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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

BlueBerry Giant Infomercial

How many of you have seen the infomercial for BlueBerryGiant blueberries? They show large, lush blueberry bushes with dozens of fat blueberries on each one. They tell you that you can have your very own blueberry bushes for one small payment of $10.00 plus S&H, but wait, there's more, you can get one more blueberry plant for free, just pay separate S&H. You get 3 plants in total. My order came to $21.90. I anxiously awaited the arrival of my order.

A few weeks later, with no notice, I received a small box in my mail. The box was very small, something you would expect to carry a hamster home from a pet store. It said there were live blueberry plants inside, I picked up this box and it weighed mere ounces. I wondered if they only sent one plant and the others were on their way. When I opened the box, I saw an open baggie of dry dirt and three twigs. Yes, I said twigs, these twigs are 3 inches long and maybe a quarter inch in diameter. Two of the three twigs had a couple of leaves and some roots, the third twig had no leaves (they had fallen off into the baggie of dirt) and no roots.

Understand that I am not so stupid as to expect to receive full grown blueberry bushes for that price, but I certainly expected something more than twigs. On their website, there is a FAQ, one of the questions on there is How long until the blueberry plants bear fruit? Their answer:
They will likely bear a light crop this season, a lot more next season and an even heavier crop during the third season and beyond.

Yeah, it will likely bear a light crop this season, and I'm likely to go to the moon this season too.

I planted the twigs in small pots, there is no way these are going outside this year. I tried to revive the dead twig with no luck. I emailed the company, they do have a guarantee on their twigs. Here is what I wrote:


You should really let your customers know that they are getting three 3 inch twigs, and that it will be at least 2-3 years before they can expect to get any blueberries from them.

With that said, 2 out of the three twigs seem to be alive, the 3rd is not, it arrived with no roots or leaves, all were in a baggie of dry soil, I'm surprised that any of them were alive. I tried to revive the dead twig, but it is quite dead with no activity coming from it at all, no new roots have grown and no new leaves have grown.

I don't know how you normally work these things, if I get a refund or if you send out more twigs. if you send another twig, I think I should get a couple of them in case one of them is DOA.

I'm pretty shocked that you can charge $11.90 for S&H on these, even with the "free" twig, it takes up no more space in that little baggie of dry dirt, it certainly can't add any more weight, you can probably stick a dozen more twigs in that little baggie of dry dirt and not incur any more shipping costs.  I suppose you have to pay for all those infomercials somehow, and for all the lush, blueberry bushes that you show on the infomercials.

To the customer service person who is handling this email, I am not angry with you personally, I feel quite sorry for you, I'm sure you have to read and deal with angry emails and customers quite a bit, I wish you all the best in your life, you should probably get a better and less stressful job, hope they are paying you well for this.

As far as the company, BlueBerryGiant is concerned, this is a pretty sad way to do business, I can just imagine the excited customers going to their mailboxes after ordering from your company, I can see the puzzled look on their face when they see the size of the box and wonder, "Did they only send one plant? Did they really put 3 plants in this little box?", and I can see the disappointment on their face when they open the box, and see those 3 sad twigs, hopefully with leaves and roots but more than likely not, in that little baggie of dry dirt.

I don't know what else to say, so I'll stop typing now, please reply and let me know what you are going to do.

I wonder what they will do. I'll post their response as soon as I get one I had the opportunity to purchase real bare root blueberry plants from Home Depot when I was in town (3 hours away), but I thought I would try getting them from the local nursery, and if the local nursery didn't have any, I could always order them from BlueBerryGiant. The nursery didn't carry any, so I ordered from BlueBerryGiant on line. I suppose next year I'll get some from Home Depot or order them from a reputable nursery. I don't think I'll find any the next time I go into town, of course if I do, I'll buy some and hopefully have a small crop of blueberries by next year. Oh well, live and learn.
Click for larger images.

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  1. Oh I can not believe you are being so calm! I would have called them immediately and told them I wanted my money back! And I would also complain about them to the BBB.
    I live on a small farmette, and we have blueberry bushes. But I told my husband I would love to have about 50 more plants! And raspberries too. But we both want the blueberries that get as large as a half dollar. So until we find a good nursery that carries them we'll wait.
    I'm sorry you got scammed.

  2. TM Frugal Gourmet, I'm only this calm because I didn't spend THAT much on them, I did get plants, even if 2 out of the 3 are alive, I'll see what they say and do about this.

  3. What a sorry bunch of....well... you know....

  4. rofl !!! I've been "got" by those claims before. Now I only deal with reputable places. I figure if they have to have an "info-mercial" there must be something wrong.
    MillerNursery.com has some very good blueberry option. I've ordered from them several times and planted their blueberry bushes last year. I looked and they are all healthy and happy little plants this spring with some blossoms on them already.

  5. Even when I clicked to embiggen the images, they were tiny, wee plants. I got two fair sized plants from one of the big-box stores, and we'll have one, count 'em one, blueberry from them this year...which is one more than I expected. Next year, I plan to put in more, and the year after as well, a few a year until we move or are swimming in berries.

    I wish you luck with your little darlin's...at least they're game to try...and hope you get some satisfaction from the company.

    Shade and Sweetwater,
    K (who wandered over from Momlady's)

  6. You should go to Dave's Gardens and post about this company. They have a huge listing of companies, who owns who & ratings from customers. Anymore I try to check there first, then order. At least your experience would be a warning to others. Its free to join & I've never been spammed.

  7. Ugh! Sorry infomercials! Scammers! But I have a hunch that if anybody can grow berries from these bushes.... er, twigs, it's you.

  8. I am so sorry your were scammed! I have seen that infomercial and wondered if they really looked like that and did all that was claimed.

    I hope they replace them for you! Let us know if you hear from them.

  9. So sorry this happened to you.
    And thank you for posting it for us to all see.
    I bought some blueberries from Sam's last year.
    They are doing well. Even the one I forgot to plant,
    and had in the house all winter.

  10. My local nursery here usually has bare-root blueberries for $3-$4 apiece. They are about two years old generally, and if you go a bit bigger in the pot it's around $12 per bush. Healthy root systems and they are about 12" high. I try always to 'go-local' just for reasons like you gave.


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