Daily Express

All is not rosy in gardeners’ world


SCORES more garden lovers have been voicing concerns over chronic delivery delays after ordering plants from online retailers hit by Covid-19 knock-on effects.

Plants can play a crucial role in people’s wellbeing and never more so than now.Among the many people contacting Crusader, some hard-pressed health workers and those currently in isolation have said they have been unwell, bought plants to cheer themselves up but fear not getting them.

After Crusader’s inquiry last week into the sector-wide supply chain hold-ups and the unpreceden­ted demand online sellers were experienci­ng, online store Primrose moved to reassure customers about refunds and the new availabili­ty of bedding and vegetable plants.

It has also sorted out particular complaints we took up on behalf of customers, although others are still waiting. And many among the green-fingered brigade have told us they are also losing patience with retailer Gardening Express.

These complaints have a familiar ring – orders not delivered when expected, imprecise automated updates, and the lack of a direct response when customers indicated

● consumer-genie.co.uk that they wished to cancel. But time sensitivit­ies were a major worry, too, with customers fearing their orders would arrive after the planting dates, leaving them unable to reap full benefit.

Gardening Express, which communicat­es via online, quickly sought to reassure customers when we raised their concerns saying the vast majority of the 150,000 orders taken since lockdown – a five-fold increase on this time last year – have been fulfilled, but a small minority have been delayed due to capacity issues.

“The company has pledged to fulfil every order. We are working around the clock.We ask customers to please be patient. Some of our plants are marked as not being ready for shipping until mid-May – we want to ship when they are able to thrive and not be killed by a ground frost. This is clearly stated on the website.

“Customers can cancel orders for a full refund at any time if the order has not been shipped.”

Orders placed prior to April 7 should have been despatched, it added, promising if customers are still waiting they should send a support ticket and it will be rectified.

 ?? ?? POT LUCK: Plants delivered late
POT LUCK: Plants delivered late

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