Hey everyone, just a quick question: in your experience, what are the best mail-order sources for bearded iris, in terms of customer service, rhizome health/size and selection?
James, I can't wait to hear. I'm new to Iris and wanting to start collecting myself.
And do we plant these the same time we plant fall bulbs like tulips and daffs?
The two excellent sources for the information you seek is first the American Iris Society webpage as they have a directory of commerical growers...second is once you know the name of the company check them out on the Garden Watchdog...
I am digging all the iris NOW and they will be planted ASAP..
Depends on the zone you live in as to when. Here zone 7 I have until late Sept or very very Oct...while in Michigan and zone 4 you should have them in the ground 4-6 weeks before first freeze.
Hope this answers all the questions, if not email me direct.
Thate are a lot of good sourcs for mail order iris, and if you read some of the posts here on that topic, you will find out what other people think of them.
There are many commercial gardens.
In my opinion:
Schreiners has just about the largest rhizomes...at the hightest prices. Their selection is small, and they only offer a choice cream-of-the crop selection. You should get their catalog...its worth the 5.00 price even if you don't order.
Superstition has a great historic selection, and many others ranging from modern prize winners to older. Their prices are mid range; service and quality are unsurpassed.
BlueJ offers medium sized rhizomes at great prices; a good selection, really nice website with thousands of pictures, and excellent customer service.
Suttons has large rhizomes, low prices, and so many bonus iris you won't know what to do with all of them.
And there are many others I like too: Argyle ('cleanest' rhizomes you ever saw), BlueBird (some you can't find anywhere else), Riverview(a huge selection, a bit controversial but I order from them every year), and there are others too.
Good luck. Half the fun is getting all the catalogs and enjoying the picking and choosing.
However, it is a little late to start now. Most growers are finished with their seasons.
Start inquiring next year around March for catalogs, and you will get in on the offerings early in the season.
Mid-America Garden is a very good place to buy irises. There rhizomes are first class and large. Good customer service. www.mid-americagarden.com is their website.
Schreiner's are first class also. If you don't see what you want ask them about it because they may grow it. I have done that a couple of times.
Sutton's do an excellant also. Out of 8 places I have ordered from these are the best.
Schreiner's has the worst customer service. According to their web site the last day to ship to Wisconsin was Sept. 8th, and you had to post your order the week prior. I posted my order on Sept. 1st. It took me quite awhile since I have only dial up service, and I did so after a long work day. I followed up on the order the next day to make sure they received it even though the website said the order was successful. The next day when I spoke to the customer service representative, she was very rude. She told me that the cutoff was on Sept. 6th, and when I informed her that the website had a Sept 8th cutoff, it took me awhile to post the order, and it was my first time...etc, she said that the date was being "corrected" as we spoke! I could have the iris order, but no guarantee! But when she saw that I had an order amount for $107, she consulted someone else, and said that they would honor the order. I told her that I intended to pot up a couple of iris, she got rude again and told me point blank that I could not do that! I am a novice, I will admit, but on their webpage there is a large section on potting up iris, and informed her of that. I told her that I would think things over.
I did just that, and located some very reputable growers.
Nola's Iris Gardens is one large grower out of San Jose, CA. They offered to dig iris out of their show gardens after hearing of my poor customer experience!
resortonhill shocked you had rude service, in all the years of ordering and going to their gardens in person they have been nothing but bend over backwards nice...
i am glad you found someone willing to ship to you this late, i have not been to nola's before, i found their prices higher then most so didn't have an inclination to drive the 90 minutes to visit them.