I recently expressed my frustration with Wayside Gardens when I attempted to place an order with them and encountered exorbitant shipping charges as well as alternate pricing on their website. After several e-mails, a lot of time, and a solution that came too late, I ended up not ordering from them.
Dave's Garden has a wonderful feature on their site, called The Garden Watchdog. If I've never made a purchase from a particular nursery before, I usually check the ratings given by other gardeners as they relay their experiences with the various garden centers, before placing an order myself. It works much the same way as feedback on eBay and is really the only way to make a somewhat educated decision on how reliable a garden center is in regard to order fulfillment, quality of product, and customer service.
After my experience, I decided I would leave a brief synopsis of my own, but as I read over the other ratings that had been left, a name kept appearing over and over. It was that of Jay Johnson, Customer Contact Representative. I thought maybe it might be best to contact Jay directly, since any negative feedback left there elicited a response from him anyway. It seems that he is where the buck stops.
I didn't receive a response from Jay, but he apparently received my e-mail and delegated the response to Eva Mathis. It was apparent from Ms. Mathis's response that she had taken the time to read my blog posts about my experience and she/they wanted to make it right:
Dear Kylee,I'm sorry to learn of the difficulties you encountered on our web site. When trying to place your order originally, the Zombie Amaryllis was a daily special buy 1 get 1 free. As this would give you the greatest savings, the 35% off sale defaulted to the buy 1 get 1 free special. If more than one special offer is associated with a variety, our web site is set up to default to the one that offers the greatest savings.
We had a number of items on our web site that are part of our Holiday Specials offer and when ordering these items along with other items, the Holiday Special offer splits off into a separate order. The shipping cost you saw displayed reflected the shipping for the two separate orders. I apologize for any confusion this may have caused.
I understand that the plant you were most interested in adding your your garden was the Paris polyphylla. In reviewing our inventory, I found that we do still have this variety in stock for fall planting. As our way of apologizing for the frustration you experienced online, we are sending one out to you at no cost. It is too late to plant outside in your area at this point, but you can plant in a container and them move outdoors next spring when the temperatures warm. Our Horticulturist tells me that when planted in a container indoors, you should see new growth in approximately 2 1/2 months. Please watch for this item to ship after December 10th.
I hope that it will be a great success in your garden and that you will consider Wayside Gardens for your future gardening needs.
Customer Contact RepresentativeWayside Gardens1 Garden LnHodges SC 296951-800-845-1124
While it was never my intent to garner free product, I feel their apology is sincere and they've tried to make it up to me in the best way they can. I've accepted their gift and their apology and I'm willing to give this business another chance. They do carry some of the most unusual plants and I already have found a couple in their new catalog that I may just have to order next spring.
Thank you, Wayside Gardens, for following this through to the end and making a gesture that shows me you do care about your customers.
And that's how I came to acquire houseplant number 177.