I have bought several hundred dollars-worth of plants from HCG over the years. Some have done spectacularly well, others have been just as spectacular failures. I think the key to success with their plants is to understand that they are for western cultural conditions and some will not do well in soils that are, for instance, heavily augmented with compost. Gardeners here in central Wyoming have to practically re-invent our soils in order to get much of anything to grow, and yet some of the plants from HCG like our soil and will disappoint in kinder conditions. I am making a guess at this point to say that probably half of what I have bought from HCG has thrived and half have failed utterly. I blame three things--I am in a rural area with much harser conditions than in town, I am still a rank amateur after gardening all of my life, and because of that, I chose the wrong varieties for my location. I haven't shopped with HCG for a few years so I could allow some festuca to mature and give me a better idea what else to plant in a natives bed, but I did just place an order for some penstemon pinafolius and rhus aromatica--fairly foolproof plants. I anticipate success. If you order from them, ask questions about cultural requirements and research the varieties you want to try really well before spending the money. Their plants come in great packaging and they get up and running pretty quickly, that is if you've made the right choice. All-in-all they are a great resource for western gardeners.
On Mar 11, 2011, hummengberd San Bernardino, CA wrote:
I first heard about HCG from a Hummingbird group on Facebook. It received very high recommendations, so I decided to give them a try. I just received my first order last night and followed their directions for the plants' immediate care. I ordered 11 plants, and every single one was healthy and well packed. I was amazed really as I've never ordered plants online before. I have to say they're all out on the deck now, enjoying some morning sun; to me, they look like they're spreading their little leaves and enjoying their freedom from the packing box. Thank you, HCG. . . I'll definitely be ordering from you again (and soon).
I had never heard of this company before until I recieved their catalog in the mail.They had a good rating so I gave them a try. I was very satisfied with my order. The plants were very well packed and arrived healthy. I was happy with the size of the plants and they all had a healthy root system. Their customer service is also outstanding. I would definately order from them again.
On Mar 10, 2011, CurtisGans Lovettsville, VA wrote:
Order done easily, processed easily and delivered when HCG said it would be. Only problem is that the non-working hour phone support has no one knowledgeable about plants and their care. So had to call again and e-mail. But once I did do the second, response was quick and thoughtful;
On Mar 10, 2011, High Country Gardens responded with:
"On Mar 10, 2011 3:18 PM, High Country Gardens responded with:
We appreciate your feedback. We have a 24 hour order line that handles orders and catalog requests. Customer service is available M-F 9am-5pm MT. We strive to respond to all customer correspondence as promptly as possible. Please contact me with any questions or concerns.
On Mar 8, 2011, ladypamelamary Philadelphia United States wrote:
I have the Hummingbird Garden at the Horticultural Center in Philadelphia, and I have ordered from High Country Gardens for the last four years. Their plant material has always arrived healthy, vibrant, and packed with care. I have found their customer service to be outstanding. Also, I have never lost a plant from them, and many of the plants have exceeded my expectations for growth in one season.
Love this nursery! I have ordered from them for years and have always been happy with the customer service, and the plants. I live in Northern California and have several xeric beds that look fantastic thanks to HCG.
Last year, I ordered a number of plants, many in premium (5") pots, from High Country Gardens. While the plants appeared small, their root systems were very well developed, and they took off like a house afire. By mid-summer, they were a riot of color and texture, a lovely sight indeed. Many were planted in the front yard, and I got so many compliments from neighbors and passersby. I could not be more pleased and have just ordered some more for spring delivery, to be planted in the "inferno strip" between sidewalk and curb next to my store. Thank you, High country Gardens!
On Jan 31, 2011, High Country Gardens responded with:
"On Feb 4, 2011 4:51 PM, High Country Gardens responded with:
We appreciate you for your feedback. High Country Gardens specially designed the 5" deep containers used in shipping the majority of the plants we grow. These premium pots are the depth of a #1 Gallon and with their well developed root systems are ready for planting in your garden upon arrival. If you are able to we would love to see pictures! You can email them to firstname.lastname@example.org or post on our Facebook pagehttp://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/hcg4fans for all to enjoy!
On Jan 16, 2011, billyet Portland, OR (Zone 8a) wrote:
Very prompt service, they were cooperative and helpfully agreed to send part of my order right away and the rest in the spring; there was 1 mistake and they replaced the bulb immediately & let me keep the mis-sent one as well.
On Oct 25, 2010, kacton Hasbrouck Heights, NJ wrote:
I love High Country Gardens. Their website is informative, I love that they show pictures of the plants that give perspective of how they will look planted. I do not live in the high country, I live in New Jersey but I order plants often from HCG and they are always alive and shipped safely. Overall a great website and solid plants.
On Oct 8, 2010, dorothy128 Visalia, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:
Excellent Customer Service! When I didn't receive the last part of my order, my e-mail inquiry was answered in less time it took me to write the inquiry. At first I was told the ordered had been delivered, which I assured them it had not. Further correspondence uncovered a problem with the drop shippers and the order would be shipped the following week. This was a problem for me since I am leaving on vacation. They agreed to delay shipment for a week, which will be absolutely perfect. Superior response time to my inquiries. All was resolved by e-mail in less than 45 minutes. I couldn't be happier with the resolution and the customer service.
On Sep 24, 2010, gardenchik Robbinsville, NJ (Zone 6b) wrote:
I received my very first order from HCG today. The plants were packaged perfectly. All 17 plants (3 varieties) look healthy and are a good size. I will order from this company again come spring. I would order more now for fall planting, but I'm already beat-up from the hot summer. I'm ready to just take it easy and dream of next spring. Thanks HCG!
I moved to Las Vegas a few years ago. I had only lived in the southeast before so I had no idea how to garden in a hot desert. I bought several plants at local nurseries and they all failed miserably. None of them belonged in the desert. I found High Country Gardens and have been a huge fan ever since. Every plant I have ordered from them has been extremely healthy and has grown beautifully. Like I said, I am new to the desert and had no idea what to plant so I have emailed them questions and they always respond quickly and thoroughly. Their employees seem to know more about my local growing area than the people at my local nurseries. Of course they offer many other plants besides desert plants. Compared to the local nurseries their plant prices are a little more expensive but I will gladly pay the price because I know the plant will grow. I just can't say enough how much I love High Country Gardens!
On Aug 25, 2010, enviroplanter Spring House, PA wrote:
Selection of shrubs is somewhat limited, but they do have things you can't find anywhere else (and not just for the Southwest). Their plants are well rooted and very healthy; they really settle in quickly and grow fast. Packing and shipping are excellent.
Posted on August 24, 2010, updated August 24, 2010
Excellent mail order resource for gardeners who need xeric plants for higher elevations, such as Colorado. Plants arrived the week I specified, in good condition.
On August 24th, 2010, mhpinson added the following:
Their catolog contains detailed information needed to choose perenials for my tough growing conditions (full sun to partial shade, 10" to 20" of rain per year, low humidity, zone 5, no supplemental watering after plant is established). Catelog also indicates plants that won't be eaten by bunnies & deer, or will attract bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.
On Aug 5, 2010, wakacjusz South Milwaukee, WI wrote:
I'm very happy with the plants I received from HCG. They are unique and beautiful. Shipping was fast and well packed. The plants grow like crazy, just after few months my catmint is over 2 feet wide. And it was a tiny one when I got it. For couple plants, that didn't make it, I received replacements from HCG and hopefully now they will have happy ending at my garden. I recommend HCG to each garden lover.
On Aug 3, 2010, WeeklyWeeder Polson, MT (Zone 5b) wrote:
I ordered several reblooming tall bearded irises which arrived healthy and nicely potted. The packing of these plants was very well thought out, as they were stable and arrived in good condition.
Very pleased with this company and their products.
Colleen in Polson, MT
On Aug 3, 2010, High Country Gardens responded with:
"On Aug 3, 2010 3:34 PM, High Country Gardens responded with:
Thank you Colleen for taking the time to share your satisfaction with High Country Gardens and our plants.
We are always delighted to hear from 'happy' customers.
HCG Customer Service Representative
I have ordered several times from High Country Gardens and have been very pleased each time. They send small, but high quality, healthy plants in a timely manner. On one occasion two of the plants I ordered were stressed when they arrived and did not survive after planting. I contacted the company and promptly received a refund with no hassle.
They have good healthy plants, packed nice and safe and they guarantee them for 6mo. and on occasion, even longer. I like them because they have plants that very, very few on line nurseries have.
On Jun 25, 2010, congminglaoshi Tuckahoe, NY wrote:
I just got some on sale plants, and they generally look pretty good. The ones that came in the smallest sized pot are small, some of them look like rooted cuttings that haven't been in production too long (ex Artemesia versicolor Seafoam and Scutellaria resinosa), but they are healthy. The items in larger and deeper pots seem to be considerably more developed, the most drastic visual difference being when I compared a diascia in a small pot with a color variant of same that was in the larger pot. None of the plants arrived dry in my case (the soil mix was actually wet) and all seem ready to grow after I get them planted. My order did come quickly, there was minimal soil spillage, and each plant had a soft foam covering on the soil secured by two rubber bands. Now, having ordered from Bluestone and Santa Rosa as well, I can't say that all of the HCG plants are like what you get from Bluestone or Santa Rosa, but they are alive, rooted, and several are a good size for their container. Plus a HCG grows a number of fussier, slower growing species than the other two companies grow, so I don't expect them all to be bursting out of their pots as is often the case with the usually quite vigorous species grown by the other two companies. I was really pleased with the Solidago sp Witchita Mtns, something I've been looking for for a while. The Phlox pilosa ssp sangamonensis, a rare variant, was also a very well developed plant. HCG also sent a 10 dollar coupon with the order for future use, a nice gesture. If I saw something else I wanted in the future, I would certainly order again without worry.
On Jun 18, 2010, ginnysue falcon colorado United States wrote:
This is the fourth order I've received from High Country Gardens over a period of 12 years.Only one plant has arrived damaged, and that was an Agastache and is known to be fragile. I am very happy with the product and the service.They sell plants that are very difficult to find, and provide great quality for the price.Thank you very much.
The 3 Agapanthus white plants arrived in great condition with good roots. I will order again from High Country Gardens. Thanks for having these beautiful white Lily of the Nile plants. Suzegirl1@hotmail.com
I've ordered from High Country Gardens several times in the past few years and have never been disappointed. Their selection is incredible and their prices seem reasonable. Plants are packaged securely for travel and arrive ready to go into the ground. The plants always seem to do well immediately. . Excellent company!
On Jun 10, 2010, kczsweetie central, IL (Zone 5a) wrote:
Ordered 3 different Agastache and 2 butterfly weed this year, first time. Everything was delivered when I had requested, packaged well, and in good shape. Butterfly weeds were healthy but small, and one ended up dying (but customer service was great about replacing it). All Agastache were 6-7" tall with good branching growth and healthy roots. 'Rosita' took off very quickly and is currently the fullest of the three, and already blooming. Both 'Ava' and 'Orange Flare' are doing well, and catching up in the recent week. Even with all the rain we've had over the last month, I've been pleasantly surprised by how the plants have dealt with the wet soil and their overall health.
Would definately order from them again. Only con is the shipping costs, but it's not outrageous. Of course the only way to avoid it is to buy in person, but then we wouldn't be mail-ordering would we? I highly recommend HCG.
I live in the mid-Atlantic region on the East Coast, and was initially very hesitant to order from a company in New Mexico. This is the 2nd year I've ordered from them, as I have been very pleasantly surprised by the selections, plant durability, and customer service! The information in their catalog is also quite helpful and accurate. Additionally, I recommend their liquid plant starter and seaweed additive to get your plants off to a good start.
While a few of the plants had a very slow or rough start, almost all came through and are flourishing beautifully in their second year (the 1st year is always so limited for most plants). High Country's customer service is super, as for the very few plants that didn't make it (or maybe I had something to do with it?!?!) shortly after planting, they replaced quickly and without hassle. I will definitely order from them again!
On May 31, 2010, sharee1 Salt Lake City, UT wrote:
I have enjoyed pretty much everything I have purchased from High Country Gardens. I am re-doing my front lawn with a grass that needs less water and doesn't grow very long (Bella Blue Grass). I received the plugs at the end of April, but don't even have it all planted yet (and I just ordered another flat as I don't have quite enough). May is the rainiest month of the year here and there have been more days that I couldn't work in the yard than that I could (we even had several days of snow, including last Monday, May 24). By the time I got a lot of these plugs planted, they looked totally dead. However, even the ones that were just planted a few days ago are starting to send up green shoots. My only disappointment is the grass seed I ordered along with wildflower seeds to put a meadow in the back yard around my peach tree. I ordered this by phone as I had some questions and the woman I spoke with encouraged me to heve the seed shipped right away and get the it planted as soon as possible. However, I could not kill the weeds/grass that were already there or get the area tilled until we had enough dry weather to keep the tiller from clogging. You can't till in the snow. So the grass did not get planted until earlier this month and nothing seems to be coming up. I followed the directions that came with the seed, but it is not easy to find a nice day that is not also windy, which is one of the reasons (other than snow and rain) that it took me so long to get the seed planted. I didn't want it to just blow away. If I don't see any sign of the grass growning in the next week or so, I may request a replacement of that seed and maybe replant in the fall. I have also purchased a lot of cacti for two cactus gardens I have--one in my back yard and a new one I am starting in my front yard. Hardy cacti are difficult to find locally. Even a shop near me called Cactus & Tropicals has very few that are hardy to this area, mainly hens & chicks and prickly pear. So I am happy to have been able to order these from High Country Gardens. I bought some last year and recently purchased quite a few more. The plants are small and cacti seem to take a long time to grow, but I'm sure they will eventually. I plan to visit High Country Gardens when I am in Santa Fe at the end of July. I am a satisfied customer.
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.....