Wish I could make that negative in big bold letters with flashing red lights all around. Do NOT order from this company or from Park Seed. Understand I am sadly not one to leave reviews and should have checked the reviews before doing business with either Wayside or Park Seed. If you are reading this - take heed from what others have written. I wish I had. My story is I paid a small fortune for 2 clematis that I could have bought from Brushwood for half the price. But these were supposedly 2 quart plants. The pots were 2 quart but the plants themselves were minuscule, wilted, and beaten up from shipping. I compared them to some clematis I got in from Brushwood that were 1 quart plants yet 3 times the size of the Wayside clematis, vigorous, and healthy. Called them up and had to send pics to their "horticulturist" for review. I did eventually get a response back saying that the plants in question were beautiful and healthy and had no issues. No kidding these plants were tiny, wilted and in lousy shape. I can not believe that she had the gall to say that they were in great shape. Sadly I had a similar experience with Park Seed. I Ordered some lantanas from Park Seed. They came in - get this - a big loose envelope mailer with absolutely no packing material to protect the plants. I've been mail ordering plants a long while and have never received plants like this - bulbs perhaps but plants? Needless to say all but one croaked. Stupid me, I thought this was a fluke and instead of calling them up and pitching a fit - I came back for more. This time I ordered 8 plants. I really wanted this specific lantana and couldn't find it anywhere else. As is the norm - it took about 3 weeks for them to ship the plants out and when the box arrived - I popped it open to see that once again the plants had not been secured or protected in any way. They'd just been beating around in the box. Nothing was left but little stems. Now understand that this year alone I've ordered probably thousands of dollars in plants. Recently bought an old fixer upper and the yard is a gut job. So, starting from scratch with plantings. I've gotten scores of plants that were healthy and had been carefully packed. Of all of them - I had one plant that had been broken (type of plant with a very fragile stem) I called up the company and they apologized profusely and sent out a replacement plant that day. Stupid me I thought I'd get the same customer service from Park Seed. Not even. Could not have cared less. Told me that I had to take pics of the plants and email them with an explanation to their "horticulturists" at Plant Doctor (aka expect no reply) dot com. Days pass and I call again. Told that it might take days for these supposed horticulturists to review my pics. Call again and instead of asking for customer service I went straight to the horticulturist. This guy was actually helpful, marked my account for a refund and then directs me back to customer service. Again, could their customer service be any worse? This woman tries to give me a store credit (no way will I ever shop with them again) AND she tries to - get this - NOT refund me for the shipping and handling! Yep, she tells me, okay, you'll be getting a store credit for x amount. I ask why the difference of the amount vice what I paid? She says I won't be refunding for S&H. I flip a nut at this point. Explain that there is NO way I will pay for S&H for plants that were dead on arrival BECAUSE of their improper packing! We go back and forth and finally she snippily states that I'll be given refund for the full amount but that will take 5-10 days. We shall see. In the meantime I will never ever spend a single dime with either of these companies, nor with any of the companies affiliated with them such as Jackson and Perkins. Shoddy service all around. Ridiculously undersized plants, horrible packing and shipping and the customer service is the worst I've ever seen. Their guarantee is a joke. The only bright light is that these weren't massive orders where I lost hundreds of dollars. The bottom line is - I can not say enough bad things about either one of these companies. There are some fantastic mail order companies out there that with healthy plants and superb customer service. Park Seed and Wayside are not. I can't fathom what their business model must be. I would assume that mail order garden companies rely heavily on return customers. I alone have made multiple orders to with a number of different companies this year alone. How can Park Seed and Wayside expect to conduct business in this manner and still stay in business?
I've never had a problem with this company until now. Their pricing and packaging of the Japanese maple I ordered was spot on until some moron in the shipping department decided to throw their heavy catalog into the shipping box. Again, not a problem if he/she had thought to secure it, but that did not happen so the catalog bounced around the box between SC and my house in VA. As a result, the tree arrived with four broken branches, which makes for a very misshapen maple. I see on their web site that this particular maple is now sold out. I am still waiting for a response to my E-mail on a solution.
On May 20, 2014, cottelpg Hamilton, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:
Early last fall I ordered some perennials from Wayside. Beginning on October 7 I began calling to esquire about the status of my order. In each instance I was given assurances that the order was about to be shipped, but it was not. I ended up calling the company seven times about this issue. The plants did not arrive until mid Nonmember. I doubted their viability when planted that late and I was right. This May I confirmed that all had died. I wrote the company a letter expressing displeasure about all of this this, explaining that I had been a customer of Park Seed for over forty years. My letter was ignored. i don't know if there has been a change of ownership in this company or what. I used to get good service from Park Seed. I do know this: I will absolutely never do business with Wayside or any affiliate of Park Seed again.
On May 16, 2014, shighlander Fruit Hill, OH wrote:
I have 2 issues to address..one is the condition of my plants....I ordered 5 hydrangea's and a butterfly bush...they were all quart size plants...they were shipped all together in a slender long box..the were in they were overlapped in the bottom of the box and packed with lot's of peanuts...so many that the plants had fractured stems...so they plants I paid a lot of money for were not much more than bareroot.....the other issue I have is that a mere 6 days after I ordered the items I purchased went on sale..by a significant amount...so I email customer service and asked for an in-store credit for the difference...most retailers will honor discounts on merchandise up to 7 days after purchase,...they responded first by saying my order was shipped and they couldn't give me a refund....and I responded by again describing the situation and that I was not asking for a refund but for an instore credit...emailed me back saying the won't or don't do that...I work for an online retailer and started in customer service...and I can tell you this is not how you handle this situation...I will NEVER buy from them again...I'm going to copy the last email response:
Unfortunately, we do not give credit for items that go on sale. The sale prices are for new orders only and we do not credit previous orders.
Again, thank you for writing to us. If you have any further questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact us (number and address listed below). And thanks for gardening with Wayside!
Placed order in Jan 2014. Received plants in May 2014. The Blue Bird Clematis was bent and a flimsy slip of vine that will no doubt die. One of the poppy roots was spoiled and gooey, The other two were alive but poor quality. I reported my dissatisfaction about the Blue Bird Clematis and they emailed back days later and said they needed photos. I am beyond livid. I sent photo of the plant and have not heard back. It's pretty clear to me that they don't care about customer satisfaction. I will buy my plants elsewhere from here on out. When you pay $24.95 for a vine you expect a plant of quality.
On May 3, 2014, raspberrypicket Circleville, OH wrote:
I'm not sure if this should be a neutral or negative rating. I have purchased trees from Wayside for years. This spring I purchased a variegated Dogwood and a Rose of Sharon shrub and both are doing well. I also ordered a River Mist variegated Oat grass and when it arrived in early April with the tree and shrub. (Last frost in Ohio is mid May) The Oat grass was a tiny mangled dried out root ball in the bottom of the box. I called and they happily sent me another plant. The replacement is green. It is approx. 1 inch by 1.5 and inches wide with three green leaves. The root ball was about an inch or less. I needed to get my reading glasses to make sure the things I thought were leaves really were leaves. The tiny little pathetic plant cost me $15 bucks plus shipping. While I appreciate the replacement I feel I have been robbed and have been an idiot for spending $15 bucks for a microscopic replacement.
For years I have heard and read Wayside is the best of the best. I'm not sure I am buying into all the hype. I am not sure if I will buy anything from them in the future. If a similar item was available at a Nursery I would kiss Wayside goodbye!
On Apr 4, 2014, bluntforcemama Bothell, WA (Zone 8a) wrote:
I ordered an Illumination Flame Digiplexis this winter, and it arrived dead in early March. I emailed about Wayside Gardens three or four weeks ago asking for advice or inquiring about regeneration and received no reply. Sometimes plants die during shipment, but there is no excuse for no customer service.
I wrote to Wayside Gardens regarding a Burgundy Iceberg Rose I purchased last Fall.It is now Summer and it has not come back - NO growth at all.
This was their reply - "Our Horticulturist do feel that varieties planted in the fall should be up and growing by mid to late spring of the following year. If you do not have growth at that time, please do not hesitate to let us know during the guarantee period. I'm sorry but the guarantee is no longer in effect for your fall order"
Seriously?!?!? Talk about contradiction!
I will NEVER order from this company again.
I will also let all my gardening friends know that this company is NOT trustworthy.They sell garbage and then you are out the money.
On May 31, 2013, b_schr Wayne, NE (Zone 4b) wrote:
Posted on May 31, 2013, updated May 31, 2013
I debated neutral/negative. The last stock I received from Wayside was 2-3 yrs back and I was very satisfied as I always had been with them. I ordered from them the middle of February this year. I got an order confirmation and that was the last I heard from them. The order had not come as of today, so I went online to check. It was marked "hold, not verified". Also marked as "sold out" was the one plant on the order I *really* wanted. I called to find out why the order wasn't verified. Found out that the credit card I'd used 'bounced'. It was good when I placed the order, but had expired and was replaced with slightly different number between the order and verification process. Now I do understand and do agree with charging a person's credit card only when the plants are ready for shipment. However an email to the same email address that was on the order was all that was needed to let me know there was a problem. I could have called with the new # which could have been immediately verified before I hung up. QED. Instead I just canceled what was left of the order. Went to Burpee instead.
I've never had a problem with Wayside before. Customer service certainly has a problem, and maybe it was just as well I didn't receive the plants I'd originally ordered. I first thought to make feedback neutral, but my reaction isn't neutral. I definitely won't be ordering from them again until their feedback is whole lots better.
On May 31st, 2013, b_schr added the following:
The comment concerning Wayside's change of ownership stirred something in my admittedly decreasing memory. Seemed to me they had been aquired by Park Seed some years ago. So went digging.
Look towards the bottom there ... Park Seed hasn't been owned by Parks since 2005 and the company filed for protection in 2010. Now granted, Wikipedia is not always spot on, but if the wiki contributer/s are right the new buyers agreed to keep employees for 3 years. And 2010 + 3 = 2013. Might be that large changes, not all good are taking place.
I wish I had found this forum prior to ordering from Wayside Gardens. I spent $200 on plants for my first (and only!) order with this company. I, as many others have noted, was surprised and disappointed at the size of the plants received--especially for the cost. A plant destined to become a 4 foot bush arrived as less than a one inch plant--at a cost of $12.95!
The response I got to my email expressing my disappointment was that the plants were "dormant" and I needed to be patient. I have ordered from other mail order companies and never received plants looking like this. Lesson learned.
Plants arrived with one missing, and 2 in bad shape. They'd been shipped to be held over the weekend by UPS in Memphis, and then were transfered from UPS to the Post Office, which incurred another 24 hour delay.
Sent an email - got no response, but did get the two damaged plants replaced. After they were received, got an email that said I would not be charged for the missing plant.
Outstanding issue -- the missing plant was the premium, for which there was to be no charge anyway. So, I've been taken. The promised "free" plant is a no show, and I paid full price for the others. Don't believe their advertising.
I ordered some plants from Wayside Gardens because someone recommended them. I ordered altogether 7 plants and 6 of them looked terrible, all dried out, broken and extremely small. I paid about 160 dollars for these horrible poor plants. PLEASE DO NOT ORDER ANYTHING FROM THEM. IT IS NOT WORTH IT.
In the Summer/Fall of 2012 I placed an order with Wayside Gardens.
The package arrived badly crushed. The stems and/or branches
of several of the tender plants of were badly broken or completely severed.
The packing for the plants was woefully insufficient for their delicate nature.
I called Wayside right away and told them this, and they advised me
to plant these plants anyways to see if they might still recover.
This was acceptable to me, and I planted the plants right away.
There were two varieties of plants in the order.
But, all the plants were damaged.
I planted these plants right away. One of the two varieties of plants did recover.
But, the other simply dried up and died. I called Wayside again and told them this,
asked them to replace the plants that did not recover.
They told me that they were out of these plants, but I could contact them next Spring.
I contacted Wayside by email in the Spring of 2013, and was told
by the customer service person that she would investigate the situation.
She never replied back. I sent another message
to her individual email address at Wayside. ...........Again, no reply.
I called and spoke with yet another person who looked up my account and
said that it was credited for the plants that were damaged. I told that person
that no one had informed me of that even though I had made communications
regarding those plants. I then asked if that credit could be applied
to send those plants now. "Certainly" I was informed. But, I would have to pay
a full $10 for shipping and handling.
I then reviewed the story with the customer service person noting that
Wayside was responsible for shipping and thus damaging the plants and
I did not feel it was right that I should have to pay twice for that expense.
Bottom line it was the only way that I could use the credit for the damaged plants.
So, I paid an additional $10 and requested that
they not send me any more of their catalogs.
I once had a shipping problem with Van Bourgondien,
and their approach, policy and attitude was quite quite different,
and in particular much much better.
I have ordered from Wayside for years and always appreciated the new items that they carried. I ordered an "Alley Cat" Redbud Tree that I did not receive until June. It was way smaller than I had expected and only had a couple live buds on it. I planted and babied it all summer and it never did really show any more life. When I called to request a replacement, I was told the guarantee for spring shipped items was June 30th and that they might have given me an additional 30 days since they did not ship to me until June. I told them I didn't believe even the 30 additional days were enough time to tell if it was going to live. I was then informed their "guarantee until June 30th" is right in the catalog and on the website as well, and I should have read it before ordering. I should have sent the tiny little thing right back to them! I own a small nursery business and would not expect to have any customers if I treated them this way! I will not order again.....
Never again will I order from them. I bought a rhodendron from them in may of 2012. In early July it looked wilted and had curled leaves. Late july, I had some tree work done and an arborist told me I had phytopithora (sp), and the plant would die. I was also told that it is common to greenhouse businesses. I contacted them in early August only to be told their guarantee only covered until July 30, so I was out of luck. some guarantee and even less service.
I used to think they were an honest company, now I know. Don't deal with them ever again, nor from their affiliates. I've told our garden group my problem and they are now forewarned. A few of them said they have had problems with them also. Can't wait to let others know at our spring garden shows! Buyer be forewarned of wayside gardens!
Posted on February 19, 2011, updated July 7, 2012
This is another of the fine online nurseries that, even 10 years ago used to be one of the best. It was one of my premium nurseries to shop from every year. Prices were good, plants were large and healthy, and in the rare occasion that I did receive a mishandled plant, they took their long time customers serious and would send replacements immediately without question or any wait period. But like Jackson&Perkins, Jung, and so many others now, they have done a complete 180 degrees. Wayside is another that is now amongst the worst online nurseries for quality and customer care. Of the past 5 orders I've placed over the last 2 years, I've continuously received only dead and extremely poor quality plants. Any replacements were never much better. It is such a shame to see companies like this turn to the dollar as the main guiding factor for their business, while they put customers and quality on the back burners. I would predict that t0his company will not last unless they do something drastic to turn it around. I've complained and given them ample time to make good on their promises. But, that time has passed now and I wouldn't order from them or recommend ordering from them again.
On July 7th, 2012, reeve1 added the following:
They sent the wrong plant, and it was misrepresnted in their catalog. I spoke with a horticulturist who agreed with me in writing and stated that I should contact Wayside, tell them that one of their horticulturists has asked that they issue a refund. 4 times now over a 2 month period they apologize, tell me that NOW a refund has been issued and I should see it in 7-10 days, and nothing ever happens. I have finally called my credit card company to dispute the charges. I have written authorization from their people that a full refund should be issued, but can't get anyone to do anything. Don't waste your time with these people. It's not the same company you did business with in the past. Run far away!
I will NEVER order from this company again. I ordered a box of plants - and the majority of them arrived looking dead, leaves shredded...and the smallest plants I have ever ordered (one plant - which was quite expensive - had only 1/3 of a tattered leaf left on it... and for the record...it wasn't a "bulb type plant" that was just dormant - it was dead). I contacted the company 3 times so far...and haven't heard back. Now two weeks later...all the plants they sent are completely dead - no amount of TLC could bring them back. (Plants I ordered from other companies are all doing fine...so the "growth conditions" in my yard are not the problem).
In short - Wayside should be ashamed of themselves for sending out such poor quality plants and for not taking responsibility for their very disappointing inventory/service. Buyer beware of this company!
I will not order from this company again. I just received four boxes of plants from them, Many of the small plants had blooms, branches, and/or leaves broken off and the one tree had the central leader broken, My biggest complaint is that they surround the plants with styrofoam peanuts which make a mess when you open the box. Other companies mail plants without these, and they arrive in better condition.
I've used Wayside for years not knowing how many companies are out there. Their catalogs and on-line presence are beautiful. I always thought my 50%-75% success rate was my fault.
Then I found this site and realized how many choices there are. I never understood why Wayside would ship plants on a Friday. After all, they're going to sit for the entire weekend, but I figured that's just the way it was. But my most recent order convinces me there there are others who do it better.
Granted, $100 isn't that big of an order but I now realize plants don't have to be thrown in a box with styrafoam peanuts. They can be shipped on Monday so they arrive on Wed or Thur in great shape. When you order four of the same plant they can be of the same quality rather than two good ones and two duds.
There are better companies out there and I'm going to take my money where it gets the best value.
On Mar 21, 2012, bluemoon1948 Opp, AL (Zone 8b) wrote:
I have had good experiences in the past with Wayside so was quite surprised with this order and not pleasantly. My order was incorrect in that I ordered a Rose Bolero (white) but received a tree rose in a hot pink color. Other items in the order were dry and the Butterfly bush had broken stems,curled and brown leaves...not dead but obviously not doing well. I live in Alabama and it took 7 days to arrive. I emailed upon receipt my concerns...no response. about 4 days later I sent a second email...no response. it has now been 15 days since they said they shipped. I sent an email this morning letting them know I will be shopping elsewhere and how disappointing their decline and lack of customer service is. My garden budget is small so my order of over $100 was substantial for me. Live and learn I guess.
On Sep 24, 2011, KathyInSandiego Escondido, CA wrote:
Their packing of the plant materials is deplorable. The poor plants arrived at my house dead and completely squished. I've made several phone calls to their "customer service" and got absolutely nowhere. I cannot even get a supervisor to return my many phone messages. I'm considering reporting them to Consumer Affairs. AVOID AT ALL COSTS!
Posted on May 8, 2006, updated August 27, 2011
After ordering from Wayside in the past and giving them a neutral rating in my mind, this last one was their last chance. I've been able to accept their small plants and even allowed for the those that didn't survive in the months after planting. But this last order attempt I canceled before I even received it! Luckily I checked it's status online, since the order I placed had become a mess. I learned a collection of Toadlillies were no longer available and four items were cancelled! And they had added, (appearantly to make me happy), a few coral bells of the same species that I never would have ordered myself. After calling them they told me the toadlillies collection was sold out a month AFTER I placed my order! Who knows what happened with the other items that were cancelled! No one contacted me to let me know! If I hadn't have checked on the order I never would have known and I would have paid for items I wouldn't have wanted. This is NOT the way you run a business! Wayside deserves it's low ratings whether they think so or not.
On May 9th, 2006, Hummergal added the following:
I just received another Parks Seed Catalog which made me want to add to my comments. I just have to say that it surprises me how quickly a company can contact it's sister company in order for them to draw clients and yet not make that same effort to let an existing customer know that the majority of their order has been canceled. And from the comments I've read here it seems I am not alone in this complaint.On August 27th, 2011, Hummergal added the following:
On Jun 17, 2011, dyzzypyxxy Sarasota, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:
I have not ordered from Wayside for at least 2 years now. This was because of several bad experiences, poor plants being delivered, and sale offers not honored. The last straw was when I placed a large order, as they had offered a 40% discount at the end of the season for an order of $100 or more.
Several of the plants offered were back-ordered. I heard nothing for months, and e-mailed several times to be told that the plants were still not available. When the spring catalog arrived, there were my back-ordered plants, both in their catalog and online at full price, but they still did not send my back-ordered plants. When I e-mailed, I was told this was new stock, so a different product than what had been offered the previous fall. I guess they were selling the dregs at 40% off, and sure as heck weren't giving me the discount on a nice, healthy new plant.
I then requested a refund, as they had already charged me for the back-ordered plants. It took several weeks before I got a response, and weeks again before my credit card showed the refund. These folks have an excellent variety of plants, but I will never order online from them again because of this experience. If I'm ever in SC and could shop in person, I might visit their nursery.
Posted on January 20, 2007, updated May 23, 2011
I'm surprised to see negatives regarding Wayside. I have been ordering from them for the last 7-8 years and have had nothing but good luck with them. I read the remarks about shipping and leaving plants out in the heat, but if you have ordered plants, you should know that you need to keep any eye out for them. I just placed another order with them for the spring. I have had nothing but positive experiences.
On May 23rd, 2011, cabarnes changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:
I'm now going to give them a bad review. I received an evergreen last year, that was expensive, and when it arrived you (and I'm not kidding, I'm very serious) needed a magnifying glass to see. I called them right away and the woman told me that they couldn't do anything just because it was small, that I needed to wait because it would grow quickly. It didn't grow, it disappeared, even though I put a marker near it so I could find it again. They refused to replace it. I then received some plants that arrived rotted and they told me to plant the roots, that a new plant would come up. I had to give them the benefit of the doubt, but nothing ever sprouted. 'They refused to replace it. Even after this I placed an order a month ago. A plant arrived snapped off and got the same story that I need to plant and something will come up from the root. Nothing is coming up and they aren't sending a replacement. It's the end for Wayside and me. My positive experiences are a thing of the past.On May 23, 2011, Wayside Gardens responded with:
On Feb 21, 2007 4:10 PM, Wayside Gardens added:
I am happy to hear that you enjoyed our products so much.
We would love to forward your compliments; if you would send us your order information, we can let the appropriate department know that their efforts were recognized and appreciated. Please email me your zip code, last name, and order number.
Customer Contact Department
In April, 2011, I ordered on-line over $100 worth of plants (3 ferns, 2 clematis & 3 vinca minor) because of a promotion to receive a $50 gift certificate to use in May. When I went to check out there was also an opportunity to receive 20% off. I made sure that even net the 20%, I would spend at least $100 so as to receive the gift certificate. Well, I called "customer service" to make sure the order went through correctly. They told me I couldn't take the 20% discount, too, although there was no statement regarding this at the check-out menu. I asked them to go ahead and take off the 20% discount so I would get the $50 gift certificate. He told me he couldn't do that because the order already went through. I'm an accountant and I know this can be done. I spoke with the supervisor and she went ahead and sent me the gift certificate. Well, I was VERY disappointed to receive pitiful looking plants (the gift certificate came at the same time)! The fronds on the ferns were brittle. The clematis & vinca minor were supposed to be gallon-size, but looked like they were 4"-pot plants put in gallon cans. I called for a return authorization and was told to ship them the cheapest way for me, which was fine. I also said I would send back the gift certificate, but she said to keep it as it would make up for my shipping costs. So, I will use it on bulbs, but I will no longer order live plants from them. I found a gorgeous clematis almost 4' tall at a local nursery for less cost. I think I will stick to local nurseries in Oregon from now on!
Terrible customer service. The plant I received seems in good condition. I received a coupon with the plant and went online to order some other ones. I discovered the coupon had expiration date prior to when I received my plant. I called customer services which at first told me I couldn't not redeem the discount and then after I asked to speak to a supervisor I was told I could have a 10% discount and not the 15% my coupon said. I preceeded to place my order over the phone but the representative was so rude and unpleasant that I ended up deciding not to order from this company. They didn't seem to know what customer service is.
JI ordered 12 First Arrival Peonie's last year. 8 of them are up nice and 4 no sign of life, I dug under there is no Root!! None!! I called them, they said there is nothing they can do , because I am in zone 3 and this peonie in there book any way is for z4. On the backof my book it says nothing about zone 3 , matter a fact the largest percentage of garden catalogues have me in z4, but she had to get irate with me, say it dosent matter what other's have me in there zone , its there zone that counts, and she didn't care if I ever ordered from them again. GREAT CUSTOMER SERVICE!!!!! I Guess I can take my business elsewhere, its probably the worst I have been treated.
I also ordered the Bloomerang Lilac bush which is relatively new and very expensive ($40+ with shipping) I received a two inch dead plant that the company said was "sleeping" and I needed to wait until a few months before they would do anything. I am an avid gardener and I know the difference between dead and hibernating. After waiting the suggested time and "babying" it, it was still dead. Interesting that the suggested time was after the time I could contest it on my credit card (90 days) By then they had sold out so could not replace it and would only give me a partial credit. I will never order from them again!!! RIP-OFF!
On Sep 11, 2010, NGW Farmington Hills, MI (Zone 5b) wrote:
Best nursery website around! Great variety, too. Quality and size of plants -- pathetic. I use Wayside Gardens website to research and view plants; then, I search them out on the web and order for some other mail-order nursery. I've learned...
On May 5, 2010, omasuziq Greensboro, NC (Zone 7a) wrote:
Posted on April 20, 2010, updated May 5, 2010
I hadn't gardened for a while, now living in a NYC apartment. But when I did, Wayside was an extremely reliable source of unusual plant material (what I couldn't get in the garden center that I wanted for my garden).
I recently ordered from Wayside plants for a new garden I now have access to. I placed my order in February, was originally told the plants would ship mid- to late-March and was told today (after a second follow up call) that two of my three plant choices are in "back order." These same plants are still being sold on their Web site.
I don't mind that catalog/mail order suppliers may now outsource some of the plant propagation they used to do in-house. This was likely because it was too expensive for the amount of the plant material sold by each of them alone. Consolidation is not a bad thing, if both quality and supply is insured by the original supplier. That's where they earn their cut.
Right now, I am feeling as though I am squeezed because it's late in the season and my alternatives are fewer, both with alternative species and suppliers available.
If this is not the Wayside Gardens of old, I mourn its loss. And I'll report back on this site.
On May 5th, 2010, omasuziq changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:
It is May 5 and I have cancelled my entire (expensive to me)order, placed in February. Not a single plant has arrived and no firm targets were available for when they might arrive. I was able to find other sources for some of the plant stock, but had to make substitutions for others. This is not what you expect would happen when you start planning relatively early.
Despite reading the negative feedbacks for this company, I decided to give it a go and placed orders for plants not available at local nurseries.
No surprise, another NEGATIVE from this frequent online orderer.
The most expensive plant was the rebloomering lilac, Bloomerang from Proven Winners @ $24.95 + shipping/handling. It arrived as a 3" 'multi-branched' DEAD, crispy 'plant'. After several attempts at getting a response from the company and none being received, I am entering this problem here. The other plants were not remarkable but at least were alive and were planted immediately so they do have a fighting chance of survival.
I will NEVER order from this company again and urge you to look elsewhere for that plant you dream of having.
I have been a customer of Wayside Gardens for a few years, thinking they charge too much for their plants, but putting up with it because they offer things that are not always easy to find and they always sent large, healthy plants. This year however, upon ordering some that I needed to finish an area I started last year, I was astounded they had the nerve to charge me a $2.50 gas surcharge, on top of their basic shipping charges (for two lousy Astilbes)!
I have ordered many plants this year from different sources and no one has charged me a gas surcharge, even from places much further away from where I live; on top of which basic shipping usually was less than Waysides, with only one company being a few cents more.
I find this "gas surcharge" business to be code for "let's take advantage of our customers" and unless they stop this nonsense, I refuse to do business with them again. Wayside should be highly ashamed of themselves, especially in today's economy when people are struggling just to get by! A big fat NEGATIVE is what they get from me!
I have ordered from WG for the past few years, but I think this is the last time. I had to call last week to find out what was holding up two orders I placed in early February (they supposedly started shipping for my zone in mid-March). You cannot get any good information from their website. I found out that the order was being held up due to one plant being back-ordered, which was not obvious from the website ("not yet shipped"). I received the first shipment (minus the back-order) today - no email letting me know they were being shipped as in previous years. I have no clue when the second one will ship - website still says "not yet shipped" and it's getting late. I never experienced this sort of hassle in the past.
I had looked at previous ratings and thought this was a good company. Based on my first experience, I will not order from them again. I ordered three new variety hydrangeas that were very pricey for their size. No local nurseries carry this variety, so I decided to go for it. My plants arrived mid-week. The packing was in good shape. Two of the plants were fine, but very small. One was badly mangled and obviously dead. I took pictures and emailed them to their customer service. No problem, they would send a free replacement---which arrived on a Monday by USPS. The replacement was also mangled and obviously dead.
Posted on April 14, 2010, updated April 19, 2010
I had the impression that this company had a fairly good reputation. As a first time customer, my experience unfortunately was far from satisfactory.
This spring, I ordered a relatively uncommon Japanese Maple (A. shirasawanum 'Aureum'). They were offering free shipping on all of their maples. Although fairly pricey for a one-gallon tree ($50), I decided to give them a try.
The problems began when they chose to ship the tree via UPS Ground at the end of the day on a Thursday which of course meant that it ended up spending the whole weekend in the UPS facility. When it finally arrived, it had been very poorly packed with numerous branches broken and the foliage looking very stressed from the time spent in a box. On top of that, even for a one-gallon tree it was very small.
When I contacted customer service via email, I was given their standard canned response that the tree would bounce back with no problem and to contact them if they could be of any further assistance. I planted the tree anyways and waited about a week with the foliage looking more unhappy each day. Finally, I again contacted customer service and explained my dissatisfaction with their product and asked for a replacement. This time they agreed to send a replacement. I asked for them to send it earlier in the week if possible to avoid this problem again. Monday of this week, I was told that it was "on the shipping floor" and would go out that day or Tuesday. It is now Wednesday and the replacement has still not shipped and it looks like it will spend another weekend in a UPS warehouse.
Overall, compared to other online nurseries I have ordered from, Wayside does just not seem to have their act together. With their highly then average prices, there are much better options out there.
On April 19th, 2010, bjohn1974 added the following:
Ok, so I finally received the second tree. Of course they did ship it on a Thursday so it again spent the weekend in the UPS facility. Not sure why it had to spend four days on their "shipping floor" before sending it out. This even though I was assured it would ship on a Monday or Tuesday. That being said, this one arrived fully leaved out and with brown spots on many of the leaves.
I was also surprised by something else. This tree arrived in a much taller box and when I first unpacked it noticed that instead of the 8" tall tree I was shipped the first time, this one was almost 30" tall! I thought that they had selected a better tree this time for me since it was a replacement. However, after I fully unpacked it, I noticed something unusual. Some of the leave were very different then the normal Aureum style. Many were greenish/red instead of yellow and much more divided. I then realized that all of the "strange" leaves were coming from two branches from the base. This was obviously a grafted tree where two suckers had been allowed to grow so large that they overwhelmed the grafted portion which was only about 8" tall. I'm not a tree expert at all, but it is amazing to me that I could realize this within minutes of opening the box but the "experts" who grew and shipped it did not. On top of that, it is also obvious that $50 is way too high of a price for a grafted tree which usually sells for less, especially since Wayside was not honest on their website and kept this information secret. Overall, I am now left with a very unpleasant view of this company. I will not order from them again.
gardeners, please unite, & put this bad company out of business.they do not stand behind their(inferior) plants-can't blame them there,it's hard to stand behind pure trash.they have never heard of customer service or customer satisfaction,but their palms are always wide open to pick your hard-earned pocket money.steer clear of by- the -wayside gardens. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!
THE VERY WORST COMPANY EVER!
On Mar 29, 2010, cardinal988 Grand Rapids, MI wrote:
I am still trying to get plants which I ordered in 2006. I made the mistake of making a large order because I was thrilled with their selection. Stuff arrives dead, sick, substituted and cancelled. They issued a credit for $300+ at the end of 2008 for merchandise which they took payment for in 2006 and never sent. The items were ordered early, but I got out of stock notices and unacceptable substitutions. I received slimy plants and dead sticks. Every problem got it's own seperate credit issued. I was still going around trying to use the multiple credits they sent out when they didn't ship my plants at the end of 2009. They refuse to send a grab bag to use up the credit. When the plant isn't available, the money spent on shipping just dissappears and they send a credit for only the price of the plant. I also can not recombine the credits to make one order, each credit must be used and shipping paid, seperately. Only 2 items of that several thousand dollar 2006 order survive today and I still have 3 little tiny credits it would cost me more to use than ignore.
The company charges shipping on ORIGINAL price of sale items, which is some 40-60% more than my purchase price. I've never encountered an online store that does that. I'm skipping on Wayside on principle.
On Nov 3, 2009, kinchen beaumont United States wrote:
On Sept. 24, 2009, I received three butterfly bushes from Wayside Gardens. I found the plants to have been loosely packed in shipping peanuts. The plants had fallen over and soil had been dislodged. All three plants were damaged; stems were broken, most the leaves were off the stems, and tips of some stems were black. When taken out of the containers to plant, soil fell from the roots, and I realized the root systems were not well developed. I notified Wayside Gardens of the plants' condition, and was assured the plants had well developed root systems. On November 2, I notified the company that the plants had no leaves, no stems, and not much in the way of root systems, and asked for a refund. Wayside Gardens refund was a few dollars more than the cost of the plants, but not as much as the plants plus tax or those items plus shipping. I asked Wayside Gardens to explain the amount of refund, and am waiting for a reply. I have lost confidence in Wayside Gardens and will not buy from them again.