Home > Shipping
Shipping Information

Phoenix Perennials Mail Order offers an exciting selection of hundreds of our most popular and interesting items from our nursery to gardeners across Canada. Though we offer over 4000 different plants each year for on-site sales we cannot offer our full selection via mail order. Some plants are too big to ship, others are too delicate, some plants are only available for short periods of time, and others are only available in small quantities. For our full selection you’ll have to plan a trip to visit us in person!

Ordering and Enquiries: We do not accept orders or enquiries over the phone. Please order through our online shopping cart system and use email for enquiries and questions. Use the Contact Us tab or email us at mailorder at phoenixperennials.com. Our goal is to answer your email within 24-48 hours, though response time might be slower over the weekend. Since we are a retail nursery open seven days a week for on-site sales we are unable to juggle phone calls related to our mail order sales with the demands of our on-site customers. In a perfect world without time constraints we would love to chat with all of you gardeners across Canada. But the reality is that phone conversations and orders, while enjoyable, are time consuming with our limited staff and would result in our having to increase the cost of our plants. Thank you for your understanding.

Minimum Order: $40 (Before shipping & handling and taxes). All prices are in Canadian dollars. The economics of mail order with the labour required to process orders and pull and pack plants is challenging. A small order of a single plant could result in a net loss for the nursery. Since we would like to be around in the long term to provide you with wonderful plants we have set our shopping cart system to require a minimum plant purchase of $40. We hope that you find this purchase level reasonable. Actually, we hope that when you peruse our catalogue you'll succumb to the same feelings of "plant lust" that we experience and have no difficulty in surpassing this value! Should you have a special circumstance that makes this value difficult please contact us by email.

Payment: We accept Visa and Mastercard for mail order purchases. Our servers and payment gateway are managed for us by some of the largest names in online shopping and provide the highest levels of internet security for your personal information so you can shop with confidence. When you place your order a hold is put on your credit card for the amount of your purchase but your credit card will not be charged until just before we ship your plants.

Plant Availability: We will make every effort to ensure that your full order is available for you. However, our shopping cart is not updated in real time. We will make every effort to keep it as up to date as possible. However, some plants may have sold out prior to your order. Please place your order early to secure your desired plants. Once you have placed your order we will mark and hold your plants for you until it is time to ship your order. Also, please keep in mind that even if we believe plants to be available at the time of your order, they may later become unavailable as a result of crop failures due to weather, disease or marauding insects.

Plants, Sizes and Prices: Prices and sizes are subject to change under some circumstances.

Sizes: Our plants are BIG! The plants offered for mail order are the same as those offered for on-site sales just like you'd expect at your local garden centre. We grow our plants in the pot size that is best for the crop. Pot sizes include 9cm (“4 inch”), 11cm (“4.5 inch”), 15cm (square gallon) and 1 gallon round pots. In many cases our plants will be in bigger pots and larger than plants offered by other mail order nurseries, especially those nurseries that are strictly or primarily mail order nurseries. These larger plants will give you greater performance and success but it might result in slightly higher shipping costs. We think it's a valuable trade-off since small, precarious plants don't do as well in shipping and are much more difficult for gardeners to take care of once they arrive. A big, boisterous plant bouncing out of a box is what we want to provide you.
Sometimes when we are doing the initial propagation of plants we might make a last minute decision for the health of the plant to pot them into a pot that is one size larger or one size smaller than what we had planned. In most cases this will not change the price of the plant since it is the cost of the plant and not the soil that is the main determinant of the retail price of a plant, especially when dealing with the many uncommon plants that we offer. It is possible that you might receive a plant one size larger or one size smaller than what you had originally ordered. Should there be a corresponding decrease in the price of the plant, we will charge you this new lower price. Should there be a corresponding increase in the price of the plant we will either send you the larger pot size for the same price you ordered or, should there be a large difference in the price, contact you to ask you your preference.

Prices: We have lots of normal plants for normal prices and we have lots of special plants at higher prices. Though it must be said there are far more special plants on our mail order site than there are normal ones. We have lots of normal ones but we figure you can get those at your local garden centre. We're here to offer you something special. Our mail order prices are the same as our in-nursery prices.

Price always comes down to difficulty of propagation and rarity just like the difference between common amethysts and rare diamonds which have correspondingly different prices.

We are a propagating nursery that grows the majority of our own plants. Sometimes plants need to be repotted to maintain health and vigour. Prices usually increase when they are repotted from one size to another. In the unlikely event that you order a plant just as we’ve repotted it but before we have updated the website, we will inform you of the new size and price and give you the option to accept or decline.

Substitutions and Back Orders: We will make every effort to ship your order in its entirety. However, plants do not always grow at the rate you expect them to or even the rate they grew the previous year! Should a plant on your order not be available when the rest of your plants are ready for shipping we will contact you and suggest possible substitutions, offer to remove it from your order, or offer to ship it at a later date. We will not make substitutions without your permission. Please be advised that if we ship at a later date this will increase your shipping costs because of the base price charged on each package by Canada Post. Sometimes making two shipments is unavoidable as half of your order might be ready in April but the other half won't be ready until June. With hundreds of different plants and thousands of different possible combinations of those that appear in your orders we must evaluate each order carefully. We will make every attempt to minimize your shipping costs.

Shipping Season: Most of our orders ship out in May and early June. If plants are ready earlier, they will be shipped when weather conditions in your area are favourable. We grow the vast majority of our own plants. Our main production season runs from February through April with plants becoming ready for sale in April, May and June. These finish times can vary by a number of weeks depending on our local weather conditions and every plant becomes ready at different times. The second factor effecting your ship date is the weather in your area. Because we are located in the mildest growing region in Canada, our plants could be weeks or months ahead of the current weather conditions in your area, especially if you’re having a spring snowstorm! Most of our orders ship from in May and June. We will continue to ship through the summer and fall as orders come in.

Shipping and Handling
: Shipping costs are calculated at the time of check out using a live connection with the Canada Post website. At any time you can view your cart and calculate your current shipping costs. Your shipping costs will reflect the true cost of shipping your plants. The Canada Post portion includes two parts: a minimum base cost for your region plus a cost per kilogram. We also add a base cost and a small per plant charge to cover our costs of carefully selecting, packing and shipping your plants. After all, our mail order plant prices are the same as our in-nursery prices. But for mail order we are your personal shoppers carrying out all of the steps that you would normally do if you were at our nursery in person. On average every order takes 30-60 minutes of administration, handling, and packing time. We must cover our costs of providing this service. Each year we do exhaustive number crunching to evaluate our administration and shipping costs. The result is that we make no profit on shipping or handling.

You may choose either Canada Post Expedited Parcel or the faster XpressPost Service. Generally plants arrive in a healthy condition up to and including 5 days in shipping. Expedited Parcel arrives within 2-5 business days for all destinations from BC to Manitoba, 4-5 business days for most locations in Ontario (sometimes with the exception of very small towns distant from large centres which may be 6 days), 5 days for larger centres in Quebec and 6 days for smaller towns in Quebec, and up to 8 business days for destinations in the Atlantic Provinces. For New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI, and Newfoundland and Labrador we recommend choosing XpressPost. Usually this costs about double to triple Expedited Parcel but your plants will arrive in about 3 days and they will be healthy and happy. XpressPost costs are competitive with or less than UPS and FedEx so we don't offer shipping options with these other companies.

To view your shipping costs you can click on “View Cart” at any time, input your location and calculate. (You can continue shopping after checking on your shipping costs.) In most cases there will be no changes to the price you are quoted and the amount you are charged for shipping and handling. There are a couple cases where there could be changes:
1. In the event that your plants are much cheaper to ship than your initial estimate we will decrease the cost of shipping accordingly. This would usually be a case where your plants weigh much less than expected.
2. In the event that you have placed a large order that must be shipped in more than one box we may have to increase the cost of shipping, usually by about $15-20 more per additional box. This is because Canada Post charges a base cost for every box while the shipping calculations of our system can only assume all of your plants will fit in one box. The variables of pot, plant and box sizes are too complicated for a computer system to work out. If this situation occurs we will try to contact you to get your approval for the increased shipping costs. However, sometimes we don't know until the last minute on shipping day that your plants won't fit in one box - every order is its own puzzle. In this case we reserve the right to charge the additional fee to cover our costs.
3. In some cases the live connection to Canada Post can fail and an erroneous shipping cost can be generated. It has only happened once but when you order $500 in plants and it says it will only cost $30 to ship, you might suspect something is up as did this lovely and understanding customer. If this occurs we will contact you to clarify and get your approval for the increased cost.
We make every effort to constantly increase our efficiency and to keep shipping costs as low as possible. Our shipping and handling charges are calculated for cost recovery. They are not designed to make money. If our charges appear higher than other companies it is likely because we are not allowing our shipping and handling costs to be subsidized by the sale of our plants. Also, our plants will, in many cases, be bigger and in larger pots than other nurseries since we are not just growing for mail order but also growing for in-nursery sales. Our plants might cost a bit more to ship but they will often be bigger, be easier to establish, and give you greater performance in your garden.

Also, keep in mind that most of our listed items are plants in full growth, not dormant, packaged bulbs, rhizomes or tubers. It is much more time consuming and costly to pack a growing plant than it is to pack dormant plant material.

In the end, our philosophy is that it is way cheaper to pay fair shipping and handling costs than it is to travel to Vancouver to purchase plants in person! We're sure that once you receive your plants and plant them in your garden you will understand the "Phoenix Perennials difference" and be very happy.

Guarantee: Our guarantee is based on the premise of mutual responsibility for the living things that we are selling and that you are buying.

We guarantee our plants to be true to name, healthy and ready to grow when they arrive on your doorstep. We guarantee against all factors within our control.

We do not guarantee our plants against factors out of our control such as adverse weather or soil conditions, under or over watering, bouts of zonal denial where plants are planted outside their hardiness zones, winter, marauding and hungry garden creatures, inadequate care on the part of the gardener or buyer's remorse. It is the responsibility of each of our customers to research their new plants and to ask us if they have any questions about cultural requirements.

While we strive to pack your plants as carefully as possible, we assume that you are aware that every leaf might not arrive in perfect condition. Damaged foliage does not qualify for replacement or credit. You are buying healthy root systems and stems that will flush out into beautiful plants once they are unpacked and planted. That being said, we have gotten good feedback that our plants almost always arrive in great condition.

If you have any questions or concerns about your shipment, you must email us within 5 days of receipt of your plants at mailorder at phoenixperennials.com. Please include a few digital photos, if possible. Digital photos will help us to diagnose the problem and devise an effective solution. If you do not contact us within 5 days then a problem that could have been corrected becomes one that is beyond our control and responsibility. However, if you encounter problems beyond this 5 day period that could be related to a cultural factor originating at our nursery, we will guarantee against such problems. Please contact us. We want you to be successful and happy with your plants.

We cannot be held liable for any amount greater than the purchase price of the plant in question. Should there be a problem that is our responsibility and that cannot be rectified through cultural advice, our policy is to offer a refund or a credit towards a future purchase equal to the purchase price of the plant plus tax. We do not refund the cost of shipping of that plant just as we do not reimburse a customer for their time and gas money if they need to return to the nursery with an ailing plant. That being said, our plants are extremely healthy and we rarely have problems related to plant health. You can order with confidence that we will only ship the healthiest plants and if there is a problem we will deal with it fairly.

Returns: We do not accept returns of mail ordered plants since costs will quickly escalate mailing plants back and forth across the country. Please review our Guarantee section for more information.

Pick-Up at the Nursery: We do not accept orders through our Mail Order Division for pick-up at the nursery. If you are interested in certain plants offered through mail order and wish to pick these up at the nursery, you can add your name and desired plants to our Wish List by emailing us at info at phoenixperennials.com. When your desired plants are available, we will email you.

Special Offers: Because we are also a regular retail nursery open seven days a week for on-site sales we will be offering coupons, special offers, loyalty cards, vouchers and sales for on-site purchases at the nursery and in local and regional media throughout the season. By default, all special offers, sales, loyalty cards, vouchers and coupons do not apply to mail order unless otherwise stated. Auction Mart and other vouchers and gift certificates donated by the nursery for fundraisers can be used to cover plant costs and taxes but not shipping and handling. We make these restrictions because the economics of a bricks and mortar store are different than those of a mail order store.

Cancellation Policy: In the event that you wish to cancel all or part of your order a 25% cancellation fee will be applied to the cancelled plants since they will have been reserved and held for you from the time of placing your order making them unavailable for purchase by other customers.