Bluestone Perennials has lost their minds!

echinaceamaniac(7)August 31, 2011

This Spring I ordered 3 Rozanne Geranium from Bluestone Perennials. They sent 3 of the wrong plants. They finally filled the order with just one dead plant! Their new pots are horrible! The plants didn't even take root into the pot before shipping and are all dried up and scattered in the box! My replacement Kent Beauty Oregano plants were not in the pot either. Their new mix looks like dried up saw dust. The main pots that are coco are just sitting in the bottom half empty! They didn't even wet the mix!

The only plant that's alive is my Clematis. Bless its little heart. It sure is lucky to survive their new shipping and handling disaster!

I will post pictures of this fiasco soon!

This company just lost a customer. I don't know what happened to their service!

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prairie_love(z3/4 ND)

I posted on the previous thread about Bluestone that the same thing happened to me. Several other people have also had this experience. Bad business.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2011 at 5:13PM
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plantmaven(8b/9a TX)

I will never order from them again. Several things from this year's order died right away and the rest are barely hanging on. Most of this may be due to our heat and drougth. But last year's plant did not due much better.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2011 at 6:05PM
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aachenelf z5 Mpls

My backorder should arrive Friday, but if what you're telling me is true I'm going to be really angry. One of the plants I ordered this past spring was Aster Sept. Ruby. They only sold it as a 3-some for $14.95. Are you telling me they are only going to send 1 plant? 1 aster plant for $14.95????

All I can say is if that one aster plant for $14.95 isn't HUGE - I mean really HUGE - I will be sending them one really nasty letter.

Will post pics too when mine arrive.


    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 7:07AM
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They are still a top Garden Watchdog company. Looks like more current reviews like OP would offset years of high reviews. Having said that, I have lately become a bit cynical of many online reviews being "fed". I take them with a grain of salt.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 8:18AM
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terrene(5b MA)

Wow, I'm expecting back-ordered and replacement plants from them anyday - will be very disappointed if the plants are as you describe, E-maniac. It doesn't sound like a fluke thing, with several people receiving plants this way so far!

    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 9:23AM
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aachenelf z5 Mpls

My box arrive today. I knew there was a problem when I picked it up and dirt was falling from the bottom. Opened it up and this is what I found. No packing material of any kind.

As you can see the middle plant is completely out of its pot.

Luckily I was home when the box arrived and it didn't sit out on the porch all day otherwise the middle plant would probably have croaked since temps will be in the 90's today. The temp on my porch will probably be over 100 F.

The plants were obviously transplanted into these pots which I don't like. They also could have solved the spilling problem very easily by taping a couple of pieces of paper on either side of the plant stem over the top of the pot. If they don't do something like this, there are going to be lots and lots of plants-out-of-their-pots arriving across the country Not good.

Mine will live and I guess I'm OK with the size of them. They look healthy. The Aster Sept. Ruby was a crop failure, so I didn't receive that one. They did send a voucher for a free plant of my choice on my next order. Since they didn't specify a dollar amount, I guess I can pick one of any price. That's nice.

I'm not ready to give up on Bluestone yet, but they have to get this shipping problem solved.


    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 12:12PM
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Wow. They must be testing different potting soils. Mine were planted in saw dust. Is your potting mix like saw dust in person? LOL.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 4:16PM
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austinnhanasmom(5 CO)

Not sure that I will order from them many angry customers recently.

Maybe management changed??

    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 5:12PM
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tepelus z6a SW MI

Do they honestly think the soil/plants will not tip out of their pots with nothing to hold them back during shipping, and that the mail carrier will take great care not tilt the box so that doesn't happen? Seriously? I think they need to rethink the way they're shipping their plants, and very quickly, or they're going to lose a lot of customers, really fast.


    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 6:25PM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

Has anyone contacted Bluestone to tell them what occurred? If not, they won't be able to adjust their practices.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 7:30PM
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mytime(3/4 Alaska)

I picked up the package from the P.O. and all looked well, but after a 5 minute drive home, I lifted the box off the car seat and there was dirt all over the rest of the mail. Uh-oh. Then I opened the box...

Well, at least one plant looks like it's still in the box...

Oops, guess not. And look at all the broken leaves mixed in with the potting mixture

This is the 3rd try for this particular plant...I'm really hoping at least one of them survives the winter, because I want to see these blooms next spring!

    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 9:45PM
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mytime(3/4 Alaska)

    Bookmark   September 1, 2011 at 9:49PM
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I took the time to let them know the condition my plant arrived in. I got a nice reply back saying that they were modifying their watering prior to shipping and looking into other options. Like any new system, it may take a while to work out the bugs. If they don't know about problems, they won't make changes.

In the past Bluestone has been good about replacements, so it's worth notifying them.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 1:19PM
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marquest(z5 PA)

I agree it sounds like someone different is making the decisions.

So often family business (which I think this was) retire and the children take over the business. Children did not put the sweat in to the start up of the business and when it is turned over to them they think....more money, less quality, pride in your product can go under the bus. We can make more money. The parents handle the business like children they raised from infancy. The children treat what is given to them so easily as something to make more money than the parents.

I am not saying this is what happened but if it is..if they do not fix the problem fast they will go under fast.

Bad word of mouth on boards like this and G-Watchdog moves fast.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 7:05PM
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jackied164(z6 MA)

Pictures cant lie so something must be different there. I have never had a problem with Bluestone. In particular in all the years I have ordered from them my plants never arrived looking like that. They did not look like that when I received my order this spring. They were healthy, the soil still moist and the plants well packed in styrofoam peanuts.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 8:14PM
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hostaholic2 z 4, MN

I'm hoping that everyone who has received those poor excuses for plants lying loose in the boxes has contacted them to let them their "new" method isn't working.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 10:07PM
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laceyvail(6A, WV)

For heavens sake, every one of you should contact them before announcing you will never order from them again. They are famous for their bend over backwards customer service and there is no reason to think they won't still be. Let them know how unhappy you are. Give them a chance to make it right.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2011 at 6:21AM
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I had ordered a Coral Bell and received it yesterday. I was soooo surprised my plant literally fell out of the big box,it was dry and so were the roots.the new "container" was stone dry. Well,last nite I took it to see if I could save it in anyway. I sprinkled water on the root system because I wanted to save any dry dirt as I could. I dipped the other container in water and put back the plant and as much dirt as I could get. I was thoroughly disappointed,it looks like the leaves have perked up so I will keep babying it.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2011 at 8:38PM
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juliebw(z5 NY)

I haven't ordered from them this fall, but I have always been impressed by their customer service. They need to fix this shipping problem. But I won't miss those tiny 3-packs much. More often than not, the plants were too small to survive a full year. They would die out over the winter, and I wouldn't miss them until it was too late to complain.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2011 at 8:35PM
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mytime(3/4 Alaska)

Well, Julie, the plants I just received actually have a smaller root system than the 3-packs that I received in the spring. I think someone else pegged it right...these have been grown in the smaller packs, but barely long enough to fill that size, then put into the slightly larger pot for shipping. I actually thought the ones I just received would survive, but they aren't looking too good right now...I think the small root system dried out in the couple days they were in shipping, and now it's too late for them to recover, as our temps are rapidly cooling down. The plants had obviously been watered well before shipping...the entire shipping box was damp, but the planting medium itself had totally dried out. I'm assuming that springtime plants would be better grown than what I received, as I think they were trying to rush things to take care of all that they had to replace from earlier.
I normally buy locally, but I do get frustrated by the lack of choices for hardy perennials, and BS has always been so highly touted that I thought I'd give them a try, despite the high shipping costs. Just my luck that it was a bad time to try them. First the shipping mess-up that many endured, then they sent the wrong plant, and now they send me too tiny of plants for this late in the year in containers that don't keep the plants contained. I'm sure they'll make it good, but it's just been too much hassle.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2011 at 9:59PM
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whaas_5a(5A SE WI)

My Lime Frost daylilies came last week and they were perfect.

There was an insert that held the potting media back. The new pots where pretty cool. I pulled that off and it teased the roots for me!

I didn't take a pic since there weren't any issues.

The only issue I have is that they where a bit dry. But the last day of shipping in transit it was in the low 90s so I'm sure that didn't help. Eitherway not a huge issue for a daylily.

They are money with service. I had a replacement order that needed to ship this past spring but I moved in the fall prior and forgot to notify them of my move. They sent another order with no questions.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2011 at 10:00PM
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terrene(5b MA)

My back-ordered and replacement plants arrived from Bluestone today! It seems they have ironed out the shipping problems, because the plants are intact and healthy. The bottom of the box was a little damp, and the soil was a little dry in a couple plants but overall they are in great shape. I checked a couple plants and the root systems pretty much fill the coir pots.

Here's a pic of them immediately after opening:

    Bookmark   September 15, 2011 at 4:57PM
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aachenelf z5 Mpls

Disregard this. This site is acting so weird again. I can post a reply to this thread, but I can't login to the Perennial Forum. It's been driving me nuts. I've tried every backdoor method I can think of and nothing is working.


    Bookmark   September 15, 2011 at 5:18PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

terrene, your picture makes me feel SOOO much better! They look like happy plants which have arrived at your doorstep in good condition.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2011 at 10:09PM
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I just received my replacement order from Bluestone for some plants that did not make it in a delayed shipment in the spring. I have to say I was worried about how they would arrive but all the replacements I received were actually in great shape, moist but not wet, and no loose dirt anywhere in the box. Seems they did iron out the shipping process a bit. Sorry no pics.

Only thing I am still worried about are the price increases. Guess we will see next May if they still offer their great "Specials" which is when I try to snag a bunch.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2011 at 11:53AM
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I'm kind of curious, are any of you actually planting them in the pots, like Bluestone has promoted, or are you taking them out of the pots and planting them, which is what I would probably do?

    Bookmark   September 17, 2011 at 8:24AM
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terrene(5b MA)

Ctopher, I bought some veggie seedlings this summer that were in really thick weird coir pots. I removed the coir. I like to remove all material from plants, peat, coir, burlap, wire baskets, etc. Despite what nurseries say, I don't like any of this stuff left around the plants roots.

The Bluestone pots are a thinner coir, resembling peat pots. I haven't planted any yet, but was planning to remove the coir. Suppose I could leave one on and experiment.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2011 at 8:32AM
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I have ordered from them for years but the price increase alone caused me to stop! I can go to a local nursery and do as well. There is also the option of raising perennials from seed which I do.

The name of the game is to find good plants as cheaply as possible...

Sure glad my garden is mature (like me) and I don't really crave many new things.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2011 at 9:47AM
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Thanks Terrene. Like you I also like to remove all of the growing material, be it peat, paper, burlap, etc. I've never had good results leaving it on and found that the plants often suffered over the winter with that junk left in place. Lots of companies have moved to plantable pot material but I'm seeing really difficult growth or even losses with them, so now I'm using the hose to blast off the paper plugs before planting and already am seeing better root and crown development. I can't imagine leaving a coir pot in the ground either.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2011 at 5:24PM
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paul_(z5 MI)

I have ordered from them for years but the price increase alone caused me to stop!

The higher cost of gas -- and with it heating and electricity --has caused a marked increase in many things. Can't really fault them there. I've seen a lot of nurseries going out of business which is unfortunate.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2011 at 12:18PM
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