Since I ordered from a number of mail order nurseries all over the U.S. this year, I am going to report on each shipment as it arrives. I will post these reviews on Fridays as each shipment arrives.
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My second group of mail-order plants arrived in great condition on Friday, April 22 having been shipped from Washington state on Tuesday, April 19. I was impressed with the turn-around time, but a little disconcerted when I realized the box sat at Fed Ex in Madison for over 24 hours before they actually delivered them to me. I think that's because the delivery order said it must get to me by Friday. So Friday it was. I did appreciate the email note with tracking number that Far Reaches sent me when they shipped the plants so I could follow their progress and be ready for their arrival.
Far Reaches Farm, Port Townsend, WA
I actually made three separate orders to Far Reaches between January 5 and mid-February as they added new plants to their web site. They were shipped in late April as requested and came all together in a BIG box. The package weighed 11 pounds and was 28" x 16" x 13".
As you can see from these photos my invoice was right on top so I could check off the plants as I unpacked them Again, the invoice was hand-signed by one of the owners of the nursery which I find amazing given how incredibly busy they all must be at this time of year. You know how busy all of us gardeners are!
Newsprint cushioned the plants and kept everything from shifting around during shipping. In addition each plant had this wonderful stretchy brown paper around it. The paper has air slits so everything could breath but it really kept every stem and leaf in excellent condition. There were no broken stems or damage to the plants of any kind. I found it rather amazing given the size of the plants that were shipped to me and the state of their growth.
The plants came from Washington state where Spring is much more advanced than it is here in Wisconsin. You can see that the Peony I ordered (P. corsica syn. macula ssp. russoi, on the right below with the red stems) has already bloomed this year. Look at the size and number of those stems! They mean I will have a very nice display next year.
The same is true of this Trillium albidum (below) which was shipped in full bloom. I planted it the morning after it arrived at my house and it is still holding onto its flowers a week later. But again, I know for sure that I have a bloom-sized plant just as the Far Reaches online catalog stated.
The plants I ordered from Far Reaches Farm, in addition to the ones mentioned above, include Primula florindae (2), Betula michauxii, Gillenia trifoliata 'Pink Profusion,' Tsuga diversifolia (2), Paeonia ludlowii, Hemerocallis exaltata ex. 'Giraffe' seedling, Asplenium scolopendrium 'Christatum' (2) and Erythronium oregonum (2). The Erythroniums are the plants in the foreground with the yellowing leaves. These are spring ephemerals and are fading as they have already bloomed etc. before they were shipped. That's why the leaves are yellow rather than any problem with the plant.
All in all, a great experience and I would certainly order from them again despite the shipping charges to get the plants from there to here.
You can find my review of Odyssey Perennials here.