TORONTO -- Flowers are always a popular gift for Mother's Day and with the lockdown in place they were the choice for many people to give their mothers.

Customers using an online florist this year found that some flowers arrived late and others didn’t look at all like the arrangements they had ordered online.

"This the first time where I had to be away from my mother and I wanted to do something nice and let her know I was thinking of her," Sylvester de Silva told CTV News Toronto.

He ordered 12 long stem roses for his mother and said he paid extra to make sure the roses would be delivered before noon on Mother’s Day in Toronto.

de Silva said they didn’t arrive until late that night and that they also contained only three roses and the rest were replaced with cheaper flowers.

“Not only did I pay $77 for the flowers and express delivery, I didn't get express delivery and I didn't get the flowers that I ordered,” de Silva said.

de Silva bought the flowers through the website Bloomex and other viewers also sent CTV News Toronto photos showing their mothers received different arrangements than what they had ordered. 

CTV News Toronto reached out to the company and a marketing spokesperson.

"Bloomex successfully delivered 59,256 orders over the Mother's Day week. Due to COVID restrictions and limitations 2.3 per cent (1,363 orders) were delayed,” a spokesperson for Bloomex said.

CTV News Toronto has also had other viewer complaints about other items ordered through Bloomex recently.

Julia Skanes of Etobicoke wanted to surprise her niece for her eighth birthday with flowers. 

She said she was told the flowers were delivered, but she said they never showed up and was denied a refund.

"It was bedtime and still no flowers and my niece was really disappointed,” Skanes said.

Cheryl Button of Dundas, Ont. said she received a gift basket from a friend when her mother passed away, but she said it looked nothing like the photo on the website.

"When I opened it, it was rotting clementine’s, two apples and one single grape,” Button said.


Button said she didn’t want to upset her friend who gave her the gift, but felt he should know the quality of the gift that he had paid about $135 for. 

“We need to know that what we are sending our loved ones is what we ordered,” she said.

The Better Business Bureau said there have been over 900 complaints about Bloomex in the last three years, but said on its website “BBB met with the Customer Service Director of Bloomex on April 13, 2021 to discuss BBB’s concerns regarding a pattern of complaints related to product issues, delivery issues and customer service issues.” 

“Bloomex has acknowledged and is working to address supply chain issues impacting delivery times and product concerns. Bloomex is also addressing customer service issues and is working towards improving the customer service experience. Bloomex continues to be responsive to BBB and is working to improve their business model to improve their pattern of complaints. BBB continues to monitor the situation in conjunction with working with the business and will review the progress over the next three months.”

Mary O’Sullivan-Andersen with the Better Business Bureau said the best advice is to do your research before ordered anything online. 

"What they should do (consumers) is go to to research any company that they are looking at working with and ask friends and family and get referrals, but always do their research," O’Sullivan-Andersen said.

Whenever you search for a service or product on Google, you should know companies can pay fees to be the first to pop up. 

Keep that in mind when you're buying something, in case you want to check out other companies as well.