Though I could provide gardeners with plenty of experiences that I have had with purchasing from seed companies, I don’t need to. There are plenty of people out there who feel strongly enough about their experiences with specific seed companies to leave a review. Though one may go on a company’s website or Facebook page and see wonderful experiences from customers, this often does not tell the whole story. Here are three sources that I feel are reliable for Gardening Seed Reviews:
1. Dave’s Garden Watchdog Reviews: Long before Yelp and Google Business, people were turning to Dave’s Garden to leave reviews of seed companies. When you look up a company on a search engine you may want to search “The Scoop on (insert company name)” and you’ll pull up a Dave’s Garden Watchdog review. They are generally pretty standard reviews. Most of these reviews will tell you not only how they felt about their experience, but why.
2. Yelp: Not all seed companies are on Yelp, but as Yelp is the leader in company reviews, they often provide as much insight as Dave’s Garden into how people feel about a specific company and why.
3. Finally, the most recent way to review companies is through their Google and Google Business reviews. With Google being the dominant search engine, it is usually easy to find a review on a specific company. Google Business pages allow for a company or its customers to recognize a business by providing the business information, hours of operation, pictures, and reviews. Unfortunately, Google Business reviews allow the individual to designate stars without giving details – something that I believe will eventually lead to problems – but at least it can provide some additional information.
Finally, what can an individual do if they cannot find any reviews on a company? In that kind of situation, it really helps to do one’s homework. This happened with myself when working to make a purchase from the Ukrainian company, Oro Seeds. I emailed the company, made a connection with the owner, ordered from them and received my seeds, then I reviewed them from my Facebook page so that others could know that Oro Seeds is a reputable company.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, I will relate an experience I had when contacting seed company Z about their seeds. When kindly requesting some form of reference, the owner became very defensive, saying that he had written a book that I need to read, he questioned my intelligence and, over the course of several emails – he told me that I was both uneducated and knew nothing about where specific varieties of vegetables come from. I was very kind to the owner the whole time, but by the end of the communication, I chose to block him from sending me any further emails. As a result, you can probably guess which seed company didn’t receive my business.
In short, it is wise to research a seed company before purchasing from them. Reading through the reviews and doing the homework needed to determine where one’s money is going will provide a fine reward when it comes time to grow.