FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
We live in the Bay Area. Can we pick up our plants instead of having them shipped?. No. Bay Flora is a mail-order nursery. We do not have a retail location.
Are your plants and wreaths safe to eat?
Yes. The mushroom kits are certified organic. The rest of the plants are pesticide-free. The wreaths are created from certified organic herbs, grains and greens.
Do you practice environmentally responsible growing and shipping methods?
Absolutely. Bay Flora uses recycled pots for most of its plants, incorporates water conservation techniques, and uses only organic-certified products for disease and insect control. We use recycled paper and plastic for shipping. We do not use styrofoam peanuts except for ceramic pots.
What payment methods do you accept?
We accept Visa and MasterCard.
How do I know you processed my order?
All processed orders generate email confirmations. If you don't receive an email from Bay Flora confirming your order, then it didn't enter our system. Please email us if you are having any difficulties with your order. We have noticed that some shipping confirmations are bounced back to us because of spam filters. Please put us on your list of known recipients if you want to make sure you receive shipping confirmations.
What is your guarantee?
We guarantee that all our plants and other items are true to name and will arrive in excellent condition. If you are concerned about theft from your property, please request delivery with signature. We are not responsible for theft when FedEx tracking information indicates delivery. If any item arrives damaged, please contact us within 10 days of ship date for a replacement. We will request return of plant or photo of damage at our discretion. You are responsible for the care of living things after you receive them, so our guarantee does not extend beyond receipt of your plants.
What happens when orders are placed on hold due to the weather?
We will contact you to let you know it is not safe to ship plants. The authorization to your credit card will be reversed while your order is on hold. When weather allows for safe shipping we will ask you if you still want your plant. You must contact us within 2 weeks of our inquiry to let us know you still want your plant--otherwise we will assume you are no longer interested and your order will be cancelled.
Can you enclose a gift card?
Sure. We have lovely letterpress cards. Just write down your message in the 'Comments' box at check-out. And yes, it's free.
Will you share my personal information?
No. Bay Flora will never share your personal information with anyone. We will generate a list of names for participating non-profits so they can audit their donations, but the list will contain names only and no other identifying information. We may also send you email newsletters of horticultural interest, but you may easily opt out from receiving them.
Is my credit card information safe?
Yes. Bay Flora's checkout system employs SSL to encrypt your personal data. This means that all transactions in our shopping cart are secure. Unauthorized parties cannot intercept any data you provide on our website.
How can I cancel my order?
You can email us and let us know you need to cancel your order. We can cancel orders that have not yet shipped if we receive notice at least 24 hours before items are scheduled to ship. For most orders, this means contacting us by the Sunday following the day you place your order, since most items are shipped on Mondays. We are unable to cancel orders that have already shipped, so please make sure you are certain you want an item before placing an order.
Do you accept returns?
No. So as above, please be certain you want an item before placing an order. Plants subject to extended shipping are stressed and may not recover, so we do not allow returns of plant material, including wreaths and mushroom kits.
Do you substitute if you're out of an item I ordered?
Why did you cancel my order because I had earlier requested a refund?
Bay Flora reserves the right to refuse service to anyone. This policy generally applies to those who have requested refunds which we consider unreasonable.
What if my plant is dead upon arrival?
Please contact us right away, which means within 10 days of receiving the shipment. Our plants are all healthy the day they're shipped and we want to know about any problems so we can correct them. Just return the plant to us at 1569 Solano Avenue, #428, Berkeley, CA 94707 within 14 days of receiving your order and we'll replace the plant. However, we are not responsible for plant care after arrival. So, if the plant dies after you planted it, something was not to the plant's liking. In such cases, we cannot replace the plant in question or offer refunds.
Some of these plants look dead. What gives?
Many plants are deciduous. They go dormant in the fall and many are still dormant when shipped in early spring. For example, elderberries and gojiberries look like a bunch of sticks with roots early and late in the growing season. Fig trees and the Magnolia vine leaf out late. Some evergreens may undergo shock during transit and drop their leaves. One way to tell if a plant is dead is to carefully pick a tiny bit of the outer bark with your fingernail. If you see green pith under the bark, the plant is alive. If you have concerns, feel free to email us. If there's a question as to the health of the plant, email us within 10 days of receiving your order. Bay Flora will replace it or refund your money upon receipt of the plant, provided you send us the plant within 14 days of receiving your shipment.
Yikes! How do I grow these things?
The plants are shipped with complete growing instructions. If you have any questions that are not answered in the instructions, send us an email and we'll be happy to help.
The wreath broke.
This is a rare occurrence, but shipping breakage is not unheard of. Please contact Bay Flora right away if there are any problems. If you return the wreath to us at 1569 Solano Avenue, #428, Berkeley, CA 94707 within 10 days of receipt, we'll replace it.
How does the fundraising work?
Right below the checkout area for billing and shipping information is a field marked 'Donations' where you enter the name (please include city and state, and mailing address if you know it) of the organization you want to support. For orders that total under $100 (not including tax and shipping), 10% of the sales price of your order will be automatically calculated and donated to the group you designate. For orders totaling $100 and more (not including tax and shipping), 15% of the sales price will be be automatically calculated and donated to your group. Please note that schools require a hosting organization for donations, typically a PTA. If there is a specific purpose you wish to support, you can note that as well. Also, your group does not have to be a 501(c)3 organization to fundraise through Bay Flora.
How can I get the word out to my organization so we can enhance our fundraising with you?
You can direct members to the Bay Flora website in your newsletters, you can post a link from your website if you have one, or you can print out a flyer that you can distribute to your membership. Make sure to instruct your members to enter your group's name in the 'Donations' field.
When will my group get their money?
We calculate donations on a quarterly basis. Checks are mailed by the 30th of January, April, July and October.
What about the tax status of these donations?
Save your email confirmations and check with your tax advisor. If the group to whom you designated your donation is not a 501(c)3 organization, the donation is not tax-deductible.
If you replace a plant, do I get to send another donation?
No. Furthermore, replacements void the original donation.
Why are some things taxed and some things not taxed?
In California, a plant that bears fruit is considered an edible item and not taxable. So citrus and olive trees and berries and grapes are not taxed, nor are most herbs. The case might be made that herbal wreaths are edible and thus not taxable, but we prefer to err on the side of caution regarding taxation issues.
When will my order arrive?
Our shipping schedule is designed so plants will arrive within five days. Generally, orders placed by Friday at 9 a.m. PDT are shipped the following Monday for East Coast orders, with plants arriving by Saturday. Midwest orders are shipped on Mondays and Tuesdays, and West Coast orders are shipped Mondays through Thursdays. If there are delays we will contact you, or the email confirmation will provide more information. During hot/cold weather, we ship plants only to California, Oregon and Washington unless you wish to ship FedEx 2day, which is very expensive for large packages. You will receive a tracking number when your order ships, whether it ships UPS, FedEx or USPS Priority Mail. Most items ship via FedEx Home Delivery, and that allows for Saturday deliveries to residential addresses when we ship your items on Mondays. FedEx Ground does not deliver on Saturdays, so please do not use a commercial address for shipping if you live on the East Coast. A commercial address adds 3 days to the time plants are in a box.. Wreaths and mushroom kits ship via UPS ground. If you wish to ship 2 or 3 day, let us know in the 'Comments' section during check-out and we will contact you regarding the cost. We sometimes ship FedEx 3 day at our expense if we feel it is necessary for plant health.
What are shipping charges?
Shipping is 30% of orders to CA, 35% to OR,WA,AZ and NV, 60% to AK and HI, and 45% to the rest of the U.S. Currently we are unable to ship plants or wreaths to either AK,HI, or outside the continental U.S.
There are no shipping charges for wreaths and tableware. FedEx 2Day shipping incurs an additional charge and this method is recommended during hot or cold weather to East Coast and Midwest locations.
Why can't you ship citrus to TX, AZ or FL?
The U.S. Department of Agriculture regulates interstate shipment of citrus. Citrus growing regions are prohibited from shipping to other citrus growing regions. This regulation helps pest/disease problems from spreading.
Why can't you ship plants to AK or HI?
We discourage orders destined for these states for two reasons: shipping costs are very expensive and even with expedited shipping plant mortality is high. Hawaii also requires soil-free shipping of plant material and our plants are all potted.