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The scoop on 'Carter and Holmes Orchids'

  Company Profile  
Carter and Holmes Orchids

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 668
Newberry, South Carolina 29108 (United States)

Phone: (803) 276-0579
Fax: (803) 276-0588

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  Feedback History and Summary  
19 positives
3 neutrals
No negatives


Positive Amoena
Nashville, TN
(15 reviews)
January 10, 2018
I've ordered several batches of Cattleya seedlings from Carter & Holmes, and have never had a problem of any kind. All the seedlings have been healthy and well-established; their packing is excellent. I especially love the potting mix they use- it's light & airy, but holds some moisture. Plus, It comes off easily when you mount the plants. But I would be remiss if I didn't mention that their seedlings are quite small. For about the same price, you will get much larger seedlings from SVO or Odom's.
Positive kwhitney
Los Alamos, NM
(11 reviews)
June 13, 2013
Received my order of five assorted Phalaenopsis today. It was shipped four days ago and arrived with every precaution taken for the plants to do well in transit. I like the way they tape finely shredded paper over each pot so that almost none of the potting mix comes out and then wrap the entire plant in newspaper to protect the leaves.

The price was very good for the quality. Including shipping, it came out to $10 per plant, cheaper than what you'd pay for a low quality cross at most garden stores.

Plants are very vigorous, with good root systems and wide leaf spans (the smallest is about 7" and the largest is about 16"), and all are in 3" pots. Actually, they look like they could be transplanted into 4" pots right now. I know from my experience with orchids that they will most likely bloom for the first time this coming winter or spring.

Because I ordered a collection that did not specify what grexes it included, I looked at their website to determine what the plants would look like in bloom. I really liked the surprise of unwrapping each plant and looking them up to see what I'd gotten. I'm very pleased with the assortment I received.

The only problem I have with my order is the potting mix they use. It's a matter of personal preference: I am not fond of a peat/perlite mix for epiphytic orchids. However, it's just a simple matter of switching them to either sphagnum or a medium bark based mix when I get a chance to repot them, hopefully sometime soon.

Overall a great experience. Very high quality plants, speedy shipping, well packaged, basic culture instructions included, good prices. I can't think of anything bad to say about the company.
Positive hopea
Leesburg, FL
(1 review)
July 25, 2012
Good company. I made 3 orders thus far and am pleased with the packing ,condition of the plants and that everything ordered was there. The prices are great and the plants are healthy and full of green roots. Even the free plant is full of health. The one time there was a glitch in no 6 in baskets supply notified me and made the correct adjustments. Their on line catalog is easy to use and their selection ample. Supply usually tells you an order may take 2 to 3 weeks, but avg about 4 to 10 days. Will use them again. also, they have offers where they choose the color or type of orchid in bundles of 4 or 5 and have not been disappointed.
Positive lorissaw
Hercules, CA
(1 review)
November 5, 2011
I ordered 6 orchids from CA. They were misdelivered by FedEx Express and came to my house late and in bad shape ( half the orchids did survive the extra days of abuse by FedEx which shows their vigor). Mr. Holmes, Fergie, and two other staff took care of me. They were patient and kind. I was told that I could get replacements for the damaged items with free shipping and that if problems did show up later with the other plants, I could ask for a replacement in the future too.

This was my first time ordering orchids online and even though FedEx messed up my delivery and caused me two days of anxiety, I did wound up with nice orchids. The bonus plant was also a nice orchid with a small thank you label. What a nice company. I will be a customer for life! They have my trust and they have beautiful orchids and an easy to use website. Thanks Carter and Holmes. : )
Positive dbaasch
Portland, OR
(2 reviews)
February 24, 2011
Just received an orchid I ordered all of 2 days ago - perfectly packed and safe even though it arrived in a very rare-for-us snowstorm. I'll have no qualms about buying from them again.
Positive dlnevins
Omaha, NE
(4 reviews)
January 21, 2011
I've ordered many plants (primarily Cattleya hybrids) from Carter and Holmes over the years. Their plants are sometimes smaller than competing nurseries, but they are strong and vigorous, and have always grown well for me. They're packed carefully, too. For mericlones already in wide commerce you might choose to look elsewhere, but this is one of the very best places to purchase new Cattleya crosses.
Positive divvajacko
Hinckley, OH (Zone 6a)
(40 reviews)
June 21, 2010
This is my first order with Carter and Holmes. I must admit I was a bit surprised with the small size of the orchid received but I didn't order a blooming size Phal. so I really have no reason to be surprised. Their packing is excellent. The health of the plant (I ordered Phalaenopsis Mistral's Sunrise Flame 'Mendenhall') is superb. I will be repotting it shortly as I always do with new orchids since I have my own growing medium that I'm very successful using.

I would purchase again from this company.
Neutral GeneQuinn
Duxbury, MA
(1 review)
May 21, 2010
The quality of their crosses is superb, their cat hybridizing is one of the best in North America, but the relative size of Carter&Holmes orchids is a disappointment. Their YouTube video shows employees shipping healthy, robust, specimen-size plants. Good luck! Odds are you will get a wimpy seedling that's an eon away from blooming size, if it makes it that far. But they do pack them nicely. And they'll give you a free plant (that you probably don't want).
Positive eucharis05
Yonkers, NY
(8 reviews)
February 18, 2010
Received my first order from this company today. The packing was awsome, the plants were beautiful, and I was delighted with the bonus plant. Will definately order again.
Positive haika
Snohomish, WA
(14 reviews)
March 27, 2009
I've ordered many times from this company over the years. One fun bonus is the free plant sent with orders containing at least 4 plants. The website is easy to use. I've never had any problems with diseased or insect infested plants which is not something I can say for every on-line orchid nursery! They have been in business for years and are a reliable source of great orchid plants.
Positive leeflea51
Golden, MS (Zone 7a)
(1 review)
January 18, 2009
I have ordered many orchids from this company and all have arrived in pristine condition. The packing the company goes to to ensure safe delivery is superior to any I've found. Lee
Positive AmunNemesis
Morrison, CO
(1 review)
November 2, 2008
I recently purchased 10 orchids from Carter and Holmes Orchids. Before choosing to purchase from their company, I used “The Garden Watchdog” list, narrowed by “Plants:Orchids” and reviewed 50+ companies. I design websites for a living and I was amazed at how many sites appeared completely unprofessional. The worst of which were sites with no images of their plants, which would be like buying a car or house sight unseen. Just how many people do you think do that ?

Anyway, the 1st reason I purchased from Carter and Holmes was because their website wasn’t painful to use like all the other sites I visited. The 2nd reason is because they had an amazing selection of orchids compared to all the other sites I visited.

My 12 orchids shipped the day after I ordered (10 + 2 free which is a fantastic bonus). When they arrived 2 days later I was actually very impressed with how the plants had no damage what-so-ever. All pots were wrapped in such a way as to keep their planting medium securely in the pot and all the orchids were carefully wrapped with newspaper. I was also impressed with the size of my plants, all of which were larger than I had expected. Carter and Holmes will definitely be my 1st choice for my next online order.
Positive PabloVerde
Canton, GA
(13 reviews)
June 25, 2007
After a visit from this firm to our local orchid club I decided to give them a try. I recently ordered 25 orchids on-line and I was very pleased with what was sent. My order was received in just a few days, and everything was very carefully packaged including 3 bonus plants.

As a relative newbie with orchids, their color catalog and plant descriptions are also a really big help.

Great company.
Positive ksdonohue
Peekskill, NY
(1 review)
June 1, 2007
I have been doing business with Carter and Holmes for about 20 years. I currently have about 400 orchids in my collection, and I would say about a third of them are from C&H. I have always been pleased by their very friendly service and the quality of their plants, which have always been well grown and healthy. They pack the plants carefully and I have always received my orders in excellent condition. Their plants also seem to adapt easily to my cultural conditions, seldom experiencing any setback (which I have occassionally noticed with plants from other growers).

I was surprised by other people's comments saying that C&H's plants are small. This has not been my experience. I often order their smallest size - two and a half inch pot - and the plants are usually ready to be transplanted into three inch or larger pots upon arrival. I have purchased plants from other growers in the same size pot that appeared to be fresh out of the flask and hardly established - this has never been the case with plants I have ordered from C&H. For the pot size, I have found the plants to be large, well established, and robust. I also find their prices to be very reasonable - I think they provide excellent value for the price.

As I said, I have been doing business with C&H for about 20 years and plan to continue doing so - they are one of my favorite growers and it has always been a pleasure doing business with them.
Positive demonknight
Waterloo, SC (Zone 7a)
(2 reviews)
December 8, 2005
Excellent company, I also have one advantage, they are located very never where I live, so I get to visit on a regular basis. We always go to their open house and the lectures and info classes they hold can teach even an experienced grower like me new tricks. many new crosses each year and they have acquired a collection of cymbideums from Fla that are out of this world. Great service, wonderful polite and courteous employess and owners. if you ever get to Newberry, SC dont leave without a visit to them
Positive nancyanne
Lafayette, LA (Zone 9a)
(8 reviews)
September 1, 2005
I am a fan of species orchids, and this company has a very good selection. The plants are not extremely large, but a good value for the price. Plants are immaculate and healthy; plants mailordered were carefully packed.
Particularly important: most plants are either seed-grown or mericloned.
Website has useful cultural information, and the catalogs are simply beautiful!
Positive gailkaitschuck
Augusta, GA
(8 reviews)
July 16, 2005
Attended an education session on growing Cattleyas with Carter and Holmes today. Excellent information presented. Stayed to tour the 18 greenhouses and buy my first orchids. An excellent selection, not only of orchids but other tropical plants. Orchids in many sizes, from 2.5 inch pots to 8 inch pots. Excellent prices, nice friendly people, a wide selection of plants and supplies.

We'll be back again.

Positive tervherd
Lima, OH
(10 reviews)
May 11, 2005
I recently placed an order with Carter and Holmes. Everything arrived in good condition and everything was VERY reasonably priced. I had ordered 5 plants and when you order 5 or more they send you a freebie. The FREEBIE, a vandaceous type, had a double spike! I certainly will order from them again.
Neutral porcubat
Brookline, MA
(4 reviews)
November 8, 2004
I ordered both orchids and supplies from Carter and Holmes.
I was very pleased with the orchids -- in fact, my cirrhopetalum arrived with a bud and proceeded to bloom gloriously in 2 weeks or so!

However, I had a few frustrations:
1) The website had a few bugs, causing my order to disappear and/or generate errors at various points -- leaving me, at one point, to wonder if my order had even been placed, AFTER I'd entered my credit card info and gotten an error. An email to the company yielded a prompte reply and solved the ordering problem, however.
2) One of my cedar baskets arrived covered in sticky dust and black mold! I emailed the company, very politely, asking if they thought that could be safely disinfected, after telling them how pleased I was with the plants and explaining that the other two cedar baskets I received were perfectly fine.
I received no answer. I emailed the company three more times, from several address and once from the web form, and have yet to receive an answer (weeks later). I had expected a prompt reply, as previous correspondence was fast and courteous. I am still rather shocked and disappointed that they failed to respond to my repeated inquiries.
Positive groovin
Windom, MN (Zone 4b)
(7 reviews)
September 26, 2003
I've been buying orchids from different vendors for awhile now. I needed to find one that also sold supplies, so took a chance on Carter & Holmes, and I was not disappointed. I needed the plants sooner than their usual shipping time frame, and they sent them right out. They were very helpful, and quick to respond to my emails. The plants and supplies came today and I am totally impressed. Plants are larger than I expected, with incredible root systems. They have an extensive catalog, good supplies, and reasonable prices. I have found my favorite orchid supplier!!
Positive triviologist
Buffalo, NY
(10 reviews)
June 10, 2003
I recieved plants as a gift-a total of 12-they were wrapped perfectly, came with instructions, and the plants look beautiful to this day. Yes the plants are on the small size, but they are of very good quality. I personally would rather recieve smaller seedling and almost blooming size plants at a lower price. That means more orchids for me!!! Very good crosses too.
Neutral walkeriv
(2 reviews)
May 27, 2002
Good quality orchids from old line company. Slow service, plus popular plants not very mature for the size category compared to some other orchid sellers. New web page very easy.

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