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Digitalis Illumination. Has anyone had these plants? I bought 3 plugs in April and 3 more in June because they were advertised as 'perennial'. The first (pink) ones have only just started to show signs of fowering and the second (gold) order will clearly not flower this year. This didn't dusturb me too much as I thought they would give a good show next year.
Now I find that they are being sold by T&M as 'half hardy perennials' so if we have another harsh winter they won't survive it. Which means that I will have paid nearly £30 for 6 plugs of plants that one might treat as annuals.
Does anyone agree that the price is excessive? I would have thought that T&M would contact people who have been misled and offer them a refund. I have phoned them and made a request for such as I would never have bought them as tender plants.



I forgot to ask you whether a cloche would help the plants to survive a harsh winter? Thankyou.

29 Aug, 2013


Hi, I definitely agree with you that they are overpriced, t&m are always overpriced, and also not very good quality, they call them plug plants, I call them seedlings, I don't know how they have the nerve to sell most of the plants they have, for the price they do.
3 years ago I bought 42 plug plants of Echinacea, supposed to be a mixture of colours, out of the 22 that I managed to salvage, with a lot of tlc, 19 turned out to be the straight forward purpurea, the rest were dead when they arrived, and I was amazed that I could hold a tray of 42 plugs in the palm of 1 hand, they were TINY.
I was very surprised that they have even bothered to say half hardy, they seem to think that if something is hardy in the channel islands, it's hardy everywhere in the uk, also I have always thought of foxgloves as Biennial, not perennial, and also i we get a severe winter, a cloche will not be enough protection, sorry, Derek.

29 Aug, 2013


If memory serves me right - I'm sure Meadowland has/had this plant. Perhaps you could send her a PM in case she doesn't see this question. She might be able to help re hardiness etc.

When it was given all the hype at Chelsea it was not the new plant they were all making out. It had been marketed before.

Dobbies GC had good sized pots of these on sale in their bargain racks for £4 last week. The label said perennial. I was tempted but have had my fingers burnt recently buying plants marked as perennial and it turns out they are considered 'short lived'.

29 Aug, 2013


Thankyou Derek and Scottish. I'm so an annoyed about this and will certainly never trust T&M again. So a cloche will not be enough protection - so disappointed after believing the blurb that these would be perennial.

29 Aug, 2013


They 'are' perennial just not hardy... T & M are very selective in their wording!

29 Aug, 2013


T&M have never been the cheapest. But if they are marketing it as half hardy then they are probably within the 'meaning of the Act'. Problem with plants is that if they don't grow you'll have one heck of a job proving that it was the seller's fault and not yours or an act of God (or whatever). Presumably you thought £30 was reasonable when you ordered them? If they're not of the size advertised then you could send them back but even that would be difficult unless T&M had specified a height (as some mail order sellers do).
There's no cast iron guarantee that the £4 Dobies plants will survive.

Sorry, but I think it's a case of once bitten... You won't buy from T&M again. What surprises me is that they're still in business after all these years - they must get it right sometimes!

It's no consolation but I guess we've all got stories about the dream plant that did nothing (I have two lovely sticks that were camellias) - the moral is do your homework before buying.

29 Aug, 2013


Because T & M only described the plants as perennials and didn't say they were hardy, I don't think it was against the trade descriptions act to say this. Had they said it was hardy and it wasn't, then you would have a case. It would be the same as someone advertising floor tiles and the buyer thought they were waterproof and they weren't. An assumption made by the buyer is not the same as an implied statement from the seller.

If you bought the plants on-line or through mail order, then under the distance selling act you have more rights than if you bought them from a store where you could have inspected them first. You could have just sent them back if you didn't like them.

I have heard that T & M have a good customer service policy and will usually replace, refund or give you a credit on your next purchase from them if you speak to them and raise your concerns.

The bottom line is a saying that's used a lot by lawyers and courts of law... caveat emptor... Let the buyer beware.

29 Aug, 2013


Thanks everyone. I guess I should have been more wary when I ordered them; a perennial foxglove was just so appealing even if sterile. i can't remember whether they advertised them as hardy or not.

Following my call to T& M yesterday, a plants woman rang me today and they are giving me a full refund. i'm still hoping to get them through the winter - aint even seen them flower yet. She said they thought they were hardy but realise now that they are not, hence the new description. Yet, I still feel so disappointed and yes Urbanite, they were my dream plant. Well put!

30 Aug, 2013

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