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Re: todays experience

I think she meant Gene Bush ;+)
I have ordered boatloads via mailorder.  Just like Marge said, give them a
try with a small order.  If a company treats the small orders well, they
will most likely be good with any size.  She's right about Plant Delights -
great place, but some high prices. All good products and they back them up.
Closer to you and me is Arrowhead in Michigan.  Great selection - send for
their catalog.  He ships in pot, well established plants.  My goodness, you
should SEE the giant Petasites (Butterbur) he sent me!

What Marge said about local places is true in most areas, but since you're
in such a large metropolitan area you stand a better chance of finding
something interesting locally than I do.  If I see one more Shasta Daisy
I'll scream!  You'll never find a Deinanthe or Glaucidium around here, or
even a woodland peony.  There's another exceptional one for you.  Get Seneca
Hil's catalog; it's small but interesting items.

Shipping from the west coast IS high.  One way around that is Greer Garden's
thick catalogue of some ordinary and some hard to find items.  Get the
catalog.  Don't order - yet.  At Christmas order a 20% off gift certificate
for yourself and then place your spring order. You still pay the 30%
shipping but the 20% savings offsets that.  Excellent quality at Greer, too.


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Marge Talt" <mtalt@hort.net>
To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
Sent: Friday, May 07, 2004 4:30 AM
Subject: Re: [CHAT] todays experience

> > From: Donna  <justme@prairieinet.net>
> > It was from a place called Plant Delights. I felt they were kind of
> > expensive, still do, but the variety they offer is something not
> > available here. I am still amazed they were sent in pots. I did
> have to
> > browse a tad and see if it was just a new plug and surprised to see
> they
> > were established plants in the pots. Maybe cause I waited so long
> to get
> > them delivered.
> ----------
> Well,  Donna, you picked a good nursery for a first order.  Tony's
> one of the best in the business.  He's gotten quite expensive these
> days IMO, but he sends out good plants that are established and if
> that's not what you get, you need to tell him so.  I'm  a Tony Avent
> fan:-)  His nursery funds his botanical garden, which is pretty durn
> fabulous.  He's said his goal is to grow every plant that can be
> grown in his climate and I think he's well on the way.  He does list
> a lot of unusual plants.  Just wish his prices and shipping had not
> risen quite as much as they have in the past couple of years.  But,
> also, he makes no bones about the nursery being a business who's
> objective is making a profit - absolutely nothing wrong with that,
> either.  His book, "So You Want To Start A Nursery' was just
> published by Timber Press a few months ago.  Highly recommended for
> anybody thinking along those lines.  He told me it's even being used
> as a text book by some universities!
> I think you'll find that all the good mailorder nurseries send out
> established plants.  They are often small because shipping is so durn
> high these days, but their root systems ought to be well developed.
> Some nurseries ship in the growing pots and some, particularly with
> larger plants, remove the pots and some of the potting soil to save
> on weight for shipping.  If they do that, then the rootballs are well
> wrapped.
> A good mailorder nursery tells you what size plants they are
> shipping.  Of course, size also has to do with the plant; some plants
> aren't big to start with and some are.
> I've been buying plants mailorder for nearly 30 years; it's really
> the only way to get a lot of things which local establishments don't
> find it profitable to sell for a wide variety of reasons seldom
> having to do with whether the plant grows well locally.  Most local
> places that do not grow their own buy wholesale from a limited number
> of growers who grow the most 'popular' and easy to grow plants -
> their object is making money and not offering unusual plants for the
> discerning gardener:-)
> So support our marvelous mailorder nurseries - they are the people
> who are growing plants, often as very small operations, who know the
> plants they grow and propagate them.  Well, some are marvelous and
> some, like Kitty's recent experience, are not so marvelous - they may
> or may not be able to get their act in gear, but I agree with Kitty,
> one order is enough if they are going to handle it the way hers was
> handled.  But, I think you shouldn't balk at giving the better ones a
> try.  Just order the minimum on your first order to see what they
> ship.
> Tho' shipping from the west cost is high, I have been really pleased
> with what I've gotten from Heronswood, Collector's Nursery and
> Digging Dog Nursery...check them out.  I got my first order from Lazy
> S'S and am pleased with their plants as well, plus Debby has been
> fantastic about keeping me abreast of progress on one of the Paris I
> ordered who was being recalcitrant about waking up....it just got
> here today with nice fat nose showing above soil.
> And, of course, do not forget our own Gene Blake's Munchkin Nursery -
> he's not all that far away from you so if it grows for him, it's
> likely to grow for you.
> So many nurseries; so many plants; not enough $$$.
> Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
> mtalt@hort.net
> Editor:  Gardening in Shade
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