On May 17, 2013, julianchandler Stillwater, OK wrote:
I ordered three 'Fireworks" Gomphrenas from Burpee's. The plants were wilted and falling out of their pots and most of the dirt was in the bottom of the box. I sent an email to Burpee's customer service and got an immediate reply asking whether I wanted a refund or replacement plants. That doesn't make up for the fact that the plants were in horrible shape to start with, however.
Ordered for the first time from Burpee.
2 packets of California poppies-
one sup'd to have 350 seeds
the other sup'd to have 100. They cost me 5.00 and 4.00/per packet. Expensive compared to other companies.$6.00 shipping.
The one had (generously) maybe 100-150 seeds. The other had 30 seeds (I have a seed spreader, and I actually counted how many seeds.)
I called and they are going to send me more, but I am burning mad.
1st- my seeding is now another week behind.
2nd- this must be their standard practice. It isn't logical that I order two packets and both have less than have of the number of seeds, unless this is their usual practice. And the reason they keep doing this is bec. they can. I bet most people don't complain. I'll never order from then, and I'll make sure no one I garden with ever does either.
Ordered two Echinacea Pink Double Delight plants. Paid approx 11.50 each with a discount and had free shipping. For the price, I expected decent sized plants. Plants are very, very small. Very small. They are in 4" containers and one is about 1 1/2" tall and about 3" in circumference. The second is half that size. Packaging was almost non-existent. One container was completely emptied within the box and the plant out of the container. Did I mention that the shipping box has large holes so the dirt which emptied out of the container was also coming out of the box? It looks like both plants were recently repotted into the containers that they were shipped in as the one plant that fell completely out had it's roots in a compact ball. I am certain with TLC I can get the smaller, tramatized plant to grow, but I shouldn't have to. I should be receiving plants in beautiful condition, yes? I am re-doing a bed and have ordered from many places the past few weeks. This is the first situation I have had like this.
Order placed on 4/11 for eggplant supports and Hydrangea Everlasting Revolution with free shipping and $10 off. Regular price for Hydrangea is $26.95, it is overpriced. Full payment was charged on 4/12.
On 4/16 contacted customer service to check order status. I was told that:
1) they are in peak season, long delivery date is to be expected.
2) delivery dates posted online are incorrect. Hydrangea won't be delivered until the week of May1. Eggplant supports should be delivered from the warehouse within a couple of days.
3) I can cancel the order if I don't want to wait.
On 4/17, received shipment confirmation for the eggplant supports. Until today 4/20, the UPS tracking # still not showing the expected delivery date, the shipment is still in the orgin scan place, PA state. (I have placed a lot of online orders, I have never seen this happened with UPS.)
Just contacted Burpee customer service. I was told that:
1) they ship UPS the same way as the others. They don't know why the UPS delivery date is still not showing. If I don't see any shipment progress, I can call UPS, there is nothing they can do about it.
2) customer complaints can be seen anywhere on the internet as I mentioned other customer had complainted the tracking problem on Dave's Garden.
3) I can cancel the order if I want to. I can return the eggplant supports at their own shipping cost.
The way their customer representatives answered you is very irritating and so irresponsible. Burpee doesn't care about any customer complaints and doesn't welcome any customers not happy with their shipping problem.
Even though I placed the order mainly because of the Hydrangea, I have decided to cancel out the whole order. I will return the eggplant supports. Thank God that my order is free shipping, so I don't have to waste the shipping charge. NO more business with Burpee. Dump the catalog to trash bin.
God bless me that I will get my full refund without too much problems. Worry about the eggplant supports return.
On Apr 13, 2013, maranser pittsburgh United States wrote:
Every year Burpee gets worse! I always tried to figure out a way to take the blame for something I may have done to account for Burpee's poor seed germination and this year answered the question. I planted 8 different kinds of peppers, all in the same seed flat. After a few weeks in the germination incubator, my problem was answered. 7 out of the 8 had the usual Burpee germination rate=2 sprouts out of 20 on average. Every year thier seed packs get smaller(wieght by millionth of a gram now!) and the germination drops another 10 % down to where now only 10 % is the germ. rate. The bad part of that was the one pack out of the eight had over 90% germ. rate in the same flat/enviroment as the others. The Patio Pleaser Peppers had the same germination as my own saved seeds-over 90%. It's pretty bad when Burpee's makes themselves look bad when comparing thier own seeds with each other. I have seeds that are over 15 years old that are NOT Burpee's that have better germ. rates then the 7 out 8 seed packs. I figure Burpee's seeds must be well over twenty years old to be so close to the edge of non-germination besides being brown/black in seed color. If only Burpee would of tested the Patio Pleasers and seen that they out perform by ten fold thier other seeds, they shouldn't of sold them so to have nothing good to compare to. Most of Burpee seeds are raised over seas and few are from the U.S.A. I would love to grow Burpee seeds here in the U.S.A. but the problem is that they too would out-perform thier other seeds and make the rest look bad like the Patio Pleasers did. I was ok when I was only able to compare Burpee's bad seeds with all the other bad seeds of thiers in the past years, and I would of been better off if I never would of got a good seed of theirs to make the rest look so bad and realize its not something wrong that I've been doing.
As far as Burpee's having a nice variety of seeds, that they do! I planted thier Chinese Giants two years ago and I swear no two plants where of the same variety. I would think if thier seeds are over twenty years old, that they would know whats not true to variety by now and not continue selling them. I was always told that a seed variety must breed true for 5 years running to become a variety and if thats the case, they got another 6 more years to go on the Chinese Giants variety. Burpee's reps are always quick to put the blame of poor results on the grower since they claim they have way better results then I do and it s got to be something I've done wrong, well, how is it my fault for the mixed variety? The answer is truely that it IS my fault for buying thier seeds in the first place. When will I ever learn?
To top that off, their seeds are worth more than GOLD! Here's the math! There are 165,000 tomatoe seeds in a pound or 10,312 seeds in an ounce. Burpee's Steak Sandwich Hybrid seed pack (45 mg-about half the size of a baby aspirin!) contains 22 seeds(counting 2-3 half seed pieces!). That works out to 469 seed packs @ $2.49/pack=$1167.81 an ounce! Now if your lucky and get a 50% germination rate, that comes to $2335.62 an ounce for growable seeds!! Yes, Its cheaper to by your wife a gold necklace than one made from Burpee's tomatoe seeds! Good thing Burpee's Steak Sandwich Hybrid seeds come from China with cheap labor because could you imagine how much Burpee would have to charge if they where grown in the U.S.A. and have to pay probably minimum wage at that! No wonder the seeds are so old, at 45 mg. a pack, it probably would take 20 years to sell a bag of seeds big enough to ship here from China!
I ordered over $50.00 of seeds almost 4 weeks ago. Then I received an email that stated my order had shipped. The email provided a tracking number without stating the actual shipper. I tried tracking the order thru UPS, FedEX and USPS to no avail. The tracking number was never found on any of them.
First: why wasn't the shipper disclosed?
Second: why would it take 2-3 days for the tracking number to be available on the "shipper's tracking system? Our company uses UPS and FedEx to ship our goods and the tracking info is available within hours.
Sadly, we never did find any usable tracking information using the tracking number provided by Burpee.
We eventually contacted Burpee and informed them that we did not receive our seeds. Burpee then cancelled the original order and placed a new order for our seeds. Then several days later, we received a notice of shipment of our seeds. Unfortunately, the same poor information appears on the email. No shipper is disclosed. The tracking number does not work on UPS, FedEx or USPS.
We are very disappointed with this situation. As you certainly know, customers order seeds early to begin the germination process indoors so as to provide a bigger seedlings when the outdoor season begins. Now we are at least 3 weeks behind, IF WE EVER RECEIVE this reorder.
While we have for many, many years used Burpee seeds, we are unlikely to ever order Burpee seeds online again.
I contacted Burpee's customer service. Their sole response was "The package should arrive Friday. Have a nice day."
Purchased a package of Burpee seeds (Better Boy) at retail store for $1.99. The package was for 50 mg. weight but only contained five seeds. Emailed company concerning disappointment with quantity of seeds in packet. Was told their prices are determined by costs and no offer of compensation made. Dissatisfied with answer I called company and asked to talk to person in authority. That person was the one who answered my email. Again went through spill about costs involved and that since I got five plants up from the five seeds planted I should be satisfied with the 100% germination and that Burpee seeds were superior to other sellers seeds so price was justified. Was told that their catalog had package of thirty seeds selling for $6.50. Looked up on internet and they're listed for $3.95/30 seeds. Asked for refund of price or coupon for another pack of seeds. Would like to see if all retail packages only had five seeds but was refused any compensation. Again told their seeds were superior to others. I've been gardening a long time and know this is not the case. Will never buy Burpee seeds again, either retail or catalog. Apparently customer satisfaction has no priority with them.
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.
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 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?
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.
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 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 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.
I have tried to remain positive about my experiences with Burpee, but I have to say that this year has succeeded in turning me off. When I placed my order in January I was told that all seeds were in stock and would be shipped out as soon as possible. When the order arrived 3 weeks later, 3 of the 9 seeds were not included. I called to inquire and was told that they were sold out and would ship when available. All three of these were things I did not need right away so I thought it was no big deal. Those three seed packets arrived May 10 - 3 months later. I emailed several times and was told that "they will ship soon." I guess soon is a relative concept. One of the three seeds that I was waiting on was a yellow squash. When the packet arrived I saw that there was a white sticker on the bottom of the packet with the "packed for season 2011" info on it. Out of curiousity I peeled it off to see that the date underneath was actually 2010. I called and was told that they occasionally have left over packets and those are used in following years. This sounded ok until I planted them. Out of 12 seeds started in the greenhouse on May 11, 2 have come up. I suspect that these seeds were in fact packed in 2010. I will never order from Burpee again.
Posted on May 23, 2011, updated May 24, 2011
I ordered live plants from Burpee April 29. Within a week I received the free seeds Burpee's offered with my order.
After 2 weeks of no live plants I called Burpee's customer service line. I was told, "we ship within two weeks." Well, obviously not.
When I asked the status of my order the woman on the phone could not tell me as she stated, "I don't know." I finally received an e-mail from UPS on May 18 informing me my merchandise was on the way. I keep checking my tracking info. and have found out my order will arrive May24. Since UPS does not work on the weekend my live plants will sit in a warehouse for two days and then take another two days to arrive. All total, my "live plants" will have been in transit for 6 days. I e-mailed Burpee and asked them, since it took so long to send me my merchandise (almost a month!) why did they not just wait and send it out Monday May 23 or send my order with expedited shipping-at no cost to me- and have heard nothing from them. Tried to call today and was put on hold so long I finally hung up. This is the second time I have had to complain about a mail order gardening site and it really gets me down. No wonder people resort to Lowe's and Home Depot! I will let you know in what shape my live plants arrive.
On May 24th, 2011, BIGjojo added the following:
Well, I have to continue with my negative rating. I received my plants today, minus the horseradish. The whole reason I went with Burpee is to get horseradish in the ground. When I placed my order on April 29 there was horseradish in stock but as it took Burpee so long to send my order apparently they are now out of stock. I am very disappointed. I will now have to scramble around and try to find some horseradish to plant and hopefully someone will have it in stock. As for my "live plants" the hollyhocks are close to dead (yellow leaves and dried and dead leaves on all six of them), even the yarrow has a few yellow leaves. The daylillies are packaged quite well and I am hopeful for them. So, overall Burpee's has failed miserably.
On May 23, 2011, TeacherAmy Fort Mill, SC (Zone 7b) wrote:
I hate writing a negative review and generally am very vocal about the positive experiences I generally have. But after several attempts at Burpee orders, I've finally given up on the company.
I, too, have paid an absurd amount for shipping of small seed packets, and the shipping time is unpredictable to say the least. The final straw was this past month when I ordered seeds and plants for Denim Petunias, and they just seemed to drop off the planet! I waited patiently, kept checking order status, and after several weeks finally attempted to email the company. That in itself is nearly useless, as I get a generic response that does not help me.
When I pointed out the problem in their response (e.g. their two-week window had already come and gone) and still got no help, I finally called and spoke to a pleasant woman who was unable to give me additional information. Apparently, because my zone had begun shipping previously, my order was bumped "to the end". Once the order went to the nursery, they had no idea where it was in the process or when I should be expecting them to arrive. Wonderful. So they could well arrive weeks later when we were out of town.
The plants finally did arrive a few weeks later--surprise--but only a few are doing well after transplanting. And the seeds have a 20% germination rate so far. Needless to say, I'm finished doing business with Burpee.
On Feb 26, 2011, 300_lb_Tomato Fair Lawn, NJ wrote:
I have decided to post to this Dave's Garden website for the first time because for several years when I submit a post to Burpee, they don't upload it.
I have been a regular customer of Burpee seeds for over 35 years and, up until 4 years ago, never had trouble.
I had complained 4 years ago that the Tasty Green Cucumber (formerly Burpless) seeds I had purchased from a local nursery were not packaged correctly. When grown that season (2007), the plants were lifeless and cucumbers were deformed. I had grown this variety since a kid (when it was called Burpless) and it had always been great. The cucmbers looked just like the photo on the packet. In fact the seed packs labeled that they had been grown in Japan usually performed the best with incredible yields.
After not seeing my post that year on the Burpee website, I sent pictures of the poorly performing plants and pictures of healthy plants from previous years, to Burpee via e-mail.
Suspecting a seed mix-up and angered that my post would not appear on their website, I sarcastically commented in the e-mail that perhaps the person that had packaged the seeds was smoking crack in the the cucumber fields. Dispite my rude comments they responded promptly and courteously. They sent me a replacement packet for the next year.
I grew those replacement seeds the next year (2008), and I had the same problem although the yield was a bit better. The cucumbers looked nothing like what I was used to. They were short fat and deformed. Once again I tried to post to the Burpee website with no success. I e-mailed them directly with photos again.
This time a quality control person from Burpee responded and we had a lengthy courteous e-mail exchange. He indicated that there is always variation in any variety of plant.
He suggested that I try another variety. They sent me a check in the mail for the value of the seed packet.
I did not try another variety. Instead, to rule out any issues that may be with my soil, I decided that the next year I would plant seeds from an older packet from 2006 that was grown in Japan. I planted them the next year (2009) and they were great.
Last season (2010), I bought a new packet of Tasty Green from a local nursey. Although the plants were healthy and yield was large, the cucumbers bore no resemblance to what I was accustomed to. They were short fat standard looking cucumbers, with many deformed. Nothing like the original Burpless or Japan grown packet or the picture on the packet.
I've decide to not contact Burpee.
It is clear to me that they have somehow lost the variety of Tasty Green (formerly Burpless cucumber). They most likely have even lost track of how they lost the variety, and probably everything concerning this variety is mixed up.
What makes me angry is they continue to use the old photo on their seed packets of what the cucumber used to look like.
I will grow for the first time a different variety of cucumber.
But I will not purchase the seeds from Burpee.
Now....about the Big Mama tomato blossom end rot problem that I and many fellow gardening friends have had since the variety was introduced.....That post will wait till I do more research on that problem on Dave's Garden...
Posted on February 2, 2011, updated February 2, 2011
Ordered 5 packs of seeds 1/19 at a cost of $6.95 to ship. Just received an email 2/1 that my order had shipped, 13 days after the order was placed and I had not received them. They are outrageously priced for seeds and promised a delivery in 7 to 10 days. I live in Maryland and they are in Pennsylvania! The only reason I ordered from Burpee is I was given a gift certificate from them. I will never purchase from them again!
On February 2nd, 2011, bearcreek10 added the following:
Just checked the tracking number they gave me and it shows no record of it 24 hours after it is supposedly shipped.
On Oct 1, 2010, timonsgirl Mount Prospect, IL wrote:
Posted on June 15, 2010, updated October 1, 2010
Posted on June 9, 2010, updated June 15, 2010
I don't know what has happened to this company but this year is the last time I order from them.
For years I ordered live tomato and pepper plants and they arrived healthy and thriving. Their customer service used to be wonderful too but that has changed also.
The trouble began last year when I ordered 3 salsa tomato plants. The plants arrived extremely shriveled and died within days of being received. They didn't have any more to replace them so I had to settle for a refund.
This year I ordered 3 more salsa tomato plants and 3 zavory pepper plants. All arrived extremely overwatered and unsalvagable. All were dead within about 4 days.
It took Burpee quite a few days to reply to my complaint and when they did they tried blaming it on the weather while the plants were in transit. The weather was the same as it had always been at this time of year when I receive my plants and that had nothing to do with the overwatering issue that I told them about.
They did have replacements this time so they put in another order for me. It took them another 11 days to ship it out and 13 days before I received it.
The plants arrived today and all are extremely overwatered again. They are all drooping and curling horribly and the tomato plants are dropping entire stems, not just leaves. The plastic containers they were in were covered in condensation and the soil was not just damp, it was wet.
I doubt these plants will survive the week.
This year will be the last I purchase from Burpee. They once provided great plants and great customer service and now both have become horrible.
On June 14th, 2010, timonsgirl added the following:
Well, it's now been 6 days since I received the overwatered replacement plants. I contacted Burpee about the problem the day they arrived. I still have yet to hear back from them.
This is the worst customer service that I have ever encountered from a company. On October 1st, 2010, timonsgirl added the following:
Well, I did get a refund and one of the plants survived and I did get a few tomatoes. However, after all that, they weren't the salsa tomatoes I ordered and was told they were. They were a completely different variety.
Dead and dying plants, poor customer service, slow response and shipping and now this. Unreal. On Oct 1, 2010, Burpee (W. Atlee Burpee) responded with:
The Burpee Company is very sorry that the customer’s experience was not as good as it should have been.
Our nursery has been very successful in shipping thousands of orders seasonally. The plants are inspected for health and vigor before they are shipped to the customer. We also package the plants to arrive in good condition.
It is unfortunate that the replacement plants were not the correct variety. This may have been due to either human error, or the label was not correct. We are working to perfect the plant selection and labeling process, as it can be very difficult to identify a tomato variety by looking at its leaves.
With the economy being slow, we have had a surprising, and much appreciated, increase in business. This generated more gardening questions for our customer service division. We do strive to answer every email, letter, and phone call in a timely and thorough manner.
Please be assured that the Burpee Company is committed to providing excellent products and service to our customers.
I had purchased Burpee Seeds many times in the past. This year, I found some Burpee seeds at Wal-mart and Lowes. I purchased them without hesitation. Most seed did not germinate and others produced maybe 1-2 seedlings. Last year, I was successful at growing Coreopsis from Burpee seed that was 2 years old. But, as I said earlier, Burpee seed purchased this year produced disappointing results. I don't know if Burpee purchased from retail outlets is of a lesser quality than that purchased from their catalog. Several emails, and promises of replacement seed or subsitutions if my seed was not available, have resulted in no outcomes.
No more Burpee for my garden. Last year, I ordered bush bean seeds and only 15% of them came up. So, I planted all the seeds I had remaining in the package and only a few seeds grew. I emailed Burpee and they sent me a new package of bush beans, which I planted to fill in the empty spaces in my rows, and still only maybe 15% came up and those that did were spindly and deformed-looking. This year, I ordered a different kind of bush bean, thinking maybe I’d have better results, but still, very few of the seeds I planted came up. The same with the corn seeds I planted this year, only about 30% of those seeds came up. So next year I will buy my seeds somewhere else. I don’t understand what has happened to Burpee, since I have ordered from them for years and never had a problem. But after 2 years of frustration with their seeds, it’s time to move on.
This is the last year I will be ordering from Burpee. Last year I ordered Sun Gold tomato plants. The tomatoes that were produced were red and the size of golf balls - and utterly bland. I contacted Burpee who told me that some plants had been mislabeled and that the mistake would not be repeated in 2010. Wrong. My first "Sun Gold" tomatoes are ripening up. On one plant the tomatoes were identical to the mislabeled plants of last year, golf-ball size, red and bland. On ANOTHER Sun Gold plant, however, I've got a huge green tomatoes about 4" from top to bottom. (!) What in the world is going on with that company! I'm not spending hard-earned money and tenderly taking care of the plants for months only to discover that they are the wrong variety - AND completely inedible to boot. Would greatly appreciate a GOOD source for the terrific Sun Gold tomato plants if anyone knows of one.
I have to say that I know how to garden and these seeds I got from them are awful! Of course they sent me new seeds because the first ones I ordered had very low germination but it took another 2 weeks to get the replacement seeds and this after I got a very rude customer service person. I will not be doing business with this company ever again and I will tell others the same. There are too many other companies that have so much better customer service and products.....for instance Baker Creek, Bluestone Perennials, johnnyseeds...etc. I used to love Burpee but NO MORE!!! Horrible service!!
Although I'm happy to see they are offering organic seeds now, this is the second order I was disappointed with. This was an order of yellow marigold seeds. The germ rate was so poor it was unbelievable!!!! Never had trouble with marigold seeds before. I planted them in different places. Out of a whole packed of seeds, I now have four plants to show for it.
My local gardening store sells yellow marigold plants which I used to replace what would have been the plants from seed.
So sad to say I think it's time to give up. I 've been ordering tomato and Summerlong basil form either Cooks Garden or Burpee for a few years now but I just got a replacement order today and I have to say I'm done. They took too long to replace and the plants that came today don't look good at all. I will try the basil but I've already replaced the tomato plants on my own. This company has really gone downhill. Such a shame since the Summerlong Basil was my favorite but now looks like a Globe Basil.
I bought my Burpee seeds at Menards. I don't know if the ones they peddle to the stores are different than the ones you order from the catalog or not?
The pelleted petunia seeds I bought sure were awful. Being it took 6 pkts for the customer service person at Menards to find enough pelleted seed that weren't crushed fine. She finally found the amount of seeds that I was suppose to have gotten. Out of those seeds less than 1/8th of them germinated.
I called Burpee's also...they sent me a new pkt of the same pelleted petunia seed. This pkt came with a little cell that the pelleted seeds were in. I thought for sure I was in luck...but wasn't. The germination was awful. I start many seeds indoors/greenhouse...and have never had such horrible luck before.
That is not all the trouble we had with Burpee seeds...we bought many Burpee seeds at Menards...thinking they were such a good company.
Horrible germination! We are 'well seasoned' gardeners..with a huge garden. So we really don't feel we didn't know what we were doing when planting the seeds.
To add more fuel to my fire...someone else I was talking to said the same thing about Burpee seeds and their germination. These were all bought in a store...not ordered through the catalog.
On Jun 5, 2010, Burpee (W. Atlee Burpee) responded with:
We guarantee all Burpee, products whether purchased through the catalog or at retail stores to the full amount of the purchase price. We can offer refund or a replacement, anytime, within a year if you are not satisfied.
Last year i ordered the Burpee catalog three times on-line. I never received a catalog or any explanation as to why not. This year i'm getting catalogs and e-mails. If this is the kind of consideration you show for a simple catalog request, what could I expect if I ordered seeds or plants? Sorry Burp, but I've moved on to companies that show me some respect.
On May 1, 2010, Burpee (W. Atlee Burpee) responded with:
The Burpee Company mails thousands of catalogs every year. Our 2009 catalog was extremely popular because it featured the world’s first ‘Sweet Seedless’ Tomato. It may be that you had ordered your copy at a time when our supply had been depleted.
We are happy to hear that you had received a copy of the 2010 Burpee Catalog. When one requests a catalog via http://www.burpee.com, there is an option for signing up to receive the Burpee Newsletter. Our site also allows you to remove your email address from the newsletter list.
On May 21, 2009, thahalibutt California, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:
With burpee you don't get what you pay for. I bought some sunflowers last year (don't remember the name) they were supposed to be 4-5' tall & dark red. They turned out to be 10' tall & yellow. I bought some rudbeckia goldsturm this spring & have been babying it for months. This was going to be my first blackeyed susan. They just bloomed today at 4" high & its a stupid purple verbena! NEVER again!
On May 20, 2009, awoodle Knoxville, TN (Zone 6b) wrote:
I ordered 3 Dahlia showtime plants. When the order arrived, the plants were broken, overwatered and brown. I called for a replacement and when those arrived yesterday all three of the plants were dead or dying and two had been completely broken off where the stems joined the potting soil. I've never received such poor quality plants in any mail order gardening! And these three cost $15.95! I will not order from Burpee again.
Ordered a package of pole beans from Burpee shortly before I left for a two week vacation. On my return, I discovered that they had sent me a hellebore, Kingston Cardinal that I DID NOT ORDER. If I had, I would have alerted the lady who helps me in my yard -even while I am gone-
to be expecting it. As I only ordered the seeds, I did not feel it was necessary to tell her about it.
When I called Customer service, I was told that I had ordered the hellebore. I kept telling her that I did not do so as I was going out of state and would be gone for two weeks. I would never order a plant and expect it to do well after setting so long in the box inside my home. She told me that I must have ordered it. I said NO WAY. I had just bought five lovely gallon size hellebores at one of our "local big box" stores. I did not need anymore. My shade space is almost full. I got no where with CS. This is not the first time I have experienced such poor service from a company Burpee owns. I had very bad luck with Heronswood this year. Was sent three plants of grass (Purple love grass) which someone in Alexandria VA ordered.
Three years ago, I was called a lier even though I had the paperwork and tag that said Corydalis, Blue Heron. The lady I spoke with said that they did not have such a plant. Seems that as long as your order is what you wanted, you are ok in ordering from Burpee , Heronswood and one other company that I am not familiar with.
As for me, this is the last time I will ordered anything, including seeds, from Burpee. To much frustration, won't get your order straight, call you a lier when you tell your side of the story, etc. Not worth it to me.
Goodbye anything and anyone associated with Burpee.
On Apr 21, 2009, growingranny Dutton, VA (Zone 7b) wrote:
I have used Burpee most of my 50 years of gardening. Last year I ordered 3 ferns from them, they came and were dead. I called and was told they were dormant...in early fall? They said they would replace them...so far they have not. I put the three pots into the heated greenhouse for the winter and one teeny little sprout did come up, about two weeks after that. The other two must still be "dormant". Later this spring I remembered I had not ordered one variety of Marigold I wanted. I had ordered all of my other seed from another company. I got the seed, planted it, put it on the heat like I do all of my seeds...not ONE marigold came up. Other marigolds from another company came up 100%. I was a professional nurseryman for years and know how to plant a marigold seed! In talking to other people on another garden site they all had horror stories to tell about this company in the last two years. This will be the very last time I order from them and according to a lot of my friends it is their last time too. I spend too much money on plants and seeds in a year to mess with a company that doesn't believe in quality and customer service.
On Apr 6, 2009, wordsilk7 Norwalk, CT (Zone 7a) wrote:
Ordered the Burpee Money Garden collection. Received it just fine, except that when I went to figure out when and how to plant the tomatoes and peppers, found there were no sowing instructions whatsoever in the packet or on the seed envelopes. Went online to look for instructions there and could find nothing. Went to customer service to contact them and found they're not open on weekends (pretty crappy policy for a garden company, I think -- I garden mostly on weekends since I work during the week).
I managed to send them an email about getting sowing instructions for the Money Garden. More than a week later, I received a response from Burpee -- was told that the sowing instructions were on the seed packet and gave me a link to a webpage with sowing instructions for the Money Garden. Since I am neither blind nor illiterate, I assumed that the woman from customer service who answered my email didn't bother to check the product and I wrote her back and told her so, cc'ing the woman in charge of Public Relations at Burpee (they don't list anyone in charge of customer service), explaining that 1) the instructions are NOT on the seed packets for the Money Garden and 2) I don't use the Internet in the garden and 3) I can't print out the instructions and 4) I've been a Burpee customer for 25+ years and don't appreciate being treated like an idiot.
I received an email back from the same customer service woman saying the instructions are included in the Money Garden package and if I like, she'll mail them to me. Duh. Hopefully I'll get them before autumn.
The woman from PR did call me to get the story and allegedly will try to figure out what went wrong here. She apologized for my confusion. I told her I wasn't confused -- I was ticked off.
It took entirely too much time and energy to get instructions for planting my tomatoes from seed -- what a waste of time.
On Apr 6, 2009, Burpee (W. Atlee Burpee) responded with:
On Mar 31, 2009, LOVIE2 Boston, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:
I always thought highly of Burpee - but Burpee.com has changed that completely!
I placed my order online 3/17, I called to check on the shipping date and the $5 off coupon that did not come of on the online order. I was told on 3/19 that the order "is in the warehouse and would probably" go out by the end of the week (which would have been 3/21) OK fine. I called back on 3/24 because the status online never changed to "shipped".Again I have been told "it's in the warehouse and will probably go out by the end of the week"
This has been 2 different weeks! This is not acceptable and I requested for this order to be cancelled. The rep that I spoke to then says she will see if she can "catch it" from shipping today. I find it very odd that prior to my requesting a cancellation, the order would ship at the end of the week and now she's trying to keep it from shipping out today all within the matter of 5 minutes. I felt that Burpee's reps were making things up as they were going along, as there was a lot of "uh's and I don't knows" coming from them. I felt very uncomfortable and demanded the order be cancelled via email on 3/24. I recieved my refund on 3/27. I will never use Burpee.com again as the customer service is not what it should be, and that is not acceptable.