Updated June 14, 2019
Direct Gardening Grade: D-
Overall rating: 60.5
Location: Bloomington, IL
Why do we list location? This is so you can know, in most cases, where the evergreen shrubs you buy are coming from.
Breakdown of scores from each of the 11 factors we evaluate. You can read details on what each category means and how we score it here.
|Years site Active||5|
|Range of sizes||6|
Direct Gardening Review:
Direct Gardening is mired in last place for the third month in a row. At a total score of 60.5 Direct Gardening is just 1.5 points away from an F, our first ever if it gets that dubious distinction.
DirectGardening.com has been around a long time, starting in 1999. That placed it 7th in our evaluations of online nurseries that sell evergreen shrubs, deserving a high rating. Domain authority, or how Google perceives their authority with online nurseries went down this spring by 7 points. That's a lot and 3 months later Direct Gardening has only come back up 1 point
Direct Gardening has one of the shortest Terms of Service of all the online nurseries we evaluated. Whatever you do, KEEP the original shipping label! Their return policy has 2 segments.
If you're not satisfied within the first year send them the plant and original shipping label and they will offer a replacement. "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."
They do offer a refund if notified within 14 days after you received the plant(s). "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."
Direct Gardening erviews on Google aren't good. They have 239 reviews with an average of only 1.6 stars.
It took us a long time but we eventually found 2 plants where Direct Gardening lists a plant size when shipped.
They don't disclose it as far as we could tell but it appears everything is shipped bare root. Kind of explains their low prices.
It seems shipping is flat rate at $9.99. Again, we couldn't find it stated anywhere but as we added more & more to our cart, the ship cost remained at $9.99. They also offer some free plants with minimum purchases. Details can be found on their home page.
Compared to other online nurseries, even ones older than Direct Gardening, the site seems a bit outdated & clunky.
What were the red flags?
- The product descriptions are pretty basic. Not a lot of details.
- No product reviews that we could find.
- No container sizes listed that we could find. If if they are shipping evergreen shrubs bare root, they should have some sort of size range.
- Ship times seem a bit vague.
- We found broken links as well as sizes that are listed both in and out of stock.
- They are getting HAMMERED with bad reviews on Google. A 1.6 average rating. Facebook isn't any better with a 1.5 average rating.
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