On Jul 18, 2011, sallygard South Strafford, VT wrote:
Posted on May 9, 2011, updated July 18, 2011
Well, I got my order, some of which looks pretty iffy (I think one of the irises is dead, but time will tell), and it included two plants I didn't order. I certainly wouldn't order blue cupidome, which is Zone 5, since I'm in Zone 4. The woman who answered the phone said there was no way the mistake was theirs, as they don't make order mistakes. It was my mistake, she said, and if I didn't want the plant (that I didn't order), send it back AND pay for shipping it myself. She never said anything even close to "sorry about that." I won't order from them again, ever.
On July 18th, 2011, sallygard changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
Well, turns out all other people at Dutch Gardens with whom I've spoken since writing the earlier negative comment have been perfectly nice.
The woman who upset me so much must have been the exception rather than the rule. Also, DG sent me replacement plants ... and though perhaps more than should have of the originals didn't thrive, still many of the plants are fine, and I'm NOT mad at DG now.
Interesting, isn't it, how one person who's rude can give a whole company a bad glow.
This year I ordered 2 sets of the Halskraag Dahlia Mixture (3 different colors). When the dahlias bloomed, 4 of the 6 were plain yellow, not one of the colors shown in picture or even close. This was disappointing as it ruined the color contrast that I had planned for that section of the border.
In previous years of Dahlia orders from this vendor, the colors were okay but the quality inconsistent even in the same variety.
I don't plan to order from them again. The dahlias in my local Lowes or Home Depot are at least as good quality.
On Jul 4, 2011, Dutch Gardens responded with:
"On Aug 31, 2011 9:16 AM, Dutch Gardens responded with:
We have tried to contact this customer via Dmail and have received no response. Halskraag means collar, and refers to the interior ring of petals rather than a color scheme. This mixture can contain a variety of colors and patterns. If the customer has in fact received an item in error we would be happy issue replacements as we do have a 1 year replacement guarantee on all of our plants! We always buy top quality, top size from our Holland growers!
Posted on July 3, 2011, updated July 3, 2011
I love Dutch Gardens and have used them for many years. Their bulbs produce the biggest and most beautiful plants I have ever seen. I have lilies that are almost 7 feet tall (they multiply every year, too!) and their dinnerplate dahlias are incredible.
I cheated on them this year and ordered from another company that was less expensive; I sincerely regret that choice. I will never do that again.
On the very rare occasion that I don't get the result I wanted from my order, Dutch Gardens was very helpful in either refunding my money, crediting my account, or shipping a replacement. This is a company I can trust and I will give them my business every year from now on. My favorite is their Kelvin Floodlight dinnerplate dahlia - absolutely huge and gorgeous!
On July 3rd, 2011, karmag added the following:
I didn't realize their return policies had changed when I posted my previous comments. I still plan on using them in the future. In my opinion, they have the best quality plants and bulbs available. I wish I could post photos of my plants; so many are in bloom and they come back even better year after year.
Posted on April 22, 2011, updated June 3, 2011
Communication with Dutch Gardens is horrible. First, contacting them by phone is very difficult because the phone is always busy. Their email response is very slow. Clearly their internal communications are very slow, too.
I placed a large order for plants in early February. However, after attempting to get feedback for over two months about shipping dates, and because plants were appearing for sale in local stores, I decided to cancel the order in mid-April. As instructed on the website, I tried calling. I finally got through and was told that my order had not yet shipped but that I had to send an email to cancel. I had already emailed in desperation and received a response the next day that my request had been forwarded to the appropriate department. I emailed again to request confirmation that my request had been received before the order had shipped. The response was merely that they had forwarded the request to the appropriate department. I assumed therefore that the order had been cancelled and I would receive a refund to my credit card.
To my surprise, the shipment arrived on April 21. I immediately called Dutch Gardens to ask what I needed to do and was told that the order had shipped on April 15 (which was 2 days after I had phoned and emailed the cancellation request. The customer service representative told me to return the parcel postage prepaid and to include a letter to the office manager requesting reimbursement for the return postage. I was told that Dutch Gardens does not offer the service offered by some businesses of providing a postage paid return label. When I queried this via email, I was informed that "as per our guarantee", I must return the package within 14 days postage prepaid for a refund and that a refund will not be issues until the package is returned.
I am appalled. This is Dutch Garden's error, not mine, and there should be no question of my having to pay any shipping costs and having to beg for refunds. This is the first time I have ordered from Dutch Gardens and it will definitely be the last.
On June 3rd, 2011, RobertaJ added the following:
June 3, 2011:
Dutch Gardens is unbelievable. I returned the shipment unopened at my own cost (approx. $20) within 4 days and have sent a copy of the tracking information showing signed for delivery on April 26. STILL no refund of any of my money . I have been working with the BBB in Illinois and received an unsatisfactory response from Dutch Gardens as a result of that complaint, which is still active. No help from the Customer Service Dept at Dutch Gardens either. I have ordered plants online from other companies many times (Springhill Nursery, for one) without problems or, if there were problems, they were promptly and satisfactorily taken care of.
DO NOT ORDER PLANTS FROM DUTCH GARDENS.
Also, they are still sending me email solicitations and paper catalogs - there seems to be no way to stop these!On Jun 3, 2011, Dutch Gardens responded with:
"On Nov 1, 2011 12:45 PM, Dutch Gardens responded with:
We are sorry to hear that this customer had a difficult time reaching us. We generally answer emails within 1-2 business days. The customer’s order had already shipped on the day she tried to cancel. A refund has been issued for this order. "
On May 19, 2011, sherry_butcher Colorado Springs, CO wrote:
Placed an order in January when I receive their catalog. One of the items was "dust" in a bag so I requested a replacement. The replacement was not much better but I was told I cannot have a refund, having tried twice with out success, but rather a "certificate" to use when I decide what I want to replace them with. Since that time three of nine corkscrew vines have died. I ordered from them two years ago and got wonderful plants. Was surprised to find out that they have been sold. Unfortunately the business model of employee owned has not been carried over. Still have not received certificate.
On May 19, 2011, Dutch Gardens responded with:
"On Nov 1, 2011 7:24 AM, Dutch Gardens responded with:
We did receive an order from this customer on 03-03-11 totaling $223.85. As per our guarantee a refund may be issued if the product is returned within 14 days of receipt. We do show that a replacement was issued for the item that died which shipped on 5/9. On 5/19 we processed a credit voucher for this item of $18. We contacted this customer via Dmail to let them know that the voucher had been processed and should arrive soon.
We are happy to hear that the plants received 2 years ago were wonderful as we are still using the same growers with the same outstanding quality!
On May 8, 2011, Lilyofthenight Victoria, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:
Posted on May 8, 2011, updated May 9, 2011
Posted on April 22, 2011, updated May 8, 2011
I rarely order plants via mail, except for a daylily farm in Missouri that is awesome, ANYWAY, I suddenly started getting these mail order magazines from Dutch Gardens and a a couple other places that I noticed were all in Illinois.
Two years passed and I was looking through one of the mags and noticed some hybird willows that form a hedge and are supposed to grow rapidly. They seemed to grow anywhere.
Soooo, I ordered 40 of them. After measuring my back property line according to the spacing suggested that's how many I needed.
THIS order was placed in January!!! (Down here in South Texas we can plant in Feb.) Finally in March my order arrives. ALL 40 plants wen in the ground within 2 days.
19 actually formed growth. 21 are dead. I called customer service appox. a dozen times before finally getting a live person to speak to. Now, here is where it gets good...... My boyfriend threw away my shipping label, I spoke with Julie in customer service and explained my situation, SHE was very nice. She said for me to simply go to my bank and get a copy of my statement that showed the purchase. I agreed..even though it was a hassel, and for me to mail it to them and ask for a replacement of the 21 trees that failed to grow. I was told I would have them in 2 weeks.
2 weeks later I got a very curt typed and signed letter that stated in BOLD letters SEVERAL times that my refund would not be honored without original shipping label.
This was repeated over and over, each time the bold print was larger and larger. (Sort of like when some people speak louder and louder to those of us that have hearing deficits.)
DO THEY think I won't understand the typed letter in front of me unless the font is constantly increased?
I was furious.. however after another couple dozen phone calls..each time a busy signal again I finally got customer service.
It was Julie again, at least I lucked out there.
ANYWAY, I repeated my situation to her, and what she had informed me to do...THIS time she suggested I enclose a handwritten letter of explanation of why I needed a replacement along with my bank statement. I had already done so the first time,
SO I suppose the shipping department can't understand anything that "I" have to say unless I send it twice ! Who knows, I have yet to hear back from them and remember this all started in January, It's almost may now.
If I continue to get the same reply I am going to keep sending my request in a larger envelope (or BOX) for that matter UNTIL I get a response to my liking! That's my way of saying I did not appreciate that nasty little letter with the growing fonts!
IF I still don't get a reply I will report them to the BBB and call every single day until I get an upper level manager.................
NEVER Again will I order from them. Good luck if You do!
On May 8th, 2011, Lilyofthenight added the following:
Here it is May and I am STILL not Happy with this company. I was contacted by a customer service rep. AFTER They read my review here. It's been a couple weeks of D-Mail back and forth.
To make this short... I had to keep repeating myself and my problem. I was even asked for the same info over and over.
My boyfriend jumped on the computer once when I was leaving yet another response to the customer rep. HE was not nice, as he was just as upset as I was over the whole ordeal.
SO.... After that a got a VERY short e-mail that my order was going to be replaced. We shall see. I am not holding my breath. ALSO all the trees are dead now. They were barely even twigs to begin with. So even if I do get replacements it will only be for half my order. I refuse to go round and round any more with them as my patience is wearing to thin. I have better things to do.
I would like You to note that this company is also owned by Burgess Seed. They also have sister companies called Royal Dutch, and Van Bourdain something or another. I forget the name of that one and glad I did as I will not deal with them.
If You have any doubts of who you are ordering from... If the company is from Bloomington, Illinois there is a high chance they me a sister company. Check it out first.On May 8th, 2011, Lilyofthenight added the following:
Update.... I did a zipcode search in Garden Watchdog and look at all the companies I found in Bloomington, Ill. WITH TONS of negative comments. ALL are owned by Burgess Seed. MY, My , My...
0 miles Dutch Gardens Bloomington, Illinois
7 miles Richard Owen Nursery / Exciting Gardens Bloomington, Illinois
7 miles Inter-State Nurseries Bloomington, Illinois
7 miles House of Wesley Bloomington, Illinois
7 miles Burgess Seed Bloomington, Illinois
7 miles Direct Gardening Bloomington, Illinois
7 miles Honeycreek Nurseries Bloomington, Illinois
7 miles Four Seasons Nursery Bloomington, Illinois
7 miles Royal Dutch Bloomington, IllinoisOn May 8, 2011, Dutch Gardens responded with:
"On Nov 1, 2011 12:46 PM, Dutch Gardens responded with:
In doing further investigation we have found that this order was not placed with Dutch Gardens. We have been in contact with the poster."
Posted on March 20, 2011, updated May 6, 2011
Years ago I had AWESOME success with the plants that I received from Dutch gardens. The new plants that they are offerring this year are exciting. I have ordered fuschia, candy lily and OSO easy paprika rose. To me the plants are not cheaply priced,but, expect this is a case of you get what you pay for. My front-yard and side gardens should be beautiful with these plants arriving good-sized, healthy as I have always had from this company. Iwill update upon arrival.
On May 6th, 2011, gracesplants added the following:
WONDERFUL! WONDERFUL! WONDERFUL! My order just arrived...9 hardy fuschia, 6 oso easy paprika rose (Chew May Time), 6 candy lilies (dormant roots) and the free asian lily. ALL of the plants are 12-15 inches tall, multi-stemmed, and, GREEN. The candy lilies are even beginning to sprout. The packaging was great. The plants were potted with MOIST soil that was wrapped in plastic bags (no soil leaked out at all). Thank goodness Burgess hasn't ruined this fantastic company.
On Apr 23, 2011, HostaHost Tallahassee, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:
Posted on April 18, 2011, updated April 23, 2011
I have dealt with some of the sister companies of Dutch Gardens and I am WAY more satisfied with Dutch Gardens. One will pay a little more up front, but the result is nicer, healthier plants, better customer service, and a no-questions-asked return policy. There is no requirement to return the shipping label for a refund with Dutch Gardens. If your plant does not thrive, just call their customer service department within a year and they will give you the option of:
(a) A free replacement of the plant(s) shipped to your home address, or
(b) A credit issued to your credit card for the purchase price of the failed plant(s).
What more can one ask of a company? When I purchase from Dutch Gardens, I am confident that I can grow some really unique plants. If they do not grow, I get a refund; all I can lose is the original cost of shipping, and the way I look at it, gardening can always be a gamble.
On April 23rd, 2011, HostaHost changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:
After posting my comment, I was contacted by a representative of Dutch Gardens wishing to "clarify" a few points I had made.
Apparently, since the last time I placed an order with them, their return guarantee has changed completely. This may be due to, as zobot mentioned, the fact that they have been bought out by Burgess Seed Company, because their current return policy is now more similar to that of Burgess and its sister companies.
Currently, if you are unhappy with your order, you will have to contact them within 14 days of receiving your order. And, if a plant has failed, they will give you a company voucher for the cost of the plant, but will NOT reimburse your credit card.
On Feb 26, 2011, laurahteague Madisonville, KY wrote:
It has been a few years since I ordered form this company, but I was not happy with their products, so I haven't ordered again. The daffodil bulbs I ordered were fine. However, when I ordered other items, I was shocked at the tiny plants. The daylilies did survive, but took years to get to the size that plants bought from other sources achieve in one or two years. Everything else died.
On Feb 26, 2011, Dutch Gardens responded with:
"On Nov 1, 2011 12:47 PM, Dutch Gardens responded with:
We are surprised to hear that this customer was not satisfied with the size of the plants and bulbs that we shipped. We do provide top-sized bulbs and healthy stock by the best growers in Holland and the U.S. Most of our potted plants are shipped in 3-4” containers and the pot size is listed in the catalog. "
This is NOT a very good company to buy products from, I strongly recommend buying from someone else. I have bought many products from other companies and something like this has never happen before. This company has burned my trust with them, I will not be comming back again.
I ordered blubs back in late September 2010, a month later, they still have NOT sent me anything. I request to cancel my order due to weather conditions and requested a refund. They told me they couldn't cancel my order because it was the last week of shipping, but they will try to cancel it. Finally in the middle of November 2010, they refunded me my money (only after I threaten them with a law suit), but they didn't refund me all of it back, they still have some of my money. They never told me from the very beginning that they would refund only part of my money back. To this day, they never refunded all of my money back and I contacted them, but they will NOT give me an answer. They have hung up on me and won't answer my emails as to why they are doing this. I have given this company plenty of warnings and been extremely generous with giving them enough time to refund my money back. To this day, they won't give me the rest of it back. I am very upset by their lack of morals and their customer services and supervisors who are unprofessional, they hang up on you when you ask tough questions. It's like their hidding something.
Posted on June 8, 2009, updated July 20, 2010
I ordered 6 oriental lilies this spring.
Nice packing. Fast email reply. Healthy bulbs.
One bulb didn't grow. I got my replacement within a week. They sent me a bag of 3 bulbs. The replacements are shooting out now.
On July 20th, 2010, eyfng changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:
Don't do business with this company! The products are expensive with poor qualities. The customer service is awful. The process for replacement is rediculous.
On 6/2, I requested for replacement for my last year's order of Red Hot Lilies because only 1 has grown. The customer representative said it will take 2 weeks to process my request.
On 6/17, 2 weeks later, the customer representative said my request has been processed for 1 week only. It will take 1 more week to process it.
On 6/23, the customer representative said the replacement will be shipped out soon.
On 6/28, the customer representative said my request has been sent to the shipping department, I should get the shipment in a week.
On 6/30, the customer representative Brad said I won't get the replacement until fall. I got the feeling that I was deceived by the previous lousy customer representatives.
I told Brad that I don't want to wait till fall to have the replacement. Brad said I can have a refund. So, I said I want to have a refund because I don't want to waste time to deal with this company anymore.
On 7/8, the customer representative said there is no record indicating that I can have a refund, I can only a merchandise credit and no idea of what Brad had said.
On 7/10, the customer representatives David and Matt both said that the merchandise credit has been issued on 7/8. Again, no idea of what the previous customer reprenstatives said.
I told David if I use merchandise credit for a new order, I have to pay the expensive shipping again. I may as well get the replacement with no shipping charge. David said I can send back the voucher when I get it, the company may consider giving me a refund.
On 7/19, I received a letter from the company with David's written details of my request for refund. On the letter a hand written sentence in red saying" You may return the voucher for refund consideration."
Today, 7/20, I talked to the customer representative Mary to clarify why I have to return the voucher for refund consideration only. She said that it is the other department's issue and she doesn't know what the result will be and how long it will take to process the consideration.
I am so upset by this company's customer service. I really want to have a refund because it is a nightmare to deal with the company.
I placed an order last spring. Most of the items I received looked pretty healthy. But the next year when some of my perennials were established enough to bloom there were two items that were not the right color (for instance what was supposed to be a dark purple Japanese iris with white veins turned out to be a solid light pink). I sent an email asking for replacements and I got a reply back a couple days later saying the email had been received. But its been a couple weeks now and I haven't heard anything from them.
I decided to purchase from them when I saw a $20 off coupon. Turned out they would not honor the coupon, so I canceled the order AS SOON AS I PLACED IT (in January 2010). They said they could not cancel it. They shipped the scrawny items (WAY over priced Dalhias, hostas and a coneflower plant) and I called customer service to return. They told me to just use the enclosed packing slip to return the items. There was no enclosed slip, so the woman gave me the details of my order to write down along with the address for returns and told me to enclose the written out sheet in my return. I did this.
I received a letter from an Arrabella Jansen saying that I needed to return the packing slip (original copy) on the outside of the box to her for my refund. I sent that to her on May 17th, and called customer service to speak with her- they said that Arabella does not communicate with people over the phone. I have heard NOTHING from them since. And it is obvious that there customer service people have no authority or knowledge on how to handle return issues.
I went out to the Better Business Bureau of Illinois. Do you know that House of Wesley (which goes by the several names including Burgess Seed & Plant company and owns Dutch gardens) has a D- rating with 497 complaints waged against this company!!!!
I will be reporting my experience with Dutch Gardens to the BBB of illinois as well. It is unethical to hold my money hostage the way they have without any communication.
This customer's refund had already been credited to her credit card on 6/3/10--two weeks before this posting. The customer contacted the BBB on the same day as making this posting and the BBB was also notified that a refund had already been issued.
The customer requested in January that we apply an expired coupon to her order. We explained to her that the coupon was no longer valid. If the customer had requested that the order be canceled in January, this would not have been a problem as we had not begun shipping for the season. A failure to honor such a request would have been an error on our part for which we apologize. The order shipped in April, and the customer returned it. We wrote to her with a question which she answered at the end of May. Her refund was processed June 3.
On May 26, 2010, thatg33kgirl Fairfield, OH wrote:
I have ordered many bulbs through this company within the past several years and have yet to have a problem. Their bulbs always seem to be nice, large, and plant well. I ordered an amaryllis a few years ago (I don't recall the name but it was pale pink) that was just gorgeous- it was so nice that it was able to be subdivided the next year and years to come- which made wonderful gifts and all bloomed successfully.
I have not ordered seeds or live plants through this company but can highly recommend their bulbs.
I echo tfreudiger's comments. The person I spoke with on the phone was not knowledgeable about flowers. The email I received in response to my complaint looked like a canned response and was very unhelpful. I spent LOTS of money with Dutch Gardens in the past few years after buying a new house and will not be ordering from them in the future. I sincerely hope that the previous employee-owners made out well on the sale because they were great. This new company is awful.
Dutch Gardens has changed in the last couple of years, having been bought by Burgess. Before that, I had great service and products from them for over 20 years.
Last year, my dahlia bulbs came up late and wimpy. I blamed it on the weather and tried again this past winter; I did not realize Dutch Gardens had changed hands.
I have not yet received my order or been able to track my order. Where I live, my dahlia bulbs should have been in the ground for a month by now. Emails to Dutch Gardens have gotten me a canned response and the phone numbers I have called have busy signals - not even a hold message ("We appreciate your business . . . You are valuable to us" . . . hmmm)
I will never again use this company. It is very sad that an ethical company with an excellent product should have lost its good name through this buy-out.
On Mar 15, 2010, MaryCorbett Niceville, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:
Posted on February 18, 2010, updated March 16, 2010
A few months ago I ordered 2 amaryllis bulbs from them...Rilona (vivid orange) and Sumatra. They arrived in a timely manner, well packed in bags with named variety and plastic markers with proper info, etc. The bulbs were large and healthy (and quite expensive). I had no concerns because I had placed many orders with Dutch Gardens before with few problems. Naturally, you cannot tell what color the flower will be just by looking at the bulb. I planted them in pots complimentary to the respective flowers to come... i.e. light apricot pot for the orange Rilona. To my dismay, the "Rilona" bloomed a light pink with white markings!! Called them, explained to Customer Service what the problem was...the girl didn't even know what an amaryllis was!!! Kept telling me they only came in pink! This even with my Order Number and the Item Number and description of the bulb showing next to it. Finally she told me they did not have them in the Spring catalog. I told her I had ordered them from the FALL catalog, and to find the info from that catalog. At this point she said that I would be issued a refund to my card for $17-plus dollars which hasn't shown up yet! This has soured me on Dutch Gardens. I am leaving a Neutral because the bulb did flower, but it was NOT what I ordered!!
On March 15th, 2010, MaryCorbett changed the rating from neutral to positive and added the following:
A day or so ago I received a telephone call from a very nice lady in Customer Service who asked me several questions pertaining to the problem previously stated. She told me I would be receiving a check from Dutch Gardens in the amount of $17.95 in the next few days. Today I received the check and, as they say, 'all is well that ends well'.
On Mar 4, 2010, JaneHendrix Breckenridge, CO (Zone 4b) wrote:
Yes, Dutch Gardens is now a division of Burgess Seed & Plant Company. I, too, have received very nice plants in the past and, most importantly, excellent customer service. Before being acquired by Burgess, Dutch Gardens offered a money-back guarantee if you were not satisfied -- for any reason. Now you can get a refund ONLY if you return the item within 14 days. Otherwise, any problems will be handled with replacements within one year of receipt of the unsatisfactory plant.
On Jan 9, 2010, curlyjoe1967 Marshfield, WI wrote:
Did anyone happen to notice that Dutch Gardens is now a division of Burgess Seed and Plant Co.? I ordered from them in the past and received very nice plants and bulbs. But now, I'm not so sure, especially after reading all the negative comments about Burgess and all their other affiliates. I guess time will tell.
I ordered 100 daffodils and 300 wood hyacinths, I received them in a timely manner and the bulbs were all in good condition. I was very pleased with my order and Dutch Gardens.
I was disappointed to see in the Dutch Gardens, Spring 2010 catalog that the Dahlias are listed as suitable in Zones 4-10, which is technically true ... IF YOU DIG THE BULBS. The dahlia descriptions do not indicate any where that the bulbs have to be dug, which makes me distrust the zone information for any bulb I am not intimately familiar with or willing to research as part of my decision to order.
I have been ordering from Dutch Gardens for over 15 years now and I have found them to be fabulous -- in customer service, knowledgeability of product, and quality of product.
Every plant or bulb was shipped on time. On the rare occasion that a plant didn't grow, I would call the company and they would offer to either replace the item or credit my credit card or account. I have never been disatisfied with them. I would recommend them to anyone.
At my former home, I literally would have people coming with their grandchildren to see my garden. Compliments ran amuck! "How did you get this to grow? What a different flower. Where did you get it? Your garden is beautiful!" My former house was on the market and sold because the buyer fell in love with my garden.
I have recently moved to a new place and have just ordered some $400 worth of things to grace my new bare lanscape. Dutch Gardens gave me coupons and the "bill me later" option when ordering. I am anxious to create another beautiful landscape!
I have ordered from Dutch Gardens on numerous occasions for many years and have had only positive experiences. I mostly order items not found as easily at my local nurseries and am usually pleased with the plants. They may be small upon delivery but are most times hardy plants that survive and thrive. I am willing to pay a little more for their plants as they will replace a plant that does not make it or credit your acct. unlike my local nurseries. I have called them the following year if a perennial fails to return and they have cheerfully credited my acct. to be used when ever I please. I have spoken to them on numerous occasions and always received the most courteous responses. I have even had a representative work with me to get my totals the lowest possible! As we all know some plants make it and some don't, but I am much more likely to take a chance if I know the company will stand behind their guarantee. Dutch Gardens does. They also keep a running history of your orders. I have been able to find out what year I ordered a certain perennial and when it was shipped( ie.) the best time to divide and replant. I find that actually talking to the company instead of corresponding by email is a much more satisfactory method of communication and produces better results.
I ordered two Anna Louise clematis on April 18. They were shipped on May 1 and arrived on May 6 -- in transit 5 days. They were supposed to be shipped in 3 1/2" pots, but the pots were 2 1/2", with a note explaining that their supplier had shipped them that way. They sent a $5 coupon for my inconvenience. But they were poorly packaged, with very little bone-dry soil in them; one was completely dead and withered, the other was about 75% dead and withered. Did I mention that they cost $9 EACH? That's $18 worth of dead or mostly dead clematis.
I have just completed an email to them requesting a refund for the clematis and also canceling the rest of my order. I am hoping it hasn't shipped yet.
At this stage, I am waiting to see what their customer service is like. Will I receive a refund relatively quickly and without fuss, or will I have to get on the phone to move things along?
I will report back on my customer service experience. I wish I had read the reviews sooner!
On May 9th, 2009, Marya_K added the following:
Two days later: I did receive an email from them confirming my order cancellation and promising a full refund to my charge card in the next billing cycle. I will post again to confirm that this happened.
They were fine in the past - maybe 10-15 years ago - when they only sold bulbs. A little expensive, but not bad, and their bulbs were always nice. But I've moved on to other bulb suppliers I like better, and in the meantime, they've figured out how to annoy me. Hadn't heard anything at all from them for many years, then I ordered something from their affiliate Gardeners Supply. Got put on GS's email list when I sent in a mail order. (Didn't see anything on the mail-in form to ask whether I wanted email ads or not, and I didn't give them my email, but they must have gotten it when I was less wary in the past.) Tried to get off with their unsubscribe link, and couldn't. A while later - you guessed it - I started getting email ads from Dutch Gardens too. And not just once in a while, but lots and lots of emails. Same story - clicked on the link to unsubscribe, got an acknowledgment, still get the spam. I really wish companies would respect the consumer and change their default to "no emails" unless you specifically give them permission. Especially when you haven't done any business with them recently, and have never given them any indication that you want to.
I just got 4 Burning Hearts Dicentra that I was having a hard time finding online. This is a somewhat fragile plant that was shiped VERY well! All four were a good size and are doing very well! I would order from this site again!
On May 4, 2009, Hemhostaholic Scranton, PA (Zone 5b) wrote:
I took a chance on Dutch Gardens (especially after readig some of the negative reviews) but after a fellow DG'er told me that she had never had a problem with Dutch Gardens, I gave them a try. I ordered 2 Stuttgart Cannas, 1 Japanese Iris (Stippled Ripples), 1 Dahlia (Treat), and 3 Lilies (Adios)...the Cannas were really nicely sized, the dahlia clump was nice, the JI was a nice size and the lilies were about as big as the lilies I ordered from Brent and Becky's! I took a chance on Dutch Gardens, and as a first time costumer I don't have anything negative to say about my experience at all. The plant materials were all great, the shipping emails kept me abreast of when the shipment would arrive, and the overall transaction was very nice! I'll more than likely be ordering from Dutch Gardens again!
On Apr 26, 2009, kentstar Ravenna, OH (Zone 5b) wrote:
I ordered several plants from them last year, four bonfire euphorbia's, some veronica, some coreopsis and so far only a couple of the veronica's and one coreopsis have survived! I have ordered a Maria Stern rose for this year. We'll have to see how this goes. But I will not be back anyway. They send puny little plants (starter plugs) for high prices when I know now that I can get them in other more reputable places for much less and better quality plants. As I said, I will not be back...
On May 8th, 2009, kentstar changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
So far the Maria Stern rose seems OK. Buds are coming out all over the exposed part of the canes (rest is mounded up). So, I am changing my rating to neutral for now. If all goes really well I will change it to positive. On May 22nd, 2009, kentstar changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:
It seems that my "Maria Stern Rose" has Rose Mosaic Virus! Yellowed patterns on the leaves. Will it is growing well for now, I have no doubt this is RMV and the rose will go down hill from here out! I won't be back again! On May 25th, 2009, kentstar changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
Dutch Gardens has agreed to refund my credit card for the rose that is virused. They did respond to my email promptly too. So, that being said, that's a good thing anyway. Will I be back? Probably not, but I do understand stuff happens. But, they should have their roses virus indexed. On Apr 26, 2009, Dutch Gardens responded with:
We are sorry about the problems you experienced with your order and for the disappointment this has caused. All of the plants we sell are guaranteed 100%, and we are happy to stand behind that promise. We can either issue a credit to your account that can be used toward your next Dutch Garden's order, issue a refund to your credit card, or we can send you a replacement plants if available.
Please, contact us by sending an email to email@example.com or call us at toll free at 1-800-876-5520 so we can take care of this problem right away.
Ordered a perennial. When I opened the box, there was an inner container that contained the pot and the plant. There was no attempt in packing to keep the plant and planting mix in the pot. The plant was laying without any soil around it and the very little of the planting mix was still in the pot. I have put the plant and planting mix back into the pot and am keeping it moist. We will see what happens, but I don't have a lot of confidence that it will survive. Clearly, no more live plant orders form Dutch Gardens.
We are sorry that your plant arrived in such poor condition. All of the plants we sell are guaranteed 100%, and we are happy to stand behind that promise. We can either issue a credit to your account that can be used toward your next Dutch Garden's order, issue a refund to your credit card, or we can send you a replacement plants if available.
Please, contact us by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at toll free at 1-800-876-5520 so we can take care of this problem right away.
On Mar 4, 2009, 17decker Grand Junction, CO wrote:
Fall of 2007 I ordered approximately 200 bulbs and planted them that fall. The following spring none of the bulbs developed and 2 of the 6 iris's survived. I have placed another order of Glamini Gladiolus and I'll have see if it will be my final purchase.
In years past I have been very happy with this company and always look forward to each new catalog when it arrives. Imagine my surprise when I found that prices in the new 2009 catalog where 3 times what they had been last year @ this time. I had saved my old catalog so I was able to compare prices. I will not be ordering from them this year......there are too many good companies listed on this website to pay these high prices. I compared $ with other companies & did not find these kind of price increases if any @ all.
I am new to mail-order gardening. Ordered 2 peonies, I iris and daffodil bulbs. When the order came today I was SHOCKED at the large size of the bulbs. I have never seen bulbs that large in local garden shops or retailers. The peonies were as described, with 2-3 eyes each and each with some healthy looking little roots (much nicer than bare root peonies I bought at a big box retailer which didn't grow). The iris was a nice size and had quite a few roots on it. The order was carefully packed and I love the individual labels which came with each item so I can mark where I planted them. Now dreaming of spring already with hopes I got them settled in their new homes adequately. If those daffodils don't bloom, it won't be because of lack of quality in the shipment I got, that's for sure!
I have ordered dahlia bulbs from Dutch Gardens for years and have been completely satisfied. A few years back I ordered peonies for myself and my mother and we both planted them in the fall - neither one came up - I contacted Dutch Gardens and they replaced them and mine were just huge this year - keep in mind it takes a while for peonies to get going. I placed an order for tulips for my daughter's birthday this fall and am hoping that she will be as happy with them as I have been with the dahlias.
On Jul 14, 2008, wendyelsey Portland, OR (Zone 7b) wrote:
I tried to buy a plant (Bonfire Euphorbia) from them. I got a "we have in stock" go ahead and was excited!! My mother had looked at their SDAME site (I have copies of the : sold out sign),.... So Iookede them up, and it was al of a suden.. in stock. I worked at a nursery, so I know it can change fast,...
They stated after the fact of having it "in stock"
# Flower supports
ship separately from bulbs and plants. You can efxpect delivery in 6-12 business days
If it is not accurate, contact me... dont tell me later that I will get it in late fall?????????
Fall... is not in 6 to 12 days..............
I am trying to cancel with them.. but we will see. I am notiying my bank. I have print outs o\f everything.. from sold out.. to in stock/.to 6-12 days.. not October?
I would NOT recommend them at all........ I was told my credit card would be charged multiple times too.. that equal the total??? I dont think that is w=right at all.......... something seems not right here
I tried to cancel today, I will let you k now if there os a big issue......... Un truthful things has been all that I have gotten....
Beware................ if you want now, big issue......!!!!!! Bad time. I will tell you too of they charge my credit card after today. This would be WAY after I told them to stop and cancel due to contract voilation/..........
Never had such an issue with ANY!!!!!!!!!!!! vendor but them.... here is some of what I received in emIL..after they had my credit card info........
> When you receive your credit card statement, you'll see multiple charges adding up to the total on this confirmation.
# Flower supports
ship separately from bulbs and plants. You can expect delivery in 6-12 business days.
What I wrote:
I am surprised it takes 6-12 days, wouldn't that not be good for a plant with it being the summer? Being held in shipping for that long?
Do you guarantee the plants health in shipping?
And the multiple charges on the credit card. Will it be 2 seperate for the plant and another for shipping? I am just curious so I can keep track in my checking account.
They wrote back....... not happy..................
We ship plants in the spring and we ship plants in the fall. I checked your order and we plan to send your Bonfire Euphorbia mid to late October 2008. When we are shipping, we quote 6-12 business days from the time you order. The plants come directly from the grower and it takes time for us to process the order paperwork and the grower to prepare the plant to ship. The plant will not be in transit for 6-12 business days. We have a 100% guarantee on all of our plants.
The Bonfire Euphorbia will be shipped in a 4 inch pot as advertised in our catalog and web site. You will most likely only see one charge on your credit card for this order. There are times when items ship from different locations or at different times or the shipping shows up as a separate charge. We mention this up front so customers know there is a possibility it may happen on their order. All of the charges will add up to the original price quoted at the time of purchase.
4 inch pot for $30 bucks??? are3 you kidding?
owch............... Nothing about a 4 inch for that much....
Just warning people. this is bad bad! I will never ;look twice here............
On July 14th, 2008, wendyelsey added the following:
I called like they encouraged me to.. after receiving an email from them saying they wanted my experience to be "positive" with their company. I was checking to make sure it was canceled. The customer service was less than nice. The lady on the phone talked over me.. didnt hardly listen to anything I said. If they were trying to make it a positive experience? they did 100% the opposite with her attitude and not caring at all about their customer. Instead of trying to make it right, she was very rude... Even if they did have nice stuff (which looks like they dont from previous DG members) the customer service just blew me away. Rude.. period point blank. I would advise anyone else.. find another vendor, that treats you with respect........
I could hardly be happier with my purchase from Dutch Gardens. The plants were the largest I've received from any mail order company and were securely packaged. Shipping was quite fast.
I used a discount code on top of clearance prices and was concerned because the online total didn't reflect it, so I emailed the company. I received a very prompt and friendly reply reassuring me that everything was OK, and even got a personal phone call assuring me of the same.
There was only one problem with the order; one plant (a viola) didn't have the plastic bag over the soil like all the others did, and when I removed it from its cardboard packaging, I found the plant broken off from its roots. I didn't contact Dutch Gardens because it cost so little and I'd gotten such a great deal overall, but I'm confident they would have gladly credited me had I asked.
Even a couple of plants which I thought had died through no fault of Dutch Gardens (a brunnera I accidentally left for two days without watering, and a clematis which broke at the base for unknown reasons) came back to life--the brunnera has grown many new leaves, and even the hard, dry stick of the clematis has sprouted new life. Obviously, these were very healthy, hardy plants to begin with.
Not everything has thrived--only one of the three bareroot foxtail lilies has come up so far, and a few other plants are looking challenged, but I believe that is due more to our acidic clay soil than anything else. On the positive side, the hollyhock, hosta, sedum and aster plants look fantastic and have grown quite a bit since their arrival.
Overall, my expectations were exceeded, and I would not hesitate to order from Dutch Gardens again. The care they put into growing & shipping the plants was evident, and the customer service was outstanding!
As a relative newcomer to gardening, within the past couple of years I've placed orders from several of the larger companies that distribute eye-catching glossy catalogs. Dutch Gardens has established itself as my favorite. All of my orders have been shipped accurately and promptly, everything has arrived in excellent condition, and almost all the plants have thrived--a much better record than I've had with some other companies. (Also, Dutch Gardens is affiliated with Gardener's Supply Company; I just posted a description of Gardener's Supply's excellent customer service on their page at this site.)
On Jun 19, 2008, TheMartinClan Greencastle, PA wrote:
I recently ordered live plants from Dutch Gardens in response to an up to 70% off Spring shipped bulbs & perennials sale. I read the reviews before ordering and was a little worried that my plants would be in rough shape when they arrived. I decided to take a chance anyway as the savings seemed to good to pass up. I placed a small order that I received quickly. I was very surprised when my order (1 rose, 3 hollyhocks, 3 dahlia bunches, 1 ghost fern, 2 shooting star, 1 hardy fuschia, 1 honeysuckle vine, 1 anemone, & 1 coreopsis) came packed with exceptional care. The plants were all large and vigorous and the dahlias were three nice large bunches. They were in individual 4" pots (excepting the dahlias), each with very informative plant tags. Each pot was wrapped in plastic bags to keep in moisture and stapled at the side to keep the soil in. Then the pots were slipped into very tall carboard sleeves with tabs that were pushed in to hold the pot in place. I was so impressed that my "clearance" purchases were fantastically healthy and well-protected in shipping. Due to unforeseen family emergencies, we were unable to plant for almost a month, though the plants were kept well-watered. Despite their overly long stay in transplant pots, all of the plants are very healthy and finally (happily) in the ground were they belong! I am surprised by the variety of experiences with this company, but I will order again from them, probably in a small quantity like last time to ensure that the quality and care is equal to my first experience.
I bought from Dutch gardens for two years and early enough, i realized that this is to much of hit and miss. I ordered Casa blanca lily, 1/3 grew, 25 queen faviola= none grew, peony (festiva maxima) = grew diseased leaves, rose (stainless steel)= grew diseased leaves, perennials: butter fly bush, blue star sea holly, fire work begonia, emereld-blue phlox = all died soon after (and I am accomplished gardener that have 98% success with plants, even rare exotics), dahlias (mixture and dutch infusion) = Yes, grew and bloomed for one season but never came back (my understanding that these were perennial in zone 9). So, i have one diseased rose + one dying peony to remind me of the performance of this company. i will take my loss and go elsewhere. Keep the catalog if you want to look at nice pictures but RUN with your wallet.