Updated September 1, 2020
Fast Growing Trees Grade: B-
Overall rating: 80.5
Location: Fort Mill, SC
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 10 factors we evaluate. You can read details on what each category means and how we score it here.
Disclosure: I have worked as a consultant in the past for the company that owned Fast Growing Trees and Brighter Blooms.
|Years site Active||9|
|Range of sizes||8.5|
The total rating score came in at 80.5 with the grade staying the same as last month. We dinged them for usability but raised their score for selection. It’s kind of a double edged sword. They appear to have a large selection. It just a few more clicks to sometimes find what you want to look at.
Taking a month off? We noticed Fast Growing Trees and their sister site, BrighterBlooms.com, stopped running any advertising for about a month starting in late June. At the same time they changed all delivery times for products from ‘ships next day’ to shipping at the beginning of August. Even into August most products say they ship in 3 to 4 days. When we checked a few products on September 1st. they were back to saying ships in 1 to 2 days. Something happened in July. Maybe just delays due to the heat? We’re not sure.
We placed an order with Fast Growing Trees recently for an Improved Meyer Lemon Tree. View unboxing pictures and review here.
As a comparison, we also bought an Improved Meyer Lemon from Four Winds Growers. Both were sold as 3 to 4 feet tall. The difference was staggering. For $10 less we got such a better tree with a much larger root system from Four Winds Growers.
It also motivated us to start a string of tips for buying plants online. Our latest post is “Never Buy a Tree Online if it Just Lists Height“.
New Look & Slogan
Fast Growing Trees online nursery debuted a new logo, color scheme and slogan in 2019. The new slogan is “We Keep You Growing”. Fast-Growing-Trees.com, as well as their sister site, BrighterBlooms.com have made a fair amount of changes the past few years with new owners. Where Brighter Blooms changed their colors to be a bit more subdued, Fast-Growing-Trees went with a brighter green.
Fast Growing Trees has also made some updates to the look and feel of the website recently. Fast Growing Trees seems to have come through without experiencing too many technical issues that usually ensnare any switch like this. That’s a pretty big deal.
With the changes, Fast Growing Trees is starting to look a lot more like their sister site, Brighter Blooms. Despite sharing the same location, offices and fields, Fast Growing Trees lists a different number of evergreen trees & shrubs for sale compared to Brighter Blooms. That just seems odd. Either way, Fast Growing Trees does have a good selection of trees & shrubs for sale. It just seems a bit more intuitive from a user perspective to get around and find things on Brighter Blooms versus Fast Growing Trees.
Their selection they offer has gone up quite a bit. So have some of the prices. $89.95 for a 3 gallon container rose is a bit high. Higher selection, higher prices, longer ship time… just makes us wonder if they’re working with other nurseries to drop ship some orders. They worked so hard to build a system that could ship orders the next day. There’s nothing wrong with offering a larger selection by working with other nurseries, it just usually adds in an extra layer of fees so both nurseries make money.
As we frequently recommend, call the nursery before you order. Make sure you know where your plant(s) are coming from.
While there are some price increases, you can also find some very attractive prices on Fast Growing Trees. They seem to frequently adjust prices. We’re assuming the price changes are based on inventory although we wouldn’t be surprised if they also monitor pricing of their major competitors.
Fast Growing Trees features a lot of product reviews. Over 600 for just the Thuja Green Giant. It is refreshing to find a site that actually has a lot of user generated reviews and questions. There’s also thousands of Fast Growing Trees Google reviews with an impressive 4.6 rating. You can view Fast-Growing-Trees.com Google customer reviews here.
Fast Growing Trees also encourages customers to leave a review on a site called SiteJabber.com. Overall rating isn’t bad but there are 607 reviews rated 1 or 2 stars. A LOT of complaints over product quality.
I worked with the family that originally started the 2 online plant nurseries. Fast Growing Trees and Brighter Blooms was sold early in 2018. It was announced in a press release on February 9, 2018.
Only Listing Tree Heights For Sale is Not Good
We noticed that there’s a fair amount of trees and some shrubs that only list a height. There’s no container size listed. As we discussed above, there could be a pretty big difference in the size of the roots system of a 3 to 4 foot tree depending whether it was in a 1-quart, 1-gallon, 3-gallon or 5-gallon container. Those things matter.
Fast-Growing-Trees.com boasts that they do not sell bare root but we’re guessing they remove the container & much of the dirt off some of the plants they ship. We’ve seen field pictures with burlap wrapped around the roots with what appears to be some sort of loose soil inside. We can not confirm that is what they are doing, just an educated guess. It would save them a lot on shipping costs if they remove the container and a lot of the dirt.
We’ve actually read a few reviews recently with customers complaining that all they got were bare root trees in a burlap bag with loose dirt. There was one review with a picture of what appeared to be pruned roots. We obviously can’t confirm if that picture is actually from a tree shipped by Fast Growing Trees. It would be a bit dishonest, in our opinion, to boast you don’t ship bare root when all you’re doing is putting bare root plants in a burlap sack with a little dirt.
We also saw roses on Fast Growing Trees listed for sale as either 1, 2 or 3 year old plants. They do list list a height range in the bullet points below each size. I’ve never seen plant sizes primarily listed by age. Maybe that’s a growing trend? (pun intended)
Fast-Growing-Trees.com is the sister site to BrighterBlooms.com. Fast Growing Trees started a few years before Brighter Blooms. They both share the same field, plants & office staff. Based in Fort Mill, SC gives them a pretty good selection for southern grow zones and can usually ship all winter to southern grow zone locations.
We were also impressed with the amount of information on the different evergreen product pages. A lot of questions & answers as well as planting guides.
Fast Growing Trees Terms of Service was changed a few months ago and appears to be an exact copy of Brighter Blooms. This includes language for their plant guarantee stating they might trim roots. Not a fan of that.
We strongly recommend before you buy anything from fast-growing-trees.com you contact them first & question the status of any plants you want to buy. Their phone staff can help you choose what is best. Also make sure to ask what container size the plant(s) will be shipped in.
What were the red flags? We took away three points for the following reasons:
- Fast-Growing-Trees.com stopped offering a 30 day 100% satisfaction guarantee. They now offer a Alive & Thrive Guarantee™ with a 5 day window to report issues. Your best solution would be a one time replacement with you paying the ship cost.
- They charge a 25% restocking fee if a return is authorized. That excludes shipping. Not the worst restocking fee but still a bit high in our opinion.
- Confusing language with the guarantee. It references providing extended time for the guarantee if you take delivery of a dormant plant. But, then it says; “we will guarantee it outside of the five-day notification period.” That’s the only place we see any mention of a 5 day period. That’s confusing.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is Fast Growing Trees nursery located?
Fast Growing Trees Nursery is located at 2621 Old Nation Road in Fort Mill, SC, a suburb of Charlotte, NC
Are Fast Growing Trees and Brighter Blooms the same thing?
The same company owns & operates both websites. They both share the same offices, fields and plants.
Does Fast Growing Trees offer free shipping?
Fast-Growing-Trees.com offers free shipping pretty much every week. The minimum order required to qualify for free shipping fluctuates from week to week. They will also occasionally require a coupon code to be used to get free shipping. Coupons (if required) are posted on the upper left corner of the website.
Is Fast Growing Trees open to the public?
No, they are not. You can, however, place your order on their website at www.fast-growing-trees.com or over the phone and pick it up.
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