Goodness You Can Grow

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you really ship trees or plants this time of the year?

Since we ship all of our plants potted in soil, yes we are able to offer shipment year round. In the winter, we monitor weather.com and hold shipment temporarily if weather is too extreme. We add insulation to the trees as weather dictates, packaging each carefully by hand to ensure the best possible tree when it arrives at your home. In the summer, we water very well before the plant's departure. Unlike our competitors who mostly ship bare rooted plant material, our plants, by traveling in the only soil they've ever known experience much less stress in transport.

What can I expect from the plant upon arrival?

If there are any leaf issues from transport, the plant usually re-foliates very quickly if allowed to acclimate a bit before transplanting.

How are your plants prepared to make their trip?

We carefully box each tree by hand, adding protective measures to absorb excessive vibration or movement while in transit. The root balls are then bagged to hold in moisture while the trees are on their way, with an additional card board collar placed over the tree to provide additional protection from the elements. Some leaf drop may occur, but the tree, once moved to a proper and safe location should re-foliate very quickly.

What are Plant Zone Maps?

Gardeners need a way to compare their garden climates with the climate where a plant is known to grow well. That's why climate zone maps were created. Zone maps are tools that show where various permanent landscape plants can adapt. If you want a shrub, perennial, or tree to survive and grow year after year, the plant must tolerate year-round conditions in your area, such as the lowest and highest temperatures and the amount and distribution of rainfall. (Citation: Website - The National Gardening Association)

The 1990 USDA Hardiness Zone Map

The USDA Hardiness Zone Map is one of several maps developed to provide this critical climate information. The USDA map is the one most gardeners in the eastern United States rely on, and the one that most national garden magazines, catalogs, books, and many nurseries currently use. This map divides North America into 11 separate zones. Each zone is 10°F warmer (or colder) in an average winter than the adjacent zone. (In some versions of the map, each zone is further divided into "a" and "b" regions.) (Citation: Website - The National Gardening Association)

Great for the East

The USDA map does a fine job of delineating the garden climates of the eastern half of North America. That area is comparatively flat, so mapping is mostly a matter of drawing lines approximately parallel to the Gulf Coast every 120 miles or so as you move north. The lines tilt northeast as they approach the Eastern Seaboard. They also demarcate the special climates formed by the Great Lakes and by the Appalachian mountain ranges. (Citation: Website - The National Gardening Association)

Zone Map Drawbacks

But this map has shortcomings. In the eastern half of the country, the USDA map doesn't account for the beneficial effect of a snow cover over perennial plants, the regularity or absence of freeze-thaw cycles, or soil drainage during cold periods. And in the rest of the country (west of the 100th meridian, which runs roughly through the middle of North and South Dakota and down through Texas west of Laredo), the USDA map fails. (Citation: Website - The National Gardening Association)

Problems in the West

Many factors beside winter lows, such as elevation and precipitation, determine western growing climates in the West. Weather comes in from the Pacific Ocean and gradually becomes less marine (humid) and more continental (drier) as it moves over and around mountain range after mountain range. While cities in similar zones in the East can have similar climates and grow similar plants, in the West it varies greatly. For example, the weather and plants in low elevation, coastal Seattle are much different than in high elevation, inland Tucson, Arizona, even though they're in the same zone USDA zone 8. (Citation: Website - The National Gardening Association)

Where can I go to find the plant zone for my area?

Our friends at The National Gardening Association, have a wonderful tool available to find your USDA Hardiness Zone. CLICK HERE (external link) to access that site.

How do you succeed so well shipping plants in the heat of the summer?

Shipping through the summer, plant containers are bagged to hold in added soil moisture. Boxes are ventilated and the plants cushioned to absorb any road vibrations. Read more about our innovative packaging techniques HERE.