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  #1  
Old 09-18-2019, 07:25 PM
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meridiannight meridiannight is offline
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Claessen Orchideen, NL -- worst experience I've had Male
Default Claessen Orchideen, NL -- worst experience I've had

I placed an order with a Dutch nursery called Claessen Orchideen. Had a very difficult experience with them.

First off, they couldn't process and send out my order within 2 weeks' maximum, like is stated in their policy. It was in the middle of August, they had a summer holiday or something, and they just couldn't process the number of orders coming in. They lied about and evaded my wishes to get my order posted sooner (their explanation on why it was even further delayed, was simply that I had not answered their question as to whether they should send plants out ASAP or wait till next Monday. So, we exchange several emails, and the one with my answer mysteriously gets lost, was in essence their explanation). I placed my order on August 7, it was eventually sent out on September 4 (they were supposed to send it on the week starting with Aug 12).

Then, when I expressed my wish to cancel the order, they ignored that as well. They claimed the package had already left their nursery. It was Saturday. I got the tracking link from the carrier next Tuesday, Sep 3, saying ''shipment expected but not received yet''. So, at the time I requested cancellation they lied about having already sent out my plants.

I replied that I intended to return everything when I received that package so again they might as well not send it out, and I threatened legal action. That was when they finally agreed to cancel my order. I was told I will get a refund within 14 days. And it took them the whole of 14 days and some 10 hours to finally refund my money, 220 euros by 23.34 at night.

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In sum, TLDR, they easily lie and offer excuses why packages aren't sent out in time, and on other problems concerning the order. Correspondence with them is not transparent.
----

Their customer service is a complete joke when things turn bad and there's some kind of a problem. When you want to order plants, and have questions about their plants then they will be very nice and helpful to you. But when things don't go well, they will be extremely difficult to deal with. I heard all kinds of traditional excuses of how their employees were sick, and how another employee had left work for a while as to why issues with sending out my package or refund were not completed. These types of excuses are so naive, that not even kids will buy them.


As for the plants, if you ever order from this company, I advise against ordering their Vandas. All their other plants appear to be fine (I had ordered prior to this last awful exchange with them), but their Vandas have very bad root systems and are not the healthiest you can find. If asked, they will tell you how those Vandas came from Asia, and how the Asians cut off the roots for the transit, and also that new roots will grow on the plants. Like that explains the bad condition of the Vandas coming out of their nursery. One of the Vandas I ordered from them arrived with 70% of its root mass rotting! Stay away from their Vandas at least!

And one other huge minus with them is that they refuse to use faster couriers. They use regular postal service, postNL, and flat out refuse to send plants by DPD, or DHL or the like. They answered that postNL is their partner, and they cannot use any other carrier service. Huge problem. I had my plants sit at postNL facility for whole 7 days before anybody sent them out.

Last edited by meridiannight; 09-18-2019 at 11:14 PM..
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  #2  
Old 09-19-2019, 03:12 AM
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camille1585 camille1585 is offline
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I'm absolutely not surprised. I live in the Netherlands, and used to regularily place orders there simply because the shipping costs are much lower than ordering from Germany for instance.

I started buying orchids there maybe 7-8 years ago, only a few years after the business started I think. Back then they had big, beautiful, healthy plants and impecable customer service because the owner seemed to be doing it mostly on his own at that time. I even visited the greenhouses around that time, and was very impressed by the quality of the stock and the cleanliness of the greenhouses.

Anyway... As the years went on, I had more and more issues with my orders. A plant with no roots, smaller and smaller plants with increasing prices, tiny plants advertised as blooming size, plants that were shipped soggy. The biggest change was the customer service which went from good, to ok, to bad, to terrible. I was told that the fact some of my orchids arrived rootless was normal because they were freshly imported plants so I shouldn't expect more than that. They all died, with no apologies, no refund, nothing. Sorry, but if a company imports plants and they are in poor shape, then they either need to a) sort things out with their supplier or b) nurse the plants back to health before putting them up for sale.

In Dutch Facebook groups I see a lot of people with the same complaints. In the past others would defend the company saying that it doesn't happen often, and they're a great vendor, but now the comments are nearly all negative. I did get some fairly good plants in my last order, but it really feels like a gamble each time I order, so I only shop there if I can't find a specific plant anywhere else...

If you want some great plants, try Elsner Orchideen or Orchideen Lucke in Germany. Their customer service is also excellent. A good dutch grower (small but healthy, proportionally priced plants) is Orchidz.nl. If you like novelty Phals and Neofinetia, try Orchids Deluxe (used to be in NL but now moved to DE). The owners are a charming couple (I've met them at shows) and though the plants tend to be small, they are beautiful healthy plants.
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Old 09-19-2019, 07:03 AM
jcec1 jcec1 is offline
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Claessen Orchideen, NL -- worst experience I've had
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Thanks for the heads up. I was very tempted with their huge range of vandas - I won't be placing an order now. I can vouch for the suppliers Camille mentioned and will add OrchideenGarten to that list of decent suppliers.
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Old 09-19-2019, 03:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcec1 View Post
Thanks for the heads up. I was very tempted with their huge range of vandas - I won't be placing an order now. I can vouch for the suppliers Camille mentioned and will add OrchideenGarten to that list of decent suppliers.
So that was the place! I remember that you had suggested this grower perhaps a year ago, and I was trying to remember the name.
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Old 09-24-2019, 12:51 AM
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meridiannight meridiannight is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by camille1585 View Post
If you want some great plants, try Elsner Orchideen or Orchideen Lucke in Germany. Their customer service is also excellent. A good dutch grower (small but healthy, proportionally priced plants) is Orchidz.nl. If you like novelty Phals and Neofinetia, try Orchids Deluxe (used to be in NL but now moved to DE). The owners are a charming couple (I've met them at shows) and though the plants tend to be small, they are beautiful healthy plants.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcec1 View Post
Thanks for the heads up. I was very tempted with their huge range of vandas - I won't be placing an order now. I can vouch for the suppliers Camille mentioned and will add OrchideenGarten to that list of decent suppliers.

Thanks for the recommendations, both of you! I will look them up.

I can add one German guy to this list of quality suppliers. He sells on eBay, I'm not aware that he has a site up anywhere. He's called olympus1975:

https://www.ebay.com/usr/olympus1975...p2047675.l2559

Hope it's okay to link him. Not a very broad variety of plants, but every plant I've ordered from him has been very healthy. I've only bought Vandas from him so far, 7 altogether (with one Laelia arriving next week as well), and I can vouch for his Vandas. He even accepts offers if you wanna bargain with prices. He sends the plants by DPD or DHL, and I've received them within 2-3 days from sending out.

Last edited by meridiannight; 09-24-2019 at 12:56 AM..
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Old 10-23-2019, 02:42 PM
bogdan bogdan is offline
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Regarding the seller olympus1975, do the plants have an actual name or just a tag with a made-up name as in the listings? Because paying 60 euro for a noid Cattleya perhaps jenmanii is quite awful.
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Old 11-06-2019, 02:57 AM
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Regarding the seller olympus1975, do the plants have an actual name or just a tag with a made-up name as in the listings? Because paying 60 euro for a noid Cattleya perhaps jenmanii is quite awful.

Some of his plants seem to have made-up names, yes, and they do not come with any kind of tag in the package.

He does use real IDs as well (e.g. some Cattleyas like maxima are correctly presented; Grammatophyllums; Vanda Ambrosian Twinkle, and a few others). But for reason unknown to me he does appear to just invent names for most of the Vandas and some other orchids he sells.
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