Burgess nursery review

Raw_Nature(5 OH)April 8, 2013

Hello guys,

I just recieved a portion of my order(bare root: strawberries,grapes,jostaberry,gooseberry) from Burgess and I was shocked with the quality, it was very very good! I have to tell, I did do my research on reviews, customer service,etc an all the majority of reviews are really bad, I mean horrible! I was reluctant to even purchase from them, I was very concerned.. That's how bad the reviews are.. But the prices were very good($3 grapes,rasp/blackberry,etc).. They have a warranty/guarantee that if you are not satisfied, you can get a refund,etc,etc.. So I said, hell I'll save some money and give them a shot.. Few days after ordering I was really concerned that i made a mistake, I was ready to cancel my order.. Everyone always says you get what you pay for.. But i just recieved my strawberries, josta, gooseberry, and grapes, and I was impressed! The strawberries had far more roots than any place I ever purchased from, especially local stores I recently purchased from... The strawberry roots were 8-10 inches if not longer, very thick, lush roots... Same as the grapes, josta and gooseberry.. Cheap price, excellent plants.. Although they did not notify me when they shipped my order, and the kid I talked to on the phone didt know what he's talking about.. Their nursery men sure do! Excellent plants! I could not be happier! For those of you reluctant from purchasing from them because of the bad reviews,etc.. I would give them a shot! I couldn't find plants any cheaper! And the quality is up to par if not better than the expensive mail order nurseries... You can't go wrong - even if you aren't satisfied, they have a warrantee/guarantee... But i don't think you will be sorry you ordered from them... I made this review to help people save their wallet as well as getting scammed... Reading the reviews,i thought burgess was a total scam, but the plants are beautiful.. You can't judge a
book by it's cover.. Any other good, cheap nurseries you guys buy from?

Joe

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Bradybb(wa8)

I did buy from one of their affiliates,Direct Gardening before I read any reviews.
I was shocked that anything stayed alive and grew.It was all bare root and put into one big plastic bag without any kind of material protecting the roots.There were about ten items and only two didn't make it.
Like one reviewer wrote,he looks at it like a gamble and likes to see what happens.
I hope they grow and produce well,Raw Nature. Brady

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 9:15PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

You are correct, they weren't even in peat or sawdust, literally bare roots! But the roots were moist an everything is budding.. Im counting on everything, not only surviving, but thriving! If it doesn't, give them a quick call and ship them the original shipping label for a refund or replacement.. Don't seem like to much of a gamble to me.. But, after reading allthose reviews it did..

PS - did you buy any fruit trees by any chance? Was thinking about it, but I was wary because they didn't state rootstock...

Joe

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 9:56PM
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Bradybb(wa8)

Only a Serviceberry,which was DOA and a couple of White Mulberries.which I'll probably use as grafting root stock.The rest were shrubs. Brady

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 12:03AM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

Brady:

Seems like you aren't to thrilled with burgess,and their affiliates.. Do you have a better place that's just Is cheap? Where do you order from?

Thanks,
Joe

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 1:09AM
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Bradybb(wa8)

I haven't seen anything cheaper online.
Sometimes local can be a way to go,during different times of the year when plants are marked down.
But if I want a certain one,I'll check different sources.
Some places I've bought plants from are Burnt Ridge,Raintree, Edible Landscaping,Gurneys and Jung. Brady

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 2:55AM
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mes111(5b -Purling NY & 7b -Nassau County NY)

JUST REMEMBER .... __"CHEAP"___ IS NOT THE SAME AS INEXPENSIVE

MIKE

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 8:18AM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

Lots of people use the two synonously .. In this case it is inexpensive, and good quality.. Nothing, I received was cheap quality..

Joe

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 11:21AM
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mamuang_gw

Joe,

I, too, use "cheap" and "inexpensive" interchangeably (knowing cheap carries a negative connotation).

However, some nurseries get bad reviews (more than good) for a reason. You may be fortunate this time that you got quality plants.

I ordered a peony from Burgess 4-5 years ago. I got a small rhizome with 2 buds on it. It took 3 years for it to grow big enough to flower (I usually get peonies that flower in the 2nd year). Right plant, right price but not the right quality for me.

When I order fruit trees, I try to avoid a "hit or miss" kind of nursery. It's too unreliable. It could set me back a year (re-ordering) or more years before I'd find out it's a wrong variety.

Everyone wants to buy good trees at the most reasonable price. I think many people here come to realize that "you get what you pay for" often rings true.

Good luck

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 7:45PM
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riverman1

I would never, ever, ever, buy from Burgess again, they are crooks and liars.

Last spring I ordered about 40 plants from them. All but just a few of the plants were dead within a few weeks. I wrote them and included a copy of my order, a copy of the payment made and asked that the plants be replaced. They wrote back saying that I needed a label off the package, what? I still had the package but the label was all washed off and could not be read. I told them that, they said, must have the label. I said but I showed you the invoice, I showed the receipt, they said too bad.

Never buy from Burgess, they are dishonest people. There are many nurseries out there that are good people and will treat you fairly. Burgess is bad news.

RM

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 8:16PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

Very interesting.. I made sure I kept my original shipping label.. How did yours ruin, was it sitting in the rain or? There is a catch with that shipping label,I agree that is bullish* they don't do anything without that label... Especially if it wasn't your fault is ruined! I'm diffenently not sold on burgess, but the did me no harm.. I called up to check my order and kid said they are a small famil owned company and you cannot track your order.. I thought they were owned by plantron? Was he just lieing or what's the deal?

Those of you angry about the shipping label: it's sad to say, but you have to know to read between the lines and Thoroughly read their warranty/guarantee...

You guys say there's plenty of other great nurseries to order from, who?? That's what this forum is about.. Help people out! If burgess is so crooked, and their affiliates are the same.. That's all the catalogs I got in! Give us solutions so we don't have to order from scandals! What nurseries are good?? Where do your order from??

Thanks
Joe

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 9:08PM
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olpea(zone 6 KS)

I agree with the skepticism about Burgess. One of my neighbors ordered 6 fruit trees from them a few years ago. Three of them were DOA. When they didn't leaf out, he called Burgess to get them replaced but they refused because his wife had thrown away the packing slip.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 10:16PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

Were the fruit trees fairly big, nice branched, besides dead? I don't understand how anyone orders trees without knowing what rootstock they are on.. Why don't nurseys state specific rootstocks, money game or?

Thanks,
Joe

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 12:12AM
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olpea(zone 6 KS)

"Were the fruit trees fairly big, nice branched, besides dead?"

No, they were small. They also ordered some blackberries from Burgess and none of them leafed out either.

Nurseries like Burgess and Gurneys don't state specific rootstocks because they mostly cater to people who wouldn't understand the difference between rootstocks, or even the significance of them.

I suspect many of the people that order trees from Burgess/Gurneys think the trees came from seed (not grafted).

I hate to associate Gurney's with Burgess. Gurneys has much less complaints about dead plants and considerable better customer service, but they both cater to the same clientele.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 9:03AM
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lkz5ia

I always liked to think that burgess gets their nursery plants out of dumpster of another nursery.
I'm not sure what this topic is trying to prove, since 99 out of 100 people that order from them have been screwed by them. Congratulations, go buy a lottery ticket while you are at it.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 9:29AM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

"You guys say there's plenty of other great nurseries to order from, who??"

Well what do you want?

For trees I like Bay Laurel Nursery, my biggest complaint is the trees are too big and branched out bigger than I really want. I would prefer smaller trees. Healthy as hell!
Grandpa's in the east is a great nursery for trees too. Rated in the top five by Dave's Garden. Again though rather large trees.

Raintree in the Northwest is decent too. Trees more of a size I can shape. Great selection too! No nursery is perfect.

Berries:

Many good nursery's. Nourse Farms is mentioned many times on this site. I have no experience with them
Raintree again too, although I heard their grapes are not the best. I have a freebee grape coming from them, so if it's bad, I won't complain, it was free.
Stark Brothers is another decent nursery for trees and berries. They tend to send stuff too early, best to suggest a shipping date with them.
Others have said their trees are good. I bought blueberries and raspberries. The blueberry was not huge but healthy. The raspberries had one cane over pencil caliper, and a huge root system. bareroot dormant. They look great!
Burpee is a huge company. The seeds they sell are decent. Most plants I feel are overpriced. I bought some strawberries from them and they were excellent and as big as an open hand. They sell many exclusive and rare items, so if you want them, you have to deal with them. I wanted the Double Gold and Crimson Night raspberries from Cornell. Cornell berries and fruit trees are always great cultivars. They also developed Black and White Gold Cherry trees, what excellent cherry trees! Anyway others are now starting to offer these raspberries, but last year only Burpees had them. I ordered them at a premium price. They were micro plants, I was not happy. They did survive the winter and are leafing out, so I'm happy I got them, even though small. I suspect the demand was crazy so probably all they had were very small plants.
Berries unlimited a top 5 rated nursery also, will be offering these plants soon, but they also have high prices. I suspect though the plants are in excellent condition.I ordered Honey Queen from them as they are the only place I saw this yellow cultivar raspberry. it is supposed to be excellent.
They are now out of stock of that cultivar. But more are expected in June. These are tissue cultured virus free cultivars, so you get what you pay for!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 10:22AM
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fabaceae_native

lkz5ia, the following comment you made above is a bit harsh: "I'm not sure what this topic is trying to prove, since 99 out of 100 people that order from them have been screwed by them. Congratulations, go buy a lottery ticket while you are at it."

Raw just wanted more information about the company given his recent success (at a fraction of the cost of the alternatives)...

I too will never order from Burgess or it's affiliates, and only certain things from companies like Gurneys. But this post makes me wonder how location, and thus speed of mail delivery, factors into this. I don't stand a chance of getting live material here in NM from a crappy company in Michigan or wherever, but that could be different if I were in Ohio.

Maybe the point of this post is the following:
Obviously when the right plants are chosen, and delivery time, weather, phases of the moon, tides, planetary influence, and current political climate all line up perfectly you can get a good order from one of these places...

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 10:36AM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

I always liked to think that burgess gets their nursery plants out of dumpster of another nursery.
I'm not sure what this topic is trying to prove, since 99 out of 100 people that order from them have been screwed by them. Congratulations, go buy a lottery ticket while you are at it."

Its not trying to prove anything.. I'm just writing my experience with the company. Its either they got better or was purely I coincidence, which most l of you confirmed it was freak luck.. Perhaps, i should buy a lotto,im that lucky.. But how are they still in business if they are such scandals? They do have a guarantee after all.. why are they still open?

Olpea: thanks for the info.. I also wonder if they don't label rootstock to get around patents and get cheapest rootstock possible?

Drew, Thanks for the nurseries...

Faba native:

I was actually just trying to help people out and save a few bucks... But it seems like I am doing more harm than good.. The point of this posts is merely to state my experience with burgess, that's all...

Isnt burgess a division of plastron?? Same as four seasons,etc?? I have a raintree catalog, which is the best catalog I got in.. I am looking for anything edible - fruit trees, fruit shrubs,etc,etc... What are some other catalogs/nurseries I should sign up for?? Where do you guys buy from?

Appreciate it,
Joe

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 12:27PM
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shazaam(NC 7B)

I've had positive experiences with Burnt Ridge Nursery, Edible Landscaping, Simmons Berry Farm, Oikos Tree Crops, Stark Bros, Peaceful Valley Farm Supply, and Indiana Berry.

I've included a link below to a thread from the Tennessee Gardening forum -- one of the posters provided a lengthy list of highly rated nurseries.

Here is a link that might be useful: Reputable Fruit Tree Vendors

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 12:56PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

Sazaam! Thanks!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 1:29PM
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ABz5b

Somereputable online nurseries that ive used. Starkbros (good for trees and Berries) My peach and Cherry tree are thriving. Henry fields, Gurneys, Raintreenursery.com. all ive had good luck with.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 2:27PM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

"I was actually just trying to help people out and save a few bucks... But it seems like I am doing more harm than good.. The point of this posts is merely to state my experience with burgess, that's all... "

Hey you did nothing wrong, information is a good thing. Even the negative comments gives us more info. I certainly may consider them as a possible source, even with the bad ratings. Sometimes it's hard to find that certain plant, I know I had a hell of a time finding a few. Now I know sometimes they get it right. Yeah it took me forever to find a Kiwi Gold raspberry, a variegated Purple Beech. and a wyeberry blackberry hybrid. I have all three now yeah!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 3:26PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

Remember, It was only a portion of the plants i ordered i was impressed with. I still have more than half my order coming very soon, I'll keep you guys posted on how that turns out!

My order:
4x concord grapes(great quality) ($3.50 or less each)
2x Catawba grapes (shipping)
2x niagara grapes (shipping)
2x rubel blueberry ($5 each) (shipping
1x jersey blueberry ($7) (shipping
1x pixwell gooseberry($3) (shipping
2x red colossal gooseberry ($9 each) ( small, breaking bud, but good roots)
1x perfect red currant ($5) shipping
1xconsort black currant (5) shipping
2x jostaberry ($7) (decent sized, nice thick stem, still fully dormant,nice roots
50x strawberry festival (beautiful, huge roots, breaking dormancy)
3 cumberland raspberry ($7) shipping
3 latham raspberry($7) shipping
3 Durham raspberry (7) shipping
12x Darrow blackberry (26) shipping
Shipping ($10)

Hope this helps,
Joe

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 5:53PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

PS - if you have any of the variaties i ordered, can you let me know how they are..

Thanks,
Joe

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 6:04PM
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mamuang_gw

Joe,

The link Shazaam posted contains an extensive list of nurseries. A few nurseries that are not on that list but get good reviews on this forum members are: Fruit Tree Farm, One Green World, Schlabach's, Tierra Madre and Vauhn Nursery.

Schlach's is the only one that you cannot find on line. It's run by Amish people. You can call (866 600 5203) to order a catalog and send in your oder by mail.

The tree quality are good (on a smaller size). Reasonable price - $15-16 per tree. I am most impressed with their honesty. One time I overpaid, not knowing. They sent back the difference. The other time one tree had some damaged roots. I called. They sent another tree, no question asked. I did not have to send any proof. Whenever I find a variety I want on their catalog, I order from them.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 8:32PM
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riverman1

A reputable company will do what they can to make the customer happy. I have a small business and I do everything I can to be fair with my customers even when it costs me money. It's imperative that the customer is happy.

When my plants from Burgess died, I had a copy of the invoice, I had a copy of payment.....it was entirely clear when and what I had ordered from them and instread of trying to be fair to the customer, they chose to use a loophole to cheat me. Not only did they lose me as a customer, but now they will lose additional customers from posts like this one.

They are dishonest and I would not recommend them to anyone. Buy your plants anywhere but from Burgess.

RM

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 8:38PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

Very interesting... Thanks for your posts.. I appreciate you guys trying to help eachother out before one gets caught in the loop holes! If someone posted a thread like I did, I most likely would not purchase from burgess.. It's one thing to read reviews and thinking the people don't know what they are talking about, because frankly, like others mentioned only inexperienced growers purchase from nurseries like these.. It's another, to get experienced growers state their opinions and experiences, just like this forum.. I'm glad I got a good order, and I may not test my luck again.. I'll be sure to keep you guys updated.. These threads are what saves people frustration and money, that's half the reason I made this!

Thanks for posting,
Joe

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 8:54PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

So i opened the door to grab the mail and nearly stepped on my plants sitting underneath it. I quickly, but carefully opened the package to give the roots a nice soak..

Overall:

I am very pleased, I do not feel like a got ripped off whatsoever.. I might even order from them again, is crazy as that sounds.. That did me good, I have no bad things to say.. All my plants arrived safely, and th majority ofthem had nice, lush roots! Although, it was frustrating trying to take the plants out of the tangled mess just thrown in the bag! my first order was only a few plants, but it became apparent how bad there packaging is when you order any decent amount of plants.. Another issue is they use thin pieces of paper to label varieties, you can barely read the thing, if it gets wet/ripped before you labeled it properly, you are not going to know what it what! They need to do a better job organizing the shipment, as well as labeling individual plants.. Oh, and one of my niagra grapes barely had any roots, literally two strands! But, I really shouldn't complain, the rest of the plants have so much roots, I can properly separate the roots and get 5 plants of them! I'll be sure I get a replacement for that one niagara grape, the rest is going in the ground as soon as it dries up! Man it always seems like the weathers against you! Can't wait to get planting!

PS: I'll keep you guys posted how everything grows.

Joe

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 2:57PM
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Bradybb(wa8)

Joe,
That's good to hear about your order.
It might be a good idea to wait for all things to start growing,if the grape is going to get replaced.Because I think they only let a person use the shipping label refund one time per order.It's good for one year though,so there's time to see if other plants live or not. Brady

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 8:53PM
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Raw_Nature(5 OH)

Our One Year Guarantee
If any item you purchased from us does not live, for a FREE REPLACEMENT just RETURN THE ORIGINAL SHIPPING LABEL along with your written request within 1 year of receipt. If you are dissatisfied with any merchandise, return it together with the ORIGINAL SHIPPING LABEL within 1 year of receipt for a FREE REPLACEMENT. Replacement guarantee is VOID unless the ORIGINAL SHIPPING LABEL is returned. For a REFUND of the purchase price, RETURN THE ITEM AND THE ORIGINAL SHIPPING LABEL, with the correct postage affixed, within 14 days of receipt.

Brady, thanks forgiving me the heads up! I didn't even think about it only being good for one time only! I thought it was bad enough you need to keep the shipping label! It sure doesn't state one time use only.. I'll give them a call tomorrow!

Thanks,
Joe

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 9:11PM
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riverman1

Consider yourself lucky Joe.

They are dishonest people waiting for another victim.

RM

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 11:29PM
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