The Consumerist Garden of Discontent is a recurring theme on this site, because it seems that delivered flowers will never quite measure up to the photos in catalogs or on the website. In hindsight, Teresa wishes that she had just picked up a few bouquets at Trader Joe’s and presented them to her mom in person before she left town. She could have done some quality control, and the end result would have been a lot prettier.
Update: A florist wrote in to point out that it looks like Teresa actually bought her flowers from an FTD florist located in a different state that’s been playing some interesting search engine optimization games to make it look like they’re the “local” florist to just about everyone. They’re not: customers think they’re patronizing a local florist, but might as well have gone to FTD.com.
Recently, to thank my mother for all her efforts helping us clean and move to a new house, I wanted to send her a nice bouquet. Knowing full well the problems fellow Consumerist readers have with 1-800-FLOWERS and FTD, I specifically avoided them and chose a local company by my parent’s winter home in Arizona, [redacted.]
I paid around $70 after taxes and delivery. I sincerely wish I’d just bought two $10 Trader Joe’s bouquets while my mother was still in my city, because they would have been far prettier and cheaper than what arrived! The flowers barely stick up out of the vase, despite the image showing the flowers being at least twice as wide as the vase on the website. I’m so embarrassed that this was my thank you gift.
So far, no response form [redacted] despite their email confirmation promise to resolve any issue quickly. I’m no longer sure it’s possible to trust an online flower company to deliver what they promise.
Here’s the problem, though, and where the line between “wire service” and “local florist” gets kind of blurry and confusing. The “Deep Emotion” bouquet is an FTD design. It may have come from a local florist, but not the same one that Teresa ordered from. Huh Didn’t she go out of her way to find a florist in Arizona? She did, but that’s not what she found.
When you search Google for a local florist, you might type something like “flowers shermer IL” in the box. When Teresa did this, it took her to a vendor that is a local florist, but also routes orders for other cities to the wire services, taking a cut in the process.