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Fall 2012 has been my first experience ordering from Burpee.
The bulbs came within acceptable sizes and health. Nothing overly impressive, but not disappointing, either.
My orders from 7/19/12 and 8/7/12 included:
Tulip, Huis Ten Bosch
Tulip, Fire Wings
Foxglove, Rose Shades
Columbine, Origami Red & White
Eragrostis, Purple Love Grass
Astilbe, Astary Mix
Echinacea, Purple Double Delight
Columbine, Lime Sorbet
Lavendar, Lacy Frills
Lily, Checkered Lily
Helleborus, First Cuckoo
The only reason I'm not strictly positive right now is because of customer service. I made a call in to ask about how well their tulips perrenialize. She responded that a supervisor would call me to let me know. They never did. It doesn't matter, now, as I ordered them, anyway. I'll just have to find out from experience. I will probably update it to positive if all of the plants do well or I have good service if they don't.
I will try to remember to update the next few years with how they are doing and anything else I order and how they are doing.
On Nov 12, 2012, SeniorGardening Sullivan, IN wrote:
I think it’s probably just human nature that we tend to post comments about vendors when we have a problem with them. I certainly have done so here in the past. But when I put together my list of recommended seed suppliers for a Senior Gardening posting this year, I realized that I should make a positive comment here about each of our suppliers that have performed so well over the years.
Burpee was the first mail order seed catalog we used almost forty years ago. Over the years, we got away from using them in favor of other vendors such as Stokes, Johnny’s, and Twilley. But in the last few years, we’ve gotten back to using Burpee for items such as garlic, Mr. Big peas, and several flower varieties.
We’ve not had to make a claim on any seed or supplies ordered from Burpee over the years. That says a lot.
I got a promotional offer from Burpee in my email box today for 20 percent off their berry plants. My birthday is coming up so I thought I'd order a few of their (ridiculously high priced) raspberry bushes. When I went to check out, the message I was given was that I would not finalize my order until all was well. Well, there was no place to enter the discount code, but I kept on going, relying on the promise,and found I'd checked out without the 20 percent off.
I called Burpee, and I was annoyed, because this just seemed so shady, and how many customers just let that go and pay the extra money? I didn't like that. I was going to cancel but decided I'd wait. The rep made the adjustment to the price of my order and said she'd email me with an acknowledgement.
So I got an email telling me that my credit card had been debited for the wrong amount. Furthermore, I was told the order would not ship for another 2 weeks. I order a lot on the Net, and the normal practice is to debit my card when the items are shipped, not at the moment of order, and with all the mixup Burpee has with their ordering, not even providing a place to put in the discount code -- it irked me.
So I called and cancelled the order. I was told they would not refund my money for a week. They get to keep my money for a week after wasting 2 hours of my time and giving me nothing but headaches. I see no reason why I have to wait a week for them to refund my money. With thousands of customers, if this is their normal practice, this gives the owners of this company access to a lot of free money.
I'm sick of dishonest greedy corporates. I filed a complaint against them with the Pennsylvania Attorney General.
On Aug 28, 2012, Indianagirl57 Cloverdale, IN wrote:
This year gardening was challenging with dry, extremely hot weather. I planted Big Daddy Tomatoes from Burpee seed. I didn't get them set out until late, but they did well and exceeded my others. Also,I planted their new stringless Italian type pole bean. They did not set beans early because of the weather, but when it began to cool in August they began to set on in abundance. I have never seen more beautiful beans! I am very excited about both varieties! Burpee has always been considered a quality company by me in my many years of gardening experience.
I had a fifteen year old unopened pack of Lobelia Crystal Palace seeds by Burpee. Inside the pack is a smaller "Life Lock" packet. The seeds are very tiny and numerous. I planted all of them in a hanging basket and it seems most germinated! I thinned them down to a few plants which are growing well and blooming.
On Aug 23, 2012, Jnette Northeast, WA (Zone 5a) wrote:
I have had very good experiences with Burpee this year. I had a problem with some seeds I had ordered from them, but I knew these particular seeds were difficult to start, and they were. But, I wrote to Burpee and Zachary replaced them immediately. Then I had a problem with those because the thermostat on my heating mat over heated and cooked them. Zachary replaced those also.
This spring I ordered a new Honey Suckle, Major Wheeler, a red one, and when it bloomed it came out yellow. I wrote, and Colleen is having a Red one sent. She gave me my option of that or a refund.
I find Burdpee a very good company to do business with. They stand behind their service guarantees. Thanks Colleen, Jeanette
On Aug 23, 2012, yousirname Sellersville, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:
Burpee was the first garden catalog I ever received as a five-year-old gardener, and I'm from Pennsylvania, so I'm sure nostalgia influences my favorable impressions of this company.
This year, however, I've been impressed with an array of discounted and free shipping (no minimum) offers I've received from their company emails. I had one rare perennial plant I was eying up for a while, and I was able to have it shipped for free, just one plant! It's been growing beautifully. Started small at the end of may and now it's HUGE and happy in a difficult spot in my garden.
In twenty-five years of ordering, I've never been disappointed. I will say that their common plants/seeds are overpriced, but they do have some rarer varieties which are priced fairly. Add free shipping, and you're good to go!
On Aug 11, 2012, Marilyn1335 Westminster, MD wrote:
Last year 2011, I purchased two Echinacea, Double Scoop Raspberry and Pomegranate. I wanted to write to let you know I love those plants and they have bloomed for me for weeks. I have not seen them yet available many places and I am sure glad that I purchased them from your company. They are certainly my favorite of all that I have and I do have many.
I placed a $70 seed order for fall planting on July 19, 2012. On July 26, I had not received the seeds, so I logged onto the site to check the order status. The website indicated that the order had not yet shipped, so I called Burpee for more information. I was told they were doing inventory in the warehouse, but it was nearly complete and the seeds would ship that same day. The next day (July 27), I logged onto the site to check the status again. Still, the site indicated that the order had not shipped. Beginning to get nervous about my fall planting schedule, I called Burpee again. Once again, I was told the seeds would ship "today". The following Monday, July 30, I logged on to the site to find the same message ("Order not yet shipped"). I figured maybe it just hadn't updated, so I would wait another day. On Tuesday, July 31, I logged in again to find the same message.
Now 12 days after I placed the order, I called Burpee to check the status again. I was informed that they were still doing inventory and that it would be complete within the "next few business days", upon which the order would ship. This now being totally unacceptable, that they had strung me along for 12 days leading me to believe the order was on the verge of shipping, I could not afford to lose any more growing days so I cancelled my order.
I placed an order with Pinetree Seeds, as they seem to have great reviews online, not to mention, I got more seeds than my $70 order at Burpee and it only came to $33! A little bit of customer service would have gone a long way in Burpee's case.
I ordered several packets of seeds for my Fall planting, and they arrived in 3 business days. They were packed securely and I received what I ordered. I found their website to be very helpful and informative, and their prices to be reasonable. I found the transaction to be pleasant and I suggest purchasing from them.
Posted on July 23, 2012, updated July 23, 2012
Posted on July 19, 2012, updated July 23, 2012
Posted on July 7, 2012, updated July 19, 2012
I moved back into gardening territory two years ago. I remember my Dad ordering from Burpee. He always let me grow something from them. Never any problems.
Now that I am back, I have ordered twice from them (two growing seasons in a row). I like their tomato cages, and accessories. They make sense.
I remember the count of seeds being on the packages (so important with veggies), and this seems a way of the past. They should go back to that system, and of putting MORE into each package. But they are not alone, so I do not cast a negative their way.
I have bought perennials from them in both orders, and they arrived just fine, with proper planting instructions.
All told, I will order from them again. What I really appreciate is their catalog arriving in the dreary winter, giving me allot of time to plan out my vegetable garden.
On July 19th, 2012, Gracye changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:
How very sad. Now I MUST cast a negative rating. At the end of placing a recent Internet order, I was given an offer to give feedback with the promise of "free shipping" on a future order. The catch? I had to sign onto Facebook! I found this out after I'd spent time writing supportive words about them.
I do not have, nor will I, create a Facebook account in order to comply. I surely wish this had been stated BEFORE I spent time on behalf of them.
I sent an email to Burpee, stating that this process seemed unfair (totally excluding those without Facebook accounts). I asked Burpee to look at my account to judge my loyalty (and seriousness). Easily, in two years, I have spent over $500.00 with them.
The reply was "this is a one-time offer and will not reappear, and in this day of computerization..." There was no effort to extend another offer. This was new to me, as customer satisfaction certainly was a trademark of the way Burpee answered my father's occasional questions, why he stayed with them, and a fond memory for me. This reply explained company policy and the changing world, so my reaction, and direction, is to change as well.
I will, as my dear father advised, "vote with my money." Thank you, Burpee, for giving me the reason to try other companies, after a lifetime of loyalty. And the catalog? Please don't send me another, for I cannot afford your "free offers."On July 23rd, 2012, Gracye added the following:
7/23/12: Burpee has refunded my shipping cost on last order. Forwarded my comments to their Marketing Department. The refund is greatly appreciated, but is not the answer to my original question, as others will encounter the same until there is positive change. My rating stays the negative, pending future correction.
I hope that some staffer (or the President) of Burpee will read the negative comments by my fellow Dave Gardeners, many old-time customers of Burpee's, to address the whole of the problem. I read them, after this experience, and realized that I had looked the other way in company loyalty while Dave Gardeners spoke up about problems that I, too, had encountered. No longer!
Too many companies are losing touch with their customers, and I hate to see this "American Institution" do the same.On July 23rd, 2012, Gracye changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
This is my final comment on this company. Negative is changed to neutral, as the company again contacted me and explained their philosophy. They have different offers that appeal to different customers. Thank you, and I do hope that my effort was to some benefit.
I have only used Burpee over the last 2 months for one item...stainless steel plant markers, which are issued in groups of 25. The markers have been delivered extremely promptly, generally 1 day, and have worked well in my garden. Burpee has also generously included $5.00 and $10.00 off your next order coupons on 3 occasions. I cannot comment on the quality of their plants/seeds, but I am impressed with how they handle their "supply" orders!
On Jun 24, 2012, TruNorth7 Walnut Creek, CA wrote:
I ordered 3 packets of Vigna caracalla seeds and 3 live Vigna caracalla plants from Burpee on May 8th. The seeds arrived quickly, the plants took about 2 weeks. The plants arrived very healthy and happy, despite almost a week in a box, There were multiple plants in each 4 inch pot and the roots were thick and healthy. I was very happy with the plants
However, I had a low germination rate with the seeds, despite nicking, soaking, heat mat, etc. Only 6 of the 21 germinated. Of those 6, only 2 survived. I wasn't pleased, so I contacted the company. I received a response in less than 24 hours, they honored the "Burpee Guarantee". and sent me new seeds quickly. The second set germinated better than the first. Still not what I had hoped (around 60%) but considering that this plant is notoriously hard to germinate/grow I'm not surprised.
Overall, the people at Burpee were pleasant to deal with and I'm pretty happy with my experience and would shop with Burpee again.
On Jun 20, 2012, happymommy11 Palos Park, IL wrote:
I love Burpee
Any plant I have ordered from the company has done very well. I joke with my husband that Burpee plants are on steroids because they grow so big and fast.
On another note, the seeds on the site are overpriced as are the more common plants you can find at hardware stores. Many of these products are found at retailers and hardware stores so you are better off buying these in stores.
The Iris Ensata and Tradescantia Bilberry Ice were received as described but I did not receive plants for the Polygonatum nor for the Tradescantia Osprey. The Polygonatum that was sent consists of a (1) 2.5" and(1) 1" piece of rhizome (no roots) stuffed in a bag with pine shavings and the Osprey was a small root cluster with a few weak white and yellow 1-2" damaged sprouts stuffed in another plastic bag with shavings. These are not plants! My confusion is further compounded by the fact that the other Tradescantia ordered did arrive as a plant in a pot. These "plants" were not cheap and I would have never ordered either of them at these prices (nor during this time of year) had your website accurately reflected them as bareroot rather than plants in 3.5" pots. Can you please look into this and see if a mistake has occurred? I will gladly send you back this shipment if you will send me the plants that I have ordered in return. Thank you
This pretty much describes my dis-satisfaction. The one plant that actually arrived in a pot is about 6" tall. I purchased other Tradescantia from Bluestone a couple of weeks ago and the smallest one they sent me was 18" tall and very full - all for about $4 during their springtime sale. I will not be purchasing anything else from Burpee's.
On June 18th, 2012, Old_Gardener added the following:
I received an email from Burpee's today. The email just provided me an RMA number and listed the 2 items invoice-style but there is no information regarding whether they will refund or replace these 2 items after I have returned them nor did they provide a mailing address to ship to. They also failed to respond as to whether a mistake had occurred (or a substitution made) in sending me bare-root stock as opposed to potted plants. I have replied to their email requesting clarification and a shipping address but, for now, my review remains "negative" due to inadequate communication.On June 18th, 2012, Old_Gardener changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
I am upgrading to neutral. Marsha contacted me today and is refunding the 2 plants in question. Thank you, Marsha, for the communications.
I am very unhappy with their customer service! I placed an order 3-13 for seeds and 3 plants of ornamental grass. Received the seeds about 10 days later, ok not great but reasonable.
According to the order confirmation, I would receive the plants end of March beginning of April. When that did not happen by end of April I called and was told they will ship it soon since my zone was not being sent out yet (for hardy plants?). After 2 more calls and several emails, each time putting me off with another excuse and" they will be there next week" I was really frustrated!
I just received an email (6-6 Yes, that is 3 months later!) as a return authorization crediting my account. I understand things happen and the quality wasn't to their standards, but how about LETTING ME KNOW? No communication whatsoever, no sorry for the inconvenience, no $5 for next time...which I will never do again.
What's the point of giving me a shipping date and then tell me my zone doesn't ship for another month?
Posted on May 1, 2012, updated June 8, 2012
I placed an order on March 9, 2012 for two "Purple Wonder "Strawberry plants.
After not hearing back about delivery I called and discovered they could not find my web order even though I had a confirmation number. After they corrected the order they said they would send me the plants as soon as they were in stock. Well, I received a box from Burpees on April 30, 2012 and when opened found two
shriveled and dead strawberry plants that had been dislodged from the dirt.
The invoice said these plants were mailed April 10, 2012, although when I called Burpees they said they were mailed April 24, 2012 . The plants certainly look like they had been in transit 20 days. I called Burpees and was told they no longer had the Purple Wonder strawberries this spring and I could wait till fall for additional stock. When asked why they came in such terrible condition they informed me they are not responsible for how UPS handles their shipping. Needless to say I asked for a refund. Still would like to purchase the Purple Wonder strawberry plants only not from Burpees.
On June 8th, 2012, gershwin changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
I just received two new Purple Wonder strawberry replacement plants from Burpee. They arrived incredibly well packed and in wonderful condition. I appreciate that they listened to my concerns and acted promptly to resolve my problem. Top class customer service. Thanks Marsha...
I ordered 36 Lisianthus plants for my cut flower business. They arrived after a week in transit in two boxes taped together. There were three 6-packs in each box. Unfortunately, in each box one 6-pack had tipped over and spilled both plants and soil mix. The stems were broken and the roots were beginning to dry out. Most of the remaining plants had been pruned, as an enclosed note pointed out, "to better handle the rigors of shipping". Of the 36 plants, only one was intact. I called Burpee right away to complain and was told to wait a day or two and then assess the damage. I did that and then emailed them. A got a quick response asking if I wanted a refund or replacement. I asked for a replacement. Burpee responded that they had no more Lisianthus so I would get a refund.
I've ordered plants from several companies and I know they can be shipped without pruning or spilling. This is the last time I order plants from Burpee.
I've always had good luck with their seeds and plants.
This year I ordered their gomphrena fireworks plants, which I grew from seed last year which did extremely well and wanted to try the plants. The plants arrived in beautiful condition...a little too early for our crazy spring this year but held over beautifully and are doing great. Very happy.
Posted on May 11, 2011, updated May 17, 2012
On March 3, I ordered almost $100 worth of plants from Burpee online and relied on the published shipping dates for my area on the Burpee website (which would have all plants delivered to me before April 30, 2011). It is now May 11 and I have received nothing. I emailed the company to complain. One week ago, I received the following email response:
"Hello: I am sorry you are not happy with the delivery date. I thank your [sic] for your feedback and will be sure to pass it on to my supervisor."
Hmmn. I don't think the problem is my personal "happiness" about Burpee's delivery date. I relied on Burpee's own published date (the plants to arrive in time for Mother's Day, which they did not). Anyhow, t's now another week and I still don't have the plants, yet they're thanking me for my "feedback"? Basically....."Hey, sorry you're unhappy about getting swindled, customer, but hey we sure do thank ya for the feedback!"
On May 17th, 2012, charlenenj changed the rating from negative to positive and added the following:
Last year, I ordered lisianthus plants and the delivery date was a bit longer than originally stated and I got a bit of a "auto" response to my inquiry. However, overall I don't think this was a big deal. And wow....the lisianthus plants were showstoppers. I am ordering another 36 plants of them now and don't care that they are $80 and are only annuals. They are beautiful!
I am really disappointed in Burpee I placed an order on the 4th of May and here it is the 12th of May and my order still hasen't shipped. I contacted them by e-mail through there website and it said wait 48 hours for a response from our customer service department. And guess what nothing heard back from them either and this is a Mother's day present now I am going to look really bad tomorrow on Mother's Day because of Burpee. No way it takes that long to ship 3 different live plants I am kinda wondering what the Burpee shippers do down there. Do they just stare at your order And gaze at it for a week I can't believe that. The Kid that started the company in 1876 probably dosn't deal with the company anymore that's why it seems it is going down hill because if he ran it like this in 1876 it wouldn't be as big as the company is today. Hope I receive my package soon I am really worried about it.
On Mar 22, 2012, morning4glory Lynn Haven, FL wrote:
I ordered a pack of 3 tuberose bulbs from Burpee. The package came in a timely fashion, but the bulbs are not in very good shape. I have planted them and will see how they do. They look "old", not what I expected. Never ordered from them before, and may not again.
Posted on March 12, 2012, updated March 20, 2012
Last year I ordered seeds and seed potatoes from Burpee's. The seeds arrived within two weeks. One of the packets was empty, but the other seeds germinated adequately.
The real problem was with the potatoes. They arrived the last week in May. I had emailed the company and they said that they sent them according to when I should plant them. They actually arrived the same week that I harvested the potatoes that I bought at a big box store when I got tired of the runaround with Burpee's. Well, I planted them right away, and out of the two lbs of potatoes I ordered I grew four potatoes. It was too hot for them, having been planted two months too late. For how very expensive the potatoes I ordered ended up being with shipping, I was very disappointed.
On March 20th, 2012, AntoniaB added the following:
I received an email from a Burpee representative:
Dear Ms. Barry:
I am not sure if you had received the D-Mail I had sent to you on March 12, 2012; therefore, I am sending this email.
Burpee products are guaranteed for one year from the date of purchase.
Our records show you had placed an order for the potatoes in the year 2010. The order had shipped in early May of 2010. I could not find an order that was placed last year. May I have the order number? We would gladly honor the guarantee for the 2011 order.
Potatoes are cool weather plants. They may be set out 2 weeks prior to the last expected spring frost, when the ground is dry enough to work. Our records show that you live in zone 4. The average last frost date for zone 4 is early June. Do you plant the potatoes in a different location? If so, that address could be listed as the shipping address and the order would ship at the appropriate time for planting in that area.
Please be assured that we do want our customers to have a positive experience with our service and products.
Customer Service Department
Thanks for replying. I can't find the order number.
I live in zone 5, according to our county's extension office. Our last frost date is either May 15 or May 21 depending on where in the county we live. I live in town, so I usually go with May 15. I plant potatoes well before that, in April, and keep them covered with dirt until the beginning of May. I also start them sprouting indoors two weeks before I plant them out, so it wouldn't be unusual for me to start sprouting them the first week in April, esp. if they are an early variety.
Here is the Wisconsin extension office's fact sheet about potatoes that also say to start the early ones sprouting in early April, even for zone 4. fyi.uwex.edu/farmersmarkets/files/2009/06/potato.pdf
I usually grow Yukon golds and blue potatoes, both early varieties. Getting them in late May around here means planting them in 80 + degree temps most years, and they just don't grow when they are started in that heat.
Thanks again for responding to my review. I may order from your company again when I need seeds, but since it appears you ship rather late in the season for me, I wouldn't order time sensitive items.
I am happy that they are willing to honor their guarantee, but I probably will not be ordering potatoes from them again.
I've had good luck with Burpee so far. For years I have received their catalogs, and never actually placed an order (big dreams, no time) This year was different, and I took the plunge to start some seeds indoors. I got 6 or 8 envelopes of various veg. and their XL growing system, because I am a notorious over-waterer. Everything came in a prompt manner, except for the plants I ordered for later, but what the heck can I do with them now anyhow? It's Buffalo in winter! So count me pleased. There was a lot of information available on their website, as far as advice and videos. It was a great resource. Now if my precious seeds just do their thing I'll be a happy camper.
I wanted to buy one pack of tomato seeds from Burpee and they charged me $4.95 for mailing approx. 30 seeds in an envelope. The Big Mama tomato seeds cost me about 33 cents apiece. I will be saving more seeds in the future. I have bought from them for years but that has changed now.
They will definitely not get any more business from me.
On Feb 11, 2012, bar55nelson Fairless Hills, PA wrote:
We have ordered from Burpee online as well as made purchases from the Warminster PA store. Every time we ordered a set of something (grape vines come in sets of two, for instance) one plant was thriving and the other was dead. Even replacements have arrived dead. Customer Service at the store was non-existent. No one could answer basic questions about the plants or the products. I don't even buy their seed packs from the local stores. Too expensive and the seeds don't do any better than other less expensive brands. Bye, Bye, Burpee . . .
On Nov 2, 2011, mizznkeeper Lincolnville, SC wrote:
Posted on October 28, 2011, updated November 2, 2011
Twice now I have orderded and had to follow up with e-mails as to where my order is for both have taken months to arrive. When I order I have particular things in mind for the order but it negates my purpose when the order is months late. I order what I want and I resent that the company then can tell me it is not time for the particular item to be sent, one was a houseplant and some seeds.I orderded 8/8/2011, i called again last week and told them I was leaving for a month and would they send the order, they said they would send it this week, it is friday and it is not here yet!!!! Really hate having to hasstle a company for my order when they take the money up front.....
On November 2nd, 2011, mizznkeeper changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
I apologize, this incident was for Burgess....I have orderded from Burpee in the past, actually these and Royal Dutch all don't have a reasonable turn around time. I have orderded from Park Seeds and they are good....
I purchased the Seedless Tomatoes Burpee has out this year and they are wonderful. I have Diverticulosis and I cannot eat seed. ( Yes I can pick seeds out of regular tomatoes but they just aren't the same). I had my first tomato sandwich in about 15 years, what a treat. I also shared some tomatoes with my brother, cousin, and a neighbor who have the same condition ( they were a big hit) . The tomatoes and very sweet and very tasty.
Will definitely be planting more this coming year.
Wake Forest NC
On Oct 5, 2011, Burpee (W. Atlee Burpee) responded with:
Thank you very much for your positive feedback on the Tomato, “Sweet Seedless” variety. We are glad that you were able to enjoy the fruits of your labor.
We at Burpee are always striving to provide excellent products and service to our customers. We are happy that we have been able to provide you with products and service that meets your high expectations.
On Aug 20, 2011, paradacrades Hilliard, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:
My family has ordered seeds from Burpee for over 50 years, but for the past few years we have not done so. Today’s Burpee is not the same Burpee that my father and my grandfather ordered from. Instead of a positive or a negative, I feel I have to rate the company as neutral. I have never really had a problem with the seeds I have ordered from Burpee. The germination rate was usually pretty good, but no better than the germination rates for seeds I have ordered from other seed companies. They also have a good selection of seeds, and I have never really had a problem with customer service. The reason I give them a neutral instead of a positive is for their prices. The price of their seeds is substantially more than other seed companies, and the shipping costs are quite a bit higher than other companies as well. I will continue to buy Burpee seeds if I see something I like in the store, where the prices seem to be a little more reasonable than in the catalogue, but I will no longer order from their catalogue. Why order something from Burpee when you can get the same or a similar product from another mail-order company for quite a bit less, not to mention save quite a bit in shipping while you are at it?
On Aug 1, 2011, laurieeirual Boston, MA (Zone 5b) wrote:
Posted on January 31, 2011, updated August 1, 2011
I bought some Burpee seeds in local stores last year and they were TERRIBLE. Simple things like nasturtiums didn't sprout at all.
I'm never buying their seeds again.
BTW A couple of years ago I compared the prices for some tomato seeds between Burpee's and my usual place and Burpee's was shockingly higher.
On August 1st, 2011, laurieeirual changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
Okay, I think I need to partially apologize to Burpee. In the end I *did* buy a few of their seed packs this year (a certain monster of an orange store is so convenient!) and they sprouted fine.
On Jul 12, 2011, vommarlowe Overland Park, KS wrote:
I usually order seeds from several companies each year as well as from the hardware store. For the past two years, I have had much better luck with Burpee seeds than other companies.
I mostly grow heirloom tomatoes, squash, lettuce, cukes, annual flowers (marigolds, zinnias, nasturtiums). The Burpee nasturtiums especially have much better germination rates than others, although the zinnias did not fare quite as well (possibly user error).
I also ordered tomato seedlings this year, which are doing very well, and some perennial flowers (echinacea) for my new house. Both groups have taken off like gangbusters. I also tried their new variety of pepper, tangerine dream, and it is coming along nicely as promised.
I always wince at the price of their seeds compared to some other mail order companies, but when I get right down to it, I'd rather pay four bucks a packet for something that grows a reliable producing variety than take my chances on poor germination rates and no fruit at all.
On Jul 11, 2011, trishrobinson Old River-Winfree, TX wrote:
I ordered tomato and pepper plants this year and had a horrible experience. Both sets of plants arrived dead or dying, and I emailed Burpee and they said they would send out a replacement order immediately. It took over 2 weeks to get replacement plants, which also arrived shriveled and some were dead. I planted the ones that had a bit of life left but they ended up dying too. I emailed Burpee again and told them what had happened but never got a response. I didn't want any replacement plants anyway because it was too late at that point to transplant anything and the heat would have killed anything new. I won't ever order plants from them again. They just can't survive the shipping and packaging.
Posted on June 1, 2011, updated June 11, 2011
I ordered some plants from Burpees, and while the perennial came in a reasonable period, there was no warning as there is from most companies. The annuals I ordered also just arrived one day, about 2 weeks later than I wanted, and also without warning. Three of the most expensive "Black Cat" petunias were barely rooted and are hanging on by a thread. They will need a lot of nursing along if they live at all. Last year I had a similar experience with a 3-pack of tomatoes, two of which were dead on arrival. For some reason, Burpee puts the most expensive plants in this large plastic packaging that keeps them so wet they seem to suffocate. The blue sky petunias I ordered in a larger pack were in better shape. Perhaps they ran out of the Black Cats and sent unrooted cuttings? Some companies just let you know they are "out of stock" right on the website, just like they let you know the plants have been shipped so you can track them. It's too bad as the breeders seem to come up with some cool plants but other departments are not there yet. Either way, my experiences in the last two years with DOA annuals and poor germination on some seeds have soured me. I have Johhny's seeds that are still getting high germination 5 years later while the Burpee seeds had only 50% germination the year I got them. I did not call customer service since replacements would be so late as to be pointless. I have purchased local plants instead and should have done so in the first place.
On June 11th, 2011, axelweed changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
Burpees contacted me soon after my post, apologizing profusely and refunding my money. They were going to inform the various departments of my complaints. As a result, I am changing my rating to neutral. I hope they get it together as it is an old company and they have some nice looking plants.