You Might Not Get The Plant You Want (Here is Why)

by Ben Bowen
landscape plants out of stock

For a couple of months you worked with Ross NW Watergardens on a landscape design. Then you signed off on a contract to install the landscape. You waited even longer for your slot in the schedule to arrive. Now, finally, it is time to plant. Guess what?

Some of the plants, so carefully chosen, are not available. Why?

To the nursery business plants are inventory, and any business can run low on inventory. If Home Depot runs out of a certain door they have to order more. If the door manufacturer has run out it may take a while for more to make their way to a store. Nurseries are like this- only worse.

Plants take time to grow. Perennials, like pansies, may take only a couple of weeks or months. Ornamental grasses, like Japanese Forest Grass, may take a few months to a year. Bushes and trees may have to grow in a nursery for multiple years before they can be sold!

But don’t nurseries know how many plants they should be growing?

Growing plants is big business. Growers plan very carefully and try to forecast demand. But it isn’t a science, and many things can go wrong. For example:

  • A recession can hit, causing everyone to slow down their growing. Nurseries sell off stock at low prices to stay in business. This happened not that long ago. When building rebounds demand spikes (as it has been for quite a while now) but supply is not ready to meet all the demand.

  • A plant’s popularity can rise quicker than growers expect, or remain high for so long that supply gets drained. Dwarf Pagoda Holly and Coral Bark Japanese Maples are good examples of this.

  • Plants can be in the wrong place at the wrong time. The plants you want may be available- 15 states away. By the time they are going to be in Oregon your project will be completed.

What do we do when your plant variety is not available?

In most cases there are similar and suitable plants that are available. We will simply plant one of these instead. There are times where only one plant will do, so we wait for it. But be prepared to be patient. It could be weeks or even months before the plant is in town and ready for purchase.

When you work with Ross NW Watergardens you can be sure you will always get great plants- just not always the exact variety you were hoping for!