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5 Ways to Slash Your Shipping Rates

You can save significant money on shipping costs by taking advantage of these great programs.

Did you know Four Star has been shipping millions of liners to growers across the country for years? Along the way, we have developed several programs to ensure fast, safe delivery to you, plus several ways you can save big on shipping.

We asked Angie VanWashenova, Internal Sales Supervisor, to explain how easy it is to start saving on shipping right away.

1. Become a Key Account

“As soon as you hit the 20,000 liner threshold, you’ll receive automatic Key Account status,” she says.  “There are several advantages to this (see below), including deeply discounted shipping rates.”

As an example, she uses a Region 4 customer (Central/South) ordering for a SuperSaver™ week delivery.

Region 4 —
Shipping 8-count box, SuperSaver week

Non-Key Account
1 to 2 Boxes

Bronze Key Account

Cost for 8 trays/box

$8.48/tray x 8 = $67.84/box

$4.19/tray x 8 = $33.52/box

Cost for 6 trays/box


$4.19/tray x 6 = $25.19/box

“This is a 50% savings in shipping costs right away!” VanWashenova notes.  “Plus, as a Key Account, the grower is only charged for the trays he or she wants. So if they want six trays, they would only pay $25.19.”

2. Order for SuperSaver™ Weeks delivery

“Growers can take advantage of more savings by ordering for delivery during SuperSaver weeks,” she adds.

Region 4 –
Shipping 8-count box

Bronze Key Account, non-SuperSaver week

Bronze Key Account, SuperSaver week




“This year, we’ve extended the SuperSaver program through Week 40, so it stretches through the summer,” explains VanWashenova.

Shipping Zone

SuperSaver™ Weeks


Every week, starting week 01 through week 22, and weeks 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, 40


Every week, starting week 01 through week 22, and weeks 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, 40


Every week, starting week 01 through week 22, and weeks 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, 40


Weeks 42, 44, 46, 48, 50, 02, 04, 05, 06, 07, 08, 09, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, 40


Weeks 42, 44, 46, 48, 50, 02, 04, 06, 08, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, 40

5 & 6

Weeks 50, 02, 04, 06, 08, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, 40

“Every region has extended weeks, which makes shipping much more inexpensive and allows growers to experiment and extend their season.  We’re hoping this frees them up to try some fall-friendly annuals, shrubs and perennials.  This expansion into the summer and fall weeks also is beneficial to growers in the south, southwest and west.”

3. Try the new 104 liner tray

New and current customers may be interested in the availability of Four Star’s innovative new 104 liner tray. It provides robust plants with a finish time equal to the 84 liner.

“This is a big advantage in shipping,” she points out.  “You get 104 liners with the same finish time and performance, and 20% more liners per tray – all at the same shipping dollar.” 

Superbells® Lemon Slice™ Calibrachoa grown from 104 liners are shown ready for market in Grande™ containers.


With the 104 tray, you are getting 20 more plants per tray, compared to the 84.  That’s 160 more plants in our 8-count box, almost two 84 trays with free shipping.

Here’s the math:  Growers receive 832 plants per 8-count box, rather than 672 plants — 160 extra plants per box, which is nearly two 84 trays with free shipping.

The 104 liners are available in 25 top-selling Proven Winners® annual varieties. Learn more here (link to 104 liner article in this newsletter).

4. Save when you buy more boxes

When you buy more, you save more on shipping.  "We encourage our customers who have not yet reached Key Account status to take advantage of our tiered box pricing to save shipping dollars," says VanWashenova.  "We have different price points for shipping, based on the number of boxes ordered.  More boxes mean more dollars saved in shipping. If you have 10 or more boxes, you’ll qualify for even greater savings, which can be important if you are not a Key Account. 

Shipping young plants across country is easy with UPS hub induction. To keep them protected, we carefully cover trays with safety nets, then tuck them into cardboard sleeves. The wide-bottom boxes are more stable.


5. Make sure your boxes are full

Ordering full boxes is the best way to get a great shipping rates for customers who have not yet reached Key Account status. VanWashenova points out that Four Star automatically calls customers when there is room available in a box, so they know they can get full value for the shipping cost. “We’ll call, and give you the option to add trays so you maximize your shipping dollar value.  Our customers love this program!”

Guaranteed shipping across the USA

“We know how important it is that you receive your plants quickly and safely, so we guarantee all our shipments via truck or UPS,” she explains. 

Four Star delivers by temperature-controlled trucks or by UPS to all regions. “We use UPS Hub induction, where plants are shipped in a temperature-controlled truck to a UPS Hub, then transferred and shipped by UPS directly to the grower,” she adds.

Shipping Delivery Zones


To ensure delivery of healthy plants, Four Star uses specially designed safety nets to wrap plants in their trays, as well as wide, 8-count boxes with cardboard sleeves for stability and protection.  Special Summer Spacer Trays provide maximum airflow during the summer shipping season, while insulated boxes keep the plants cozy in the winter season.  Stackable containers protect plants shipped by Four Star temperature-controlled truck.

“We’re always looking for the best, safest and quickest ways to get plants to our customers,” she says.  “And we’ll work with every customer to help them maximize their freight savings.”

It’s Easy to Benefit as a Key Account Grower

If you order 20,000 liners, you qualify as a Bronze level Key Account.  You can do this with 1,900 – 3,800 sq. ft. of growing space and multiple turns! 

As a Key Account grower, you can then enjoy lower shipping rates, reduced pricing on plants, Four Star co-op marketing support, points for travel to Four Star events, points for P.O.P. and access to our Unrooted Cutting and Self-Propagation programs, saving you even more!

You can order unrooted cuttings of certain varieties directly from us, and purchase seed, rooted liners or unrooted cuttings of certain varieties from outside suppliers and still get credit to achieve Key Account status.

Each level of Key Account – Bronze, Silver and Gold – qualifies for even deeper discounts on shipping and pricing.  Points accumulate annually and must be redeemed by June 30, 2018. Ask your Four Star representative for more information.


For more information on Four Star Shipping, contact us at 734-654-6420 or email