I hate to leave a negative comment about the ISI because I truly believe in what they do but I have never had a good experience with them.
The first time I ordered with them I bought three plants. One was not from that years catalog and I emailed first to make sure some were left. I was informed that there were so I ordered one. The plants arrived and when I opened the box only two of my three plants were inside. There was no note explaining why, no refund check, and I didn't receive an email about the missing plant. I emailed them and asked where my plant was. I got a terse reply that they ran out of the third plant and that I should have ordered it sooner. How would I know that it ran out in the time since I emailed asking about it?! Also, since I emailed ahead of time and said I wanted it, why not put it aside for me? If you didn't have it, then it would have been proper business etiquette to include my refund in the box or at least a note explaining what happened and that my refund would be coming soon. I was finally refunded the money.
Maybe a year later I decided to give them another shot and placed an order for another plant from a previous year's catalog. I was told that they were in stock and I bought one. The plant came in terrible condition covered in mealy bugs. It died shortly after I got it. It never should have been shipped with bugs! I emailed them saying that I should be refunded for this poor specimen and they sent a replacement. The replacement was in much better condition. Then, a month or so later I get an email from them asking when I planned to pay for the new plant! I informed them that it was a replacement and I shouldn't have to pay for it. It turns out someone in their finance department made a mistake.
Fast forward five years and I decide to try and order some more recent items and emailed them some questions and was told that they would check on the status of those plants and get back to me. Here we are two weeks later and even after emailing them I have gotten no response. Apparently they don't want my money.
In addition to their plant offerings, The Huntington is among the world's most important repositories for the history of science and technology. I love this place! From the Chinese Gardens with their inspiring bridges, to the Huntington's Rose Hills Foundation Conservatory for Botanical Science; it is a must stop for garden lovers. Their botanical collections display approximately 15,000 kinds of plants from all over the world arranged in collections, many landscaped into a series of theme gardens. Amazing place.
Happenstance Northern California, CA (18 reviews) December 31, 2003
Excellent selection of Huntington introductions available. Plants were large sized and healthy, some in bud stage. The several weeks it takes to receive shipments is worth the wait. //www.huntington.org/BotanicalDiv/ISI2003/catalogindex.html
I have ordered hybrid Echinopsis many times from the HBG and always had a very good experience. The plants are among the finest available, generlly good sized and very healthy. Many have bloomed the day after I received them. My experience with their personnel exceeds all expectations.
David W. Diffenderfer
Crasulady2 Valley Village, CA (5 reviews) January 8, 2002
This is a clean, weed free nursery, plants are grown on benches, they tend to run slow shiping the month of April-May due to the ISI Introductions, the plants are shipped bare root, and spotless. The prices are resonable for the size of plant. The have everything your little heart desires, but not at all times. These plants are inspected by the Agricultural Dept. They will be labeled correctly with two labels and a receipt of your order. I give them an A+