Monday, October 19, 2009

Monday is Shipping Day

Monday is the day I package and ship the rose orders from the previous week.  Doing this on Monday guarantees that the packages spend as little time as possible in the postal system on the way to their new homes.  (If I were to ship later in the week, there's a chance that the packages would stay in the system over the weekend ... not good.)

Packaging fragile, live items is a challenge.  The goal is to make sure that the roses arrive at their destination with as little damage as possible.  To do this, I have to do whatever I can to guarantee that they absolutely cannot move around in the box. 

I place each pot into a plastic grocery bag ... this is a great way to reuse all those bags that I have squirrelled away.  It helps keep the rose from drying out, and contains any loose soil that may fall out of the pot.

Here is an order of roses, ready to go into the box.  (If you see this, James, these are your roses.)

The largest roses go into the box first. 

I tape across the small flaps of the box to keep the pots in place.  This holds so well that the roses can even be turned upside down, which will probably occur at least once during their journey ... it is the post office, don't ya know.  I learned a long time ago, "This Side Up" is meaningless to them.

The smaller two roses get the same treatment on the other side of the box.

I lay the box down and I arrange all the little branches into the center of the box as carefully as I can.  This is a much easier part of the job earlier in the season when the roses are smaller.

After I drop in the receipt and a brochure, I tape up the box and take it to the post office.  With USPS Priority Mail, these little guys should be in their new homes on Wednesday.

In my years of rose gardening, I have ordered roses from just about every mail-order vendor in the country.  There's always a certain amount of anxiety when I order from a new place ... will the roses arrive in good shape?  My favorite vendors package their roses with great care, and opening their packages feels like Christmas morning.  My wish is that you get the same feeling when you open your roses.

(written by Hartwood Roses.  Hartwood Roses blog)


  1. Hi Connie, what size are your pots that you mail your plants in and where do you purchase your pots? I like your packing idea, very clever! Also are they cuttings from roses that you grow? What is your set-up for doing your cuttings?

  2. Most of my roses are growing in half-gallon pots (6 x 6 x 6). By this time of year, the roses are more than ready to be moved up into larger pots ... which I'll do to all the left-over roses to prepare them for winter. All of the roses come from cuttings of plants here in the garden. If they don't do well here, I won't propagate them for sale. My propagation bench in the greenhouse is in a blog post from this summer.



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