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Comments regarding Native Habitat

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  Feedback History and Summary  
8 positives
4 neutrals
3 negatives


Neutral RWhiz
(6 reviews)
On Nov 7, 2004, RWhiz Spring Valley, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

It took three months of cajoling to receive the plant I ordered. $30 for one tiny little seedling. I noticed on my CC statement that they applied it immediately. I ordered in early-August and finally received the plant in early November. Lee, the e-mail contact was very nonchalant about the whole process. Every two weeks I would send an inquiry. After the first month he started using the hurricanes as an excuse.

I usually order 1 or 2 plants and usually not too expensive before I commit to doing steady business with an online company. This is one company I won't be doing business with again.

I did FINALLY get my plant, but beware of this outfit.

On November 24th, 2004, RWhiz changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:

I went back and looked at my e-mails and it was August 26 when I first received a response from Lee Rathbun. So he is correct on that point.

Back in the mid 1980's I received about a half-dozen Butea monosperma seeds. The dry seeds look like big brown lima beans. I soaked them overnight and planted them the next day. All of them sprouted within a few days. In six months they were between 8-10 inches tall. I gave half of them to friends and kept three for myself. Three years later they were about 2-1/2 feet tall. I kept them outside in pots on the patio. In around 1988-1989 we had a cold rainy winter and I lost all three of them. I'll give the benefit of the doubt and say this plant I received is about 4 inches tall (max).

In retrospect I should have just gotten some seed and grown them myself. It would have been much cheaper and less hassle.

I'll change this to neutral because I was wrong on the time duration and I did receive the plant. Just don't tell me it was a 3-year old seedling.

A lot of this distrust and dissatisfaction could have been avoided if there had been better e-mail communication in the first place. I wanted the plant so much that I probably would have bought it anyway full well knowing it was 3-4 inches. And when you have a catastrophic event like a hurricane, it would help to notify customers with a bulk e-mail mailing.

Ron Whisenhunt
Spring Valley CA

On Nov 7, 2004, Native Habitat responded with:

"The date on Mr. Whisenhunts order is August 26. The order was shipped on October 28th. On Sept. 5th, we took a direct hit from Hurricane Frances enduring 36 hours of eye wall with sustained winds in excess of 100 mph. This caused unprecedented devastation to the town of Vero Beach, Florida. We were a Federal Disaster area with National Guard directing traffic with M16s, no traffic lights, no power, no ice, no food, no water, no fuel....long lines for everything. Three weeks later Hurricane Jeanne hit us as a category 3 hurricane with SUSTAINED winds in excess of 122mph with gusts over 145!!! Thankfully we were only in EYE WALL for 10 hours this time. Back to no infrastructure at all & survival conditions. Mr. Whisenhunt has the nerve to say that we used the hurricanes as an excuse!!! We are still not recovered from these disasters & nothing will ever be the same.
But we took the time as soon as we could to send Mr. Whisenhunt his order. A Butea monosperma. The plant was a small "seedling" but it was 3 years old. We drive 7 hours to the only tree we know that sets seeds. For every 200 pods that we pick up, one has a fertile seeds in it. Maybe half ot these seeds germinate so we produce 3 of these a year if we are lucky. He makes it sound like we sent him some just sprouted seedling. If he knows where a better deal is on Butea, why doesn't he tell us all? I would like to buy some bigger, nicer plants for less than $30....

One last thing. Like a Phoenix, we are going to rise from the ashes of these disasters bigger & better & more able to be responsive. The website is undergoing a major facelift. We plan to offer less variety so we can concentrate on what we do the best. We will likely never sell Brugmansia again until everyone admits that the virus genie is & has been out of the bottle for some time (and we did not uncork the bottle)....
We have never failed to resolve a complaint if given the opportunity, and we really are trying hard to provide a service that was not available to us when we started collecting rare plants. We wish you well!!!
lee "

Neutral plantcrazy1955
(1 review)
On Jun 28, 2004, plantcrazy1955 wrote:

well i ordered several plants from them on, i think it was thursday of last week, the 24th of june 2004. it was charged on my mastercard, and i was supposed to be sent by them an email confirming my order with them, and what i had ordered from them as well, with a total on it etc.they said on their website that they would be sending it to me shortly to confirm my order with them!!! i have yet to this day received nothing whatsoever from them to acknowledge the fact that i had even ordered anything from them at all!!! they submitted my order, processed it to my mastercard, and i have not heard anything from them since!!! i just emailed them today the 28th of june 2004, to find out where the hell is my confirmation email they told me that they would be sending me shortly on their website, after i gave them all of my information etc. that they needed to process the order, and the list of plants that i wanted to order from them as well. i have not received anything from them at all!!! it is as if i never ordered from them at all!!! i do not know what to think, but one thing is for sure i have no intention of paying for plants that i have never received, and then have them charged to my mastercard, there is no way in hell, they will get away with that, that i can assure them of!! i will dispute the charges on my card if they appear and i have nothing from them to show for it, and i will have my credit card company retrieve all of my money back from them before i pay the bill. i have a right to do this.i will wait and see, and i hope that it does not come to this, but if it does this neutral will be turned into a negative,you can be for sure of that!!!!! thanks for listening, and i hope that this will be cleared up as soon as possible!!! sincerely, rennea d. burgess, and my mother betty j. esposito.

Neutral Mblade
(3 reviews)
On Aug 17, 2003, Mblade wrote:

I have been trying to figure out how in the world to contact this comapny since they are not listed anywhere regarding Vero Beach, even with the chamber of commerce! I have sent out a few emails to them and never get a reply back, and am Growing fustrated as I have money to spend, I live close enough to vero beach to drive there and pick up plants in person, yet with no direction or even so much as a "yes or no" we dont take walk ins, this gets very frutrating. I realize this company is probably a hobbiest company, and Kudo's to them for becoming so successfull at it, but with a websight that took many many hours to design and pictures of everything they offer, you would think they would spend the extra money on just hiring someone to answer the phone (once they ever got around to putting a number up). This is not a negative session, just a very frustrated person trying to reach these people to be able to enjoy the rare and unusual plants they have to offer

Neutral suntzu
(4 reviews)
On Jun 30, 2003, suntzu Waterford, CA wrote:

I ordered plants and other items from this company almost three months ago.In that time I have recieved one packet of incesce (Incense of the month ).It has been said that patience is a virtue.Looks like these folks are not prepared for success.What the hey,I'll gve them a while longer.It's only money.

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