Olgochka Stockholm, Sweden (2 reviews) August 15, 2012
Posted on March 21, 2012, updated August 15, 2012
Posted on March 19, 2012, updated March 21, 2012
Back in January I placed an order for 34 different hardy perennials at Fa. C. Esveld company. The order has been confirmed and all plants were available at that point. On February 13 I asked for a small change in the order (changed one plant variety with another) and I received a confirmation of this order again. In the same confirmation I got a shipping date of March 20.
Today March 19 I received a delivery note where my order is stated and it indicated that 11 plants are missing from my order. I immediately replied that I can't accept the order if it is decreased by 1/3 without prior notification to me. That means that each plant in the rest of this order got more expensive by 1/3 since the shipping cost was not changed and is 47 euros for Sweden.
Here comes the precise e-mail reply from Dirk van Gelderen, PlantenTuin Esveld:
'Many plants have suffered badly this winter, only showing this now. That is the reason. The order is already on itís way.
This last winter caused more than 100 million Euros in damages in the nursery trade, more than ever before. Sorry, canít help it, canít change it.'
I can understand that there were losses in the trade but why they couldn't inform me on nonavailability of plants? I could have changed the order and added other available plants to make it reasonable for me to order there.
Actually most of the 'unavailable' for me plants are still present in the on-line catalog and are possible to order. Does that mean that these plants are currently unavailable but may get available later? Why wasn't I then offered to delay my order until it would be completed? Or they could have offered me a delivery of the currently unavailable plants when they would get available later free of additional charge. Fa. C. Esveld didn't bother with that either.
It seems that this plant shop, one of the largest on-line plant shop in Europe, has no respect to their customers. They simply don't care that I will loose money. But they want me to understand their billion losses.
I have been ordering many plants in several other European shops and never experienced such treatment before. I will warn as many on-line buyers around Europe as possible to be ready to meet a customer careless service of Fa. C. Esveld company. And of course will never order with them again.
Disappointment and frustration are two words that describe my current state. I wonder if I would ever trust an on-line shop again.On March 21st, 2012, Olgochka changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
After an intensive e-mail correspondence with Dirk van Gelderen from Fa. C. Esveld he promised me to send the plants that were missing from my order free of shipping charges. I trust him and hope that in May/June I will receive my plants. So now I can change my rating for this company to Positive.On August 15th, 2012, Olgochka changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:
Strongly NOT recommended vendor.
Four months has passed since I was promised by Dirk van Gelderen from PlantenTuin Esveld that the rest of my order would be send to me. Today I got an e-mail from him that he is cancelling his promise since plants are not available. Although a week ago I received an e-mail with confirmation that my full order would be shipped today.
I should have changed my rating of this vendor to 'Negative' but I was threatened by Dirk van Gelderen earlier that he would place my name in some kind of 'Black list' for ordering plants on-line in Europe. Although after the very unpleasant experience of ordering with this company I'd think 10 times before placing an order with any on-line vendor.
I have got the plants in perfect condition in two (2) days from Netherlands to Italy!
PERFECT TRANSACTION! Cyberly!
viqarqadir Treviso, Italy (Zone 9a) (3 reviews) November 16, 2006
This is a real marathon of an experience but bear with me and please take the time to read.
I was attracted by the wide choice of plants offered by this company and decided to make an order back in early June. I will detail the experience here in steps for everyone who might some day plan to buy from them:
1. I made the order on the 8th or 9th of june.They confirmed the order and told me the order will be delayed until 10th of october.
2. On August 22 they confirmed the order again. This time with a shipment date of 23rd of Octoberand some wait for the delivery. It was pretty late for me but I agreed anyway.
3. September for I got another order confirmation after my request to substite one plant by another.
4. October 23, I contacted them to ask for the approximate date of delivery so I could recieve it at home instead of risking the plants spending a weekend in some unheated storage facility. They said it wasn-t shipped yet but would be shipped within the week. No indication of when it would be delivered.
5. October 31, and no shipment. I asked them again about the delivery and they said it would be sent ASAP.
6. Nov 1, I asked them about the order and told them that if they were unable to send the order I would need to immediately make other arrangements. The same afternoon they confirm shipment.
It gets worse.
7. November 4, the plants were sent to some two bit delivery service who tried to deliver on a friday afternoon while I was at work. They didnt bother to call me even when I had put up a poster sized notice on my front gate giving my number and requesting to call. I was charged 50 Euro (70 USD) for this shipment. But I had to risk driving without a license to go an pick them up from the delivery people on saturday because they refused to deliver before monday. I later realized that the total shipment weight was 10.5 kg and at 10 kg the delivery rate jumps from 16 euro to 50, they could easily have taken a handful of soil out of it.
8. I unpacked the box when I got home and discovered that most of the plants were badly damaged. Someone had crammed the plants into the box so poorly that the two of the plants had broken main stems, three of the plants had suffocated and died and (I am still amazed about this) five of the plants were missing!!! There were differences between what I ordered, what I was sent and what I was billed for...and items that were billed more than once!
9. Novermber 5, I wrote to them about the damaged and the missing Items and other problems with the bill. They resopnded saying they are investigating (No apologies)
10. November 13, I write again to ask about the status of the issue. They say they found the missing plants at the nursery and would ship them now(!)
11. November 16, (Today) I am still waiting for the rest of the order.
Here is a list of what I orderd and a list of what I was billed for:
Acer japonicum Meigetsu (main stem broken)
Acer palmatum Waterfall
Azalea 'Anneke' (main stem broken)
Jasminum officinale (suffocated at the bottom of the pack)
Azalea Apple Blossom
Clematis montana Grandiflora (suffocated)
Clematis Westerplatte (suffocated)
Clematis John Warren
Clematis White Lady
Not Delivered (or ordered) but Billed:
Paeonia Bowl of Beauty
Paeonia Laura Dessert
Paeonia Lois Arlene
Paeonia Lois Arlene (yes, twice)
To finish the report I would also like to mention that the sizes of the plants that did arrive intact were small and the "trees" were actually single twigs barely 30 cm long.
If I recover my faith enough to ever try to buy plants on the internet again, these guys would not be the ones I go to. On November 23rd, 2006, viqarqadir changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
Over a number of days and a lot of discussion, I have discovered that this nursery had been unfortunate in that the Italian postal service messed up some major ways. Further confusion was added when I myself made a couple of mistakes by not making a single coherent order but making minor changes several times...this compounded the difficult task of arranging for the plants.
The owner was very helpful and responsive in resolving the issue and actually went out of his way to take care of the damages. The second shipment arrived promptly and in good condition.
I have also hopefully played a helpful part by discovered the postage contractor company's name...the postage service in Italy has been notified and that should take care of issue.
I have decided that I would buy from them again.
ViqarCompany representative comment on November 17, 2006: On Nov 17, 2006 4:28 AM, Fa. C. Esveld added:
The first five points are correct, we had a little trouble to make the order as complete as possible, there were a few plants that were very difficult to get. We did manage to make the order virtually complete and, as requested by the client, the shipment was sent by parcel post.
The order did not contain 'trees' at all, all were small plants, otherwise the shipment obviously could never have been sent by parcel post in the first place. All sizes were in agreement with the order and invoice.
Where did it go wrong? Two things really went wrong. First the (separately ordered) Paeonia were mistakenly not put in the same parcel. These were found a few days after the shipment left and were then quickly packed and sent at no extra cost of course to the client, separately to him. The customer was notified of this, although he fails to mention this here.
The second part of what went wrong:
I am afraid it went wrong AFTER we had sent the order and thus lost control over what happens with the shipment! The Italian post office made a real mess of the shipment, obviously throwing it around, tearing the parcel up and, last but certainly not least, then refusing to deliver the shipment to the customer's home address! The customer asked me about a week ago to check this which I did, but the Italian post office does not respond to my urgent requests for clarification. This was also communicated to the customer, which he also fails to say here. He was also offered replacement for damaged plants, he was asked which plants were damaged, but so far I did not get a list of what was damaged from him, I am obviously supposed to get this from here!
The Italian post office has done bad things to shipments before, for instance not delivering to addresses that are 100% certainly correct claiming the address does not exist. In one case the address was the post office itself and they still claimed they could not find it! However, for small shipments there is no real cost-effective way to send any other way so we are stuck with them.
The same problem exists with Spain unfortunately, all other postal systems in Europe work just fine.
In all, there were problems and they were admitted and I have informed the customer about all steps taken to correct the problems, although the worst part was not my fault I did try to correct it, but due to lack of answers to my questions to the customers I was so far unable to complete the steps needed to make the corrections.