Unpack your products as quickly as possible upon arrival. Should any product be delivered in damaged condition, please notify De Groot, Inc. for resolution.
Field Grown Product: Most Northern field grown products do best when shipped in a dormant or bare root condition. Often plants shipped this way may appear to be dead. However, dormant or bare root plants are living plant material even though their growth processes have been temporarily shut down. They may appear void of green buds, leaves, or in some cases even roots. The plants are shipped to you without any soil around the roots. This process helps keep shipping costs down. They've been conditioned for shipping and will be ready to start their growth after planting. It may take as long as four to eight weeks before they begin sprouting to the point where growth is obvious.
Alarm Clocks: All De Groot, Inc. products have imaginary alarm clocks that tell them to begin root development as soon as they are planted. Underground root development is necessary before they begin their upward growth. But, just like you and me, some wake up faster than others and growth may be sporadic at first. Most spring-planted products may need four to eight weeks before above ground growth is visible. Fall-planted items most likely will show no above ground growth until spring.
Once out of proper storage conditions, plants don't like to be kept waiting, so they will need your immediate attention. Transplanting within 24 hours after receiving to their new home is always the best idea. However, if you must delay planting for any reason, we recommend the following:
Fruits & Shrubs: Most fruits and shrubs are shipped in bare root form. If possible, plant fruits and shrubs as soon as possible upon receipt of your shipment. If you must wait a few days, open the box, cover the roots with moist peat moss or newspaper as necessary to keep them damp, rewrap them in their plastic shipping bag and store in a cool, dark place.
If you can't plant for more than 10 days, for best transplanting success we recommend you heel in the plant. This is a nursery process to temporarily hold plants until they can be formally planted. Dig a trench only big enough for all the roots. Lay the plant in the trench and cover the roots with soil and soak with water. Don't worry about plant depth and straightness - remember, this is only a temporary home for your plant.
Before planting your bareroot fruits and shrubs, soak the plants roots in a tub of water for at least an hour or two (but no more than 12 hours). Most of these plants have developed calluses on their coarse bareroots and need this soaking to let the plant know it is time to start growing again. For optimal transplant success don't allow your bare root plants or bulbs to dry out from sun and wind before they are planted. They must be kept moist and cool at all times prior to planting.
Perennial Plants: Keep perennial plants in their original shipping bags at 34 to 50 degrees F for up to three weeks. We hold most perennial plants in our atmospherically controlled cold storage at 34 degrees F. Most any refrigerator will work fine. Immediate planting will give the best results and is always recommended. It is common for the roots of bareroot perennial plants to appear dead when they arrive. They are just dormant and will sprout into life after planting. As with fruits and shrubs, it is important not to let the roots dry out before planting.
Bulbs and Vegetables: If the shipping bag you receive has perforations, open and separate the bag to allow air to circulate around the bulbs and vegetables. Store them in a cool (45-60 degrees F), well-ventilated location until you plant them. Protect them from extreme heat or freezing. If the shipping bag appears not to have perforations, it is best to leave the product in the bag as received and store similar to perennial plants. Some bulbs and vegetables develop surface mold during storage. This yellow and white mold may appear anytime during shipping or storage and is no cause for alarm. It will quickly wipe off or fade away once the product is planted. With all products best results will be achieved by planting within 24 hours after receipt.