Normally I wouldn’t be the type to air nursery grievances but I need to know if others experienced this for the current growing seasons to decide if I’ll order from Burnt Ridge again or not.
I ordered $500 worth of rootstocks (Myro, St. Julian, Marianna, OHF, Bud, and Lovell). The box came with NO labels and NO banding on the rootstocks. Not a single rubber band in the entire box (even though I ordered most of them in groups of 10). They were stuffed in the box in alternating multiple orientations that had no rhyme or reason. 2 Hours of forensic recreation later and I was able to separate the obvious apples, from pears, from peach… but the prunus plum rootstocks were indistinguishable.
What is an appropriate response from the nursery? Can a customer expect to have rootstocks rubber banded with labels if they pay for groups of 10? Would you request a refund or just eat it? For us “eating it” means redesigning our orchard around the possibility of incompatibility and size differences (or dumping the plans for this year and restarting next year).
p.s. without naming names I had two other nurseries this year with serious problems (not to this level), so I can conclude from that, the entire nursery industry might be under some severe stress due to the sky high demand.
I don’t find this acceptable at all! Spend a few years to realize you guessed it wrong? Nope. If they are overwhelmed, they can delay shipment or even put a hold on sales. Not your problem in any case.
One of my big questions is: are nurseries just filling the flood of orders with anything they can find at any rate/cost just to get things out the door because they’re inundated with requests? From a business point of view that seems like good in the short term but foul in the long term.
I ordered over 20 trees this year, raspberries, asparagus and strawberries. Most trees have come at this point and all were labeled. One cultivar of my strawberries came and they were banded and labeled. With One Green World the dirt had fallen out of one of the Paw Paw pots but the rest were fully secured so it was easily distinguishable from the other trees. It was a Paw Paw I canceled anyway so I felt fortunate just to get a free tree anyway. I have gone both ways with plants/trees and plant issues and have learned to give the sellers some leeway and now debate cutting my losses more. At first I bought pepper seeds from refining fire chiles and typically at least some of the seeds germinated though some a lower amount but I requested a refund too early when I should not have because I still had a good amount of each variety germinate. I got a snake plant instead of greek oregano from Home Depot (not sure how they confused greek oregano with a snake plant though). Another time I got a unlabeled peach tree from a Home Depot seller ( I have had issues with Home Depot with plants as you can see) Those times I requested a refund. With other times I just say screw it because it is not worth it. A good example was last year I got trees shipped from Grow Organic Peaceful Valley and 3 out of 5 cherry trees did not come out of dormancy or if they did the leaves turned brown quickly and fell. Since I did not know if it was my fault or the nurseries or even know what happened with the trees I just said screw it I will take the loss and miss a year. For what it is worth the cherry trees that lived are flowering in their second year when many cherry trees need 3-4 years to flower.
I received my order from burnt ridge 2 weeks ago with no problems. My order consisted of 5 m26, 5 antok apple and 10 b9. Also some strawberries and grafted redlove odysso,2 Korean tea bush’s and some raspberries. All labeled all in decent growable conditions.
That is extremely disappointing. I just received my albeit much smaller order from Burnt Ridge and everything looks great. The rootstock (x4 and x5) were bundled together with one labeled tag for each bundle. On a different note, One Green World gets the ‘Best Packaging’ award this year. They were the best packed trees/bushes that I have ever received (although Flowers by the Sea still gets the best-ever packaging award for their Salvia shipments). Raintree, Fedco, and Grimo Nut also came through with excellent plants/trees/rootstock. I think I lucked out this year. Usually Raintree forgets something, but they always fix it.
Yow. Sorry you had that to deal with. Also sorry because I just got an email that Burnt Ridge is shipping my order. They are short handed ,I’m sure, but it looks like the scramble has seriously affected quality control. I’d let them know and see if they offer any compensation. Good you have photos.
Wow, my order from BR this year did not look like that - I think I ordered 10 antonovka and 10 bud9 apples as well as some St. Julian, all were tagged and banded etc. Only thing I wish they’d have done was put more water in with the roots & newspaper they shipped with as they were pretty dry when I received them
I had the roots/medium dry out with the bare root trees from One Green World. I just put them in soil medium right away. They all are still alive and were showing green on the buds within a few days with the exception of the bounty almond which is just now starting to show some green.
The majority of my rootstock came from them this year. All of it was bundled with twine by type and most thicker types were tagged individually with labels as well. I had a couple with qustionable levels of root, but no complaints.
I think you should give them the chance to make it right, and you certainly have cause to be upset. If you can confidently identify what you have, I don’t think I would let your blood pressure get too high and be willing to compromise a bit, but you shouldn’t be expected to incur risk where you can’t afford to be confident.
I am not a business, so I probably would not be confident in the differences between a lot of things, but I also wouldn’t stand to lose business of my own for mixing up Bud-9 and M111. Mixing up pear vs plum obviously means failed grafts. Basically, don’t not call, but be prepared to listen after airing the problem. More flies with honey, and all that.
Knowing that yours were bundled helps me think this may be a one off. I want to believe the nursery hasn’t devolved into a state where they couldn’t find rubber bands.
I’m willing to give them a mulligan if they’re willing to make it right.
I’m sorry to hear about your experience, this is unacceptable. However, my experience with BR was much better. I’ve ordered rootstocks from BR for the last three years, and they always came in bundles tied by twine, with separate types in different bundles, and a few labels per bundle. This year, I received Myro and Marianna from BR and, indeed, they are indistinguishable as bareroot rootstocks.
I ordered 70 rootstocks of 5 varieties from BR and they were mostly labeled but some weren’t bundled in groups. The Lovell and Persimmon were scattered but it was discernible from the other stuff. If they had mixed the apples, it would had been a mess.
After reading your comment I think I was mistaken in my earlier comment when I said mine came from BR banded, I’m pretty sure mine came with twine around the bundles of rootstocks as you described, instead of rubber bands.
Sorry this happened to you. Burnt Ridge sold out of many things and canceled on things I’d ordered early in the year, but I’ve never received an order from them that was not well labeled and well packaged. They usually have plastic bands on everything and often twine. Obviously disappointing and I hope they’ll make it right for you.