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Re: Plant disaster/ups versus usps

David, when you ship a plant, is it still in the pot?  How large a
pot?  How tall are the plants you're shipping?

Virtually every nursery sending plants from west coast to east will
either ONLY send 2nd day or 3rd day or highly recommends it - or
takes no responsibility for the state of the plant on arrival if the
buyer selects ground shipping.  Forestfarm will ship ground between
certain dates only, when they can be sure the plants are dormant and
the weather in other parts of the country won't either freeze or cook
the plants.

There's been a thread on Trillium-L about shipping costs - got fairly
lively - but the upshot is that shipping costs are high from the
carrier standpoint and those costs need to include pulling, packing
and paperwork as well as the actual shipping for a nursery to not
lose its shirt in the long run.  Labor and materials for shipping
ain't free - even if it's your own labor....that shouldn't be free as
you are in business to make a profit, not go bankrupt:-)

One of the reasons you generally get smaller plants via mailorder is
the cost of shipping!

From what I gather, figuring out shipping charges is one of the major
headaches of doing mailorder sales!

Seems odd that your UPS isn't offering 3 day select...but you can't
account for what UPS does or does not do these days.  I used to
prefer them, but now, when I ship plants, I send them priority
mail...haven't had any problems with that method.  Have also shipped
Fedex Ground and thought I'd found something better than UPS, but
with the tacked on fees, the costs ended up being more than priority
mail...so that's the end of Fedex ground for me!  I think UPS has
lost its collective mind with their charges, but they have the market
fairly well sewn up and guess they can charge what they like these

BTW, Kitty, I don't trust any of the carrier's web site pricing...the
end price is ALWAYS substantially higher than the web site quote...at
least that's been my recent experience.  You get a ballpark and
comparison between carriers for x size and weight of box going to
x...but what they show online ain't gonna be what they want to
actually ship it.

Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
Editor:  Gardening in Shade
Current Article: Battling Bambi
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> From: David Franzman <dfranzma@pacbell.net>
> Kitty, I've checked with my UPS folks for the fastest yet most
> delivery and if 3 day select was among the choices it had to have
> considerably more expensive than that. I will certainly ask again
but I'm
> afraid the cost differential is significantly higher.   (I"m not
> you I just wonder if that is offered here and if the cost is only
$10 more I
> would have used it.) Now mind you that my plants don't weigh 20# so
if the
> choice were $13 (which is what is typical for that distance and by
the way
> they guarantee 7 day delivery) or $46 that's a huge difference when
> talking about a $20 plant.
> Parcel post, as I've been told could take up to two weeks as they
> guarantee a particular delivery time.
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "Kitty" <kmrsy@comcast.net>
> > David,
> > Other choices include UPS 3-day select and USPS Priority Mail -
also 3
> day.
> > They are more expensive than ground shipping but are a  bit less
than some
> > of the faster services.
> >
> > If you shipped a 20 pound 12x12x12 inch package from Santa Rosa
CA  to St.
> > Augustine FL by UPS:
> > Next Day Air -  $94.61
> > 2nd Day Air -  $59.36
> > 3day select -  $46.75
> > Ground  -   $25.25
> >
> > Same package via USPS:
> > Express Mail - Overnite (usually, they say)  $53.45
> > Priority Mail 3day  - $36.40
> > Parcel Post 7day  -   $26.12
> >
> > For an extra $10 I might opt to get my plants in better
condition.  I once
> > ordered from Greer and they sent via UPS ground and it took 10
days.  They
> > don't offer 3 day select for some reason, so it has to be ground
or 2nd
> day
> > air.

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