Lorne Blackman, owner of Walla Walla Nursery, says he has purchased products from Van Belle Nursery for over six years. He’s been buying their RocketLiners since the Washington nursery started doing business with Van Belle, and he has purchased their Bloomin’ Easy brand of plants for about three years now.

Blackman says he was first drawn to buying Van Belle’s products because he wanted to build his shrub program and the nursery caught his attention because of the lines they carried.

“We wanted to build a shrub program,” Blackman says. “They had a good selection. Also, they carried the Proven Winners shrubs.”

As for the quality of Van Belle’s RocketLiners and the Bloomin Easy brand, Blackman says they are, “top quality.”

“[They are] vigorous, ready-to-grow, dependable plants,” he says. “They grow and produce quickly.”

Blackman says there are too many options for him to be able to pick a favorite Bloomin’ Easy plant. However, he is particularly excited about one of the new varieties: Panther, a ninebark with black foliage.

Because of Van Belle’s “vigorous growing” products, Blackman says Walla Walla Nursery has quick turns on their plants.

“Less grow times allows us to build a broad program in shrubs, which is attractive to our customers,” he says. “It’s been a significant contribution to the growth of our business in the last five years.”

In addition to the quality of the products decreasing production time, Blackman says Van Belle’s liners have helped the nursery save on labor costs.

“One thing they’ve done recently is pre-pulling the plugs … so you don’t have plug trays,” he says. “It’s been a labor-saving improvement.”

Blackman says Van Belle Nursery has great customer service because of their attention to their plants and clients.

“They’re great,” he says. “One of our favorite vendors for sure. They’re very meticulous about crops, and they have good follow-up. Good grower support if you need it.”