Mixed emotion on your post but want to reply in a friendly discussion manner and not adversarial so don't take this as a flame or anything.
The gathering XP is certainly over the top, although I discovered that part of that is due to rested XP being applied but not showing in the feedback like it is with mobs.
For example, my alchy went to do some archeology today and thanks to being fully (or almost fully) rested it cleared the remaining 25% of 80, all of 81 and three bubs into 82 - I was scoring 14.5k xp per dig. The rested XP finally gave out after I stopped digging at 99 (an hour of digging and no skill up - **** it - I was combining crap) so I did some herbalism in Mt H - the last of the rested gave out there and I was earning around 3k per herb - on par with killing a mob.
So I think the problem is more of needing some tweeking, especially with archeology (which I hate saying as that doesn't have much in the way of pay off, at least at lower skill levels IMO - plus it's slow as balls to level to boot).
Not far enough in chanting yet to fully discuss your observations but I do recall the rod issue cropping up almost every xpac in that there'd be a recipe or two which hit before you could make the rod - that doesn't justify it - just an odd patter on Blizz's part.
It sounds like you're saying that you need to do a quest to get your higher end chanting rod though - if so I'll call it a good thing as it gives front line enchanters an edge over alts (note my chanter is an alt and it's not high on my priority list to get it into the field to start leveling either).
On JC my biggest gripe on my end is the lack of gems from the ore nodes (and I've yet to have one drop from a mob), meaning that prospecting isn't so much an option as a requirement. As a plus point though, prospecting is (at least on my server for now) still the cheaper option then buying raw gems from the AH.
As for certain gems which will come into play later being cheaper now due to no use yet - that's an investment opportunity, not a downside.
The only way to get some recipes is from dailies. Other professions don't have this restriction,
Never got cooking past 375 on any toons I take it?
Getting all the recipes means doing the daily EVERY day for about 10 months. By which time those items will be long obsolete and we will be halfway to the next expansion
You don't need all of them though - your first half dozen or so are cherry picked for leveling JC and/or the utility of the recipes - ie/you get the ones you need first. That done, you then move on to the ones that are either good AH cuts, are also useful, but not as useful as the first batch (secondary gems/jewelery/trinkets, cuts for friends/guildies/alts) and then finally, once all of the need and want recipes are acquired, then you putter your way through the Pokemon stage of tradeskills - ie/recipes - gotta have 'em all.
That's not even a requirement either if you're willing to put cash above instant gratification too - my JC in LK used it's daily token to buy a dragon's eye and made a mint selling them to the "gotta collect every recipe NOW" crowd - gotta see if the new version of the dragon's eye is the same situation - might do the same thing again.
Still, you have a valid point about the gaining of recipes being a tad rough - it is nice not to have to farm a misc item to add to the recipe but having to cut a gem right then and there means you can't simply skill on daily cuts and save them up to use over the course of the week.
Leather workers have it almost as bad as they have to purchase most of their good recipes using heavy leather and probably the new version of arctic fur, meaning said recipes run the AH equivalent of several hundred to over 1k gold.
Alchies, BS, engineers, chanters and tailors have no such requirement, although alchies do have the limitation of needing to discover certain recipes (meaning that if the RNG doesn't play nice you might never get it no matter how much gold you've got) while engineering is it's own punishment.
Inscriptionist suffer a somewhat similar limitation in that they need to do research, however, they get scrolls and misc related items as partial compensation for their efforts.
As for the orbs being BOP - if memory serves that's the way they were back in the beginning of LK too - give it a few months and they'll eventually be BOE. What I would like to see though to avoid the issue of idiots rolling on them just for the merchant value (or to stock up in anticipation of AHing them once they're BOE) is to have the NEED/GREED system scan your recipe list and if you don't have a recipe which calls for them then you only get the GREED option - that should make life a bit more manageable in that respect.
Right now my biggest grief with tailoring is that the cloth is rare as hen's teeth - as noted, all my toons plus my GF have been feeding my tailor every scrap of cloth we can find and that's not all that much - I die a little inside every time someone in my guild hits 525 in first aid as it's such a horrific waste of needed cloth.