ShrubBucket offers unique plants in a new way (with discount code)
Horticulturist Heidi Mortensen, chief operations officer of ShrubBucket, is on a mission to offer a wide range of unique plants to gardeners. “It’s been our passion from the very beginning to fix the access to green goods in America,” she says proudly. Started in 2015, the company ships plants to about 15 states mostly in the eastern part of the U.S. and will be expanding their range this summer. Mortensen has spent much of her life in the commercial plant trade and realized that the public has very little access to the plethora of plants available for their own home gardens.
One of the keys to the business is getting the plants to the customer in great shape. “We have our own vans, our own drivers,” she says. “We have processing facilities near wholesale growers. We specialize in moving live goods around and also training our employees to take really good care of them.” Putting plants into a dark box is not the best way to ship them, she adds. By shipping plants the way they do, ShrubBucket can offer ten foot tall trees in their selection and other bigger or odd shaped plant material as well.
I gave the ShrubBucket website at try, ordering some perennials and shrubs which I’d always lusted after, but could rarely find. The process was simple, as users can set up parameters for their hardiness zone, sunlight requirements and a host of other choices to fine tune the selection.
I thrilled at how the plants were delivered, the shipment came as a wonderful surprise. The plants weren’t packaged in boxes, these looked as though they came from the nursery down the street. I’ve had a lot of plants shipped to me over the years, not always with the best results, but these were pristine, in perfect condition ready to be planted right away.
Mortensen longs to supply a large palette of cultivars to gardeners. “I wanted to give homeowners 100 different colors of hydrangeas rather than two or three,” she says of decided what could be offered. We want to have as many plants in there (ShrubBucket website) as possible.” Right now, depending on the season, there are 6000 different plants, headed for 15,000 as the site grows. There are trees, shrubs, perennials, herbs, edibles and more. As vegetable gardening has exploded this season, the website’s orders for food crops have increased by 3000 percent.
One of the cool things ordered for my garden was a ‘Golden Guinea’ kerria. I’d never seen the cultivar before and cherish the plant in general for it’s toughness, deer resistance and blooms on long arching stems. This variety has yellow single flowers and like my other kerria shrubs will enjoy a semi-shaded location. It’s one of the dichotomies Mortensen has discovered between offering plants to nurseries as she did in her former job and now to home gardeners. “I couldn’t give kerria away when I was selling plants to garden centers,” Mortensen says with a laugh. “It’s such a beautiful plant.”
Another component of the business is the environmental angle of the waste in packaging. Nothing sent from ShrubBucket comes with packaging, the plants are in pots. “You should be able to add to the environment when planting not take away,” says Mortensen of the company’s shipping methods.
“I’m so proud of it,” Mortensen says of the ShrubBucket model. “That’s what we’re all about, making gardening fun again.”
Readers using this link will receive 15 percent discount on their order, which is good through June.