I Got Ripped Off

katkin_gwFebruary 2, 2009

I am fumming. I got ripped off by one of the venders at Gardenfest in Vero this weekend. I bought 2 bromeliads at $20 each only to find out they were spray painted for the color.

Gardenfest has been my favorite plant sale for years and to think someone would be so dishonest selling a cheapy bromeliad you can get anywhere with the color sprayed to make it look worth $20. I put a call in to the Indian River Garden Club, the people that sponsered this sale and am waiting for a return call. I don't want this vender to ever be able to do this again.

I still can't believe that this happened at this sale. I thought they checked out the venders better then that.

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FlowerLady6(z10 Fl)

Oh Kathy ~ I am so sorry this happened to you. I had just looked at the pictures of you with GoldenPond and your two husbands and you looked like you were having a great time. I hope they find out whoever did this. I bet yours won't be the only complaint they get. Did this paint wash off? Didn't they think they were going to be found out? They should give you money back!

Keep us posted.

FlowerLady

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 1:07PM
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katkin_gw

No, it didn't wash off, it's like a spray paint. He was under the shade of some trees and I was wearing sun glasses so it didn't look so fake. He put the plants in sleaves so I didn't see them good until I got home. Then I thought they looked funny and pulled on one of the flower petals and saw the true color underneath. They are always coming up with new bromeliads so I thought these were new ones, I had never seen before. I never got the name of the dealer, but if I ever see him again........

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 1:48PM
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coffeemom(Broward z10)

Last year we were handed a list of all vendors and there was a map to show you where they were located.
Did they have 1 for this year? Maybe it could help to find the name of the vendor.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 8:15PM
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natives_and_veggies(10b)

That is dirty, and thanks for the warning. I can't help you get your money back, but you've certainly given me the heads up to look more carefully at what I get. If nothing else, that vendor can expect to be not just discovered, but exposed, publicly, if I'm the one to notice his deceit. And I'll be looking at plant sales I go to.

Can you post pix of the broms you got? I'd be interested to see what this spray paint artist did, just so I can spot it more easily.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 11:16PM
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katkin_gw

Sorry Native, I'm not good with a camera and posting pictures. But a friend is a dealer and told me the way they do it. They insert a cone of paper over the flower and between the leaves and then spray it. It might be what's called floral spray. The flowers are stiffer then normal, but not like if they used regular spray paint.

Coffeemom, I did get a map and I have an idea where he was. I spoke to the Pres. of the garden club. But since I didn't have a name she said she couldn't help. She was nice, but didn't seem to want to bother with it.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2009 at 7:16AM
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solstice98(9b/Orlando)

If you've got anyone there with a cell phone camera or digital camera, send me the photo and I'll be happy to post it.

Kate

    Bookmark   February 4, 2009 at 3:28PM
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katkin_gw

Thanks for the offer Kate, but I don't have a cell phone or camera. Probably the only one in the world without a cell phone. lol

    Bookmark   February 4, 2009 at 5:58PM
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solstice98(9b/Orlando)

Ah, you are a wise woman - and not just in the garden!

    Bookmark   February 4, 2009 at 8:56PM
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katkin_gw

Thanks Kate. ;o) That's not what my kids say. lol

The name of the vender is Millers Way Orchids and Nursery. I haven't found an address yet or phone number, if anyone knows them please advise. Thanks

    Bookmark   February 5, 2009 at 2:20PM
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ginibee(z9bFL Brevard)

Did you get my email? I think that's the one.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2009 at 3:40PM
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katkin_gw

I just called the people at Miller's Way and they are refunding my money by mail, or so they said. Gail Miller claimed her brother was supposed to tell people they were color inhanced.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2009 at 3:38PM
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atreelady(9b SW Orlando)

Kathy, I'm glad it looks like you will get it resolved. But why would anyone paint a brom in the first place?
... And I thought I was the only one w/o a cell. Glad to know I'm not alone.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2009 at 9:17PM
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imatallun

Whew! I'm glad you are getting near resolution. I never would have guessed spray paint on broms... so thanks for the heads up.

Guess we need to really, really watch out. Not all plant people are good, but at least you had restitution, and I'm very happy about that, Kathy.

I'd rather be ripped off myself than invite someone somewhere and have that special someome get ripped off. Promise, last word said about all of that.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2009 at 11:08PM
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scottrell(10AFl)

I am so sorry that happened to you.

I too attended this palnt sale with a large group of friends (There were twelve of us) There are two of my friends that bought these broms, I said at the time "Whoa those are so unusual, they almost look fake!" I had no idea at the time that they really were!

I did not know how to break it to them that they were duped. So thanks so much for posting! I have told them to contact Miller's Way. Hopefully they will get a resolution as well!

Maybe if more people complain, they will no longer try to pull this off.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 9:32PM
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katkin_gw

Gail Miller told me that was the way they bought them from the grower in Homestead. Perhaps, (a long stretch) they didn't know either.

Millers Way Orchids and Nursery
6740 SW 169th Ave
Southwest Ranches, Fl
954-680-8731

Good luck to your friends. :o)

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 9:35AM
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imatallun

Dear Katkin,

I swear I never would have realized that people would actually spray paint broms and sell them. I have a soft spot for Bromeliads and Tillandsia, so thanks for the heads up that this can happen at a plant sale.

What color did the perps paint your $20 plants?

You are welcome to my garden anytime to get new broms. We Treasure Coast peeps need to hook up sometime.

Your kind words are very much appreciated, by the way.

m

marilyn

    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 11:54PM
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katkin_gw

M, whoever did it used a floral spray and one was bright red and the other lavender. The bright red was really hard to tell, but I guess I should have known the lavender was fake. All I can say is their stall was in the shade and I had sun glasses on. I didn't question the color till I got them home.

And though Gail personally told me she would refund my money I haven't received it yet. If it's not in today's mail I am calling them again.

Yes, we should get together sometime.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2009 at 4:52AM
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imatallun

Thanks for the explanation, Katkin. Now I can see how that could happen, didn't know the practice existed, so once again, thanks.

Have you seen the Blue Tango Brom yet? OMG! Google it if you haven't seen it. And lavender isn't an unusual color in the brom family. I hope you receive resolution, think you will.

Best wishes,
Marilyn

PS I'll keep my shades off when in a Miller's booth. There's a big plant sale coming up in Stuart in March. Perhaps a get together around then? (I'll host.)

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 7:01PM
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katkin_gw

I haven't received the money yet, so I called again. Gail Miller said she was out of town, but put the check in the mail today. Hmmmm,we see.

M, What is the plant sale in Stuart and when? And a get together sound great. :o)

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 7:21PM
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katkin_gw

Marilyn, send me an email about the plant sale and get together. I don't get over here that often. Marion has the best address. :o)or send it to the one listed here.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2009 at 4:44AM
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msmarion(9aPort St Lucie)

Ya what plant sale? Inquiring minds want to know hoe! LOL

    Bookmark   February 19, 2009 at 8:58PM
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imatallun

Here's a link. Oops, a copy & paste (lol). What is really funny is that a friend in Sebring gave me the heads up about this sale in Stuart ... she was checking Gardino's schedule because she has the icky hoya bug. (I have that bug too.)

http://www.gardenclubofstuart.org/fair-to-remember.shtml

    Bookmark   February 19, 2009 at 11:12PM
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katkin_gw

Hmmm, that sounds good. I'll go. Hope Millers Orchids isn't there! lol What day, Sat or Sun? I usually like the first day of a sale to get the best plants.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2009 at 6:35AM
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msmarion(9aPort St Lucie)

Sounds like a flower show. There doesn't seem to be any mention of vendors. I think we should go. Saturday would work for me.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2009 at 10:39PM
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katkin_gw

Marion, under flower show on their web site, is more info and that you to garden expo and they say vendors will be there. :o)
Sat works for me, they open at 9:00 am.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2009 at 4:47AM
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msmarion(9aPort St Lucie)

Thanks Katkin, I missed that page. See you there!

    Bookmark   February 21, 2009 at 7:49AM
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coffeemom(Broward z10)

Katkin, I tried to find Miller's Orchids on the way to work. I'll have to mapquest it. It was one of those "can't get there from here" addresses and I kept going down dead end streets. (with homeowners giving me somber looks)

    Bookmark   February 21, 2009 at 9:47PM
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katkin_gw

I got my check in the mail, now as long as it doesn't bounce I'm good. Yea! I guess they new I wasn't going away. Gail did appolize as well.

Thanks Kristi. From what I've learned it is a home business.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 5:12AM
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tropicalfreak(z10b Ft Lauderdale)

coffeemom, you sure they weren;t loading there shot guns. lol

tropicalfreak

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 5:33PM
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imatallun

I'm glad that you received reimbursement for your wayward bromeliads and sorry that I fizzled out on hosting a Treasure Coast happening for the local sale. Wasn't Miller's mentioned in "The Orchid Thief"?

    Bookmark   April 5, 2009 at 10:21PM
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katkin_gw

Imatallun, sorry you weren't able to have garden tour, maybe sometime in the future as I would still love to see your garden. Email me when you're ready. ;o)

What was the "The Orchid Thief"?

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 11:26AM
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imatallun

Hey Katkin,

"The Orchid Thief" is a fascinating non-fiction book, best seller about 10 years ago about S. Florida plant thievery and orchid shenanigans and the Miccousoukee (I think, and I think I spelled that wrong) Indian tribe and reserve. It's been awhile since I read it, but it was memorable, especially the main charachter.) It's a worthy read. My copy is out on loan, return being somewhat iffy, but you may find the book at a used book store or the library.

Thanks for your kind words. I'll be in touch! And I'm not the type to have to wait until the garden is perfect, because it never, never is. I always have something (or a few things) that are a work in progress.

Happy Easter and/or Passover,
m

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 10:43PM
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katkin_gw

m,thanks I'll be sure to check that book out. I love stories about Fl.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2009 at 3:03PM
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imatallun

Did you find "The Orchid Thief" yet? It is a worthy read, I promise.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2009 at 10:21PM
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katkin_gw

No, I didn't get it yet.:o)

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 10:06AM
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imatallun

But the check was good, hopefully?

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 7:37PM
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jonibook(S. Florida)

I got ripped off by Gail Miller and her husband from Millers Way Orchids, too at the Coconut Grove Art Festival. Last year they had a display of blue orchids that were gorgeous and pricey. I talked to her directly and asked how that could be. She went on and on about a new hybrid and how she was one of the first in the country to grow these, etc etc. I really questioned her b/c I have a lot of orchids and keep up on what's going on. Anyway, I bought one at a premium price. When I go home I examined it and noticed " needle marks" on the plants where they were injected with blue die. One month later I saw them in Publix with a label saying they were dyed and when the grew back next season, they would be white, which is exactly what happened. Now I may have bought it anyways since it was so pretty but she lied to my face.
For those of you who tried to find their place, years ago her husband, Chuck, took me to the greenhouses, so they did exist, in the Southwest Ranches, but they were almost like private greenhouses. I think she just buys and resells upping the margin a lot.
I would never buy from them again!!!

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   June 10, 2012 at 9:20AM
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