We placed a small order with this company. This had been our first experience with them. The order was acknowledged immediately, the products were delivered on correct planting time; the packaging was excellent; and the quality and size of the bulbs were spectacular!
This year the Trumpet and Orientpet Lily bugs bit us. Because we are kind of new in mail orders, we placed orders with many different companies; some orders were small, some orders were large. Until now, we have received shipments from three companies (including the order from Van Engelen). So far, we are very satisfied with the services from two of these companies (Van Engelen being one of them) . We are not happy with one of the companies (the bulbs were small and kind of unhealthy-looking); but we have decided not to report about it until we see the results next Spring. We are expected to receive orders from five other companies, and we plan to report our experiences with them on the scoop.
I've been consistently impressed by the quality and value offered by Van Engelen. Their collections are often unbeatable deals, their selection is extensive, and they ship at appropriate times for planting. Customer service is a pleasure to deal with - this is a company that clearly takes pride in its product and reputation. I look forward to receiving my Van Engelen order every year.
I have ordered bulbs from Van Engelen since 2005. I've always been pleased with the quality and size of the tulips. The red tulips were simply exceptional this year. Definitely will order from them again.
I ordered a collection of double amaryllis bulbs form them this year and the bulbs were huge. The flowers were unbelievably beautiful and 3 of the bulbs put out 3 stalks. The flowers lasted from before Christmas to the end of Feburary with the successive stalks coming up. I plan to order more for gifts next fall.
The camassia I ordered from them are up as well and looking great around my water garden.
I have been ordering tulips from Van Engelen for the past 3 years and i have never been dissapointed. I have never seen a more beautiful bulb anywhere. They are firm, white and huge. I won't buy bulbs from the garden stores anymore because in comparison they look old and dry. You can't beat the price and quality.
On Mar 16, 2008, fragrance1st Marietta, NY (Zone 5a) wrote:
I have ordered several hundreds of dollars worth of bulbs for several years. I get large healthy bulbs delivered quickly. I have even planted thier bulbs as late as January ( in zone 5) and they came up in spring. Very few problems with them and they were resolved promptly. Biggest problem I had was when I ordered 300 fragrant breeze daffodils and I discovered that they were not fragrant breeze when they flowered. I called the company and they sent replacements free that fall with no problem.
I have been ordering from Van Engelen for the past 7- 8 years. Mostly tulips, but also hyacinths, daffodils, and a few others. I have never had bulbs that failed to bloom. The bulbs always arrive in excellent condition. Shipments always arrive by mid-October, giving plenty of time for the six weeks of refrigeration necessary in my Southern California climate. (Even when I have waited until early October to place my order.) I have no complaints at all about their service. And, as far as I can tell, no other mail order companies offer tulips at the prices Van Engelen does.
I just got my fall bulbs in the ground this week as the first snow of the year was falling (it has been an unseasonably warm fall in MA this year).
I must say, these are the most impressive bulbs I have ever planted. Every daffodil bulb was doubled -- the smaller of the pair being the average size of bulbs I see at local markets. The bulbs were firm and smooth and beautiful.
The crocus bulbs were also robust and all the bulbs were priced inexpensively and packaged very well with clear instructions on how to store until planting time.
On Oct 29, 2007, aphroditeslaugh Seattle, WA wrote:
The website was very easy to use, and intuitive. Everything happened in a very straight-forward manner. I received my bulbs at a good time to plant, and they looked great. There were a couple of tulips which appeared dead (crumbly), but that was true of the ones I saved from last year's crop as well, and a smaller number than I was prepared to accept due to how large my order was. The bulbs were all of good size, mostly larger than the ones I purchased last year (impulse buy at a hardware store). I had a very good experience with this company and will recommend them to others as well as return when I find more room in which to plant things.
On Oct 14, 2007, dragonfly53 (Terri )South Boston, VA (Zone 7a) wrote:
I ran a co-op for their new line of Peonies. They were very co-operative in giving the group discounts for quantities that were higher than those posted in the catalog. The roots were shipped a week later than they originally said they wold be but I believe them when they said their supplier was late in shipping to them. The roots were beautifully packed in groups of 3 inside a plastic perforated bag, then 2 bags packed inside a liner box and then the liner boxes packed inside larger cartons. It was a little bit of overkill, and some of the roots did have a little white coating from the high humidity in the bags I think, but they were all healthy and putting out hair roots. The roots varied in size from 1 ounce to 8 ounces in some cases but all had at leat 3 eyes.
On Oct 11, 2007, GingerMA West Springfield, MA wrote:
Have purchased tulip and lilies from Van Engelen for the last 3 years. Great prices and huge tulip bulbs. The collections are great deals. It is definitely the place to shop if one is looking for exceptional spring and summer bulbs.
I have ordered bulbs from this company for several years. They have the best bulbs at the BEST price. All my neighbors envy my spring flowers. The service and speed of shipping is also the best. I highly reccomend this company.
Van Engelen is EXCELLENT! I ordered from them when they were Top 20 (then 30)-- more folks should comment on their great service & products to get them back into that elite group!
They ship fast! I've received my orders each time I've ordered within 5 days -- with both email and snail mail acknowledgements beforehand!
Sturdy packaging with items clearly identified -- and the bulbs -- healthy, ready to plant, plus -- they have probably the best overall prices and even more remarkable prices at their end-of-season sale. If the quantities seem daunting -- 100 or 50 make a real showing compared to 10 or 20 of the same kind from a discount or hardware or grocery store (and the flowers are so much prettier)!
There are SO many varieties to choose -- all with specifics as to zone, habit, etc (online and print catalogs) that help a beginner a lot! I had marginal success with dutch irises but that was more than compensated for by the flourishing and multiplying 3 different alliums and the lilies!
I particularly recommend their 100 naturalizing lilies which were nice the first year and amazing the second year -- I can't wait to see what they'll do this year!
On Dec 14, 2006, 1900House Saint Joseph, IL (Zone 5b) wrote:
I got the John Scheepers catalog, then the Van Engelen catalog. They are the same folks, so using the photos in the JS catalog, I ordered the larger quantities at lower prices from the VE catalog. I ordered online, then got email and print confirmations. My 1,100 bulbs (narcissus, muscari, scilla) arrived at the right time for my zone 5 planting. Some of the scilla bulbs were not good, and a phone call to a friendly VE person took care of that with a credit. Otherwise, the bulbs were all of good size and condition. I'm anxious for the bulbs to emerge in the spring, adding color to my busy street! I will surely order more from VE in the future.
On Dec 1, 2006, ladyisle Bohemia, NY (Zone 7a) wrote:
I ordered from their end of season sale-mostly lilies, and an order of Fritillaria Raddeana (sp?). All bulbs are healthy and large. Thanks for being in my Top 10 for a reliable bulb supplier. Much better than in Dave's Top 40, (or whatever), 'TOUCH OF NATURE'.
Your bulbs being BIGGER, and your shipping much quicker!
And order communication superlative. You have another faithful customer.
On December 1st, 2006, ladyisle added the following:
On Dec 1, 2006, fpgill lexington, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:
I work for a not-for-profit conservation district; twice a year we hold plant sales to raise money for our programs. We ordered from Van Engelen for our fall 06 sale. Great quality, low shipping rates, responsive to emails, very good customer service. Highly recommended!
On Nov 8, 2006, vossner Richmond, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:
I helped manage a group purchase with VE and the bulbs, as well as the service, were above par. Prices were very good and communications satisfactory. Will not hesitate to buy from this company and highly recommend others do the same.
On September 10th, 2009, vossner changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:
I regret to change my my rating to NEGATIVE. In 2008 I purchased over 500 daff bulbs, all supposed to be suited for my zone. I was told they were landscaper grade which means that even though small, they would bloom. The following spring they didn't bloom, while daffs from other sources bloomed fine. Their position was I didn't know what I was doing; mine was I was entitled to replacements if nothing else,for possibility bulbs were indeed inferior or immature. Various discussions were hostile and fruitless. I took the time to write Mr. Jan Ohms himself about my frustrating experience.
I got my catalogs recently and was reminded Mr Ohms had never answered. I called today and learned from his daughter Joann (sp?) that he had forwarded the letter to her for handling. She never bothered. Talking to this lady was like talking to the wall and today was not exception. Her final response and suggestion was for me to go buy bulbs elsewhere, and that is exactly what I will do.
VE is generally a good company. They offer good horticultural instructions, but please read & follow them carefully b/c if bulbs don't bloom, you will not get any satisfaction or refund or replacements and most importantly, they will not acknowledge even the remotest of possibilities that something was wrong w/ bulbs. I promise you, you don't want to talk to this intransigent lady.
Still being optimistic here. If the daffs in question happen to bloom in Spring 2010 I will be happy. My garden will be beautiful and it will confirm that bulbs were immature (I paid for blooming grade bulbs). The negative rating will remain as there is NEVER room for arrogance.
On Oct 25, 2006, bbrookrd Nantucket, MA (Zone 7a) wrote:
In May I placed an order with Van Engelen for a fall bulb order. A few days ago I received a cancellation notice for one item and today I decided to check on the status of the remaining $200 plus order. Within minutes I had a cordial, sussinct reply that the 2 boxes should be arriving today. Well, as promised, the boxes arrived in fabulous fashion as if on cue a few minutes later! Great packaging, in fact, so good I am saving the boxes to store my gladiolus in for next winter. All the bulbs are top notch. I am extremely please. Thanks to Sharon Doty in customer service, who actually knows what it means to really service the customer. She left me her number and extension, if I wished to speak to her. What a pleasure. Patti
Have ordered there for the last 6 or 7 years. Always get rather large bulbs, shipped in very nice containers that make it easy for me to stick them in the fridge (I live in California and need to chill the bulbs before planting).
My only complaint is that many of the items only come in 100 bulb quantities--limits how many different types I can order, as I don't want to be planting 500 bulbs each season. Would be nice if more came in 25 or 50 count.
But they all grow very well. I am always impressed with the quality.
My bulbs arrived promptly and were gorgeous! I quickly ordered more. Service, quality and value are all superior at Van Engelen. I routinely order from some other companies that I think are excellent also, but Van Engelen had the best prices I've seen for the parrot tulips I wanted.
On July 20th, 2007, veejay added the following:
I had a big display of Blue Parrots this spring and they were stunning! People stopped, slackjawed, to look at them. Thank you for the quality bulbs!
On Oct 5, 2006, kmom246 Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:
I have been getting their informative catalogs for years waiting for the day that I had space to order in quatities of several hundred. That year is this year - 66 lbs of daffodils and 23 lbs of other assorted spring blooming goodies - over 1300 bulbs altogether! They were well packed, well labeled and plump and healthy looking. I placed my order several months ago, and they sent both an email & snail mail confirmation right away. Later, close to planting time, they sent me an email letting me know my order would ship soon so I knew my credit card would soon be charged. I've several acres to cover, so you know I'll be ordering from them again next year!
I ordered about 800 bulbs ( tulips, daffodils, crocus) last fall.
They all arrived on time and were very well packed. People were stopping in the street to comment on the quality of the tulips especially. The company gives tremendous value if you want large quantities. If you want somewhat fewer bulbs you can go to their sister company John Scheepers and pay only a little more for what I assume will be the same excellent quality. I intend to buy more bulbs this year and try some of their lilies too.
I have ordered many bulbs from this company over the years and have had nothing but good results. They are the first company whose catalog I look at when I am looking for bulbs. My last order (in late fall of 2005 for a number of bulbs on-sale at the end of their shipping season) was no different. Ordered many muscari, chionodoxa, and lilies. All arrived in great shape, and all have now bloomed (or in the case of the lilies are just about to bloom). Their only drawback in the past was that their (print) catalog had no color -- but that was OK given how low their prices were -- and now even that drawback no longer exists given their on-line catalog has color pictures for everything. They also appear to have one of the largest bulb selections of any company -- especially of the smaller, more-hard-to-find bulbs. I'll definitely be ordering from them again.
On Feb 25, 2006, Revnrose Clinton, NY (Zone 5a) wrote:
I ordered from VE this past summer, as I have in other growing zones in previous years. Being new to my area, I was especially concerned about the appropriate time to plant my bulbs -- before the date of the first killer frost. They shipped at the *perfect* time. As always, beautiful, healthy bulbs, wonderfully packed. I appreciate the separate bagging of their collections, since I want the plants but rarely wish to plant them in the suggested design. I appreciate their selection, their attention to detail, and their extraordinarily competent service. Their catalog and website complement each other beautifully. I appreciate their clarity on when the new catalog posting occurs and on the offering of early bird specials. I always feel that I receive more than my money's worth from VE, especially when frequently bulbs that are essentially annuals continue to show beautifully for three more years.
On Nov 28, 2005, doghill6 Central Point, OR (Zone 8a) wrote:
I used to split my bulb orders between Van Engelen and Brent and Becky's. I ordered everything from VE this year. They ship at the perfect time and all the bulbs (over 400) were perfect. B and B has good bulbs, but they always shipped so late I ended up planting in the freezing rain. Van Engelen has everything you could ever want, and great service, too.
On Nov 28, 2005, healsing New York, NY (Zone 7a) wrote:
My internet orders with Van Engelen and John Scheepers arrived within a few days and all of the bulbs I received were large and healthy! Their prices are the best I've found on the internet and the year end sale was an added bonus! This company does it right and makes ordering large quantities of bulbs affordable! The only thing I would advise is to order early in the season because much of their product sells out early.