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Comments regarding Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs (

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  Feedback History and Summary  
149 positives
69 neutrals
248 negatives


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Negative plover12
(6 reviews)
On Sep 30, 2017, plover12 Grand Marais, MI wrote:

This is the second time I have ordered bulbs from this company and my experience has been poor in both cases. Last year it took them almost a month to ship my order because they said they were moving their warehouses.

This time I ordered 17 bags of anemone bulbs ten days ago. They still haven't shipped. I'm in zone 4 and running out of time to plant. I called their customer service and was told that "it typically takes two to three weeks to process and ship an order". WHAT?? Nowhere on their ordering page does it say you'll be waiting a minimum of three weeks to get your order. The customer service rep said she would put a note on my order to expedite it but couldn't promise it would do anything. I may well have snow on the ground by the time these things arrive. I won't be ordering from them again.

Negative Georgiamom
(1 review)
On May 24, 2017, Georgiamom Atlanta, GA wrote:

I don't even know where to begin. My first order from this company was worse than dealing with my local DMV or cable tv company. I would NEVER order from k. van Bourgondien again; I just wish I had read these Daves Garden reviews first. I would concur with everyone else who has written about the company's failure to ship, and complete and total lack of communication!

I ordered 2 bags of Dutch iris beauty mix spring bulbs on March 13th and was to have them by the first of April (to plant before it got too hot in Georgia). After sending more emails and making more phone calls than I can recall--and, writing a letter--bulbs finally arrived May 19th. The accompanying note said that I was receiving a substitute order, because they received overwhelming demand for the bulbs I wanted and had exhausted their supply. I am just dumbfounded. I cannot comprehend how a company that does business like this can, in fact, stay in business.

During my 10-week wait, customer service operators in the Philippines gave me wide-ranging order updates and numerous shipping estimates. I was told that the bulbs had not arrived from Holland, that they had arrived and were already sold out, that it would be another 4 weeks, and even that my order had been cancelled!!?! I got no response at all to my letter or first handful of emails. The email response I did eventually get said they would check into the matter and get back to me "that day or the next." THREE WEEKS LATER, having heard nothing, I made one more plea. It generated a meek apology, a $13 refund, and....shipment of an order of substituted bulbs.

As other reviews have noted, I, too, had to purchase my iris locally this year. With temps already in the 90s in Georgia, I'm betting these bulbs aren't even worth planting. In the future, and to preserve my sanity, I will take my online ordering business elsewhere. Don't say you haven't been warned!

Negative LilBlossom
(1 review)
On May 4, 2017, LilBlossom Bolingbrook, IL wrote:

I ordered some Vermeer Calla lillies from them. I purposely had a small order, to get familiar with the company before placing a larger one. The lillies arrived towards the end of April, and the bulbs were all soft, and some even rotten. I immediately called, and they said they'd send out some more lillies, free of charge. I was impressed at how they didn't argue with me, and last Friday they were sent to Fed Ex. Delivery was scheduled for tomorrow, however, they arrived today.

However... This bag was WORSE than the previous bag. Some bulbs were so soft, I stuck my finger through them. Thankfully Phil from Van Bourgondien was very quick to refund me. But it's sad when you place an order, and they can't even fix their first mistake, but make it worse.

Negative reeve1
(48 reviews)
On Apr 15, 2017, reeve1 Plano, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

Posted on April 14, 2015, updated April 15, 2017
What I received is similar to others. Broken, rotted and unviable plant material. This company should be sued for fraud. This is absolutely ridiculous to pay money for what they picture on their website and then send something that could not possibly produce. I\'m done with them! Stay away from Gardens Alive and its subsidiaries! These people are crooks only concerned about your money and are no friend of the gardening community.

On April 15th, 2017, reeve1 added the following:

I used to do business with these people because they would respond and eventually I would get my plants or my money returned. But, now, they don't even respond to customer inquiries or problems. These people hide behind closed doors now and still send the pathetic, broken, dead plants! Done!
Negative Gardener21
(1 review)
On Aug 30, 2016, Gardener21 Randallstown, MD wrote:

Perhaps it's unfair of me to say something at this late date, but many years ago I ordered some "on sale" Thalia daffodils and lycoris squamigera from Van Bourgondian. When they finally came up, the leaves on both species had "snowflake-like" white spots on the leaves. I had never seen this before. The foliage was weak, they did not thrive or bloom well, and after researching the issue on the web, I found out that these were virus-infected, and would never do well. To keep them from spreading virus to the rest of my daffodils and lycoris, I ended up having to dig up every one of those bulbs from Van Bougondian and dispose of them in the trash. I thought, how reprehensible of Van Bourgondian to offer up diseased bulbs as sale merchandise! The daffodils I have purchased before and since from OTHER suppliers have done very, well, thank you, but I swore right then that I would NEVER again order from Van Bourgondian. And I haven't. They lost me as a customer forever.

Negative colorecho
(3 reviews)
On Mar 2, 2016, colorecho Stamford, CT wrote:

I placed a few medium size orders for last season from this company and there were several problems. Of 5 Lilium 'Landini', 2 were the beautiful black-purple Asiatics, but 3 were much taller gold and orange inverted blooms, clearly the wrong bulbs. Another more subtle issue was the Lilium 'Trebiana', offered as pale greenish yellow, but was instead a bright true yellow. I emailed them 3 times, once even including a picture of the incorrect 3 Landini bulbs. They never responded at all.
As I send this, I pulled out my order and noticed that the Begonia 'Switzerland' I ordered last year was from them too. Of 5 bulbs, two emerged, but only one of the 2 had dark foliage. Not a good experience.

Negative sagebird
(5 reviews)
On Nov 18, 2015, sagebird Laramie, WY wrote:

Ordered bulbs beginning of sept. Bulbs est delivery by end october. Still havent received all order and now NOV !8 ground is very frozen solid with inches of snow. Weather colder and colder . How am i supposed to plant bulbs . VERY crazy delivery - one package after another randomly and very LATE. I am avoiding in future .

Negative katesflowers
(1 review)
On Aug 25, 2015, katesflowers Columbus, MI wrote:

Negative experience. I ordered 4 different bulb collections 5 days ago and was told they would all be shipped in 18 days; no back orders. My credit card statement arrived 3 days after my order was placed with the bulb transaction charge. I had not received my order. I contacted van bourgandian, and was told they had a new policy of immediately charging the credit card, even if the order will not be completely shipped until 6 months later, which, oh-by-the-way, I'd have to wait until spring for part of my order. I have ordred from the van bourgondian company for years, they'd never charged prior to shipping, what's up? Oh, didn't you know, van bourgondian sold out to gardens alive. A company i would never have done business with if i had known.

Negative blancalj
(1 review)
On May 10, 2015, blancalj West Des Moines, IA wrote:

Years ago, when I was an active IA State Ext Master Gardener, I purchased from K.Van Bourgondien often and until recently had some of their excellent bulbs. When I decided to replace my dahlias,tuberose, freesias, lilies and glads I did not hesitate to order from them. The prices are good and they arrived promptly, the lilies and glads were wonderful, the freesias ok but the dahlias and tuberoses were sad! The 10 dahlias I received might have had 3 viable pieces, and the tuberoses looked chewed on!
When I emailed them hoping for replacements or partial refund all I received was a "we care and will respond' email, that was over a week ago and I'm still waiting for a real response.
Very disappointed and will make sure to let gardening friends know.

Negative wallyg
(1 review)
On Oct 20, 2014, wallyg Lone Tree, CO wrote:

I ordered bulbs most of two months ago. Finally, they sent email and told me this order was canceled. No substitute items was mentioned.

If they did not have enough items, why did they accepted the orders for such long time? So disappointment.

Negative cmitchprint
(1 review)
On Jun 22, 2014, cmitchprint Florence, AL wrote:

On April 15, I bought $32 worth of Arium Metallicum, or red candle lily. The first order arrived in 2 pks of 5. Both packs were dried up, hollow chunks that could be crumbled. I complained through email and a customer service emailed a replacement certificate. I reordered the bulbs and they arrived worse than the first. They were so dry they were crumbling to powder like chalk. I don't understand why my order left both times like this but it's obvious this company is not in business to stay in business.
Pic here: //

Negative rcedric
(1 review)
On May 29, 2014, rcedric Woodbury, MN wrote:

Be aware that Dutch Gardens no longer warranties their products past 10 days. My fall shipment arrived late in the season. Because of the early winter in MN , most of it failed to grow except for the bulbs. I was willing to pay their prices because of the guarantees. But without warranties it will be cheaper for me to by locally.

Negative Kschaufler
(2 reviews)
On May 10, 2014, Kschaufler Lacey, WA wrote:

Ordered alstroemeria bulbs from them and when they finally arrived they were shriveled. They never even came up. Never purchase from them again!

Negative prioreb
(4 reviews)
On May 6, 2014, prioreb Atlanta, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

Want to place an online order with a company and never get your order #, order summary, and order details emailed back to you? Want to order plants that are supposedly available, but then find out after several calls that they are not ready? Want to wait a month after ordering to have to call and say what's going on? Look no further than Van Bourgondien! I will never order from them again. Apparently trying to order some Dicentra is like asking someone to part the Red Sea. Terrible customer service. I would tell anyone to run from them company.

Negative cardoons
(4 reviews)
On Feb 4, 2014, cardoons Longmeadow, MA wrote:

I ordered Great American Lakes Dahlia Blend tubers last spring from this mail order company (not the nursery on Long Island with a similar name). Several of the tubers were damaged in shipping. Poorly packed, in my opinion. The damaged tubers never sprouted. Replacements were shipped; only half sprouted.
Once they bloomed, I found that NONE of them were actually Great American Lakes Dahlias. Some other variety I could not recognize. I will never again order from this company or any of the other Gardens Alive! companies.

On Feb 4, 2014, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Feb 11, 2014 1:11 PM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

We appreciate your feedback. I apologize for the problems with your order. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information."

Negative coriaceous
(18 reviews)
On Feb 1, 2014, coriaceous ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

My company ordered dahlias from Van Engelen last spring. We only discovered that their product was mislabeled after growing them. We'd also had problems in the past with unacceptably frequent incidents in which what arrived was not what we ordered. We've given up dealing with this company.

On Feb 1, 2014, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Feb 3, 2014 11:53 AM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

Thank you for your posting and I apologize for the problems you have had with your orders. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and take care of this for you."

Negative docknee
(10 reviews)
On Jan 6, 2014, docknee Murphy, NC (Zone 7a) wrote:

A recent Spring mailing offered 50% off making many selections attractive if not competitive. Upon checkout the shipping was $19.95 on a $55 dollar order - even if it really was worth $110 that is almost 20% for shipping - I moved on. Found everything elsewhere for same price or better with some offering free shipping.

Negative Uncbuck
(1 review)
On Nov 12, 2013, Uncbuck Wayne, IL wrote:

I placed an order with Van Bourgondien on October 3rd for a poppy, foxtail lilies and hosta, as well as another order October 16th for Bearded Iris (their end of season sale)

Well...Its November 12th now .. I have 2 inches of snow on the ground. The poppy arrived last week but I have no lilies, no iris and no hosta I will plant them when ever they do arrive (I pre-dug the holes and have thawed soil to fill them) but I do not expect much survival

Learned a lesson on this - next time I will check Dave's Garden reviews before ordering.

On Nov 12, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Nov 16, 2013 2:44 PM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

Thank you for your feedback. Have you received your order. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and check into this for you."

Negative DanSpitz_Guitar
(5 reviews)
On Oct 26, 2013, DanSpitz_Guitar Bellport, NY wrote:

Awful....I ordered from them....after I ordered from them, the email I received from them mentioned that the items would ship in about 4+ weeks....yet I was already in prime bulb planting season, and 4+ weeks from now is "Frost City" where I live....I realized, after reading reviews of the company, that this was a DUD of a company...I called the company and cancelled out...why wait WEEKS (or more) to have your item shipped, when you can have your item shipped from a different company almost immediately?...this company was giving me flashbacks of another company, Michigan Bulb...they seem to operating in the same bizzarro fashion...find a better company than this one...

Never again....

On Oct 26, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Nov 16, 2013 3:21 PM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

We appreciate your posting. We use the USDA shipping chart so we know the best time to ship our products. I apologize for the delay. "

Negative carolmo
(19 reviews)
On Sep 19, 2013, carolmo Olathe, KS (Zone 5a) wrote:

Took a chance and ordered fringed coral lace gladiolus and a lavender daylily. The gladiolus bloomed pink - not coral (had several times before and know what the correct one looks like). Will not know until next year if daylily is also mismarked. Contacted them - they gave me a code to use with another order. Last year, black landini asiatic lily bloomed orange - they also gave me a code to use with next order (but the code did not work, so I did not order then). They do not refund. You must order more and get stuck with a shipping charge. Never, never again. Good grief - why can they not send the correct items? If the daylily is wrong too, I will be screaming.

On Sep 19, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Sep 20, 2013 11:32 AM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

Thank you for letting us know about the problem with your order. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and we will take care of these problems for you."

Negative SeaMist
(1 review)
On Sep 11, 2013, SeaMist Carlsbad, CA wrote:

I ordered 12 items in May and they shipped 8 of the items in June.

Today I looked up my Order Status on their website and it said one of the 4 remaining items had been cancelled but made no mention of the other 3 items that I have email confirmation of having ordered in May.

I called Customer Service and the first person I spoke to said she didn't know why the one item was cancelled but the other 3 items were out of stock. I asked why I was able to order out of stock items? Why these items weren't showing up on the Order Status page? And why I hadn't received notice that 4 of my 12 items would not be shipped? She again said she didn't know so I asked to speak to a manager.

The manager (Sheryl) said she doesn't know why 3 of the items were not showing up in my Order Status on their webpage but that she could see them in her system. She also said that they send notices when items are out of stock -- implying that it is somehow a failure on my end in receiving no notice.

I asked how I can have confidence in ordering through them again given that so many items were out of stock, she doesn't know what is wrong with their Order Status webpage or their notification system, and is not communicating an intent to find out? Her response...I don't know.

Enormously unhelpful. I do not recommend this company if you want to receive more than 2/3 of your order or any semblance of customer service.

On Sep 11, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Sep 12, 2013 12:31 PM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

I am so sorry to hear about the problem with your order. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and check into this for you."

Negative ppippin
(1 review)
On Aug 19, 2013, ppippin Ringgold, GA wrote:

I was looking for daffodil bulbs to order for the fall and reached this company's page by referral. It was July and they were running July specials. The problem began when i started looking at the different subtitles of the daffodils such as pinks and doubles. I found they had a buyers favorite and had a price and a buy button. When i went to the cart to look at what i had listed to purchase the number of bulbs in the package had changed. with 50 to 75 % fewer bulbs for the price quoted. I emailed the company and they offered me a special offer which was less than what was on the web page. When i called their customer representative offered no explaination or adjustment. This seems to be bait and switch at its worse and completely illegal.
When i checked the web site the next day after not hearing anything back from the company they had changed the pages i had pointed out but there were other pages that still showed this misrepresentation. I have copies of emails that have copies of the pages in question. There is no way i would deal with this company with such shady business practices.

On Aug 19, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Aug 23, 2013 8:59 AM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

Thank you for your feedback and I apologize for the confusion over the pricing on the web site. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and make sure this is taken care of."

Negative highlassie95
(1 review)
On Aug 14, 2013, highlassie95 Simi Valley, CA wrote:

My Grandmother, mom and I placed an order together. Here was our order and what happened with each flower/plant:

-BLEEDING HEART - Blooomed nicely
-DAHLIA NICK SR. - Bloomed nicely
-HARDY GERANIUM JOHNSON'S - Got Purple instead of Blue flowers when it finally bloomed.
-HARDY GERANIUM PRATENSE SPLISH SPLASH - Got plain white flowers when it bloomed
-YELLOW GINGER LILY- Did not bloom at all

So 42% of our order was unsuccessful. I think that is a high percentage. I was disappointed when my geraniums blossomed and were not what I ordered. I will probably order from them in the future because I have had great experience with them in the past with tulips, daffodils, and irises, I guess maybe just stay away from the geraniums. They are unpredictable. Even the ones that blossomed nicely didn't have anywhere near as spectacular a color as shown in the photo.

On Aug 14, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Aug 15, 2013 11:10 AM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

Thank you for your feedback we appreciate you letting us know about any problems you have with your orders. The Johnson's Geranium usually bloom a purple/blue color, they are not a true blue. The Splish Splash should have a purple color as well as the white. I will have one of our customer service representatives contact you for your account information and we can reship the items that did not perform as they should have."

Negative Cshewlett
(2 reviews)
On Jul 30, 2013, Cshewlett Deatsville, AL wrote:

I was SO disappointed with this company! I placed two separate orders, both in March the 8th and the 21st. The first was tuberose, summer cheer daffodils. Lord Lieutenant anemones. The second was Lord Lieutenant anemones, purple ranunculus and mixed ranunculus. The ranunculus was for my mother for Mother's Day. Well, Mother's Day came and went with no order arriving. The anticipated delivery date kept getting pushed back every week - finally in mid June I lost my patience because the order for tuberose was cancelled as they were out of stock. Really? You couldn't have figured that out 3 months ago when you put it on sale? So I sent a strongly worded letter letting them know they dropped the ball on the ranunculus, and seeing as I had already paid for the tuberose I wanted my money back. They did respond same day - and my money was refunded to my checking account the next day. My ranunculus order magically appeared in the mail 2 days later. However, they had substituted my anemones I wanted with blue and white anemones.

Never again will I purchase anything from a nursery that claims they have the right to substitute items without notice.

On Jul 30, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Aug 6, 2013 4:12 PM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

I apologize for the problems you had with your order. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and see what we can do to rectify the problem."

Negative Lotusflame
(1 review)
On Jun 20, 2013, Lotusflame Murphy, MO wrote:

First, everything charged on credit card upfront, months ago. No one else does this, they charge as they ship. Second, shipping in mid June to St. Louis? It's pushing 100F; lilies in bloom everywhere here. Third, quietly updating statuses to 'cancelled'. No email, no offer of replacements. (Of course I still get a daily junk mail regarding their special deals). Stuff just out of stock, which I had to learn by going back to the catalog. It was not offered up as a cancellation reason. Fourth, $51 worth of elephant ears just dropped off the order. Of course, I was charged for them, but now they've apparently been cancelled along with everything else, not apparent on invoice. So, approximately $240 worth ordered, only $85 shipped. Amount credited back to my card does not match missing stock. Everything else now out of stock, almost all out lilies, and all my elephant ears. Got the beds tilled up and waiting, now too late to find good stock at local nurseries. NEVER AGAIN, I would rate them right there with Michigan Bulb CO, the 'dead stick' people. I don't care how beautiful the catalog is. If you can't provide the product, don't offer it. If indeed they are located in Ohio, I could have driven there in late April/early May and picked the stuff up. It would have gotten a proper start, although it remains to be seen whether the few items that we actually received are going to grow. Hard to say, now that the tender stuff has to face extreme heat. I would suggest a revision of the zones shipping schedule. But I will not be around next year to find out. Absolutely the worst online/mail order experience with a nursery, ever. I wish I had read here first, live and learn.

On Jun 20, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Jun 20, 2013 11:27 AM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

I apologize for the problems you have had with your order. We would be happy to check this out for you and make sure you are taken care of. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information."

Negative MartinAMc
(1 review)
On Jun 17, 2013, MartinAMc Des Moines, IA wrote:

I ordered from Van Bourgondien for the first time this year. My order was fairly small and late in the season (May 1), but everything was listed as in stock, and my order confirmation said the estimated delivery date was 5/15-6/5. One item, 3 egret flowers, shipped on time, but they failed to grow. Everything else was delayed. I received a couple of geraniums Friday, but I am still waiting for some hostas and irises. I just noticed today that the White Feather hostas which were the primary reason I placed this order were quietly canceled at some point. A refund was issued to my credit card, but since pricing information was not included in my order confirmation, I have no way to verify that it was the correct amount.

I probably won't bother with this company again.

On Jun 17, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Jun 20, 2013 11:24 AM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

We appreciate you letting us know about any problem you have with your order. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and check this out for you."

Negative DGRich53
(10 reviews)
On Jun 13, 2013, DGRich53 Janeville, WI wrote:

I sent ihs company a rather sizable order on 5/1 and started getting "pending status" updates almost from the first day-moving the shipping date farther and farther into spring.

The latest pending status had dropped three items (all of which I had planed in my garden) and when I asked why, I got this:

"Thank you for your email. Due to the popularity of these items and the conclusion of our shipping season, we are unable to process your order ..."

6 weeks after they accepted my order and I designed my plan, they are sorry.

I was at a local garden center the last week in May and could have bought the PLANTS. Called them today, none are available.


On Jun 13, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Jun 14, 2013 1:11 PM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

I apologize for the problem with your order. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and check into this for you."

Negative AprilsWin24
(3 reviews)
On Jun 12, 2013, AprilsWin24 Bowleys Quarters, MD wrote:

Posted on May 20, 2013, updated June 12, 2013
Last winter, I ordered Forget Me Nots for spring shipping. I kept getting notices that my shipping was going to be delayed. This is understandable since they ship based on the best time for each person's zone, however, when an order did arrive for me, it was a shipment of 36 gladiolus meant for someone else. That person was sent my Forget Me Nots. When I contacted them they told me my plant was no longer available and I should just keep the gladiolus as a consolation prize- their words. No refund offered or given. This winter, I ordered pagan dance reblooming bearded iris- probably should have learned my lesson the first time. When the fans arrived they were tagged as Pagan Dance. Now, that they have started blooming it is obvious they sent the wrong flower. Pagan Dance is a black and deep purple iris. The iris I have is Let's Boogie- a purple and white/yellow bearded iris that doesn't rebloom. No apology or offer of a solution from them.

On June 12th, 2013, AprilsWin24 added the following:

Update: I was promised a refund was being processed and would be seen in 2-3 weeks. Well, its been 3 weeks and the refund hasn't shown up. I also just found out the lily's I ordered are also incorrect. They were supposed to be a lime green Trebbiano Lily and are instead a pale yellow lily.
On Jun 12, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On May 22, 2013 11:30 AM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

Thank you for your post. I apologize for the mix up with your order and there should have been a refund for the items you received incorrect. Also a reship should be processed for the wrong iris. One of our customer service representatives will contact you for your account information and take care of this."

Negative Lee21
(2 reviews)
On Mar 27, 2013, Lee21 Ann Arbor, MI wrote:

Posted on August 23, 2012, updated March 27, 2013
Posted on August 13, 2012, updated August 23, 2012
Posted on June 29, 2012, updated August 13, 2012
I agree with many of the negative comments noted on the forum already although they have been pretty reasonable with replacements. I bought from them years ago and then this spring with two significant orders. I've called them 5 or 6 times already regarding the first order because of wrong shipments and wrong # of items. Most calls I was put on hold for 15-40 min. (They don't respond to emails -- you immediately get a ticket # but nothing happens). Now I have to call them because of problems with plant growth : I bought 3 types of trumpet lilies (5 bulbs ea) and for each type, only 2 or 3 of the 5 have buds on them. I bought 18 oriental lilies, 15 sprouted and of the ones that are growing it looks like very few have buds on them. I bought 40 lily of the valley and less than a quarter have sprouted (almost 2 mo). I bought 6 Virginia bluebells -- one was rotten on arrival, 2 of the 5 sprouted but never made it past the one-leaf stage. Only 1 of 4 ostrich ferns sprouted ; hoping they are just slow. A tree peony I planted 6 weeks ago hasn't sprouted (hopefully it's just slow because it is bare-root). It is curious that in contrast to other companies which ship bare roots in the fall, Van Bourgondien shipped them in the spring-early summer.

After much debate (because I didn't want to be put on hold) I called them about the tree peony, to my surprise the customer rep says they have no record of my purchases. After a bit of back and forth, I got a little annoyed (the rep kept saying "let me tell'am) and asked to speak to her supervisor, which is when I learned of the changing of hands and they have NO records of orders. Additionally all of their catalog#s have changed - no wonder the rep has no idea what I am talking about (but instead of 'fessing up about the new ownership, she kept ma'amming me).

I also agree with someone's point about the company charging our credit cards for the full order even when half the shipment isn't planned for several months. I don't know of any other online company that does that.

Since half of my order is still pending (fall shipment), I hope this changing of hands isn't going to derail that order.

On August 13th, 2012, Lee21 added the following:

8/13/12 update
Still maintaining a negative rating. The company rep sent me an email to which I responded but never heard back.
I was supposed to get a refund for a plant when I called on 5-28 that has not come through. I got an email confirmation on 6-18 and called again on 7-19 at which point they said it's coming. Now 2.5 months later, still nothing.
Still have to deal with them regarding a second large order (many plants never even sprouted or were rotten on arrival).
On August 23rd, 2012, Lee21 added the following:

I dreaded having to call van B regarding my second order but finally had to bite the bullet. Half of the plants I ordered either did not produce buds (lilium), did not sprout at all (lily of the valley) or were DOA (Virginia blue bells). I thought now it is the end of August, surely they have their records straightened out (WRONG!) and that they can send replacement plants for fall planting (WRONG!). As far as I can tell, they are not making any attempt to transfer old orders (the last one I placed was in 5-2012 so that should have been under new management already!) and they are not honoring their warranty. So I was told today that they will not be sending replacements (even though the items are in stock for fall planting) and the only recourse is refund. But the refund is not fair exchange! First of all the prices have all gone up considerably. For example lily of the valley was $7.5 for 10 plants when I ordered them in 5-2012, now its $14.99, a 200% increase. So a refund will not buy me the same number of plants that I paid for. Second, the refund doesn't cover the shipping cost. Since I want to sever my relationship with van B ASAP, I opted for refund. We'll see if they actually post the refund this time.
Bottom line, I will NEVER buy from van B again.
On March 27th, 2013, Lee21 added the following:

It's spring and I am finally ready to use the credit that they issued me for $50.97. First I found I cannot use it online, so I had to call and waited for 10 min before someone picked up. Then they couldn't find the credit memo and put me on hold for another 10 min or so. Came back and said yes they found it but it was for $50.79. I said, it's a small amount but it should be $50.97 (it's the principle of the matter) - I can email them a photo of the postcard they send. The customer service person was a bit rude and said "if it is such a big deal, I'll take 18cents off". Well 18 cents here and there could amount to quite a bit. Besides, a company has to be honest to generate loyal customers. The customer service rep was a bit huffy for the remainder of the phone call (e.g. asking her if I will receive a confirmation via email... etc).
Bottom line, I am done with this company, new management or not. Plenty of other companies around.
On Mar 27, 2013, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Jul 19, 2012 10:33 AM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

Thank you for your posting and we apologize for any inconvenience. We are now under new ownership and a customer service representative will contact you for more information. Or if you prefer you can call us at 800-622-9997 and of our of customer service representatives will be happy to help."

Negative pyracantha
(3 reviews)
On Aug 14, 2012, pyracantha San Francisco, CA wrote:

I know it's tempting to order from them with their discount incentives and I have been guilty of purchasing from them when I knew that I would be taking a chance but this year I have put myself on a K Van B. ban.

I've ordered from both their wholesale and regular sites for years and for years had mixed results with the quality of the bulbs and their service. The biggest problem was always delayed shipping or completely lost orders. I order for my clients so I spend a lot of money here and place my orders very, very early but still 75% of the time they failed me.

Last year they simply broke the camel's back which ended up costing me a lot of money and delayed planting which made work look less than what my clients had come to expect. I consistently called to check on my order and was told they would be shipped "any day now" for weeks and weeks. Then finally they said they lost my order so I ended up frantically buying from retail places in town that had limited quantities and selection. They said I should put a new order in so I did put in a new but smaller order for the items I couldn't find in town and when the bulbs did finally arrive late they were shriveled and moldy. I was unable to get them to do anything about it while being put on hold for 20 minutes at a time.

So just bite the bullet and don't be tempted by the prices and pictures. Just don't do it.

On Aug 14, 2012, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On Aug 16, 2012 1:03 PM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

Thank you for your posting and we apologize for any inconvenience. We are now under new ownership and a customer service representative will contact you for more information. Or if you prefer you can call us at 800-622-9997 and of our of customer service representatives will be happy to help.


Negative plantshopper
(6 reviews)
On May 14, 2012, plantshopper Portland, OR wrote:

Wouldn't be surprised if they go bankrupt - lousy customer service. I had ordered in the past but this last year, a small order in the Fall 2011 didn't arrive until after Thanksgiving! Some of the tulips were rather small and a lot had mold. I planted them anyway and lo and behold, they were almost all mislabeled - lavender and purples tulips came up red with yellow edges, a purple mixture sported such a range of variety it was obviously the wrong bulbs. And some of the flowers were about 1 1/2" while others were normal 4" tulips. I sent photos this Spring in an email, pics from their catalogue and pics of what came up - and my auto response from the complaint was supposed to be answered in 3 days, 3 weeks later nothing has happened. So just avoid, shop instead at Brent and Becky's bulbs!

Negative StacyP9
(11 reviews)
On May 11, 2012, StacyP9 somewherein, IL (Zone 5b) wrote:

Horrible experience. I ordered three plants, a blue poppy, a canna and ranunculus. Shipping was delayed repeatedly. When the plants finally arrived I was shocked that someone would have the gall to pack them up to fill an order. There were two leaves on the tiny poppy. Both were gray black and rotting. They canna was a tiny shoot, also with two tiny leaves,with mold and rot. I've ordered plants on line for 20 years and I can honestly say this is the worst experience I have ever had.

Negative WVsusie
(1 review)
On May 4, 2012, WVsusie Corporation of Ranson, WV wrote:

I have ordered from this company for years, with mixed results. In early March, I ordered dahlias for a cutting garden and rhubarb among other things. I asked if the dahlias could be shipped soon as I wanted to start them indoors for earlier blooms. They assured me, yes. The were not received until 4/27. Same day, I got an email saying rhubarb no longer available. I noticed the refund was not posted to my CC. I googled the company for the ph# to call them and found all the bankruptcy info!!! Called them....on hold for 40 minutes....and when I politely explained that I was looking for a refund....CSR hemmed and hawed....and disconnected me!!! Called CC and they gave me a credit for the appropriate amount. I guess I won't be ordering 500 paperwhites for Christmas from them this year!

Negative indamtns
(1 review)
On Apr 30, 2012, indamtns Kingstown, NC wrote:

I have read many of the most recent reviews and I thank those who took the time to type with such detail! I have had the same experience! I placed a rather large order, several of the items never came up, some even had mold when they arrived, and ever since I have been battling with "Mike" to get a simple replacement! They insist, rather "HE" insists that I am only entitled to an $8 credit (it should be more than $30) and then no matter what I choose for that $8, the shipping and handling is $8.75! I chose a $5 item and it's $8.75 for S&H even though the "postage" was only $3.10 on a box full that arrived! They're making you pay for the cost of the plant again yet they advertise full free replacement! I've written back and for at least 20 e-mails now and this "Mike" person lies and lies and lies. First he says he WILL refund the S&H then nothing for a month. Then he sent an e-mail stating "you will receive a letter with a pin number to be used for your credit in the mail." 2 months later, nothing came. I wrote again. He responded, "Sorry, I was really busy and had to work to get this resolved." Really? Another month and I finally wrote, "Just send me the pin in an e-mail!" He wrote back with a credit and pin and after I asked for the S&H credit because it's only fair, he wrote that he agreed and would. Three more weeks, nothing. I wrote again asking for the credit(S). He wrote back that my original $8 was there and another $2.55 for S&H! I asked where that number came from he wrote, "I had to beg to get that!"
This company lost my business for good along with many of my bloggers who have been waiting to see how this gets resolved! I asked for escalation many times but he does nothing, only refuses! I hope they do go out of business because with customer service like I got, no one deserves to be issuing paychecks to anyone! :-( TWO GREEN THUMBS DOWN for this one!

On Apr 30, 2012, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

"On May 15, 2012 9:51 AM, Van Bourgondien Dutch Bulbs ( responded with:

Where I come from stating company policies is not considered lying. I could publish the entire email string for you to see, I will not though, I know what it says and my manager knows what it says, that's enough for me to sleep well at night. This customer did get what she wanted in the end and then some; I don't see a follow-up from her though, funny eh? It's just another case of the squeaky wheel get’s the grease. Too bad customers that have good and positive things to say, rarely take the time to post them (I do see a couple of nice ones here, thank you); I guess they are content to wake up and smell the garden's fresh aromas and enjoy the blooms."

Negative liawia
(1 review)
On Apr 26, 2012, liawia Des Moines, WA wrote:

Last year, 2011, I ordered a number of dahlia bulbs and other plants from this company. Although the dahlias did grow except for one, out of the 5 that did grow, 4 were mislabeled and ended up being the wrong color, hot pink instead of shades of orange. This year, I placed an order on February 10, 2012 for some phlox and hibiscus, and just now received an email stating that the hibiscus was out of stock and that part of the order cancelled. (on April 26, 2012) I believe in 2nd chances, but this company will not get my business again.

Negative eyfng
(11 reviews)
On Apr 26, 2012, eyfng San Gabriel, CA wrote:

Posted on November 29, 2011, updated April 26, 2012
Posted on June 8, 2009, updated November 29, 2011
I ordered peony and 6 lily bulbs this spring.

The packing is not that good. The box is a bit oversized. One root of peony broke when I got the shipment.

The peony is growing fast at the beginning. Now the leaves are getting thicker and bigger, but growing slowly.

The 3 gold stargazer lilies are healthy and producing bubs.
2 elodie asiatic lilies are growing healthy. One didn't grow, but I got the replacement within a week, They sent me a bag of 3 bulbs. One replacement is shooting out.

I have to call them for replacement because they didn't reply my emails.

The shipping charge is so high, so I only order when it provides special offer.

On November 29th, 2011, eyfng changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:

Based on my shopping experience with this shop in the last few years, I have noticed that the quality of bulbs are not good. Sometimes, they are not true to name.

I ordered serveral Glamini gladious on 2009, received initial shippment in 3/2010. The naomi and zoe didn't grow well, none of the naomi produced flower. Received replacement in 3/2011. Naomi turned out to be misty red instead of purple and white. Zoe turned out to be 9 in orange red and 1 in pale pink instead of peach and yellow.

Requested for second replacement. The sales representative Toni gave me the hard time for the replacement. She said they don't carry these colors. The items were already replaced once. The company is losing money for second replacement. The internet doesn't reflect the true stock of merchandize, they sometimes may still have stock in the shop, ...

Zoe is out of stock, I don't want to wait for another year to get the replacement, so I changed the color to Charlotte. Received replacement on 6/2011.

Naomi turned out to be pink, only 3 produced flower, but only one bloomed. The subsititution Charlotte have only 5 produced flower, but they didn't grow well.

So, I have neve seen the real Naomi. I totally waste time and money on Glamini gladious. I give up on them. I am good at planting gladious.

The first shipment of Charlotte on 3/2011 didn't grow well on the second year.

The German breaded Iris Pink Perfection, one turned out to be Edith Wolford in purple and yellow, the other one has not produced flower yet after one and half year planting. The Motherearth Iris, one produced a flower on the first year, the other one has not produced any flower yet after one and half year planting.

I usually made an order when it is 50% off, because their original price is almost double the regular price in the other places. Their shipping charge is always based on the original price which is very high.

I will not dare to place new orders with this place in future. Too much time on replacement or mjerchandize credit, it is not worth it.
On April 26th, 2012, eyfng added the following:

As the other said, STAY AWAY from DB due the following reasons:
1) payment in full before shipping
2) keep on delaying delivery date for spring items without notifying customers
3) products not true to name
4) refuse for replacements
5) NO response to customer email
6) long waiting time for telephone service
7) customer representative not honest, some are very rude
8) previously mentioned, high charges on products and shipping
9) previously mentioned, weak products take long time to develop

I ordered the Hosta White Feather last year; it is supposed to be shipped to zone 8 where I am living now in March this year. DB kept delaying the delivery date from 3/5 to 3/25, then to 4/25.

I emailed them in early April; the reply was that item will be shipped once they got it from the supplier in Holland. I emailed back to say that I don’t want to receive my spring item in summer.

Two days later, I received the shipment confirmation for the Hosta White Feature via USPS. How come suddenly they have the stock to ship to me?

I received one with ¼” of sprout and one with roots only with no sprout. I planted them in the self-watering container with new planter mix from Gardeners Supply to make sure that they will grow first.

I emailed DB to ask whether the one without sprout will grow or not, NO RESPONSE so far. However, it is producing sprouts now; I hope that it will be true to name.

The one with sprout is growing to an inch tall now. The young leaves are in green with darker green in the center instead of WHITE. The leaves are smooth without veins showing as the picture on the internet. Yesterday I checked the online product description on DB’s website, Dave’s Garden’s panfile and the other places that carry this product.

Dutch Bulbs online description:

“As it appears the leaves are completely white. With maturity, streaks of green begin to appear and lavender flowers rise from the top.”
Customer Comments and Reviews
Romi October 6, 2011
Hosta White Feather
My plant started out with white leaves now their green. Will they go back to white next spring?
The Bulb Lady Reply October 7, 2011
Hosta White Feather
Yes, each season the leaves start out white but as they mature they turn green.

Pictures showing in Dave’s Garden panfile are white first when just grow.

Breck’s online description:

White Feather Hosta: Unique white leaves are a welcoming surprise as they emerge in spring. As it matures, the leaves transform into a blend of green and cream. Lavender flowers illuminate your garden in midsummer.

I called DB yesterday 3 times to ask for replacement. After waiting for almost 10 minutes I hung up the phone for the 2 times. I called the third time, after waiting for 10 minutes, I was able to talk to a female representative.
Her answer was:
1) I don’t know when the leaves will turn white.
2) I can not give you the replacement because you have just received the items not long ago. (Item was received on 4/13/2012.)
3) We may not have the item in stock. You call back in June. We will send you the replacement if it is really not true to name by then.

I then emailed DB to complaint about this with NO RESPONSE yet.

I suspect that DB has never had Hosta White Feather in stock this spring; DB just shipped me another hosta. If the company is going bankruptcy, I don’t think that I will get the replacement next year.

As mentioned previously, the German Iris “Pink Attraction” ordered from DB took 2 years to produce flowers in purple with yellow instead of soft pink. The wrong color spoils my color arrangement for my German Iris flower bed. It is wasting my money and the time to grow the product. How can I ask for replacement after 1 year guarantee?

I will never have business with DB. Dear gardeners, please be smart to stay away from Dutch Bulbs.
Negative Darkman27
(1 review)
On Apr 24, 2012, Darkman27 Raytown, MO wrote:

I order 2 kinds of bulbs for my wife for Christmas 2011 and was told that the items wouldn't be shipped until January. I have since been in contact with them twice and still not delivery and its almost May.

I urge people to stay away because it's obvious that there's a problem with the company and that they're either out of inventory of they're just plan bad at business.

Either way, I will never purchase anything from them again.

Negative smitty1931
(1 review)
On Apr 16, 2012, smitty1931 Suncoast Estates, FL wrote:

Ordered dahlia tubers on Jan. 4th . As of April 16th have not received tubers. Terrible customer service! It appears the Dutch Bulb Co. has taken over. I wonder if they will honor my order? I ordered dahlias from Eden Bros at the same time and they were delivered March 21 and are up and growing.

Negative NJgardener1
(1 review)
On Apr 12, 2012, NJgardener1 Oakland, NJ wrote:

Do not buy from this company. I ordered bulbs and they arrrived in terrible condition. This company requires you pay before they can ship (I should have known!). STAY AWAY from the Bulb lady!!!

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