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Old November 16, 2017   #1
MissS
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Default Fedco Seeds

It has been many years since I have ordered from Fedco. I used them a lot before they became employee owned. After the change I found that prices went up and service declined. I recently gave them another try and I am sad to say that it was a thumbs down experience.

I ordered only four items. I paid $5.00 for shipping four packs of seed. One was a pack of Rosa Bianca Eggplant. The tomatoes were fine. However the Rosa Bianca had a 69% germination rate marked on the package. I was not happy and contacted Fedco. They said that federal germination regulations for eggplant were 68% and that theirs was above that. I could keep the seeds or send them back for a full refund but they would not be replacing them.

Fedco has lost a longtime customer. Never again...
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Old November 16, 2017   #2
Father'sDaughter
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I haven't ordered from them in a few years, but I know they are still very popular with local small farms, CSA growers and community gardens as they sell in bulk quantities. From your experience, I'm guessing that's their primary focus these days -- small commercial and market farmers buying big packs, not those of us just looking for a few small packets of seeds.
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Old November 16, 2017   #3
jtjmartin
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I've bought seeds from FedCo and had a good experience. Just one guy - but it worked for me.

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Old November 17, 2017   #4
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I have always been skeptical of their variety descriptions of tomatoes. I've read their glowing reviews of varieties I have grown and with which I was not that impressed. "Puffery" is the legal term. It means that you are not doing anything outright dishonest or illegal...just embellishing the up side a tad, like any good salesperson would do.
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Old November 17, 2017   #5
Labradors2
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I've bought from them in the past and been happy. I will buy from them again if they have what I'm looking for.

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Old November 17, 2017   #6
Worth1
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At least they were honest about the germination rate.
I would test it myself before making a decision if it were me.
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Old November 17, 2017   #7
Ken B
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MissS View Post
It has been many years since I have ordered from Fedco. I used them a lot before they became employee owned. After the change I found that prices went up and service declined.
For this part, maybe you're thinking of Johnny's? Johnny's transitioned to employee ownership in the last 10 years.

Fedco's always been a cooperative since the '70s (it's part of the funkiness of their name, something like Federation of Cooperatives). They're 60% owned by consumers, 40% owned by the workers.

Anyway -- I like them a lot, I ordered seeds from them for 10 years before starting to work at a (different) seed company, then getting to know them and cooperate with them. From my perspective they're very dedicated and passionate folks.
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Old November 17, 2017   #8
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I have bought from them for 7 or 8 years now and am very satisfied with quality and price.
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Old November 17, 2017   #9
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I have bought from them for 7 or 8 years and have been very satisfied with prices and quality.
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Old November 18, 2017   #10
PhilaGardener
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The high cost of shipping is a problem across the industry - it is killing small busness. I feel it every time I want to mail a small package (and I'm not trying to run a business).

The Federal Germination Standard for eggplant seed seems to be 60%, so they were above the regulation by more than they indicated.
www.ct.gov/caes/lib/caes/documents/publications/bulletins/b1001.pdf
is a report from the CT Ag Experimental Station (2005) that shows germ rates on commercial eggplant seed lots (page 6) that range from 50% into the 70%s. None were spectacular.

I've had problems with low germination of eggplant seeds from several suppliers so share your pain. Sorry you had a bad experience and hope next season is better!

Last edited by PhilaGardener; November 18, 2017 at 08:46 AM. Reason: Fixed link
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Old November 18, 2017   #11
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Eggplant is a notoriously poor germinator. I don't even save seeds from one year to the next for them. I have had 0 germination on saved year old seeds. Last year I bought plants from some one else instead of growing my own. it wasn't worth it to me to try. so, really 69% in my book is a great %. I say try them but sow heavy.. give away the extras if you can. otherwise you may as well throw away the seeds that you don't use this year anyway.

and 5.00 for shipping some seeds is ridiculous but no one seems to be any cheaper, either. I pay 5 to have my seeds shipped from a commercial supplier and as much as I order it should be free, but it isn't. I order 500.00 worth and still pay. Johnny's is 200.00 and free shipping. 200.00 is not a lot of seeds from Johnny's either.
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Old November 18, 2017   #12
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Tomato growers supply charges me $3.95 S/H no matter what it is or the amount and yes they have ROSA BIANCA seeds.
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Old November 18, 2017   #13
pmcgrady
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Worth1 View Post
Tomato growers supply charges me $3.95 S/H no matter what it is or the amount and yes they have ROSA BIANCA seeds.
Plus they usually throw in a free packet of tomato seeds!
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Old November 18, 2017   #14
Father'sDaughter
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Default Fedco Seeds

Went looking out of curiosity. Here is the pricing for the smallest pack each offers.

Fedco - Rosa Bianca - 48 seeds- $1.50

TGS - Rosa Bianca - 30 seeds - $2.95
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Old November 18, 2017   #15
Worth1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Father'sDaughter View Post
Went looking out of curiosity. Here is the pricing for the smallest pack each offers.

Fedco - Rosa Bianca - 48 seeds- $1.50

TGS - Rosa Bianca - 30 seeds - $2.95
Considering the extra charges but 18 more seeds it is more or less about the same.
My mind isn't into any kind of math right now at all.
But we are talking about the price of a frigging candy bar these days.
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