Last Updated on February 11, 2024
Garden Goods Direct Grade: C+
Overall rating: 79.5
Top 20 Rank: #6
Location: Bowie, MD
Why do we list location? This is so you can know, in most cases, where the plants you buy are coming from.
We evaluate and score each nursery on 10 different categories. You can read details on what each category means and how we score it here.
Garden Goods Direct Review
Garden Goods Direct is in the top tier of our rankings. Their rating went down a few points, but still good for a B- grade, and #6 in our top 20.
Overall, the site is easy to get around on. It also seems some prices have changed with the site enhancements. Most of the prices we noticed seem to have gone up. We have bought from them a few times and visited their facility a few years ago. They have always sent us quality plants and they seem to care about sending you high quality.
Garden Goods Direct made some revisions to its cart page. Just a few things to be aware of. They offer the popular extended 1-year warranty. It’s not worth it in our opinion. It costs 10% of your product sub-total.
And you need to know their terms; “To claim your warranty, we require a photo of the plant and its surroundings to verify that the plant condition has met our warranty terms“. And if they approve your claim, you don’t get your money back, just a store credit, excluding shipping. We have read a few complaints about customer service being pretty strict about approving a store credit.
Also, be careful with any of their recommended add-on products. A quick Google search and you can find most of them elsewhere for up to 50% less.
Their checkout page has been cleaned up. Looks like they listened to someone who knew what they were talking about to remove some distractions. There is, however, some verbiage you need to be aware of. There’s a question mark next to ‘shipping’ on the checkout page that pops open a window with a very long Shipping Policy.
The very last paragraph is some pretty fancy legalese. And when we say fancy, we mean it is good for them, not necessarily for you. They actually refer to it as a shipping contract.
Note: All purchases completed on www.gardengoodsdirect.com are done so in accordance with the shipping contract. This means that the risk of losing an item and property rights associated with the item is transferred to you (the purchaser) when we remit the item to the carrier.
Shipping Protection – It is a rip-off, in our opinion
On their cart page, there’s a Shipping protection that has already been checked yes, charging you an extra fee for ‘shipping protection’.
They have a whole page dedicated to the disclaimer for the policy. https://gardengoodsdirect.com/pages/shipping-protection-policies
In essence, they file a damage claim. You can do the same thing online, for free. They are offering protection that their carrier won’t deliver a damaged package. In this day and age where porch thefts of packages have increased, they make it clear that stolen packages are not covered.
Here’s part of the language:
- Shipping Protection does not cover cosmetic damage (scratches, dents, etc.), manufacturing damages, or defective plants. At our discretion, we may offer a partial refund depending on the severity of the damage.
- In the event of live plant material perishing due to stress in transit, Customer Service will determine claim eligibility.
In our opinion, it is a rip-off and a bit shameful that they have it automatically turned on.
Garden Goods Direct has also raised its prices. We ordered 3, 3-gallon Camellia from them just over a year ago. You can view unboxing pictures here. One of our biggest reasons for ordering was their prices. Our average cost was $40.75 per 3-gallon plant. They were less than most other reputable online nurseries. When we checked recently, the same Camellia we ordered a year ago has gone up. A 3-gallon Shi Shi Camellia was $87.95.
That’s not to say you still can’t find some deals. We found a 3-gallon container-sized ornamental grass for $49.95. That’s a pretty good deal.
Garden Goods Direct is also known as Woodie’s Garden Goods but we always wondered; Is there really a Woodie? Yes, there really is a Woodie and we had a chance to meet him! Very nice guy and very knowledgeable about all things plant-related.
Garden Goods Direct has posted a couple of videos with Woodie hosting. Here’s one. The quality of the evergreens in this video is impressive. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cP0pg0btfv0&feature=youtu.be
Between talking to Woodie and the quality of the plants ordered it has us convinced that they emphasize sending quality plants. The extended plant guarantee and over-priced add-on recommendations are some of the reasons it’s hard for us to fully endorse them.
Garden Goods Direct Reviews
Google shows over 2,000 reviews with a 4.4 rating. Houzz customers of Garden Goods don’t seem as pleased with a 1.8 average star rating.
Garden Goods Direct Has a D- Grade with the BBB
Woodies Garden Goods Direct has 37 complaints with the Better Business Bureau. That’s a lot and they’re not pretty. Read Garden Goods Direct BBB Complaints here.
We’re not trying to scare you away. Let’s put it this way, we would order from them again, depending on what the plant species was and the price.
It appears they’re associated with Patuxent Garden Center. We came to this brilliant deduction because they share the same address. Well, that and we also visited Garden Goods and saw that they shared space & ownership.
All in the family!
The Tree Center is owned & operated by the nephew of the owners of Garden Goods Direct. To say there is some animosity from the Garden Goods Direct ownership would be an understatement.
Then someone in their family was going around to various growing fields in the deep south recently trying to buy plants wholesale. Judging from some of the comments I’ve heard, nepotism is not helping them.
Woodie’s Garden Goods has an impressive number of evergreen trees & shrubs. Mostly 1 and 3-gallon sizes. They also offer a wide selection of deciduous trees & shrubs, perennials, and even house plants. They have one of the best collections of houseplants at reasonable prices available online.
Our bottom line is that they are plant people, not online marketing people. That’s not a bad thing! They have quality plants, I would order from them on the phone & avoid the gimmicky traps on their website that could cost you extra.
What were the red flags? We deducted two points for the following reasons.
- Their guarantee and return policies are very similar to Nature Hills. That’s not a good thing. You will get a 50% store credit if something you bought from them dies. They do cover that for a full year whereas others charge for a full 1-year guarantee. They also charge 10% ($10 minimum) if you cancel an order before it ships. Fulfilling orders for live plants is not easy. It’s not like a robot pulling a product off a shelf in a warehouse somewhere. Having worked in the business, and spending time in fields pulling trees & shrubs for orders, I can vouch that it is labor-intensive.
- Conflicting number of reviews online between their Google ads and Google itself. Very few product reviews as well.
- Pre-charging for ‘shipping protection’ that offers something you can easily do for free.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is Garden Goods Direct Located?
Garden Goods Direct, also known as Woodie’s Garden Goods is located in Bowie, MD at 2410 N. Crain Highway.
Is there really a Woodie at Woodie's Garden Goods Direct?
Yes, there really is a Woodie! It’s not his real first name but a nickname he has had since childhood.
Does Garden Goods Direct offer a guarantee?
If your plant perishes within the first 30 days you need to submit an email to their customer service department that includes pictures. They will review and offer a store credit to reorder the plant if approved.
Can you pick up orders at Garden Goods Direct?
Yes. There is a retail store called Patuxent Nursery at the same location. They share the same office space, fields, plants and fulfillment facilities.
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