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The scoop on 'Plant Delights Nursery'

  Company Profile  
Plant Delights Nursery

Mailing Address:
9241 Sauls Road
Raleigh, North Carolina 27603 (United States)

Phone: (919) 772-4794
Fax: (919) 662-0370

Catalog Order Page: Hyperlink
Paper Catalog Cost: Free

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This company offers a variety of plants.

This company specializes in:

  Company Comment, posted on December 12, 2011:  
Since 1988, Plant Delights Nursery has been the choice of serious gardeners and plant collectors looking for the best and rarest perennial plants. We are pleased to have received the Perennial Plant Association Retail Award in 2011, the American Horticulture Society Commercial Award in 2002, and to have been selected as one of the Best Mail Order Plant Sources - Garden Design Magazine 2010. Welcome to our family of plant lovers!

  Feedback History and Summary  
302 positives
27 neutrals
47 negatives


Displaying the 50 most recent comments:

Positive LucasCatChow
Tulsa, OK
(26 reviews)
June 1, 2020
I was hesitant to order from them this spring because of the confusion caused by the Wuhan Virus shut down and the reduction of the work force. Therefore I was very impressed by the on time delivery and the quality of the plants (2 Bubblegum Blast Monarda). The plants were lush and green and better then many plants at the local nurseries. Not your skimpy seconds or immature plants you so often get from some mail order nurseries. Good job in the face of trying circumstances.
Positive scrollo
Los Angeles, CA
(3 reviews)
April 11, 2020
One of my favorite mail order nurseries ever. I've ordered from them about 5 times over the last 8 years and the plants they send always thrive for me. Every plant is labelled correctly, and they carry things that are not available anywhere else. I live in California and grow a lot of agaves, mangaves, etc., and their selection is the very best.
Negative trilliumfan
Olympia, WA
(1 review)
May 19, 2019
I have been a long term (over 10 years) customer of this company, My experiences with them had been positive until two years ago when my order arrived poorly packed, more dirt loose in package than in pots, plants floating free out of pots etc. I wrote them about this, never received any reply to letters. Noticed here others with similar experiences at that time. Didn't order last year. This year I decided I would give them another chance - order arrived when requested (mid April) and well packed. All plants in good shape except 2 trillium, (one additional trillium was dormant, still hasn't appeared) One of the two had bloomed and already drying up which was probably okay, the other was very wilted. I have numerous different trillium and have never seen a wilted on before! I emailed them immediately (April 17), enclosing pictures. Received an auto reply that I would get a response within the next 72 business hours. No response came, emailed them again, same auto reply, still no response. Since they obviously have no interest in me as a customer, I no longer will consider purchasing from them.
Company representative comment on May 21, 2019:
On May 21, 2019 9:27 AM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

We respond to all customer inquires directly and hope you have received our private message. We value our customers and the plants we grow in the Nursery. We are available Monday through Friday via email or phone; or 919-772-4794.

Positive CooDeeFoo
Central, SC
(15 reviews)
May 5, 2019
First let me say that their varieties are very unique and tempting to plantaholics like myself. This spring, I sent an order for approximately $175 for 7 plants with $35 of this being shipping. When my order arrived, six of the plants were very stocky, well-rooted specimens and one, in my opinion, was very skimpy for the $17 price tag. I emailed them twice with no response, only to learn that complaints should be directed to Very quickly after I sent the email to the proper address, I received a response from Elaine in customer service. I had included pictures of the skimpy fern. Within a week, I had a replacement. Now, all the plants are growing quickly. I watered them with Myco + root inoculant to help avoid future maladies, and they seem to be thriving. I have to say that my experience with their customer service was great, and Elaine was true to her word. I am certain, I will not be able to resist ordering again.
Positive wahle
Glen Carbon, IL (Zone 6a)
(3 reviews)
April 29, 2019
What a joy to unpack an order from Plant Delights Nursery. Their shipping boxes not only protect plants from the worst abuse in transit, but they also make unpacking easy. Plants were all healthy and have been in the ground for three weeks...all doing great. Will continue to order from PDN.
Positive brianaucuba
PEQUEA, PA (Zone 6b)
(20 reviews)
November 30, 2018
Posted on July 11, 2013, updated November 30, 2018
I can't say enough good things about Plant Delights. They always have the most unusual, quality plants. I ordered Kniphofia 'Lola' a few years ago even though I was a little skeptical about the mature size listed. I was amazed at just how large it grew. Their catalog is always a good read because of the plant material offered and Tony Avent's humor. My only problem is that my budget doesn't allow me to order all of the cool plants from Plant Delights that I want to.
On November 30th, 2018, brianaucuba added the following:

It has been several years since my initial post. I wanted to update it and keep the positive rating. This year I ordered several Dryopteris crassirhizoma and a Rohdea. Outside of ordering direct from Japan, Plant Delights is the best source I have found for unusual Rohdea as well as the straight species. The Dryopteris is a rarely offered species with a beautiful evergreen form until snowfall here in some 6b. I had purchased three of the same Dryopteris species from Plant Delights years ago. They have grown into beautiful specimens. My only regret is that I didn't purchase more of them at the time.

The Dryopteris I received this year were a nice size and the Rohdea was absolutely beautiful. Packing was top notch. I still enjoy the catalog and the political humor in it. I don't always agree with the political humor but I am an adult and realize there are other viewpoints than my own. To everyone at Plant Delights please keep doing what you are doing and keep the humor in your catalog. You have a fan in Pennsylvania.
Positive VA_GARDEN
Hood, VA (Zone 7a)
(30 reviews)
October 14, 2018
My latest order included a clematis that arrived in pretty terrible condition. I sent photos, then called, and they immediately shipped a replacement plant which arrived in perfect condition. I couldn't ask for more from customer service.
Negative VC_Palms
Valley Center, CA
(1 review)
September 11, 2018
We have purchased many expensive plants from Plant Delights over the years and we have never been "delighted" at all. Our last purchase was over $1,000 USD. The only reason why we buy--- or rather, used to buy, is because of the rare species. We have made a commitment never to buy from Plant Delights again. The reason is the plants are never really that great to begin with. We have never received a plant that was not damaged in some form. This is terrible because we buy plants to give as gifts and they show up with broken leaves, smashed leaf tips, and they have been trimmed asymmetrically so the plant looks weird. Also, the shipping prices are astronomically high. I can understand high shipping and perfect plants but it has never been that way. Plants are shipped in very narrow boxes that are narrower than the plants are so they are all damaged. We tried communicating these problems but basically gave up because we felt it all fell on deaf ears. We also ordered plants, and paid for them in full, only to be told we would have to wait an additional 6 months. After waiting an additional 6 months we were told would have to wait an additional 6 months ( a total of one year later) to get the plants, if they were even going to be available at that time. I can understand one or two plants being damaged or delayed but it has consistently been the norm for us. Another thing is the catalogs all have some political message to them and are covered with cartoon images. We are interested in buying PLANTS - NOT POLITICS. The whole point of growing plants is to get away from the nonsense of the world yet the catalog makes it the centerpiece. A picture of a new variety or species of plant would be an appropriate picture for the cover of a plant catalog. In my opinion, cartoon images are appropriate for the covers of comic books which are appropriate for children. We believe our multiple experiences of which all have had the same results lend credibility to our review and our decision to post this review.
Negative wmbusch
Marshfield, MO
(2 reviews)
July 24, 2018
I have ordered several times from this nursery and spent hundreds of dollars. I love their selection and catalog. I think the prices are high and so is the shipping, so I expect the best of success with their plants. I worked for over 5 years in a nursery potting up thousands of bare root plants, splitting plants, nursing sick plants, etc. and I love to garden and plant perennials first and foremost. I say this because I don't just plant my mail order plants and hope for the best. I prepare the soil, water them in, make sure they are adequately watered but not drowned in the first few vital weeks, and check them every few days thereafter because I want them to survive and thrive. Unfortunately, I have lost a lot of their plants. It almost always seems to be the plants that come in quite small and not looking like they are thriving. The last order was
Achillea Sassy Summer Taffy - doing well
Buddleia Pink Cascades - doing well
Heuchera Pretty Pistachio - doing well
Polygonatum odoratum Angel Wing - looked good. Planted with some trillium that have done well but it never grew at all and recently died over a few day period. A $29 plant.
Polygonatum odoratum Fireworks - First one came in and was broken at the base. I reported it and sent pics as requested and it was replaced with another that, without any support for it's upright nature, was also broken at the base. I staked it and planted it and hoped for the best but it died as well. A $29 plant.
Tiarella Pink Skyrocket - Loved the picture of this. It came in with about 2 or 3 very tiny leaves and looking poorly. It sat in the ground and did nothing and and died with about 45 days. For gosh sakes, it's a Tiarella.
Bottom line, I have lost 3 out of 5 of my expensive order.
As I understand it, plant are only guaranteed to arrive alive, so I will admit to not pursuing reimbursement a second time for the Fireworks Solomon's Seal, the variagated Solomon's seal, or the Tiarella.
Let's look at other orders:
Baptisia Blue Towers - Planted it and it did nothing and then died. Planted in full sun wildflower bed where I have 5 other Baptisias growing and doing well.
Agastache Rosie Posie - survived from Sept. until winter. Never returned
Acanthus Summer Beauty - sat without growing and didn't survive winter
Baptisia Pink Truffles - lived and grew to about 10" tall this year.
Baptisia Yellow Towers - lived and grew to about 10"
Baptisia Ivory Towers - lived and grew to about 12"
Baptisia Blue Towers - out of stock. Got later (see above).
So I lost 50% of this order that was also over $100.
This order of one item for $31:
Arisaema sikokianum - order in Feb, arrived in June. This may have been a replacement of a previously order (see below) Planted the "bulb" and it never came up. Ordered one from White's Flower Farm this year and it came up shortly after planting and bloomed. Leaves still look great even in our 90+ weather.
And this first order:
Kniphofia Lola - large plant. It grew but didn't survive the winter.
Arisaema serratum var mayebarae - never came up. Over $30 for a "bub"
Arisaema sikokianum - Over $30 and never came up. I had these Solomon's seals planted in soil typically covered in oak leaves at the edge of the forest.
Paeonia japonica - never got any bigger and it died off at the end of summer. It did come back but only grew to about the same size it was last year. Hoping it will begin to thrive next spring. No blooms.
In conclusion, only one plant of this $145 order survived.
I haven't not had this little success with any other of the 10+ online nurseries I have ordered from (except bareroot plants from Brecks which have about a 100% chance of not surviving even when I've tried potting them in professional growing medium before planting them). My advice--get the largest plants you can buy. I have found some nurseries, even through Amazon!?, selling 1 gallon and quart sized perennials and and I've had much better luck with the survival rate and the prices have been as good or better than the much smaller sold by Plant Delights and others.

Company representative comment on August 3, 2018:
On Aug 3, 2018 4:26 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

We try to reach out to customers directly, and hope you have received our private message. We can better troubleshoot situations insuring quality for the plants in our greenhouses and our customers' gardens with direct communication. Once a plant ships we are unable to control its environment, however we do try to work with every customer and when appropriate replace the plants should something have occurred during the shipping process. We hope you understand and let us know if we can do anything to help make your garden a success. We are available Monday through Friday via email or phone; or 919-772-4794.

Negative jdlcav
Huntsville, AL
(4 reviews)
July 15, 2018
I will be the first to admit that I am, at best, an intermediate gardener. Even at my level, I do know how follow planting instructions and I am careful to purchase only plants that work in my hardiness zone and can stand up to my blisteringly hot summers. I water according to the instructions on each plant and plant in the season I am supposed to do so.

I am a firm believer in buying from small businesses. I purchase all of my plants from two local nurseries and a few online sources. About five years ago, I started making notes on how plants from various nurseries were doing. I generally wait at least two, and sometimes three, years before I write a plant off entirely. I try to measure success in specific plants. Where that is not possible, for example when I do not have a sufficient amount of a given plant, I measure them against the best metric I can find.

Over the last three years, I have had a low success rate - - 27% - - with items from Plant Delights Nursery. My success rates with the other companies range from high to average - - 100%, 96%, 90%, 88%, 80%, 55%, and 38%. And, certainly, three companies have scored so low that I never purchased from them again.

I recognize that the company's plants are often rare, though I do have other rare plants that have done just fine. Some of Plant Delight Nursery's plants have not made it past the initial planting and many have not come up after the first year.

I cannot say with certainty why I have not had success with this company's plants. And I have loved the plants with which I have had success. In some cases, I have planted a dozen or more of those plants (albeit, often purchased from different companies with higher success rates).

So, the question is, will I continue to order from Plant Delights Nursery? In light of the company's high prices and my low rates of success, the answer to that is "probably not." I do not believe the company represents a worthwhile value proposition.
Company representative comment on August 3, 2018:
On Aug 3, 2018 4:13 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

We try to reach out to customers directly with any cultivation issues and hope you have received our message. At Plant Delights Nursery we strive to help everyone enjoy their plant purchase. As a small specialty nursery at Juniper Level Botanic Garden, we put lots of care into our plants before they leave our premises, ensuring the highest quality. Once a plant ships we are unable to control its environment, so we offer a small window to replace the plants should something have occurred during the shipping process. We hope you understand and let us know if we can do anything to help make your garden a success. We are available Monday through Friday via email or phone; or 919-772-4794.

Positive Tidewatergarden
Waverly, VA
(5 reviews)
June 2, 2018
I really like this place. I have ordered from PDN for the last three years, with about a dozen orders in that time. I rate them positively because my experiences with them have been, speaking holistically, quite good to outstanding. Just some positives: they offer a great selection of rare/hard-to-find plants, are usually very quick to respond to questions, provide valuable information, the customer service has been great for me and the plants, while expensive, are of generally of much better size and quality than most of the other mail order nurseries I have tried (7+).

My slight issues have been some plants that have been slightly underdeveloped - by "some" I mean only a Clematis hybrid and a Baptisia "Dark Net" which I hope they will sell again. I am not sure if this is really an issue, as there were still plenty of roots to ensure development, but I am including this here having seen similar concerns raised by others. I also find their soil medium to be of better quality than some other mail order places, whose media completely desiccate in what appears to be seconds in the Southern sun. For us, that at times makes it harder for plants to get established unless we water constantly even when in ground for several months.

I am also aware that their prices are high, but the place is devoted to becoming a great center for botanical research and transitioning to being a non-profit botanical garden. Perhaps consider that you could be bringing greater benefit to others through science through your payment contributions?

I will finish by noting that I admire their personal touches. I took my parents to their early March open house this year, our first visit to the premises. Though I live hours away from my parents, we have decided to collaborate on designing and planting our family garden as a way of connecting and keeping in touch via a mutually engaging project. This (and so much in our lives) has sadly been made more difficult as my mother has been recuperating from ovarian cancer in the last year and a half. When we went to the PDN open house, one of the staff (Megan, I believe) very kindly spent several minutes chatting with Mom (who was intrepidly walking around despite her pain) about her condition and later offered us 4 beautiful hellebores that staff were preparing to throw away because of PDN's exacting quality standards. (She had remembered that my mother was really interested in figuring out a problematically dull area in shade.) We were so touched by the kindness, generosity and consideration, especially as my mom had made such an effort because she wanted to see the place despite the 2.5 hour drive.
Positive kansasgardenguy
Goddard, KS
(5 reviews)
June 1, 2018
I received my first order from PDN last week, 2 Houseplants and 1 Hosta ('Time Traveler'). All were much larger than I expected and were very healthy. I look forward to doing more business with this company! . . . and they are FUN too! ;)
Positive Mid12nt
Stone Mountain, GA
(15 reviews)
April 22, 2018
Posted on April 24, 2017, updated April 22, 2018
Posted on April 26, 2012, updated April 24, 2017
Ordered cat thyme and White Surprise Caryopteris, received call from Diane that due to weather damage the caryopteris was no longer available, but that I could substitute another plant, which I did (a form of Salvia Guarantica). All plants arrived when I requested very healthy and larger in size than expected.

Great customer service, very proactive in preventing customer dissatisfaction. As always, I'm glad to be a customer and highly recommend them.

One sad note, my cat loved the cat thyme too much and in rubbing all over it, he broke almost all its branches.
On April 24th, 2017, Mid12nt added the following:

It's 2017 and I have received my order from Plant Delights, more Cat Thyme (the cats always eventually find and either crush it to oblivion or devour it, which requires me to buy more), and some variegated Dutchman's Pipe. The plants arrived in excellent health and of a very good size.

Although expensive, Plant Delights offers plants I can't easily find elsewhere, and I know when I buy from them, the plants will be of good size and good health.
On April 22nd, 2018, Mid12nt added the following:

It's now 2018 and once again I've purchased some plants from Plant Delights Nursery. A few years ago I purchased the solid yellow pokeweed, and it continues to give me and the birds much happiness, this year I was able to order another pokeweed I have lusted after for years, a variegated pokeweed (it's beautiful). I also ordered 2 Black Coral Elephant Ears. I am very, very pleased with my plants. They were packaged carefully and as requested delivered to my front door and the week I requested. The plants are in excellent health and of good size. Plant Delights is one of my favorite all time nurseries I have been buying from them for over a decade.
Positive hardyinokc
Oklahoma City, OK
(27 reviews)
April 6, 2018
Posted on April 3, 2018, updated April 6, 2018
Posted on April 2, 2018, updated April 3, 2018
Posted on May 13, 2013, updated April 2, 2018
Posted on May 8, 2013, updated May 13, 2013
Posted on May 7, 2010, updated May 8, 2013
Posted on May 25, 2006, updated May 7, 2010
My very favorite mail order garden place. Cool plants, Good info, and great customer service!.
On May 7th, 2010, hardyinokc added the following:

Received two plant orders from PDN yesterday...all six plants were well-grown, with roots extending out of the bottom of the pots. I definitely recommend PDN to everyone.
On May 8th, 2013, hardyinokc changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:

placed my order the beginning of February 2013...the money was charged to my account at that time...ship date set for May 6th...May 8th no notice of order shipping, so called...was informed that my order was NOT shipping this week as one of the items I ordered was no longer available...PDN ordering policy indicates that when the payment is charged that the plants are set aside at that time, so I do not understand how a plant I ordered 3 months ago & paid for 3 months ago is suddenly not available...if PDN cannot supply the plants ordered, they should not charge when the order is placed...the customer service person I spoke with was very nice & apologetic about the situation & did agree to send a different plant as replacement for one not available...also stated that the order would ship today...also bothers me that the email I received from PDN confirming my order states I would be contacted if there was going to be any delay in shipping...I was NOT contacted about this order not shipping...c'mon PDN, get your S**T together!!!
On May 13th, 2013, hardyinokc changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:

Received my order...changing my rating from negative to neutral as the plants arrived promptly in good condition & well-packaged...will possibly change my rating to positive if PDN actually follows their own policies on my next order
On April 2nd, 2018, hardyinokc changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:

FYI, the plant that PDN sold me (2 years ago I think) marked as Nolina Longifolia was actually Nolina lindhiemeriana. They apparently got their seedlings confused! After the first winter in the ground, I was really surprised how well the plant marked "nolina longifolia" survived the freezing cold; after it bloomed this past summer, it became apparent that the plant had been mis-labeled.

On April 3rd, 2018, hardyinokc added the following:

I have sent an email to Awaiting response.
On April 6th, 2018, hardyinokc changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:

After PDN reached out to me in response to my posting, I felt they deserved a Positive rating. Greatly appreciate their customer service. THANX!!!
Company representative comment on April 2, 2018:
On Apr 2, 2018 2:44 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

We guarantee that any plants we send are true to variety. We hope that you will respond to our direct message, and if you have any other questions we are also available Monday through Friday via email or phone; or 919-772-4794.

Positive Greenpeter6
Astoria, NY
(16 reviews)
March 29, 2018
Posted on August 30, 2010, updated March 29, 2018
It is when you have a problem that you find the worth of a company. How did the company react to a your needs? I have only respect for Plant Delights. I had a problem with a Lycoris purchase. They happily, and with humor replaced the plants--which were dormant at the time of shipping. I am always very pleased with plants purchased from Plant Delights and now the customer service accorded me matched the high quality of the plants they sell and ship. If you like plants that are out of the standard offerings of many vendors, this is the place. Take a look at their web catalog, and if you want to have a good time monthly--subscribe to their e-newsletter--although sometimes Tony shares some sad news here, it is always interesting and well-written.
On March 29th, 2018, Greenpeter6 added the following:

Never a problem--always delighted with plants received and customer service from this company. Recently I ordered a variegated Tibouchina. It came yesterday--a beautiful well-grown plant, bushy and large. Also, this is the first time I noticed their clever packaging. The plant was cradled in a separate cardboard insert in the packing box. It was very easy to remove the plant from the box without causing damage. Brilliant design! I am very pleased with the plants and service I receive from this source and will order more plants from this excellent company.
Neutral texaslynn
Cypress, TX
(8 reviews)
November 22, 2017
I've been debating ordering from this company for some time. Beautiful website full of some varieties that I've been wanting for a long time. I've had four items sitting in my cart for quite some time! The shipping charges are quite high but would be acceptable; however, I've read the latest reviews and became leery. Then I ran across a few reviews complaining about politics being interjected and I definitely decided that I (sadly and disappointingly) didn't want to order from a company who is overtly political. Don't want politics in my entertainment, sports, holidays or plant catalogues.
Negative wannabe7
Columbia, MO (Zone 6a)
(3 reviews)
July 31, 2017
I ordered 5 plants this spring, and they were received when promised. they did seem to be a little small for the price, but they were all planted promptly. two of them are doing well, and two are surviving. the cardiocrinum giganteum appears to have died. it arrived with 2 leaves and third leaf forming. they have all now turned yellow.

when the leaves first started to turn yellow I emailed, explained my problem, and asked for advice. the plant was placed in a bright location in rich well drained soil. according to the plant info on the website the plant should be hardy in my zone and survive high humidity.

I did not ask for another plant or a credit, just advise. I never even received an acknowledgement of my email. pretty disappointing customer service
Company representative comment on August 4, 2017:
On Aug 4, 2017 3:58 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

We try to reach out to anyone having an issue directly and hope you have received our message. At Plant Delights Nursery we strive to help everyone enjoy their plant purchase. As a small specialty nursery at Juniper Level Botanic Garden, we put lots of care into our plants before they leave our premises, ensuring the highest quality. When a plant leaves our premises we are unable to control its environment, so we offer a small window to replace the plants should something have occurred during the delivery process. We hope you understand and let us know if we can do anything to help make your garden a success. We are available Monday through Friday via email or phone; or 919-772-4794.

Neutral KTinIllinois
Urbana, IL
(3 reviews)
June 14, 2017
I have ordered from Plant Delights nearly every year since 1997. I've had mostly success, but do order one or two plants which are new to me, new to my zone (5b). Sometimes these fail. I accept that! In the past 2-3 years, however, I've had plants shipped which were clearly not ready to sell or plant in. Most notably a couple of pricey Epimediums which came in the standard 3.5" pot, but simply fell out into my hand when I went to plant them. The first time this happened, I took photos showing the meager root system, the planting medium which had no roots in it, and the plant label and pot. I didn't get any satisfaction, replacement or apology. When this happened again this year, I put the plant back into its pot and will nurse it along until it hopefully roots well down into the planting medium. It seems there is not much point in complaining.

Should I have turned out each pot the day I got my order to see if they were well rooted? Isn't this the job of the staff at the nursery?

For a nursery with such a huge reputation, this is unacceptable. The plants are priced a bit high and the shipping is a big percentage of the plant costs, but until this year I figured this was the cost of doing business - they truly do have an astounding selection of plants which they offer.

What a big disappointment this is at a time when so many of the best nurseries are now closing. Right now, I feel like it would be foolish to order again and add to my woes. I will update this comment if this year's teeny plant thrives or doesn't survive.

Company representative comment on August 4, 2017:
On Aug 4, 2017 4:01 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

We try to reach out to anyone having an issue directly and hope you have received our message. At Plant Delights Nursery we strive to help everyone enjoy their plant purchase. As a small specialty nursery at Juniper Level Botanic Garden, we put lots of care into our plants before they leave our premises, ensuring the highest quality. When a plant leaves our premises we are unable to control its environment, so we offer a small window to replace the plants should something have occurred during the delivery process. We hope you understand and let us know if we can do anything to help make your garden a success. We are available Monday through Friday via email or phone; or 919-772-4794.

Negative knoxgal
Knoxville, TN
(5 reviews)
May 21, 2017
I ordered 7 plants at an average price of $18 per plant. Of these 7 plants only 4 were in average to good condition, the other 3 looked diseased.

I contacted them and told them about my problem. They did get back to me quickly but said I should plant them and then contact them again if the plants didn't recover.

I told their Customer Service agent that their plants were expensive and if I had known the poor quality of plants I would receive, I would never have purchased them.

As instructed, I planted them to see if they will recover. However, I planted them in large containers because if they are diseased I don't want to pass the problem on to my other plants.

I will update this if the plants recover and are healthy, but the fact remains their prices are much too high to send such low quality plants.
Company representative comment on October 3, 2017:
On Oct 3, 2017 11:12 AM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

We try to reach out to anyone having an issue directly and hope you have received our message. We value our customers and the plants we grow in the Nursery. In conjunction with our experts and Juniper Level Botanic Garden we strive to ensure our plants are of the highest quality. We are available Monday through Friday at or 919-772-4794 and hope to hear from you.

Negative Tiaramisu
West Hatfield, MA
(3 reviews)
May 15, 2017
First time ordering from them, Didn't ship one of the plants I'd ordered three of in the winter and now in May I will not be able to source them. An apology or advance notice would have been nice, but the only communication I got was a brief refund notice with no explanation. I had outstanding products I was waiting for from them, and additionally had just ordered another item before I realized that order with the three plants was inexplicably cancelled. I asked them to cancel all open orders. Not only did they not respond, they promptly charged my card and shipped anyway. Won't buy from them again.
Negative haika
Snohomish, WA
(14 reviews)
May 9, 2017
I admit that some of the plants on offer are difficult or impossible to locate elsewhere, which can lead the plant addict down the path of despair if they receive the type of package I received on 4/27/17. I've ordered roughly 18 times or so over the years, and results have been mixed. To start the tally of bad-things-happening-from-Plant-Delights, I received a package containing Trilliums etc in 2016 that was packed in a way that allowed most of the soil and labels to jostle out of the pots. I opened the box to a mess but could re-ID most of the plants except for 2 Trilliums. I immediately contacted Plant Delights and was told that they were experimenting with packaging strategies and that I should wait until the Trilliums bloomed to re-ID. Based on the rhizome size, that could have taken years, so I was not comfortable with that answer. We ended up coming to a mutually agreeable solution and I moved on. I made several more orders after that without problem. Then, on 4/27/17 I received another order in a similar state....unlabeled plants upended in a mess of soil and labels. This time I ended up with 2 Asarums I could not match up with the appropriate label. I also ended up with an unlabeled Trillium but, because I'd only ordered ONE Trillium, I could re-ID it. However, it was basically unpotted (I could see the dormant rhizome in the pot) in a mess of very wet, mucky substrate. I cleaned it off since I was afraid it had started to rot in the muck, but it was firm so I repotted it in a substrate more suitable for my condition. I have another T. underwoodii in tight bud so I was surprised at the dormant stage of this rhizome. But, I can deal with that if it's not a rotted mess. Another worry. I immediately contacted Plant Delights by e-mailing them using the plant order e-mail address on their website. No response. I e-mailed them again on 5/3/17 using the address on the invoice for plant order problems. No response to date. Luckily, I uploaded the photos of the mystery Asarums with 2 potential IDs to FB Planet Asarum and got some useful hints to matching up the plant with the loose labels....but no guarantees till they bloom (sound familiar??). Plant Delights has not provided any response to the ID problem OR the packaging issues. The other issue preventing me from further orders is the recent increase in shipping charges. In 2016 I was able to order 3 plants with shipping $28.75. Now the price breakdown for my area is $40.50 for 1-6 plants. I cannot justify further purchases from a nursery that does not provide adequate customer service, does not respond in a reasonable time (at least last time they DID) to problems, charges very high prices for both plants and shipping, even though I see plants I feel I can't live without. I'll just wait until local collectors or specialty nurseries bring in similar plants (sigh). By the way, when the $50+ plants I received in dormancy never appear and I e-mail them asking what to look for etc, I've rarely gotten any response. And if you look at their fine print about replacements etc. for problems reported AFTER 7 days, they indicate that if the same plant is doing well in THEIR nurseries, it's the buyers fault even though the nursery plants have not gone through a potentially disruptive shipping process. Yep....I really think I'm DONE with them.
Negative Marleneboegli
Loveland, OH
(2 reviews)
May 3, 2017
I splurged and ordered two flowering gingers from Plant Delights. Gingers are slightly difficult, and twice I have bought plants that turned out to be the wrong cultivar, and deeply disappointing. So I spent a bunch of money to a company I trusted to send me the correct cultivar. They were listed as being in three quart pots, so it seemed I would get fairly large plants. I did not. One was the smallest possible division, the other only slightly larger. They had been freshly shaved from a parent plant, potted in a huge pot, wrapped and shipped. Shipping must have been brutal, because both plants were shaken until almost all the soil was loose in the box, and both the plants have broken stems. I have emailed PD, and so far have not had any sort of response. I believe the plants were obscenely over priced, there is NO justification for up potting to that size, let alone what must have been the day of shipping. I paid more for shipping two big pots of soil than for either plant. I do not believe either plant will bloom this year, they are so small. So for close to eighty dollars I have two huge pots of soil, and two fresh divisions with broken stems. They will probably live, but I am deeply dissatisfied, and after reading the comments I am wondering if I will even get a response. If I do I will update this review.
Negative pterostyrax
Seattle, WA
(9 reviews)
April 25, 2017
Posted on April 13, 2017, updated April 25, 2017
Great plant selection, and I would be willing to pay their premium prices if the plants were premium quality. But very disappointed in quality and customer service. One of my half-dozen plants arrived completely decapitated. Two were tiny and both had their single stems broken, in one case by a piece of cardboad packing that was supposed to be a divider but had been pressed down on the tiny plant's neck (!). I wrote to complain but more than a week later have heard nothing from them.
On April 25th, 2017, pterostyrax added the following:

It is now three weeks since I complained, and I still have heard nothing. The two puny little plants did not make it. I doubt the one with the broken-off foliage will bloom this year.
Negative Fimiano
Minneapolis, MN
(1 review)
April 17, 2017
I really wanted to like this place: good catalog, great selection of plants...BUT I spent > $700.00 on plants, and hardly any of them are still alive.Oh, I called and complained, and they offered to replace a couple and give me a small credit, but I still feel I got screwed. 1.) plants sent are puny-little teeny starter plants 2.) culture and zone info are not accurate- plants listed for my zone 10 couldn't take the heat. 3.) WAY overpriced. The reason I shopped with them was to obtain varieties not available at local nurseries, but what a waste of my money. And, by the way, I have a huge, thriving garden... with the exception of Plant Delights stock.
Neutral Timden
(1 review)
February 10, 2017
I usually order a couple hundred dollars each year (last 3yrs) but upon receiving their most recent catalog i will not be a returning customer ...

It's really not smart to mix business and politics.
Seeing your un-American defamation of President Trump in your plant catalog is just really super dumb on your part.

Way to alienate 50% of your business.
I support and voted for Trump and proud of it.
Positive keithwadams
Angier, NC
(1 review)
January 25, 2017
unlike the vast majority of people commenting on here, I buy in person on open house days as I live only 15 miles from PDN. That being said the best part about PDN is being able to visit their display gardens, and view in person all the plants for sale on the grounds and in greenhouses and being able to talk to their staff. And I might add, their display garden is amazing..... Never ordered and got deliveries via mail so I cant comment about that...
Negative MikeRath
Austin, TX
(1 review)
December 3, 2016
Posted on August 16, 2016, updated December 3, 2016
I made my first order with Plant Delights (PD) about 2 months ago. I am happy that they have a wide selection of hard to find plants. I am disappointed however that the plants depicted on PD's website and their catalogs are fully grown and the ones you actually receive are very small in comparison. There is no indication of the plants' sizes other than that the ones I ordered were coming in 3 1/2" pots.

I am happy with the 7-8" across Agave ovatifolia 'Vanzie' and Agave nickelsiae plants I received in terms of health and size. However the most expensive plant purchased -- a $35 rare Agave 'Shark Bite' -- is only a 3" across pup. Also the Echinacea 'Pixie Meadowbrite' flower plant I received is only a 4" juvenile plant that may take a year or more to mature and flower. I would not have purchased the latter 2 plants for the prices I paid if I had known they were baby to juvenile plants.

I also purchased a Yucca curnea -- which was larger than I expected (12" leaves) -- but within a week its center leaves died which killed the plant. PD did send me a replacement though after i sent them pictures. Where I work they have dozens of these same yucca plants and they are very hit and miss -- some die and some flourish in the exact same soil and sunlight conditions.

I just received a Fall 2016 PD catalog and on page 5 there is a 3/4ths of a page large picture of a 18" tall Agave lophantha 'Quadricolor'. The plant description also describes an 18" tall x 2' wide plant. I know the plant you actually receive will not be that large -- which is misleading. PD should describe accurate plant sizes and show inset pictures of an example of the actual size plants you will be receiving like most sellers do on EBay and other websites. Just showing professional pictures of mature plants gives buyers no idea what size plant they will be.

Overall I am very happy with some of my plants and less so with others. They all arrived healthy and neatly packaged by FedEx. Accurate pictures of what size plants you will be receiving and buyer reviews (as Yucca Do Nursery allows on their website) would let buyers make more informed buying decisions and know what they are actually going to get.
On December 3rd, 2016, MikeRath changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:

Plant Delights plant sizes and pictures listed are false and misleading. My $18 Echinacea Pixie Meadowbrite advertised as 34" and pictured with blooming flowers was actually about 3" tall with no flowers and died within 4 months in part shade. My $14 Sempervivum 'Unicorn' died within 4 months in part shade. My $35 Agave 'Shark Bite' advertised as being 11" tall and pictured as a fully grown plant is in reality a fragile 3 1/2" pup (baby plant). It has lost 2 of it's 5 tiny leaves and hasn't grown at all since I purchased 6 plants which arrived July 3, 2016. My $19 Agave ovatifolia 'Vanzie' and $19 Agave nickelsiae have each lost about 5 of their 12 leaves have barely grown and are much smaller than the advertised pictured plants. My 1st $19 Yucca cernua was dead on arrival and was replaced by Plant Delights but the replacement plant does not look healthy. Going into Austin's comparatively mild winter I'm not confident that any of the remaining 4 of my 6 plants purchased at Plant Delights will survive. Buyers beware: Plant Delights sells plants that are much smaller than advertised and not suited for hot climates such as Texas. I will be buying locally from now on.
Neutral BJames1
Elizabeth City, NC (Zone 8a)
(19 reviews)
June 19, 2016
Plants are small and very expensive. Recent marketing shenanigans have been a big deterrent from supporting company. Good educational resource that has taken a turn to the dark side.
Positive Gortom
Santa Cruz, CA
(1 review)
May 26, 2016
I ordered 9 plants from this company - three different kinds of flowering maples and hellebores that I couldn't find locally. The plants arrived in about a week. Was impressed with how well they were packed. All plants were in good shape even after being shipped across the country! The flowering plants all had buds and blooms on them. A brochure about caring for plants after unpacking, as well as return policy and contact information was thoughtfully included. Very good overall.
Positive PhillyLover
Philadelphia Suburbs, PA (Zone 7a)
(12 reviews)
April 21, 2016
Returning customer. Ordered several perennials. Shipped on time, packed well for shipping. Most plants were a good size for the container except Amsonia Georgia Pancake which was very tiny. I notified PDN and they noted my account in case the plant doesn't make it.
Positive rdtjr05
Franklin, TN
(30 reviews)
April 1, 2016
I am happy with the several plants I ordered and received. The prices are not the cheapest on the internet but the quality of the plants was good. I would like to single out the Spiranthes cernua 'Chadds Ford' as being an extraordinarily good value and I've never seen a peony lactiflora species strain offered anywhere else before.
Positive HaydensFamily
Austin, TX
(2 reviews)
November 8, 2015
This is our family's first time ordering from Plant Delights Nursery and we are very happy with our experiences. The staff was very kind, knowledgeable, and patience with every questions and changes we made to our order. Shipping was very prompt and a tracker number was provided. When our plants arrived, our family immediately inspected the package and we were very pleased at how carefully everything was packed and how generous in size our plants are. We're glad we discovered and gave this nursery a chance.

We look forward to ordering more plants from them again next spring! Yes, we would recommend this nursery!
Negative ala58
Allentown, PA
(1 review)
June 30, 2015
I was so excited last year to find and place an order for not 1 but 3 Clematis glaucophylla 'Panhandler'. Arrived timely 2 out of 3 looked poor (strike one) was told it's a vive not to worry new shoots from base will come but they never did on the two. Mulched for the winter in case of a bad weather as we had the year before. Now Spring arrives and the 1 that was in good condition came up just fine and is beautiful. The other 2 never came up. I called and they said give it sometimes, after another couple weeks nothing, called back and (strike two) I was told "Tony only guarantees they will get to you in good condition (which was not the case anyway). They put a big Hoopla about there customer satisfaction!! It's simply not there from my experience, I am a very experienced gardener and g found them to be a company who toots there own horn and does not stand at all behind there product. At high price, higher shipping and absolutely NO caring. I would have been happy if they extended an olive branch and offered me a reduced price on a replacement, ANYTHING. I would NOT recommend them to anyone. Also I did state to the woman answering phone that I would appreciate how deeply upset I am with their lack of Guarantee Directly to Tony. Never heard a peep back (strike three) It was very clear I was not a happy customer and my concerns were are are still legitimate. I don't normally leave anyone negatives reviews but this company really deserves it from me. I will share my story throughout internet land and among fellow gardeners. I almost ordered another series of vines but my husband reminded me of the problems and as much as I would love the vines I cancelled. If you cannot count on customer satisfaction guaranteed what can you count on after all we are blind to picking our specific plants...
Company representative comment on July 8, 2015:
On Jul 8, 2015 1:43 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

Dear ala58,

I'm very sorry to hear that not all of your Clematis came back from this past winter. We've talked with many gardeners this year (and last) who have experienced losses in their garden as winters were harsher than years past. Plant loss over winter usually has little or nothing to do with the quality of a plant or whether the plant makes it through a winter as advertised. Plant death of zone appropriate plants can be influenced by many different winter conditions, not just temperatures. For instance, It can be too little rain in the fall, too much rain in the winter, ice vs. snow, warm-ups in January or February and the list of conditions and combinations – well, you can see the variables are many.

We understand how our limited guarantee policy can be puzzling given the extended guarantees that are prevalent in the green industry today. A customer can forget to water, plant in poor soil, neglect to provide winter protection to mention a few, and large garden centers/big box stores will replace or refund with no questions asked. Plants are our only source of income which is why we cannot compete with these long-term guarantees.

If we ship a plant that left with undiagnosed problems, we will gladly replace it, even beyond the initial 7 day period. We check our nursery notes in cases such as yours to see if we have experienced any failures here that might indicate a problem with the crop. In this case we have not lost any of this clematis from 2 months before your order was shipped all the way through this spring.

We want to be fair, and in every case we want to replace or refund any plant loss that is our fault. We guarantee our quality, but we do not guarantee that everyone will be successful gardeners. We have killed our fair share due to improper drainage, too much sun, not enough sun, neighborhood dogs, insects, vermin, improper plants for our zone and a myriad of other reasons including quirks of mother nature that no one has control over.

I apologize for the lengthy note, but it is important to us that our horticultural friends around the circle understand our logic when questions arise about our limited guarantee policy. I do hope you find this information helpful. I'm sorry to hear that you have decided to cancel your newest order. Please let us know if we can be of assistance in the future.

Kind regards,
Virginia Meehan
Manager of Customer Service & Shipping

Negative garden_ny
New York City, NY
(1 review)
June 1, 2015
Posted on May 26, 2015, updated June 1, 2015
I ordered 10 Echinaceas “Fatal Attraction” from Plant Delights last July 2014 (I am a big fan of Piet Outdolf). Two of the plants came in horrible shape, perhaps due to transit damage. I called the nursery, and while they were initially almost rudely questioning my ability to identify a “damaged plant” (i.e. it will eventually recover, so just go ahead and plant it), after I provided photographs showing the state of the two specimens they agreed to graciously replace them. They were nice and apologetic.

It is now almost June 2015, a year later, and NONE of the 10 plants grew back. I have a large terrace garden in NYC, and have been growing plants for a long time… this is the first time that I plant 10 perennials and zero make it. I just called the nursery to ask what is their policy in such cases. All other places I have dealt with (Romence Gardens, Santa Rosa gardens, Joycreek, Lazy S’S farm, and Bluestone Perennial) have always found a way to solve problems with fair solutions. Regrettably, Plant Delights just brushed me off: in essence “this is no longer our problem”. Too bad, this is about the joy of caring for our plants and gardens, and a big part of the mail-order side is the relationship between gardeners and providers.
On June 1st, 2015, garden_ny added the following:

I am afraid the response is not quite correct. I called, explained in the nicest way what the issue was, described the facts (left out that it took me 3 calls and 2 sets of photographs last year to have them agree to replaced the two echinaceas), and was told matter of factly " it is no longer our problem". There was never an offer to discuss it further, to talk to their growers, to explore options or solutions, or to even suggest other plants. I would be happy to engage. I strongly believe that growers should be supported for their efforts.
Company representative comment on May 30, 2015:
On May 30, 2015 1:21 PM, Plant Delights Nursery responded with:

Dear garden_ny,

As you stated we did replace the 2 Echinacea last year that arrived damaged. Since we did not hear from you further last year, we can only assume they performed for you the remainder of the season. Our guarantee policy does not make provision for plants that fail to emerge due to the many cultural factors that are generally the cause of a plants failure to thrive. Plant loss over winter usually has little or nothing to do with the quality of a plant or whether the plant makes it through a winter as advertised. Plant death of zone appropriate plants can be influenced by many different winter conditions, not just temperatures. For instance, too little rain in the fall, too much rain in the winter, ice vs. snow, warm-ups in January/February followed by colder temperatures and you can see the variables are many. Growing in a terrace situation at a higher elevation presents its own set of challenges such as more variable soil temperatures, increased wind exposure, etc. We do not sell plants as a loss leader as the big box stores do and offer a 1 year guarantee no questions asked.

We are always available to discuss plants with you. It is about the relationship as you stated which requires a two way conversation. I’m sorry that you did not have a desire to discuss further with our horticulture staff to help learn what may have occurred. Instead you quickly hung up and posted here instead. While we can’t replace every plant on every occasion, we will continue to offer exciting plants and top notch cultural advice. The offer still stands if you have some time to speak with our garden supervisor to help with your future growing seasons.

Kind regards,
Virginia Meehan
Manger of Customer Serivce
Plant Delights Nursery, Inc.

Neutral jmcarolina
Greenville, SC
(10 reviews)
May 16, 2015
Posted on May 29, 2006, updated May 16, 2015
This is not a cheap nursery but their plants really are top notch. I have ordered from them three times and will do so again. They will not ship you a plant that you will be disappointed with. As a bonus, the catalog cover art and plant descriptions are witty and humorous and we could all use a bit of humor in our lives. The only negative is that they will charge your credit card as soon as the order is put in the computer rather than when it ships. If a plant is not available at shipping, you will be given the choice of a refund or nursery credit. Keep in mind this is not a discount nursery. They obviously try to keep the emphasis on quality rather than price.
On April 27th, 2008, jmcarolina changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:

I was less than thrilled when I received my latest Plant Delights order. Some of the plants were leggy, some were bone dry and others were wet to the point of being very difficult to unwrap and plant. They have all been in the ground for over a week now and most seem okay but, considering the price of the plants and the nursery's reputation, I was not happy about the state of the plants I received. I did email this info to them and am sure they will make good on any plants that do not survive. But still.....
On October 4th, 2008, jmcarolina changed the rating from neutral to positive and added the following:

The problem I had with the spring shipment was probably at least partly due to FedEx and their less than speedy shipment. Plant Delights replaced the unacceptable plants with no problem and they have done well this summer.
On May 16th, 2015, jmcarolina changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:

The change in my rating is due to problems I had with Plant Delights last year. I really hate doing this but it bothered me enough to cause me to stop ordering from them this spring and I have been a good customer for several years.

Last spring I placed 3 orders in March with them to be delivered after mid April. I realized around the end of that month that I had never received my first order. I called the office and asked about it. I was told they had new software and that a malfunction in it had caused their shipping department to never process my order. It was shipped but 2 or 3 weeks later than I had wanted. Subsequently, I had the same experience with the next 2 orders and plants that I wanted to put in the ground no later than early May were not received till the end of the month when planting is more difficult. I have a hard time understanding that this did not happen to others and I felt like I should have been given a discount or some other form of apology but none was offered even after I expressed my frustration and feelings that this would be fair. Plant Delights always has a nice selection and I had been a very good customer for a long time but my heart is not with this company anymore.
Positive Kylie2x
Millsap, TX
(7 reviews)
April 28, 2015
I have purchased from Plant Delights for many yrs. I have Always received Healthy Large Plants.. I recently received an order that did live up to my expectations.. Customer Service was Amazing and the issue was handled Promptly and with my Satisfaction being their Goal.. Outstanding Company with the Utmost of Integrity!!!
Positive bonsaiguydw
Mendenhall, PA
(5 reviews)
April 24, 2015
Best plants I've found and I love the variety. Everything was healthy, larger than other suppliers and just beautiful. Generally good packing. But shredded paper is a pain and dirt not as contained in pot as I liked. Still one of my top two suppliers and I bought 150 plants this year.
Positive bobbi_s
Richland, WA (Zone 7a)
(21 reviews)
April 20, 2015
I placed an order almost two weeks ago, and these arrived last Thursday. The plants were very large for a mail order, and were protected very well. They were packaged nicely, and were in great condition. The plants I ordered were: Tiarella 'Pink Skyrocket, Pulmonaria 'Dark Vader', Begonia grandis 'Heron's Pirouette', and Pulmonaria 'Raspberry Splash. I am very pleased with all of these plants, an d would recommend this mail order nursery to anyone.
Positive Suzkling
Bandon, OR
(7 reviews)
April 3, 2015
have ordered several times from Plant Delights......initially worried that plants needed to travel across the country.....NC to OR.....but they carry varieties I couldn't find elsewhere................usually I simply order from Annie's or Far Reaches Farm (both highly recommended)......but surprise!....plants were fabulosity! good size and uber healthy............they arrived wrapped in several layers of careful care..........
Positive Auryla
Norfolk, VA
(8 reviews)
October 9, 2014
I have ordered many times from this company and have never been disappointed. I knew they were having problems with their new system, so I expected somewhat of a delay. I will never stop ordering from them because they are the only company that has such unusual plants! Every plant I have received has been full, and packaged well.

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