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By NightRaider
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Posts:  418
Joined:  Mon Jun 07, 2021 4:01 am
#389875
I know John Ende has been a bit of a controversial figure recently, but with the free shipping promo and him having D. graomogolensis in stock I decided to give it a shot. I haven't found any actual reviews about his plants or shop, so I was curious to see how things would look. In the end, I was pretty thoroughly whelmed. The plants were okayish for the most part, but the packaging was pretty lackluster. There was no indication whether they would ship potted or bare root, but as it turns out they were surprisingly potted. The issue? Other than the grao, the tops of the pots weren't taped over to contain the soil like every single other potted plant I've received, meaning the dirt was various levels of scattered on all of them. The U. fulva was half buried because the soil was almost totally dry (???), and the D. natalensis had soil all over its leaves. In the end, I decided to just repot the three Utrics into bigger 3.5in pots as well as washing the natalensis down to bare root and repotting it. Another little more nitpicky thing I noticed is that the U. longifolia was just potted in a standard peat/perlite mix, when I was expecting to see at least some amount of lfs being epiphytic and all. Finally, I had the wrong person's invoice in my box, including their name and address, meaning more than likely they or someone else got my invoice with my personal information on it as well, which while fairly harmless is still a little annoying. However, I will at least give credit for getting a pot that included two graomogolensis when I only ordered one.

There were a couple more nitpicky things I wouldn't have even pointed out had it not been for the other issues. First was the tags were pretty terrible and didn't match. 3 were on actual good rigid tags but the handwritten green sharpie made it hard to read, while the other two were just printed on something like cardstock. I ended up just having to make new tags for them all. Also oddly enough, even the 2.5in pots didn't match each other either, but that's whatever. Just seemed a little strange they wouldn't be uniform. Also, I think this may be the only website I've ordered from that didn't have any review or account system, meaning there's no way to see reviews from other people or to find your order again after placing it other than through email.

In summary, the plants themselves seemed mostly okay and I expect them to survive (really glad I got mostly utrics), but while the packaging was *almost* there, it fell on its face at the last step. That combined with the almost completely dry soil in one pot, a potentially questionable choice of soil mix for another plant, and a lapse in care for at least 2 customers' personal information means I likely won't order here again. At least, not for quite a while.
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Half buried in dry soil
Half buried in dry soil
fulva.jpg (538.31 KiB) Viewed 7691 times
Thought it was sideways in the pot at first with how much of it was covered in soil.
Thought it was sideways in the pot at first with how much of it was covered in soil.
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The one pot that actually looked pretty professional
The one pot that actually looked pretty professional
graomogolensis.jpg (554.35 KiB) Viewed 7691 times
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By Nepenthes0260
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Joined:  Mon Apr 30, 2018 1:59 am
#389879
Thanks for the review. I’ve been wondering about his plants, too. I saw Jeremiah made an unboxing from him and everything looked much more professional than what it seems like actual customers get.
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By NightRaider
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Joined:  Mon Jun 07, 2021 4:01 am
#416353
Wasn't really planning to, and kinda regretted it immediately afterward, but bit the bullet and ordered here again since I have a new lowland area set up and he had falconeri in stock. Got D. falconeri, D. aff lanata (Flying Fox Creek), D. dilatopetiolaris, D. petiolaris, and Triantha occidentalis. I'm going to be a little more scathing this time because after 9 months I was hoping some of the issues from last time might have been resolved, but it was basically a copy/paste of my first order.
The entire experience this time was almost identical: nearly dry soil in two pots, useless tags, dirt all in the shipping box and all over the falconeri's leaves, and questionable soil mixes (orchid bark in petiolaris soil? At least I'm hoping it was orchid bark and not random trash from the peat). Additionally, this time the falconeri was potted about an inch below the top of the pot and the lanata had algae and slime mold on its soil surface so once again I have to mix new soil and repot and retag everything besides the triantha (which had 4 included but every one was half brown). Just annoying that the plants themselves are mostly pretty good but everything else ruins the experience.

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By Sundews69
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Posts:  2388
Joined:  Fri Dec 03, 2021 5:57 pm
#416355
Yeah, I ordered my U. sandersonii from him and he put a cup over the pot and there was soil absolutely EVRYWHERE. I could barely see threw the cup! idk if sandersonii is epiphytic or not, but it is in peat/perlite. The tag had sloppy handwriting on it and was kinda flimsy.
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By NightRaider
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Posts:  418
Joined:  Mon Jun 07, 2021 4:01 am
#416357
Yeah, the only thing I'd even consider ordering from there again is probably utrics since they should survive nearly anything as long as they didn't dry out and soil getting tossed around doesn't matter much to them.
Sundews69 wrote: idk if sandersonii is epiphytic or not, but it is in peat/perlite.
It's not, so peat/perlite is fine for them. Epiphytics include some, but not all, South American species with large leaves and extremely showy flowers. U. alpina, humboldtii, quelchii, and nelumbifolia are probably the most commonly available, but there are some others.
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By NightRaider
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Joined:  Mon Jun 07, 2021 4:01 am
#416437
Repotted the 4 drosera just now and made another discovery. When I unpotted the lanata with the stale soil, I immediately noticed several bugs crawling around throughout the soil. Upon further inspection they appeared to just be isopods, so I guess at least it wasn't anything harmful. Still, ehh. No other pots had any present at least, and the petiolaris and dilatopetiolaris actually seemed to have pretty decent soil so positive marks for that I guess. Also, turned out the stuff in the falconeri soil really was just trash from the peat and not orchid bark since there were actual sticks in it on down.
I guess a good summary for me after 2 orders would be this: good plants, mediocre packaging and poor administration/quality control.
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