Vegetable Garden Plot

Reply to gardening topic Page 1 of 1
Seed Quality
Author Message
Reply with quote
Post Seed Quality 
I am preparing to buy my seeds for this year's garden, and as I've priced the different seed companies, I noticed that the same see type differs widely in price.

As an example, take the Better Boy tomato, .

Burpees sells 30 seeds for 3.95, Parks sells 30 seeds for 2.75, and Ferry-Morse sells 20 seeds for 1.00 at Walmart. They all are listed as the
Lycopersicon esculentum Better boy hybrid.

Does the vendor make that much of a difference?

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Reply with quote
Post Seeds and where they come from 
It does make a difference.
Sadly it is hard to tell which seeds to buy.
Commercial grows care a LOT about seed quality and demand to know the 'batch # and to see germination reports. Thus commercial growers get the best seeds.
Seed companies that sell to home growers know that packaging and marketing sell more seed packages then germination reports.
Thus look for seed companies that seem to care about quality. Look for seed companies that have their own 'trial/test farms' where they grow out some of the seeds they sell each year and test new seeds before they sell them.
Look for seed companies that are in the same climate or source seeds from they same region that you are in.
Sorry I can't give a simple easy to follow answer. As with many things, there is a lot just below the surface/seed package that most people don't see.

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Reply with quote
Post  
Hi Roy.

I can understand the germination factor, but what about the actual fruits/veggies? Once germinated, would there be noticeable difference is the produce, or might it show up in less visible means, such as disease resistance?

In other words, if I had hour healthy plants of the same type from four seed suppliers, would each of the plants produce the same, given that all water and nutrition and other conditions were the same?

Thanks
Steve

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Reply with quote
Post Seed quality 
Germination has a bit to do with seed strength, which in turn leads to plant strength.

Home veggy gardens are not as likely to notice a few weaker plants, maybe blame themselves. If you by 30 seeds and 29 germinate into strong plants it is also a different value then buying 30 seeds and getting 23 to germinate or get a few stunted or weak tomatoes. $3.00 might be good value for high quality seeds and $2.50 would be a rip off for low quality seeds.

Not to say that with a seed package you won't get strong plants, just not as many per seed package.

But then high price doesn't mean higher quality. It may mean that company spends more on advertising or has higher margins. Because you don't know what quality of seeds are in the package it is hard to know for sure.

I want a less complicated world to live in. Smile

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Reply with quote
Post  
Hi Roy,

Thanks for the info. For me, i guess it comes down to scale. I'm just gardening in four 4X8 raised beds. I surely can understand the needs of a commercial gardener.

I may try an experiment this year and try four different seed vendors for the same produce. Unfortunately, there will be only one plant per vendor, so my sample size will be too small. Should be fun though.

Thanks

Steve

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Reply with quote
Post Experimenting on seed quality 
Hi Steve,

Don't mean to be a "seed disturber" here Wink but if you do proceed with your experiment, note that a huge percentage of commercial seeds come from Monsanto or Seminis, a subsidiary of Monsanto. So if you get a variety of, e.g. an Early Girl tomato seed from Burpee or Gurney's or Johnny's Seeds, they all likely come from one source - Seminis. Here's an article:

http://www.seedalliance.org/Seed_News/SeminisMonsanto/

and there's more info on this subject if you just google it.

It would be best to call the seed company and find out where they get that particular variety of seed from. This industry is "incestuous", so bear in mind you may need to research the parent/grandparent company of their seed distributor.

I am very curious to hear the outcome of your experiment!

Warmly,

Gigi

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Reply with quote
Post  
Hi Gigi,

Thanks for the heads up. I am somewhat disappointed in learning that Monsanto is involved in any way. How can a small gardener such as myself, find out if the seeds from a Johnnys or Burpee are non-GMO, and not some biotech engineered product from the labs of Monsanto?

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Reply with quote
Post  
go with a seed place that harvest there own seeds like Seed savers exchange
or d landreth company(since 1784) or any that sell heirloom seeds i even get some seeds from ebay now seed savers even have classes on how to save seeds (there packs come with no shafts and plant bits)
d landreth has bit with seeds but cheaper per pack and if you like to try something new look at ebay the big seed catalogs do not have all seeds from mom and pops garden around the world and saved from the boat trip to USA
hope that helps

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Reply with quote
Post  
Thanks Stripes!

It's still mid February, so I have some time left.

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Reply with quote
Post  
I can tell you that I have had better results with Burpee than Ferry-Morse or Parks. I come from a family with three generations of gardeners, and we all prefer Burpee. Incidentally, I called Burpee, and they said the Burpee seeds you buy at retailers are the same seeds they sell in their catalog, just smaller packages (great for me!), and also cheaper prices because of the smaller packages.

View user's garden forum profile Send Garden forum private message
Display posts from previous:
Reply to gardening topic Page 1 of 1
You cannot post new topics in this vegetable garden forum
You cannot reply to topics in this vegetable garden forum
You cannot edit your posts in this vegetable garden forum
You cannot delete your posts in this vegetable garden forum
You cannot vote in polls in this vegetable garden forum
You can attach files in this forum
You can download files in this forum