers and lawn I found the HCG site and a world of info about what to plant, when to plant it and what complimented what. In the middle of a drought, with water restrictions and ugly yard contests I had this great looking lawn thanks to HCG.
Now we have moved to TX and here I am looking for plants and grasses at my favorite site! I agree that the prices are a tad high but the quality is also high, and the service is exceptional-even if you need a plant replaced. Watch for those coupons and you won't find a better place or a better value then HCG Denise Herring
On Sep 24, 2009, floating_stump Grafton, WI wrote:
High Country Gardens has a great website. It's very informative, both about the specific plants, and tips in general. They're very clear about when and how they ship, and they plan their shipments to arrive at their destinations on fridays, so you can plant on the weekend (and they don't sit in a warehouse over the weekend).
I ordered eight plants. Two of them were coming out of their pots in the package. I wasn't thrilled about this, but those plants seem to be in good shape. One plant was in sorry shape when I opened the box, and the next day it was clear that it was dead. I have about nine months to order a replacement. Two more of the plants seem to be dying, but that's my fault. I mentioned this, when I e-mailed to discuss what I did wrong, and they offered to replace those as well. I'm not sure I'll take them up on it, since I'm sure it was my fault, but I appreciate the generous offer. It would have been nice to have gotten a planting guide, since these plants were all "xeric" (kinda special cases). Everyone else I order from includes little booklets on how to plant, no matter how mundane the plants.
Not a perfect experience, but I would definitely recommend this company.