I use Daylilies a lot in my landscaping work and I buy fairly regularly from all of the UK Hemerocallis specialist nurseries. I have never had any problems with any of them but I have to to say that Swallowtail Daylilies gets my recommendation. The plants are in pots,which I find convenient, despatch is the fastest, the prices are mostly lower and the range of variety is more up to date. I have never had any problem with this nursery & have always been pleased.
The day lily plants I received, well you couldn't call them plants, bits of twig and some small leaves, no labels and the bits of plant didn't even add up to the total plants ordered so heaven knows what I had been sent. When I telephoned they were rude and abusive and put the phone down on me.
If I had seen the change to strictly daylilies earlier I would not have purchased - happily I have to say, the plants I received from Strictly daylilies were excellent as was the service and communication from them.
I have a sneaky feeling John Bowers has moved into echinaceas, not sure will have to do more research, it's just that I saw something that started alarms bells tinkling.
Watch this space......
Strictly Cambridge United Kingdom (1 review) August 22, 2013
As of 2013, the individual, Mr John Bowers, is no longer associated in any way with 'John Bowers Daylilies' as the plant stock is now owned by 'Strictly Daylilies Ltd' and the website (temporarily being used), http://www.johnbowersdaylilies.co.uk/ is also owned by 'Strictly Daylilies Ltd'. Despite assurances to the contrary Mr John Bowers has recommenced trading as 'Swallowtail Daylilies' under http://www.hemerocallis-daylily.com/ at the same location of Wimbotsham, Norfolk. PE34 3QB. Strictly Daylilies has no connection with John Bowers or his trading practices.
Ordered Hemerocallis 'Sergeant Major' but received something similar looking but not the true 'Sergeant Major'. Contacted company and submitted photograph but they simply told me that the plant in my photo was 'Sergeant Major'. Have since had it confirmed by an expert that what I received was NOT the true 'Sergeant Major'. Haven't used this nursery since.
patrick51 norwich United Kingdom (1 review) June 29, 2012
poor quality plants, roots all brown and shriveled, wrong names to plant sent to that ordered, in total can understand why he is getting out of the mail order business and his plants have been sent out at very cheap prices as the plants are not worth the money that he charges
Urban_Green Oxford United Kingdom (2 reviews) September 2, 2011
Please AVOID this mail order nursery if you are looking to buy daylilies online.
John Bowers' website gives the impression of a person / company that really care about daylilies. That is not evident in the quality and condition of the daylilies that are dispatched. It is also not reflected in the accusatory tone of e-mails they send to their customers.
I ordered a dozen daylilies over 2 months ago. Be warned - there is no confirmation of the order when made. I waited a week and contacted them via their website message service to check on the status of my order but received no reply. Note that I had been immediately charged for the full amount of my purchase on my credit card.
A further 5 weeks pass, and I e-mail, explaining that I will file a chargeback on my credit card if I do not receive my order or have an adequate update on status. Low and behold, the threat of a chargeback produces a half-dead bag of 'daylilies' the following week. What arrived was in such poor condition that they were not able to be saved - browning, dry, orphaned roots and foliage, split clumps to give the impression of sending sufficient plants to satisfy the order (though all clumps of each variety are wrapped in one bag, another way of attempting to deceive you into thinking maybe they sent enough). It was certainly a bait-and-switch in an attempt to avoid a credit card chargeback. I took careful photos of what arrived.
I contacted John Bowers to inform him/the nursery that what I received was not in a satisfactory condition, and that I was entitled to a full refund. I was told that I was arrogant, and that it was simply a case of me changing my mind. Even though my credit card company will fight this for me, this has been a huge waste of my time, and I've found it very stressful having to interact with the Bowers' nursery. With enough complaints, hopefully they will lose their Mastercard licence. In the meantime, please do not do business with them. You will get nothing but stress and accusations, and no healthy plants.
Kimalex Oxford United Kingdom (1 review) July 14, 2009
Ordered 7 plants from John Bowers Daylilies in early 2008 through their website providing credit card details. No response to my e-mail requesting a confirmation of order (not generated by website on confirmation). No response to a second e-mail in April. Finally rang to be told that they had in fact received it and would send out plants sometime soon.
The fans received were of Roswitha (1 single fan), Anasazi (3 single fans) and Maleny Empire Rose (3 single fans). They were vastly smaller than plants of equal or greater scarcity from A la Carte & Pollie's ordered same season.
The plants received serious attention on arrival and I managed to establish all of them through initial pot-up in premium compost mix & very good ground preparation on planting. Thus all live. Notwithstanding, only Maleny Empire Rose bloomed last year. This appears to be the right plant.
This year "Anasazi" bloomed. The plants were bright lemon yellow (supposed to be pink per Stamile registration) - clearly not the right plant allowing for stretch of colour display in different climates etc etc.
Roswitha" has still not bloomed - perhaps next year (it was the size of my little finger on arrival !) so jury is out on this.
I have e-mailed John Bowers Daylilies a photo of the "Anasazi" plants requesting their proposal for rectification but have not had any response. I do wonder whether anyone ever reads their e-mails.
In short I am not impressed by the service levels or quality of plants in the context of prices charged. A business with this front-end presentation surely can do better than this ?
AskLilou kerridge United Kingdom (1 review) November 2, 2008
Not too sure what to make of my order:
The day lilies arrived, looking rather pitiful. Except for 2, most arrived with rather small root clumps and a fan the size of my finger nail, if any at all!
I'm really skeptical as to how these plants will perform...not what I expected at all after reading the many descriptions from this "Lily enthusiast". I expected healthy looking plants, but got a pretty pitiful selection instead. I doubt any of them will flower anytime soon.
Has anyone else ordered from them?
lovelylily Cirencester United Kingdom (1 review) May 1, 2006
Totally dedicated nurseryman whose captivating catalogue and plants cannot help but persuade all gardeners to grow more - and more! - daylilies.