I am definitely odd person out in my review of this company, but I am left wondering what all the fuss is about. They have a good reputation here, and in the hosta community at large, so I was expecting good things, but overall was left unimpressed.
I ordered $200 worth of hostas (about 13 or so) on 5/11. They acknowledged the order right away, and I had it in hand at the end of that week. That IS impressive, and is the fastest order to door time I have found. If you have to have it now, this is your p lace.
The plants themselves were OK, but just that. The plants were shipped potted, which again is great -- no re-hydration needed, and they can go right in the ground, which they did. Size was just average though; single eyes, something I would consider just an advanced starter, or slightly more. I have received less from other companies, but also have received much more. They were healthy, and that's important, but of average size and above average cost.
For negatives, I start with their website. It is horrible. First, if you want to page through it, you only have three points in the alphabet to enter. You must do a LOT of paging or guess-jumping. I hate that. Second, about 2/3 of items were out of stock. Thanks for letting me know what I can't have, and making me page through it all to see what I can. Put these items in a "sorry you missed it" or "not for sale" section. We can then see what you carry without the burden of all the paging. I understand you want to show us your vast inventory, but it isn't so vast if you don''t have it. Third, at least for me, it would not save my cart across sessions. I had to rebuild my cart several times before I checked out, finally resorting to saving things in a "wish list," but this adds extra clicks. In short, the site is a lot of work to wade through, among the worst of sites I have ordered from. It in itself is a barrier to me ordering again from them. Another negative was that their extensive packaging, although necessary for the potted plants, creates a lot of waste for me to dispose of. I shred it for the compose pile, but there is a lot of it.
I would order from them again, but it would not be my first choice. There are just better value propositions out there with plants just as good.
On Oct 17, 2011, VA_GARDEN Hood, VA (Zone 7a) wrote:
Given all the great reviews, I was a little dissappointed in my order. First the positives: the web site is great, they have a tremendous selection (I've been looking for 'Glory' for years), prices are good, shipping was very fast and free with a $50 order. Now the negative: the packaging was not very good. The pots were lying on their sides in the box, so the newspaper and rubber band packing didn't contain the potting mix. I had a big mess of loose soil, damp newspaper, broken leaves and soil stuck to the leaf surfaces. I contacted the comapny and received an apology and an offer to make things right. I will wait until spring to see if the plants make it through the winter. Despite the packing mess, everything actually seemed really healthy.