On Nov 20, 2012, MyRee Brigham City, UT (Zone 5b) wrote:
I have been very happy with the quality of bulbs that were delivered this fall. The bulbs were large and appeared to be very healthy. The order came in a timely manner and well packed. I will buy from this company again.
On Nov 20, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Nov 21, 2012 12:55 PM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for you wonderful testimonial. We appreciate you taking the time to post. Enjoy your bulbs!"
Received a package from Breck's. It happened to be a present from my sister, but was not told so by Breck's. The packing list contained 4 species of bulbs. One species was missing. The count of the bulbs was wrong in 2( 17 instead of 18 bulbs) of them and of the Narcissus Poetica ( 5 bulbs) one was so rotten and moldy that is was ready for the garbage-can. I hope you can open these photo's I took of them./Users/Mhecht/Desktop/DSCN2279.JPG/Users/Mhecht/Desktop/DSCN2282.JPG.
The above mentioned Cyclamen corms too( see Eva Hecht's complaint) were in such a terrible condition that the Better Business Bureau of Ohio was notified and I am still trying to contact the agricultural inspectors. Bulbs like these do not come from the Netherlands nor from Turkey like that. Phyto-sanitary inspections are strict and if Breck's sends out bulbs like this they are spreading diseases all over.
Sad but true!
On Nov 8, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Nov 13, 2012 11:02 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
We appreciate you taking the time to post and apologize that the bulbs were not in good shape. We would be happy to reship some new ones to you. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information."
Round 1: I selected about $150 worth of Fall delivery bulbs. When I went to check out, the website kept asking for the code data from the catalog the company had sent me in the Spring. I put the codes in four times -- and then it indicated that Special had expired. Why not say that the first time???
Then it refused to connect that data to my name, address, etc. that they obviously have on file. Why not?
After filling in all those data several times, the website kicked me out of check-out and back to the cart! That kind of action is not only frustrating, it is really suspicious. Is this a secure site -- or a phishing scam phony? I exited the site ASAP.
Round 2: Some automated software got in touch, supposedly Sharon from Customer Service, but the email address was generic, not person-specific, so I doubt there really is any such human at the other end of the missive. It warned me that my order would be put back into inventory if I didn't confirm it by a certain time. I was busy for a couple of days -- some of us have to earn the money to spend on our gardens....
Round 3: That led to daily reminders to complete my order. Although I sent a Customer comment, asking them to call me to sort this out, no one ever did. When I did give them another chance, and re-entered the shopping cart, two of the more valuable items were no longer available -- yet the emails had said they would be returned to inventory several hours after I tried. Are these products vaporware? Is this a bait-and-switch scam?
Round 4: I tried to connect to their wholesale site to replace the missing items with a bulk order, but they won't let one connect bulk and regular orders in the same cart. I'm not paying twice for shipping, so that one got canceled.
Round 5: So, I decide to just take the remaining items the cart said were still available. I plugged in the $25 discount code "Sharon" had sent as compensation for both the initial frustration, and my kindness in sharing the errors of the site with them.
And the price went UP by a $100!!!
I'm outa there! I think this is a scam company.
On Oct 19, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Oct 31, 2012 9:42 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for your posting. We apologize for the problems you had. One of our customer service representatives will contact you and work out your order with you."
Posted on September 30, 2012, updated September 30, 2012
I just want to post that I've been ordering from Breck's bulbs for many years and have always had great success in growing beautiful tulips! Every once in a while, I will buy bulbs also from another online company, but they have never turned out as great as the Breck's bulbs. They have always stood by their guarantee also when one time because of weather conditions the bulbs didn't survive. They sent me replacements bulbs for free. I will always buy my tulip bulbs here. Thanks!
On September 30th, 2012, Laurie777 added the following:
I want to add to try the "WOW tulip collection" - they'll knock your socks off!On Sep 30, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Oct 3, 2012 11:40 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you so much for your feedback, enjoy your bulbs."
1.One Sep 9, I placed my first order, amounting to $131.47, on the phone with the Breck's representative, Anna, who confirmed the shipment will be made by last week of Sept. The shipment date is just right as I have to go aboard right after that so I can have time to do the planting.
2. I then received another shipment confirmation which will be made by Oct. 15 so I re-asked them about this. The 2 replies from Cindy and Jenny made me feel better as they confirmed by Sept again.
3. On Sep 21, Cathy informed me that the shipment will now be between 10.05.12 and 10.26.12. Something must be wrong about this.
I had to cancel this order with regret as I expected to do the planting before making a trip for many weeks.
Thank you for your posting. We apologize for the confusion over when your order would ship. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and see what we can do."
I ordered some fall planting bulbs and rhizomes on their website at the end of July and requested an earlier shipping window via comments.
The reason I requested a shipping window is Breck's bases the shipping date on your USDA hardiness zone, which in turn is based on your zip code. This may be accurate for a large part of the country, but is totally useless in the West, based on our micro-climates. To illustrate, my zip code places me in Zone 8, which is warm winters. I live in the San Jacinto mountains at an elevation of 6300 feet, which makes our effective hardiness zone around 5. The tentative shipping date assigned to Zone 8 according to Brecks is Oct 15 - Nov.1, at which point my ground has been frozen for a while and there is a good chance of snow on the ground. This is a common problem throughout the West. This is the reason why the gardening bible used here in the West (Sunset Gardening Book) has zones 1-24 plus two zones for Hawaii. In my case, Oct 15- Nov 1, we will have temperatures in Palm Springs (appx 12 airline miles away) in the 80's while I have temperatures 40 degrees and lower. We are both in Zone 8.
I received a confirmation email that was missing my order id, my name, my delivery address, when the items would be shipped, etc.. yesterday. I received an updated email today filling in the missing info and showing their estimated ship date.
I called and explained my problem and requested an earlier ship date since apparently no notice was made of the earlier ship date request . " Can't do it" the supervisor said, but if I wanted it LATER, that would be no problem. The zone always determines the shipping date, except if you want it later, in which case the zone doesn't matter. Apparently the zone only matters when Breck's says it matters.
I cancelled the order, re-ordered from Schreiners Iris and Holland Bulb Farms (at better prices I might add) and will be getting my bulbs and rhizomes in less than 10 days . Neither company is using an ordering system developed in the 90's like Breck's apparently is.
(I was told to expect my credit card refund in one day. We shall see.)
On Aug 17, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Aug 20, 2012 11:03 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for your posting. We do ship accoring to the USDA
On Aug 20, 2012 11:06 AM, Breck's Bulbs added:
Thank you for your posting. We do ship according to the USDA but we also know there are other micro climates that need to be considered. I apologize for the confusion. We could send your order to the green house and ask that they ship sooner if the product is available. A customer service representative will contact you for your account information."
On Jul 3, 2012, brydas Pensacola, FL (Zone 8a) wrote:
Placed original order(by mail) on 5/8/12 for $53.31.Sent check on 5/21/12. Got a better offer from them so cancelled 1st one & made a 2nd one. They told me they had charged me ($9.95) for the 1st CANCELLED order as they were"unable" to refund the S&H.My case:the order was CANCELLED & not even due to be shipped out 'til Oct/Nov-neither shipped nor handled 'til then. Asked 4x for them to send me a copy of the "policy" stating they were"unable........". Never got one. Been fighting with them since 5/8-----30-45 e-mails, 3 phonecalls, 5 e-mails from parent co.(garden's alive, no more help than Breck's people). I find them to be conniving, underhanded, dishonest, incompetent, misinformed & unknowledgable. Have documentation ready to go to the Atty.Gen, Angie's list, the Watchdog & the BBB.
Thank you for your posting. We will be happy to get this taken care of for you. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and get this taken care of. We apologize for all the trouble."
On May 30, 2012, wufflespring Yoder, CO (Zone 5a) wrote:
Posted on April 5, 2012, updated May 30, 2012
Maybe this might seem unfair to post a review on freebies - but I'm doing it. I rec'd an email giving me $25 free from this company so I figured I'm not out any money should things not turn out well. I figured if all went well with the freebies, I could order from Breck's without worry in the future.
I chose to spend the money on Blue Star Dahlias as my daughter was quite impressed with the photo in the catalog. First and foremost, these took 2 full months to arrive. Certain things ship certain times, I get that. But I got a shipping confirmation 3 weeks after ordering and was told to expect them during a 3 day range in early march. About mid March, I realized they'd never arrived, so I checked their 'shipping status' thing, and found they were scheduled to arrive in early April. Ugh - so why did I get shipping CONFIRMATION more than a month earlier telling me to expect them in March?
My Blue Star Dahlias arrived today. They are not dormant. They are dead. Oh I'm still going through the motions of putting them in soil, but I'm not holding my breath. I've been gardening for a very long time and I know dead, I know the smell of death, these poor buggers are dead.
If, by some freak of nature, these things actually sprout and grow, I will be sure to update this review. But I can say I will never spend actual money at this company.
On May 30th, 2012, wufflespring added the following:
Quote: Thank you for your posting. Our bulbs ship from Holland and can take 3-4 weeks to arrive once they are shipped. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and take care of this for you.
My main point was that I was sent an email, telling me that my order had been shipped TO ME. As in, it's on it's way. And then weeks later, I find out it never did actually ship but would soon. MY PROBLEM with that is: DON'T TELL ME YOU'VE DONE SOMETHING UNTIL YOU HAVE ACTUALLY DONE IT! I don't MIND waiting. But don't lie and tell me to expect something nearly a month before you actually mail it to me. I have to drive 5 miles one way up a very bumpy dirt road to get to my mailbox. When I am expecting a package, I check mail DAILY. When I'm NOT, I check mail weekly. So during that period, I was checking mail every day for something that was NEVER shipped.On May 30, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for your posting. Our bulbs ship from Holland and can take 3-4 weeks to arrive once they are shipped. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and take care of this for you."
Posted on May 7, 2011, updated May 14, 2012
Posted on March 30, 2011, updated May 7, 2011
Posted on March 29, 2011, updated March 30, 2011
I highly recommend Breck's in Guilford, IN. I have been their satisfied customer here in Spokane, WA for several years now, ordering probably close to a thousand dollars worth of bulbs and plants. They guarantee their products for life, but I have only had to ask them to replace/credit me for a handful, which they have done quickly, no questions asked. There was only one case in all these years where they sent me the wrong product, and when I mentioned it they sent along the correct product quickly with their apologies. While they seem to me to be a little pricey, I signed up for e-mails and take advantage of their sales on line and also have purchased items from their catalogues, the latter which often come with a $25-off coupon on the back page to enclose with a minimal order. Breck's also sends e-mails to acknowledge orders and also notify you when they have shipped same. I have also placed multiple orders through their associate Michigan Bulbs, which have fewer products to choose from but very reasonably priced and with the same great customer service and careful packing. I couldn't be more pleased. It must be very challenging for companies these days with the world's economic problems, changing weather patterns, etc., but I feel I must give credit where credit is due - hence, this review. Being a senior on a fixed income, I don't have money to throw away, and when I find reputable companies and good products I want to give them their due. I enjoy my colorful flower gardens.
On March 30th, 2011, jeanrice added the following:
My two cents:
For those who feel they get "stuck" on the phone with Breck's; I couldn't speak to that, except to say that if I have any query or problem I e-mail them at their customer service dept. on their website; I immediately get an acknowledgement of my e-mail that is followed in the next 3-4 days by their reply. If I were to phone them, I would strive to be polite. Their word is good on their guarantees. I am convinced that their direct-from-Holland bulbs are the finest and it is nice to know that Breck's trusts you not to take advantage of their guarantee. I've pretty much stopped buying less expensive bulbs and plants here locally, which don't carry a guarantee. I don't mind paying a little more for a guarantee that has been honored without any hassles by Breck's. As stated above, I do request and receive e-mail notifications of Breck's many reduced-price web "specials," and I also often use their $25-off coupons when placing an order from their catalogue.
I must tell you that I have the advantage of having a grown son who has taken some horticulture classes and helps me plant any bareroot plants, such as daylilies. I plant the bulbs, which seem to be fool-proof. The reasons are two-fold: I am still a little timid about planting the non-bulb items, and working with my son gives us a hobby we can share together. I am in the process of learning more about gardening, myself, however, from books, garden magazines and the Web - who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks? I have learned that good, amended soil and regular watering are key, plus most plants really do better in sunny locations, unless they are specifically shade plants. Plants also do well among boulders and rocks, as it helps to protect them. I always buy Breck's plant food, too, to give them a boost and put a layer of small-sized bark around them to protect them from our cold winters. I've also learned that a "mass" planting of three or more of the same plants look really nice, but I do have a backyard one-of-a kind specimen garden, as well.
In response to Doris G.'s complaint of 11/05/2010, I believe that when a person checks on status of a particular order and you get a blank screen, there are two possibilities:
1. That screen seems to have "timed-out" after awhile and you have to go back and request it again.
2. Whenever I come up with a blank screen checking on the status of an order, I notice that I get a e-mail that day or the next that my items have just been mailed; I could be wrong, but I believe that they were working on my order at the time which might have accounted for the initial blank screen. They do keep details of all the orders on screen so you can review them to refresh your memory on what you have recently ordered and/or planted in the past year; for details of any shipments prior to that time, they state that you can send an e-mail query to them.
3. They offer some collections on credit, so once you demonstrate that you will, indeed, pay on time after you receive your shipment, they will likely extend more "buy now/pay later" credit to you in the future. I prefer to pay by check, any balances due (along with their statement), which is handy for me.
When I have placed a really BIG order, the e-mail listing the plants and bulbs that have just been shipped may be incomplete. That threw me off, initially, but the FULL listing of items shipped is found on the website's "status of order" screen. I think the reason for the abbreviated e-mail listing may be due to space or some items in a particular order are due to be shipped at a later date. Checking your status at the website will show you all that has been shipped and on its way and what remains to be shipped and when one can expect it. I have never received a dead or damaged-appearing plant or bulb in all these years.
MY QUERY: Has anyone used "Miracle Grow" garden roducts, are they as good as they claim? On May 7th, 2011, jeanrice added the following:
I was surprised to find so many negative comments on these Garden Watchdog lists, but my son, who is in the horticulture business, tells me that dissatisfied customers are the ones who most often write and/or voice their complaints, while the customers who have no complaints are less likely to share their experiences. Just something to keep in mind ! Happy Spring ! My garden is full of BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS from Breck's. On May 14th, 2012, jeanrice added the following:
I am pleased with this company, their service and their products and continue to place orders. It should be noted that when they extend credit they DO expect to be paid on time, which is reasonable, so be careful not to fall behind. . On May 14, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
On Apr 26, 2012, idahosteve Twin Falls, ID (Zone 5b) wrote:
I have been trying to get a replacement order for the one that died last year due to late shipping and poor plant quality. I have contacted customer service several times but they will not even respond back to me. I do have a replacement certificate that they sent to me but when I try to use it I get kicked out of there online ordering site. So I guess I have a worthless piece of paper for my money. Way to go Brecks.
This is my first ordering experience through Breck's and so far I give them 2 thumbs up. I'm always a little weary ordering plants through the mail but I took advantage of their $25 coupon and ordered a daylily which just arrived and in excellent condition. The item was nicely packed and the roots are very healthy and large. Based on the size in about a months time this plant could be sold as a one gallon plant. I purchased a day lily from Michigan Bulb last year and what Breck's sent is about 4 times larger and much healthier. I will be doing more business with Brecks :)
For those people upset with shipping delays, you need to realize these are live products. There are 100's of factors that play into shipping a live plant across the country. No matter how many precautions a company takes there is not going to be 100% success rate when dealing with a live product especially when a 3rd party shipper is responsible for getting it to you.
I have received some things from this company usually small. That is ok. But this time I ordered a Heuchera Caramel plant. It is a plant not a tuber. Well what I received was something painful to look at. I am growing plants now from seed. What I saw was a plant barely starting to grow. Few very small green stubs was sticking out in the soil. Barely starting I paid $16.49 for a plant that was barely beginning. I was so disappointed I was so looking forward to at least seeing a few leaves of this plant when I received this. I repotted this plant but now I don't even see anything in the pot. I will never buy another plant from this company that they call a plant. Tubers are fine. But when I buy a plant from a company I expect to see a plant. I don't mind small but this so called plant was nothing but the very beginnings of a plant. For 16.49 I deserved something more.
I do not want to hear from Brecks customer service. I have placed several orders from Brecks over the years for bulbs and I never had a problem until 2010. I ordered roots this time and when I opened the box it was very musty smelling, sort of like the smell of rotting leaves in a forest. I wasn't sure if that was normal or that they were moldy but since I didn't see any mold I decided I'd plant them anyway. I followed the directions in planting them, and nothing, absolutely nothing was healthy or came to be an actual plant from that order. I have 1 lily that survived from that order but never flowered and now in year 2 the leaves look pathetic compared to the other lilies around it that I purchased elsewhere. Anyhow, I pursued a refund from Brecks, on only those plants that didn't become a plant at all, which was granted. I then ordered a bunch of bulbs mid summer to plant in the fall. I received only a quarter of my order in October and was sent a notice in November that the rest of the bulbs were out of stock. My response to that...."Seriously?" Toward the end of the planting season they inform me of this, at a time when nurseries are no longer selling what I want?
This is not good customer service. My order for these bulbs was placed early enough for them to contact me about a replacement and they must have known, earlier than November, that they were out of stock. I believe that customers who don't make use of the "lifetime guarantee" are those that get priority shipping of items but once you have a problem with your order, you are flagged as a 2nd rate customer. Other customers state they have been sent letters banning them from ordering again, because of complaints, and I believe this to be true. I feel it's a waste of my time to place an order from them again. I'll be going to the nursery.
On Mar 25, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Mar 27, 2012 1:07 PM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
We appreciate your feedback. We apologize for the confusion. We appreciate each and everyone of our customers and would not flag a customer as 2nd rate, or ban them from placing an order due to complaints. If ever a customer's return rate is 80% or higher, we determine at that time that our company's products are not a good match for them. We regret that we are not successful in satisfying all of our customer's needs. However, we do strive for 100% customer satisfaction, and in most cases, achieve it. This can be evident by our devoted customers who purchase year after year from us and by the many testimonials we receive from them."
I have to say that I have had only good experiences with Breck's Bulbs, and have ordered from them for a number of years now. I think they may be short staffed a bit, as the only negative I have is that when I emailed them about some lillies not coming up, they simply reordered them for me, which was more than I was asking at that time - I took it to mean that they stood behind their products, but didn't have the means to speculate on my particular situation.
I'd advise western gardeners to do their homework before ordering any bulbs from outside the region - the USDA zones correspond poorly to western climates and are not especially accurate at predicting garden conditions - Olympia and Tucson are both zone 8!
On Mar 23, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Mar 27, 2012 12:48 PM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you very much for your posting. We do ship according to the USDA recommendations. Unfortunately, those zones do not recognize geographical features such as areas of elevation, micro climates, etc. We sincerely apologize to any of our customers who fall into these categories, but we are currently reviewing the zones and plan on making some changes that will hopefully solve this issue."
On Feb 13, 2012, cathrn67 louisburg United States wrote:
Can't believe all the negs here! I have ordered on and off from them for the last 12 years. I think the only problem I encountered was getting a common spiderwort over the Blushing Bride I ordered. Never knew if they sent the right one because a Vole promptly ate it. I think a lot of plants/bulbs not coming up are due to weather and voles which the company should not be responsible for. I will be placing an order in the next couple of weeks and expect the best!
On Feb 13, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Feb 14, 2012 5:30 PM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you so much for your wonderful testimonial. You are correct there can be many factors as to why plants do not survive. Just remember we do offer our lfetime guarantee for as long as you garden. Happy Gardening!"
I began ordering from Breck's approximately five years ago and am very pleased with every purchase made...and their have been many. I have followed the directions/advice that accompanied the plants and have NEVER needed to return or replace ANY of my purchases. The first four years I was planting in Clarksville, TN and now I am planting in Columbia, SC. The mature bulbs in Clarksville have returned and multiplied wonderfully...daffodils, lillies, hostas, etc. My new plantings here in SC are also doing beautifully.
I am submitting this review because I for one have not had any of the problems indicated in the below negative reviews and can completely understand a company not doing business with customers who do not seem to have success with their products and continually request refunds and replacements. That is smart business in my opinion.
On Jan 2, 2012, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Jan 3, 2012 11:46 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you so much for feedback concerning your experience with our company. We really appreciate you sharing your experience with us."
On Dec 21, 2011, Barbara777 Larkfield-Wikiup, CA wrote:
On 12/14/11 I ordered 6 "Kris Kringle" tulips for gifts at Christmas. I called on 12/20/11 to find out the shipping information and was told that they would not ship until 2012. They had run out of the product and not notified me. Their customer service was terrible, only offer was to sell me another product at twice the price. I found out that they use a third party customer service call center, you can't actually talk to someone at Breck's that might care. I have used Brecks.com for years but will never order from them again.
On Dec 21, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Dec 30, 2011 9:43 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for letting us know about the problems you experienced with our call center and your order. A customer service representative will be contacting you for your account information and to rectify this for you."
So far so good. I ordered 300+ bulbs on Oct. 12, 2011. I was billed out right away. However, 12 days later I recieved an email stating that my shipment would be sent out any time between Nov 4- Nov 23. REALLY! I called customer service and explained that I live in upstate NY and by then there will be at least 6 inches of snow on the ground. She said she would place a priority shipping status on the order. Low and behold, the shipment arrived 4 or so days later. WOW. I have planted the bulbs today. They look great. I just hope that they look great when they flower. I have ordered from several of the sister companies and have had no problems with service, refund, or delivery. Hopefully I can update this post in the spring with a true positive. Reading others comments, I am a bit nervous. Looking forward to the display of colors. My only real complaint/recommendation is don't bill the customer until the Item ships. When billing right away, it gives the customer the sense that the shipment will arrive within 7-10 days maximun.
On Oct 30, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Oct 31, 2011 11:26 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for your feedback. We appreciate what our customers have to say and use your comments to better improve our company. Please let us know if you have any problems. Happy Gardening!"
I have planted Brecks bulbs every year for 15 years at two properties in Massachusetts and have only had one group of bulbs fail, and that was because I took a chance and planted them in an area that did not receive enough sunlight. Also I ran out of bulb booster on some of them. Most of the complaints I have read on this site are from people who keep returning merchandise. If you follow instructions on planting depth, fertilize, and avoid planting in too much shade you should have no problem. No. I am not a Breck's representative. I have just had better results from Brecks and Dutch Gardens than from Home Depot and other sources. In fact, I don't dig up my bulbs, just let them winter over, and I have never lost any bulbs other than the group I experimented with. Bear in mind that I only have the normal style tulip bulbs, daffodils, grape hyacinth, and some low-to-the-ground carpet variety of flowering bulbs. (My mother told me that some of the tulip varieties such as the lily style must be dug up and replanted annually though she leaves the regular bulbs in the ground over winter.) If I had a customer that kept returning merchandise I would assume that he was doing something wrong in planting and care and I would refuse to let him reorder also.
Lastly, most of my tulips are still growing strong after many years.
On Oct 4, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Oct 5, 2011 9:15 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you so much for your testimonial about our bulbs and service. We do our best to provide excellent service and offer top quality bulbs. Happy gardening to you."
I also received a letter stating that I was no longer able to order from this company again. I was so upset that I called and spoke to rude customer service people who informed me that getting such a letter means that I also cannot order from their other companies as well. These include Springhill, Gardens Alive, Gurney and Henry Fields. I have been purchasing from these companies for years. I have a very large yard and spend thousands of dollars every year so my yard can be used for charity events. I do not believe these companies should offer lifetime guarantees if they are not going to honor them. In fact, the main problem that I have had in recent years is that they do not send what I order. For example, shrub lilies should not be 4' tall, shrub apricot roses should not be 3' tall, white feather hostas come out and stay pure green. I also get upset when I order a specific color and they substitute without asking first. If I wanted the color they sent me...I would have ordered it. Another problem they have is their timing. I live in the northeast and get items sent to me in March. When I call...I am told to keep them in the refrigerator. After weeks (or until the correct planting time), they are starting to form mold or getting mushy. I suppose this is my fault as well. I feel their letter was very degrading to a long time, loyal customer. The only saving grace is that there are many other companies to order from. I do not recommend using any of the companies I mentioned above.
On Sep 5, 2011, Snowbabymama Custer City, PA wrote:
After ordering from Breck's for a number of years, I received a letter stating that since a majority of my purchases have been reshipped, replaced, etc., that "our products are not a good match to your needs." They will not process any further orders; they have canceled my pending orders (which I have ordered months ago and paid for in advance; and my reshipments have been cancelled -money to be refunded. This is all in spite of and contrary to their "lifetime guarantee" which has no exclusions. My fail rate on my bulbs and plants were unusual this year because of our extraordinary harsh winter and spring flood rains - collections were lost. I only seek replacement for plants that fail within the first year; after that it is my loss. I had made a new garden area last year, prompting orders (which needed replaced), and I also placed new orders because I decided to increase the number of plants. I now have a this empty garden bed and all my orders (replacement or otherwise) have been canceled. They are banning me from ordering and won't provide me with the replacement plants under their guarantee of "full refund or replacement, whichever you prefer." Now I must scramble to try to place a new order with a competitor this late in the season.
On Aug 20, 2011, OceansEdge Conception Bay South Canada wrote:
Posted on August 19, 2011, updated August 20, 2011
Posted on August 19, 2011, updated August 19, 2011
I tried earlier this week to place a simple 3 item order, using the relevant coupon (expiring today) through the Canadian website http://www.brecksbulbs.ca and discovered that their check out is well broken. It simply would not take me to the 'shipping and billing' area. The help' information on the website does not actually reflect the process used for order and checkout so I sent an email to 'support' after getting an unitelligable (garbledygook) response I finally got an email from 'Shannon' saying they'd passed my note on to the web people and if I'd like I could go back to the website and place the order or call the 1-800 number.
I went back to the website, yesterday and today, and the check out is still broken so I tried faxing the order to the fax number listed on the order form. No answer.
So I sent another email detailing my frustrations - really this isn't a good impression to leave a first time customer with.
I got exactly the SAME email form letter response from 'Shannon', so indeed I indicated to them that sending me canned email form letter responses designed to look like they came from a real person doesn't make me any happier.
I got another email back suggesting I could "send your check or money order on our mailing address" OR "You can place your order through our website(www.brecksbulbs.ca) " I mean - REALLY? am I dealing with an overseas call/order processing/customer service group? Because whomever "Shannon" is she really doesn't seem to be getting the gist of the problem. The order coupon expires today mailing it won't arrive in time, the website checkout bloody well doesn't work! The fax line isn't picking up the phone and in all honesty after all this the last thing I want to do is talk to an overseas call centre to place a credit card order.
Enough already. You lost my business before you ever had it.
On August 19th, 2011, OceansEdge added the following:
There are reasons why I rely on web and fax for mail ordering, I don't do phone orders.
While I do understand that occasionally one can have problems with their website, surely it isn't terribly difficult to see that your fax machine answers the phone?On August 20th, 2011, OceansEdge added the following:
I was finally able to place the order through a different computer and sending the order as a 'guest', rather from being logged in. (my computer automatically logs me into my accounts on various websites).
I really do think that your support team needs to learn how to be more helpful than simply suggesting people return to the website (if it didn't work this time why would that suddenly change next time) or calling - if I could call you, I would have when I first had the problem.\
Hopefully there won't be any difficulties with the order itself.On Aug 20, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Aug 19, 2011 11:38 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Vicky, we apologize for the trouble you have had trying to place your order. A customer service representative will contact you and place your order for you if you like. We will still honor your coupon. We have contacted our IT department to have our website checked out. We also have an 800 number you could call if you would prefer and they can take your order as well. Our number is 800-644-5505.
I'm really surprised by all the negative comments for this company. I absolutely love ordering bulbs from Brecks! Every year I layer 300-500 bulbs into my perennial beds and a good deal of them come from Brecks. The bulbs are always large, in excellent condition and packaged well. I feel their selection is very good also.
There has only been one instance in which I had to call for a replacement and that was for three crown imperials that failed to thrive. There was absolutely no questions asked and I was shipped replacement bulbs (at the correct time for planting in my zone) without hesitation.
On Aug 5, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Aug 11, 2011 9:51 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
We really appreciate you taking the time to post your experience with our company, thank you and Happy Gardening!"
I've only used Breck's twice so far, but am VERY impressed! My first purchase was a daylily lover's grab bag. I thought I would receive a bunch of tiny seedlings, but got two boxes filled with actual plants. My second purchase was the garden lover's grab bag.
I opened the boxes that came in the mail and felt like a kid in a candy store. I can't believe I got everything they sent me for $20.00! I'll be sure to update everyone to let them know how everything does.
Posted on May 28, 2011, updated June 20, 2011
I place my order (10341171900) on Feb 3 (it was a long Indiana winter and I was excited for spring!). The estimated delivery date kept getting pushed back by weeks at a time until they weren't estimated to arrive until mid-June (which is dry and hot here).
Finally I email them and they told me they were shipping my order from Holland so it would take 3-4 weeks. I got the shipment a couple of days later because they actually shipped from Indiana.
However, the shipment did not fulfill my order. I checked back today and they canceled the rest of my order without any notification. At least they didn't charge me for it but now it's too late to get the plants I needed for my landscape. I am very disappointed in how Breck's manages orders.
On June 20th, 2011, yla1031 changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
The company sent me a gift certificate to apologize. I am happy with the plants that did arrive. I will give them another chance in the fall.On Jun 20, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On May 30, 2011 9:23 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
We apologize for the delay in shipment. I checked on your order and your bulbs were shipped from Holland. A customer service representative will be contacting you about the rest of your order."
I placed an order from Brecks on April 19th for three items. They shipped one item promptly, another item some time later and I have been waiting two months now for the final item which was important to my spring planting plans (final item had a count of 5). I finally call Brecks on Monday of this week (after calling a few times over the last couple of months) to understand why the ship date has been pushed back multiple times and was now estimated as late as the last couple weeks of July?! That is nearly THREE months after the order. They told me how bad the season was in Ohio this year due to bad weather but that they were putting a 'rush' on my order - I thought their product came direct from Holland??? This is misleading at best. But it gets better...I went online this morning and noted they cancelled my order for the final item I have been waiting two months for. No email, no call and when I called them they said they are only returning a fraction of my total amount for the full order. Doesn't make any sense at all and on top of that their 'sister company', Michigan Bulb, did the same thing in canceling part of an order I just place about 10 days ago. This experience, coupled with the refund I had to request on my items from last fall due to them not coming up this spring was the end of it for me with Brecks and all their affiliates. I wanted to share this with the Dave's community (I rarely, if ever, post negative about a company) but this one is comical at best. Urgh - off to the local store to buy my items (probably should have done that from the get-go).
On Jun 15, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Jun 16, 2011 9:29 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for letting us know about the problem with your order. A customer service representative will be contacting you for your account information. We will do whatever we can to make sure you are taken care of. We apologize for any inconvenience."
Posted on June 6, 2011, updated June 14, 2011
I had oredred a couple of grab bags fromt hem 3 years back. The following year a few plants came back and so I asked them to send only one grab baga s replacement since thignswerent as bad. 2 years gone adn now only a few shamcrock bulbs and one dahlia and the lily tree (some bulbs) survived. I caled them this eyar to complain and requested ar eplacement. A very rude lady told me that they cannot keep shipping me free plants every time ( i asked for it only once so far). She said that she can give me a credit for future use that I CANNOT use for grab bags. It can only be used for phone order (not online). I said that is not fair adn then she said that if I ask for replacement then she threated to close my account and not let me order ever again. I did like the plants especailly the dahlia collection I received as part of my grab bag, the poppy anmonie, dutch glads, peacocks and many more but nothing survived. So basically it is like I spent my money to have those plants just for one season and not really perennials :(
On June 14th, 2011, loveforplants added the following:
I did get an email from brecks and I responded to itbut they havent gotten back to me after I provided them with the information that they askedOn Jun 14, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Jun 6, 2011 3:57 PM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for your posting. We apologize for the rudeness of our agent. A customer service representative will be contacting you for your account information and take care of this for you."
Posted on May 23, 2011, updated May 31, 2011
Posted on May 23, 2011, updated May 23, 2011
Posted on November 16, 2010, updated May 23, 2011
Posted on November 12, 2010, updated November 16, 2010
I order the grab bags---basically because they are such good deals; I always like the surprises, and it makes me change up what I normally do. I had a great spring bulb grab bag last year, and I LOVED the spring cheer daffodils I got by chance. The tulips were also great. I also bought the lily grab bag last time, though I never had done lilies before. The carpet lilies performed well; the trees did not; the Madonna lily was fantastic. I have to agree with the incredibly slow shipping. Holy cow--I ordered the daffodil grab bag this year on October 4th, and they are due to finally arrive November 15th. I have two other orders pending---spring bulb collection grab bag and a crocus grab bag (with some gipsy hyacinth I threw in with the 50% discount). Anyhow, I just wish they would ship them when I order them. It's obviously planting season---the orders should just go out.
On November 16th, 2010, bwalls added the following:
I just received my daffodil grab bag from Brecks and I'm THRILLED! For $19.99 plus shipping I got $350. 00 worth of bulbs. I have 50 of the summer cheer daffodils and 15 of the spring cheer---so I'm extremely happy. I got the shrike, raffles, and pensioner daffodils; I've never had a 2010 or 2009 Award Winner before---or any Award Winner for that matter, so I'm interested to see these. If I could give a Double Positive review, I would. I guess I've just lucked out, because it's still warm in the California desert, so planting now isn't an issue. Lucky me!On May 23rd, 2011, bwalls added the following:
I've ordered again from Brecks and the shipping is ridiculous!!!
I bought some for me and then some for my mother for Mother's Day (4/28 and 5/1 order 11210712000 and 11180312200) and shipping has been delayed three times! I live in the desert, and I needed to get them in the ground ASAP. I emailed them, but only got a form letter that didn't address the issue that they needed to ship my order now. I can see why other people get so irritated.On May 23rd, 2011, bwalls changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:
I've ordered again from Brecks and the shipping is ridiculous!!!
I bought some for me and then some for my mother for Mother's Day (4/28 and 5/1 order 11210712000 and 11180312200) and shipping has been delayed three times! I live in the desert, and I needed to get them in the ground ASAP. I emailed them, but only got a form letter that didn't address the issue that they needed to ship my order now. I can see why other people get so irritated.On May 31st, 2011, bwalls changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
I received my grab bag today, May 31...a month after I ordered, but I I'm going to change my feedback. The plants in the grab bags are just so nice---hostas, dahlias, glads, Mexican shell flower, lilies, asclepias, sedum. It may be too late for the glads and lilies since they are already starting to bloom in my yard, but for the money paid I received some great things. Also, my mom was really happy with her delayed Mother's Day surprise. It was still a good planting time for her---just not for me and my desert zone. Also, I really appreciate the person (s) who monitor this site from Brecks because he/she gets on top of it faster than any email or telephone call supervisor. On May 31, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Nov 15, 2010 8:46 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for your feedback. We appreciate you taking the time to let us know about your experience with us.
On May 23, 2011 1:49 PM, Breck's Bulbs added:
Thank you for your feedback. Your order is on the way and you should receive it in approximately the next 7-10 days. We apologize for the confusion as the bulbs are shipped from Holland and take about 4 weeks for delivery."
On May 30, 2011, ladybearscout60 Hendersonville, TN wrote:
There shipping is slow sometimes, but the bulbs are great. I had 50 lilies shipped. They just bloomed and they are huge. There is 5 huge blooms on about 15 inch stalks. Also the hostas were in great shape. I just planted begonias and they all seem to be coming up.
Overall everything I've had shipped have been good. I had some bad poppies but so far they have responded to my problem. I've been waiting on them to bloom to see which ones I lost.
On May 30, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On May 31, 2011 3:04 PM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for sharing your experience with our company. Just let us know which poppies you need reshipped and we will be happy to replace them for you."
I ordered the Mixed Grab Bag on 4/28/11 and the shipping date was between 5/6 through 5/9. On 5/8 they moved it back a week - since then it moves back every day with it now being moved out to 5/31 through 6/14 (with it moving backwards still). Calls provide no clarity and I was told that boats move slow from Holland. It is getting to be too late in the year to even plant many of the bulbs I will be getting. This is a very, very bad experience - please avoid.
On May 24, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On May 24, 2011 12:23 PM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
We appreciate you letting us know about the problem wth your order. We will have a customer service representative contact you for your account information and check into the delivery of your order."
I placed an order using a $25 coupon. As required, I paid the balance of the order with a credit card. Plants arrived in the fall and by the next spring they were blooming nicely. End of story? Not quite yet. Fast forward to the call from a collection agency claiming I somehow own money from a COD order. A quick call to Brecks (aka Gardens Alive) and they confirmed they failed to apply the coupon in full. It took them 2 minutes to figure out where they made the mistake. It is now nearly a month later and I still get calls from the collection agency despite attempting to follow-up with the company 1/2 dozen times. They have written nice letters (to me) stating that they have cleared this up, but the collection agency still says my account is not cleared. So if you order from this company, realize you may end up having your account go to a collection agency after they misapply a coupon. Good luck.
On May 13, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On May 16, 2011 10:43 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for letting us know about the problems you are having with your account. A customer service representative will be contacting you for your account information and take care of this for you.
On Apr 30, 2011, beckytheother Saint Paul, MN (Zone 5a) wrote:
Generally, I have been pleased by my experiences with this company. My perspective changed after I requested via email that an order I had placed be canceled. I was advised this was not possible as the order as "'unable to cancel your order since your order has been processed and ready to ship" by a gentleman by the name of Patrick. I do not understand how the order cannot be canceled if it has not shipped. I am very disappointed in their service. I am at present doubtful that I will place another order with this company.
On Apr 30, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On May 5, 2011 3:51 PM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
We apologize for the problem with your order. A customer service representative will be contacting you for your account information and take care of this for you."
On Apr 22, 2011, Roly0217 Miami, FL (Zone 10b) wrote:
Posted on April 15, 2011, updated April 22, 2011
Posted on January 20, 2011, updated April 15, 2011
Posted on January 17, 2011, updated January 20, 2011
Posted on January 17, 2011, updated January 17, 2011
I ordered 2 begonia collections last year. Planted the tubers as instructed and they never came up. These were tuberous begonias. One was the Prima Donna begonia collection and the other one was their other collection available at the time. I'm dissapointed that I didn't know about the Garden Watchdog before I placed my order.
On January 17th, 2011, Roly0217 added the following:
The other collection was the Roseform begonias. I absolutely loved the pictures but the results were less than desirable.On January 20th, 2011, Roly0217 changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
I've changed the rating to neutral since I've been contacted by a CS rep and they will be reshipping my order comes March. I will change to positive if they bulbs produce foliage and blooms.On April 15th, 2011, Roly0217 changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:
Well we go back to a negative here. I received half of my reshipped order since the other collection appeared to be out of stock. I didn't receive any form of store credit for the other collection. Or a replacement with something else. Buyers don't let the pretty pictures confuse you.On April 22nd, 2011, Roly0217 changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
Received my check in the mail. They took care of the problem though I was dissapointed that I didn't get the other collection. I'm sure that when I was first contacted by the rep the collection was not sold out.On Apr 22, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Jan 18, 2011 10:10 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for your feedback. We appreciate you taking the time to post. We do offer a lifetime guarantee on our products. A customer service representative will be contacting you for more information.
On Apr 20, 2011 7:54 AM, Breck's Bulbs added:
We had contacted the customer and a refund check was mailed out on April 19 for the remaining balance."
Last fall, I ordered three sets of tulip bulbs from Brecks (Prince Tulip Mixture, Tulip Parrot Mix and Cream of the crop Tulip Mix Super Sak). I wanted to experiment with planting them in containers and leaving the containers outdoors during the winter (plastic containers). The only protection I gave them were some bags of mulch placed up against them, a layer of bark mulch on top and any snow that fell. Like most places, we had a very cold winter in Ohio this year.
I'm thrilled that every container is currently up and blooming with very minimal loss of plants (I would guess I have 95% of the tulips blooming right now). I wasn't sure how they would do, but they came through wonderfully.
I also recently planted several Astilbe collections (March 2011) and every one of them are growing vigorously in the moist, shady location I chose. I'm looking forward to seeing them bloom later this spring.
I have tried several times recently to place an order on-line, but Breck's site won't accept their own $25 gift coupon ("no strings attached"). No 800 #, so I was going to mail it - until I read these comments. Sounds unreliable, and like too much of a hassle. Catalog is out for recycling!
We appreciate your feedback to let us know of the problem you were having. Unfortunately we do not have an 800# but we do have a notes box at the end of the order process where you can type in that you have the coupon. When we process your order we can then apply the coupon for you. We apologize for the problems on the website and this will be checked into."
On Mar 30, 2011, 2minny_mouse Kingstree, SC wrote:
Posted on March 25, 2011, updated March 30, 2011
Posted on March 12, 2011, updated March 25, 2011
Posted on October 16, 2010, updated March 12, 2011
This is my first time ordering from Breck's, My tulip bulbs arrived and they were in excellent condition. I can't wait to see them bloom in the spring. I had 2 bad bulbs, I called Breck's and they are going to replace them. How's that for excellent service! I will be ordering more things from Breck's.
Way to go Breck's!
On March 12th, 2011, 2minny_mouse changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:
All of the Halley's comet Jumbo Tulips didn't get up and the ones that did didn't grow as tall as they were discribe. I see red and pink and a few white ones, What happened to the other colors? I'm dissapointed but I'm not going to bash the company, I know they will make it right.On March 25th, 2011, 2minny_mouse changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:
I called customer to replace replace the tulips that didn't come up and the customer service lady wasn't very nice. I will think twice about ordering from them again. I was so happy with my first experience with them, Now I don't know about them any more. They guarantee their product why give the customer a hard time when they call for replacements.On March 30th, 2011, 2minny_mouse changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
Brecks contact me about the problem I had, And they are going to make it right. I'm changing my rating back to positive.
Thanks Breck's !!On Mar 30, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Oct 27, 2010 7:17 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
Thank you for your feedback. Your comments are very appreciated and are used to better service our customers We always do our best to provide the best possible service. Happy Gardening!"
received a shipping notice on 3/04/2011. After a few days I noticed that the UPS tracking data was fake After I complained I noticed the tracking number was changed on 3/10/2011 and received another shipping date through email.
The new tracking data even to this date says a label was printed 3/10 but, UPS never received the package.
I inquired a a 2nd time and the customer support basically said it shipped 3/04 and when I pointed out the tracking data saying the shipping label was created 3/10 they said it was lost and would reship.
The new delivery date (3/24-3/27) is up and still have not shipped. I have doubts this company will ever ship this package and sent them a final email stating that if they can't make this due date to please cancel. It is too hard trying to babysit and prod this company to ship products and trying to get around fake shipping labels and ever changing delivery dates.
On March 29th, 2011, jackparker changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
Much thanks for Donna here for addressing my concerns and locating my package. Everything arrived today and although small they look in decent shape. I can grow them up though.
. Donna seems a huge asset for this company and appears the only person from Brecks that could help me. . I will probably order from again fall/ next year but, a little earlier.
Maybe a disclaimer that X product takes more time due to shipping from Holland and maybe a little prep work with customer support as they too seemed confused about product location..
. On Mar 29, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Mar 25, 2011 8:45 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
I apologize for the confusion with your order. Your order is shipping directly from Holland via several different shipping modes, which may cause confusion on the shipping date. A customer service representative will contact you for your account information to find out when you should be receiving your order.
Posted on October 4, 2010, updated March 28, 2011
Posted on May 26, 2010, updated October 4, 2010
Being a newbie gardener, I called Breck's customer service several times to get information on the plants that I ordered. Each time I was given great info and helpful advise.
I have placed 2 orders with them and have been very pleased so far! I can't wait to get my fall order!
I have made this suggestion before, but the only thing that I would love to see is for the Customer Service Reps to have photos of what the seedlings or newly sprouted plants should look like. As I get more experienced, this should not make a difference, but as a newbie, that would have helped me identify plants that I forgot to label.
On October 4th, 2010, TishSparr added the following:
I just wanted to state what a pleasure it has been to work with Breck's. Yes, I did have some plants that did not work out, but they have 100% lived up to their Guarantee. I spoke with one of their customer service reps, Sharon, and was quite pleased with all of her help, friendliness and willingness to stay on the phone with me until all my questions/concerns were answered.
I have order a ton of spring bulbs and will be anxious to let you all know how well they do. From looking at them, they look to be in great shape. Out of 200 bulbs, only one bulb was damaged, and they are going to give me replacement for all three! That is customer service. The other thing that I noticed is that the bulbs are much larger than I expected and many of the bulbs were double, which is a nice bonus.
Also, I found that they had more specialty type plants that you don't usually find at the discount places or even a nursery, so I am excited to see how well they do. One note, I did find that some of their prices for like items were much higher than others sites, so just be a little careful with that. The main one that I notice was Fritillaria imperialis (Crown Imperial...19.99/one bulb vs. 9.99/bulb at an upscale nursery.
Other than that, don't be afraid to try them.
Tish SparrOn March 28th, 2011, TishSparr added the following:
Well here is my follow-up to the the bulbs that I ordered last fall. All came looking healthy. Now that it is spring, it has been so fun to walk out and see all the new growth that my gardens are having.
They really have been a great company to work with. As I have learned a little bit more about gardening, the plants that did not work out, were because of ME (not THEM), yet they still replaced them with no questions asked.On Mar 28, 2011, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
"On Jun 8, 2010 11:01 AM, Breck's Bulbs responded with:
We appreciate your feedback. Your feedback is appreciated and used to help provide better service to our customers. Thank you for your suggestion and Happy Gardening!"