Shipping charges

proudgm_03(6 MO)July 4, 2008

Are all the other places that sell clematis as high on shipping as ChalkHill? The shipping charges were more than the cost of the clematis? I don't usually buy live plants but I thought the shipping was too much?

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organic_kitten(8)

The shipping cost is obscenely high. The selection and the fact that the clematis themselves were half price was what made it worthwhile for me.

Kay

    Bookmark   July 4, 2008 at 11:29PM
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jeanne_texas(Z 8B TX)

Most places charge 18 bucks for the clematis plus 9 dollars shipping for 2 which doesn't make it that much cheaper..figure those cost you 22.50 total...Dan over at Brushwood and Gardencrossings have the cheapest shipping prices and their clematis are priced lower as well...Jeanne

    Bookmark   July 5, 2008 at 12:12PM
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gianty

Yep a USPS flat rate box charge of nine bucks should get ya a least 2 maybe more depending on the size of the starts. If you are being charged more then I'd have to says it's an excess charge, maybe the additional amount is a handling fee?

    Bookmark   July 5, 2008 at 3:58PM
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nckvilledudes(7a NC)

Shipping charges will vary by mileage from the source to the end destination. Chalk Hill also uses long pots that might push the shipping charges up due to the shape and size of the boxes required for shipping. There is also a handling charge associated with orders from Chalk Hill.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2008 at 6:58PM
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ljrmiller(z7 NV)

Chalk Hill is only charging a bit less than what it costs them to ship the plants. Chalk Hill uses these tall square pots (about 9-12" tall and about 4" per side--I don't have one at hand to measure at this very moment) and they aren't inexpensive to ship.

The best shipping deal at Chalk Hill comes when you buy your plants in multiples of 4. It costs me 20-some dollars for shipping to Nevada, about 350 miles away.

I really don't understand all the to-do about shipping costs: I worked in life science for 9 years and did all the ordering for my laboratory. The LOWEST shipping charge for perishable items (and plants are perishable) I paid was $17.95 per shipment. Some stuff ran $45.00 per box. Those companies aren't making big bucks from shipping and handling, either. Again, that's what it costs.

Sure, it's nifty to drive 300 miles round-trip to a more horticulturally sophisticated area and buy plants in person all day, but consider the costs of gas, oil, prorated maintenance, prorated insurance, prorated registration, the increased costs of eating out and those big gulp sodas you bought to keep hydrated and the time you spent driving before you claim it just shouldn't cost so much.

I'll even be the first to admit that I LOVE doing "plant shopping road trips", but I won't lie and say I save any money doing them. I can also tell you that even calling ahead or writing to many retail nurseries doesn't mean that you will find the plants you seek--I consider it a GREAT "plant shopping road trip" if I can cross even 1/4 of my entries off of my current wishlist.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2008 at 4:20AM
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organic_kitten(8)

Well, my shipping cost for each order of 6 clematis was $46. I do consider that quite high, and I am one who orders so much stuff off the web (year round) that I give the UPS man, the Fed Ex guy, and the mail carrier very nice gifts at Christmas time.

But, as I pointed out, the clematis themselves were half price, so that made the total cost worthwhile to me even with the very high shipping costs. When I have ordered clematis from other nurseries, the shipping cost was a good bit less.

I always say, if something isn't worth the cost to you, then don't order. It was worth the cost to me, so I did order. But, none-the-less, the shipping cost, $46, did seem very high to me.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2008 at 1:24PM
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ljrmiller(z7 NV)

Organic kitten, if you had ordered 8 clematis (instead of 6), it would still have cost you "only" $46. That's why I always fool around with my shopping carts and my orders to get the best possible deal on shipping. Forestfarm's gallons are the same way--whenever possible, I order in multiples of 4 (I'll find room for the other things somewhere...) to get the most bang for my shipping buck.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2008 at 9:05PM
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organic_kitten(8)

Unfortunately, ljmiller, I, being greedy, eventually decided to order not 6, not 8, but 12 clematis. I suspect that 12 clematis would have pushed shipping past the $46.

My point was that I knew how much shipping was costing me when I pushed the "submit order" and still thought it was worth it. Both times. I merely agreed with proudgm that the shipping charges were high.

I am very prone to order after looking at something for a bit...I have, so far, managed to avoid ordering from Silver Star since she is having a "buy three get one free" special, but I have a couple of days yet -- and a pretty long list.

To be honest, while continuing to look at the Chalk Hill site, I found three more clematis that I wanted to order, but I didn't think it was worth it to pay that much shipping a third time. I have ordered from a couple of other nurseries, and, as an aside, thanks Jeanne, I have asked Dan to let me know when a couple of clematis come in again at Brushwood.

I am having a wonderful time with this new obsession, and the poor clematis that I had before I found this site are really showing the effect of the care they are now receiving. They look like totally different plants thanks to a little regular water and and some food.

Kay

    Bookmark   July 6, 2008 at 9:33PM
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jeanne_texas(Z 8B TX)

Kay..you are welcome..you'll love Dan's Clematis..they are the best!!...Jeanne

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 8:22AM
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organic_kitten(8)

Jeanne,

I am only half joking when I say I work to support my plant addiction. It is largely true.

Lucky for me DH doesn't really mind. If he did, it would be war! I am really loving watching the clematis stretch out and grow since they are getting adequate water.

I am really wanting a white clematis now. When I ordered my dozen from Chalk Hill, I went by the pictures only, since I knew absolutely nothing else. I am very easily enabled. I ordered Candida, but I love the way several other whited look, and I have this nice new trellis that needs a clematis for the other side. Sooo suggestions?

Kay

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 5:06PM
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jeanne_texas(Z 8B TX)

For a white?.."John Huxtable" or "Huldine"..must haves!!..Jeanne

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 7:01PM
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ljrmiller(z7 NV)

organic kitten, I know whereof you speak. Chalk Hill's closing sale got me for 8 clematis, and I have NO idea where I'll put 7 of them. Nor does that count the 7 clematis I added this year, of which 4 came from Chalk Hill this Spring (pre-sale). At least I found places for all of them....

Lisa

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 10:17PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

I have not ordered tons of plants online but I did think Chalk Hill's shipping was very high. I was going to order a lot more than I did and I did play with the shopping cart and no matter how many I bought, it was always more.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 10:18PM
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organic_kitten(8)

Well, Lisa, I just know we will figure it out. I love to decide where to put each baby -- my only problem is I love everything "front and center". I ordered Huldine from Dan at Brushwood for September shipping yesterday.

And the low price for the clematis did help offset the shipping cost.

My DH could not believe I was cutting back my new Josephine. I have explained it to him, but then again, I may have to hide his 8-8-8 since not only did he not agree about cutting back to produce stronger plants, but he is convinced 8-8-8 is the perfect fertilizer for everything.

Kay

    Bookmark   July 8, 2008 at 9:55AM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

Not if you want blooms!

    Bookmark   July 8, 2008 at 12:32PM
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organic_kitten(8)

Yes, I keep reiterating that to him. I think he is listening, but I know he is sneaky and is capable of fertilizing "on th sly" so he can prove he is "right". He is very good about helping me water them though, and I would have had a hard time without him while I recouperate from this stupid knee.

After reading so many of you advise it, I ruthlessly cut back the two clematis I had bought and planted, one last year (Niobe) and one this year. (unknown until it blooms).

I do have one that is blooming like crazy for the second time this year. It is a group I, four years old, and survived my ignorance about clematis. It is beautiful. I have also bought a Josephine and Nelly Moser this year. The Nelly was an established plant, and she hasn't acted as if she noticed being planted. The Josephine is very nice, but small, so I potted her in a one gallon and pinched her back the way you-all-who-know-what-you-are-doing advise us newbies to do. I can handle delayed gratification if it gets me more plants like those in the pictures I see here.

I am not a new gardener, but I am a newbie to clematis, and clematis have become a total addiction. My list of must haves seems to grow every time I sign on to this forum.

Thank all of you for sharing your knowledge with me.

Kay

    Bookmark   July 8, 2008 at 1:01PM
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jeanne_texas(Z 8B TX)

Well..your dh loves 8-8-8 and I love 10-10-10....they are both great fertilizers as they are balanced..and that doesn't hurt anything for they feed all parts of the plant...you will still get blooms with it...BUT if you use a fertilizer with a higher "N"..Nitrogen THEN you inhibit the plant from flowering and just producing beautiful leaves...Jeanne

    Bookmark   July 10, 2008 at 8:26AM
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organic_kitten(8)

Hi Jeanne,

He also loves ammonium nitrate. And our tomato plants are gorgeous, but not so many tomatoes. I know I will never change him, but if he puts that on my clematis -- there go the flowers.

Kay

    Bookmark   July 10, 2008 at 10:57AM
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