The Cook's Garden is dedicated to cooks who love to garden and gardeners who love to cook. It's that simple! We travel around the world to seek out varieties with top-notch culinary qualities that will inspire great meals from seed to table.
Satisfaction in the garden and spontaneity in the kitchen go hand in hand. The Cook's Garden is your best source for organic seeds and supplies, European and American heirloom and specialty varieties as well as exclusive seed blends.
Our interest in good food plays a big part in the business, which is why we offer plenty of great recipes to encourage you to try something new. Garden in good health and have fun in the kitchen!
The Cook's Garden Guarantee
We guarantee all products in this catalogue to the full amount of the purchase price. We shall refund your money or provide a replacement, anytime within a year if you are not satisfied.
devinevegan Igo, CA (Zone 9a) (12 reviews) April 4, 2014
Posted on March 16, 2014, updated April 4, 2014
I ordered seeds and live plants from this company last year and was very disappointed. The seeds are overpriced and come in a plain & ugly thin seed packet that rips when you open it. I did not get good germination or healthy thriving plants from any of the seeds. I ordered a Kiwi plant and it never arrived. I emailed them a month later and they sent the kiwi pair. They had brown leaves and did not look good. I tried but failed to bring them back to life. I tried twice to get off their mailing list (and Burpees) but they keep sending catalogs even though they agreed to take me off their list. Many of their seeds are treated because they never say they are not, and most are hybrids and PVP's. Just awful!On April 4th, 2014, devinevegan added the following:
This company and their partner Burpee are just awful. I have sent two emails asking to be removed from their mailing list, and got two confirmations they would remove me. BUT, I keep receiving catalogs and just received another one again! TAKE ME OFF YOUR LIST!!!
More than 1/2 (7 out of 12) has died on me, I found out they are diseases in these raspberry plants. I am VERY disappointed, it is very expensive $45 for these plants. I took very specific caring for them... They shoot up new stem and beautifully then the bottom of cane starting to purplish then spread all way to up top and caused it to black and drop completely dead!! I took picture of it and pulled the dead ones out. Since it is diseased, I wanted refund, no refund yet.
No body want UNHEALTHY plants especially raspberries. I will never buy from them again!
Sorry The Cooks Garden is a HUGE NO NO next time. VIRUS unhealthy plants. however the collection combo looks good, the plants itself inst! IT also took them 6 weeks later to ship them to me........ said "has to dig them up pack them and all"... SIX WEEKS!?!?! no way,
Gross diseases and look bad. I would like fully refund your plant "COOKED" with virus, so please send me my money back . Thanks :)
nashnewbie Nashville, TN (4 reviews) July 16, 2012
Posted on July 16, 2012, updated July 16, 2012
I ordered 3 organic tomato plants, 3 organic pepper plants, and a patchouli plant from Cook's.
They arrived in good shape and are thriving.
First time for mail order veggie plants, so I was nervous. They arrived in good shape.
My only reservation is their expense: product and shipping. But in this case it was worth it.On July 16th, 2012, nashnewbie added the following:
One thing I don't find helpful about the company and suggest they correct: they don't send confirmation for phone orders. I had to order by phone because the website wouldn't take my coupon. After ordering, I never heard anything. Finally called them and requested a confirmation, which they were prompt about. They said I'd receive something via USPS, but I never did. So make a point of giving them your email address and requesting confirmation if you want it when placing a phone order.
Posted on June 6, 2012, updated July 6, 2012
Ordered 25 asparagus plants on May 12 (online it said they were available). Credit card charged that day. Called company on June 4 to ask why status said "processing" on my account online. Customer service looked it up and said "Oh, that looks like a product we won't be able to deliver. You'll probably be getting a refund." Most online companies don't charge your credit card until they ship the plants -- this rep said no, they always charge on order, even if they don't send the plants for months. She processed a refund. But when I asked if anybody would ever have let me know I would never receive the asparagus she said she didn't know (and didn't sound much like she cared one way or the other!) The excuse that charging credit cards when plants are shipped (that then customers would wonder why they were being charged then, when they ordered months before) is implausible, since they would have just received the plants. Overall, a very lackluster performance. Won't be shopping there again. And not very happy to have missed out on planting spring asparagus.On July 6th, 2012, slynn64 changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
Cook's Garden was very responsive to my review, and sent me 25 asparagus plants as a gesture of goodwill (of a different variety that I wanted, but you can't fault them for sending me what they had on hand). Since it was June I was skeptical about their viability, but I planted them and have been tending them through a very hot midwest summer and most are up and doing well. They also requested additional feedback on their customer service, and gave every indication that they took my feedback seriously. I still think that the policy of charging credit cards when orders are made and then not communicating about unavailable products that have already been paid for is not a great idea, otherwise I might go all the way to Positive in my review. But still -- kudos to Cook's Garden for working with me to make the best of what happened.
Calalily Deep South Coastal, TX (Zone 10a) (40 reviews) June 12, 2012
I ordered the asperagus collection in late winter. The plants were shipped later, when available, but only a few came up even after 6 weeks very few were growing. I called the company and they replaced within 2 weeks. The new asperagus were big, beautiful roots which grew quickly. Their customer service department was very nice.
I am an experienced vegetable gardner since childhood (it was my father's business). I ordered Cook's Garden seeds and plants for the first time this year on the recommendation of another gardner and have been soundly disappointed. I echo the other reviewer about extremely low germination rate compared to comparable seeds from other companies, and glacially slow shipping of live plants, several of which arrived dead or dying beyond my best efforts to revive them. I let the seed germination issue go - but emailed the company after the very late/dead (and expensive) plants arrived, leaving a detailed message and order number information. So much for the 100% guarantee, because I have not heard a word from the company since. This is really unforgivable.So what is up with this? I notice that most of those giving positive reviews do not live in my region (Ohio Valley), so maybe there are issues with geographical location and shipping. If so, this should be made clear to the customer. I also realized (too late) that the company decides when you should put your live plants in the ground for you, and that late shipping is sometimes based on this calculation - but, again, this is not clear from the website, and I'd really rather order from a company that leaves it up to me. Micro-environmental conditions, soil, drainage and gardner preference have a lot to do with how early plants can go into the ground - it's not all about hardiness zone. As it is, too few seeds germinated, the plants that managed to survive the shipping definitely went in the ground too late and I've had to scramble to make up for my very mistaken decision to try Cook's.
Posted on April 5, 2009, updated March 14, 2011
I have been doing business with this company for 3 years and have had good service and good seeds. I like the packets with different varieties, such as the winter squash.On March 14th, 2011, lilygrandma added the following:
Looking forward to planting those seeds that came so quickly this year--8 days!
Ninamaria Olympia, WA (2 reviews) February 3, 2011
I ordered 4 packets of (expensive) seed on January 6, 2011. After several weeks with no seed, I called the company and was told that there had been an error with my order, but that my seed would be shipped soon. Within a few days, I received 3 of the 4 packets. I was charged full price for all 4 packets even though the packet contained only 3. There was no explanation for the missing seed. I called again and was told that the missing seed would be sent out. I then received another envelope containing duplicates of the same three seeds I had originally been sent. The enclosed invoice again (wrongly) showed that all seeds had been shipped. I called a third time and was told that the 4th type of seed had never been sent because it was not available. Not sure why I wasn't told this right away so I could have purchased the seed elsewhere. They did refund me the price of the one packet of seeds that they had wrongfully charged on my credit card, but the whole experience left me with a bad taste in my mouth. At these prices it shouldn't take three phone calls to get just part of a simple order.
I used Cooks Garden website to place my seed order. It was easy to use, and my items shipped quickly. Everything was as ordered and we got a free gormet lettuce seed packet! If you are ordering seeds, I would highly recommend them. I will post again when I get to plant my seeds to inform of the germination.
DaveH San Francisco, CA (Zone 10a) (29 reviews) June 27, 2009
I placed a first-time order with Cook's Garden last Spring for a few hard to find vegetable seed varieties. I received my order promptly and all the seeds grew fine.
I ordered several varieties of heirloom tomatoes as well as a mesclun mix and their starting soil. The mesclun germinated so fast I couldn't believe it and is growing nicely. The tomatoes ALL germinated into seedlings that are now good sized blooming plants. I'm not sure what kind of harvest I will get since we've had way too much rain, but I'm really pleased with the success of the seeds germinating. I'd definitely recommend this company.
I ordered a new variety of pepper called Zavory this year, as I have been bitten by the pepper bug.
The first set of plants arrived shaken out of the container and perished within a few days despite the TLC.
I contacted Cooks Garden and they replaced the plants.
I am pleased to say they have changed their packaging and the plants arrived in perfect order and were beautiful.
I wish UPS would treat packages better.
UlrikeDG Johnston, IA (Zone 5a) (2 reviews) May 5, 2009
On April 7, 2008, I ordered 75 strawberry plants from Cook's Garden. They didn't arrived until the first week of JUNE, 2008. There was no communication from the company telling me what was up with my order until I contacted them in mid-May, at which point I was told they'd be shipping "soon".
Half of the plants never broke dormancy after I planted them (in a raised bed with drip irrigation). Now it's spring 2009, and only 13 of them are still alive.
Their seeds may be fine, but for live plants, I'll be ordering from other catalogs from now on.
I placed an order for a few packets of lettuce seed from this company as a first time order, as they seem to have a really good selection of unusual varieties of lettuce and greens. The seed was shipped within a day of my order. The first sowing of seeds has shown great germination. This is a a company I will be ordering from again!
boleslaus Chattanooga, TN (4 reviews) April 18, 2009
I ordered asparagus plants in the spring of 2008, then realized I would not have bed space for the plants until June. I called the co. to try and delay shipment. Instead, the rep suggested that I start the crowns in a nursery bed, transplant them when I was able, and Cook's would replace any plants which failed to grow. About half of them did not survive, so I called customer service yesterday and was told they would ship out a complete replacement of the order.
Now I just need to figure out where to plant the extra dozen crowns.
EricaKane Jemez Springs, NM (2 reviews) August 19, 2008
I am a very experienced gardener and ordered a lot of seeds for this year's garden from Cook's. In general, the germination was extremely poor, with some items (cutting celery, yellow chard) not coming up at all despite repeated plantings. In addition, the instructions on the packets were inadequate, and sometimes just silly. Since I live in a challenging climate (7200 ft., very short spring, water-challenged), getting seeds into the ground on time is critical if I am to harvest before the "roasting" season. Very few of my cool weather vegetables from Cook's made it, although seeds from other companies did fine in the same conditions. I called the company, and a woman apologized and promised a refund. That wouldn't have saved my garden, but it was a nice gesture. But I never heard from them again. Will never order from Cook's ever!Company representative comment on September 3, 2008: On Aug 21, 2008 9:40 AM, The Cook's Garden added:
I am very sorry to hear that our seeds did not perform as they should have. We have a 100% satisfaction guarantee for all of our products at The Cook’s Garden. I checked your account and we show that we refunded your account for 5 packets of seed on June 24, 2008. Can you check our account to see if that refund came through? Please email me at Phofer@burpee.com.
On Sep 3, 2008 10:25 AM, The Cook's Garden added:
We made a refund to your card for $16.05 on 6/23/08. The transaction was processed by our credit card company on 6/24/08. Can you check your credit card statement to see if that came through.
Moonglow Corte Madera, CA (21 reviews) August 17, 2008
For a beginning vegetable gardener, I took the leap and ordered quite a few seeds from them. Although I did not receive a confirmation either, once I emailed, customer service responded to me right away. Hopefully, it is something they can fix in their system.
True to their response, the seeds already shipped and arrived the following day. I filled a 72-cell Jiffy Greenhouse and in less than a week, 100% germination on the mesclun greens and mache.
I highly recommend The Cook's Garden (TCG). It's a great seeds source for gardeners and food enthusiasts alike.
TCG has helped me already discover my INNER CHEF (self).
I have ordered from Cook's garden for three years and have always had a good experience. If there has ever been a problem with an order it was taken care of promptly and politely. They have a nice variety of seeds - especially lettuces and some unusual varieties of common vegetables. Their plants are well packaged and healthy on arrival. Even the catalog is beautiful! As someone who is relatively new to gardening, it would be nice if the seed packets gave a little more planting information, but that's a small criticism compared to the wonderful job they do overall.
phineas117 Springfield, IL (3 reviews) May 28, 2008
I have bought seeds from the cook's garden for years. excellent results.
this is the first year for buying plants. I purchased "pistou" basil....three plants......they arrived today, beautifully packed.
very vigorous plants.
I will be ordering again from you!!!!
I ordered per snail mail, so I can't say anything about the order comfirmation on the "net.
Kertesz New Prague, MN (4 reviews) January 2, 2008
I ordered quite a lot of vegetable and flower seeds from Cook's two years ago, at the same time I ordered seeds from two other companies. In nearly every case, the Cook's seeds were more expensive yet showed noticeably lower viability than the others, and completely failed to come up in some cases (parsnip, kale, stocks). I have been growing plants from seed for years and have never had such sprouting failures. In at least one case the Cook's seeds were mislabeled - Empress of India nasturtium, supposedly a premium red -orange variety, came up a common yellow nasturtium. And when I called the company to ask about some radish varieties that were incorrectly described in their catalogue, the person I talked to didn't have a clue, and couldn't find anyone who knew anything about their own products. My first big order from Cook's has been my last.Company representative comment on January 3, 2008: On Jan 3, 2008 1:51 PM, The Cook's Garden added:
We are sorry to hear about your poor performance with The Cook's Garden seeds. We provide a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all of our products. I have sent you an email. If you provide me with your name, we will promptly refund your money.
I've been shopping from Cooks Garden off and on (as my seedsaving skills ebb and flow) for, I think, 20 years now and have always been very pleased with their service and product. I decided that their prices are not really higher than anyone else's, since their germination rate is so much better. More bang for the buck!
But I just received the new catalog (glossy, with four color photographs instead of Mary Azarian's lovely woodcuts), with a terse introductory letter from George Ball (of Burpee Seeds), and I have to admit that I'm disappointed and concerned.
I can understand them thinking that the photos are more informative, but these photos aren't very attractive and the catalog looks as if it were put together hastily.
Are there problems over there? They seem in disarray, and I would have appreciated an explanation of the new format.
It's not the end of the world, and if I can't find anything I like better, I'll probably continue to order from them until I feel that the quality of the product has gone down. But I miss the creative, small business, artisanal atmosphere of the old Cook's Garden. And I'm concerned that the lack of attention being paid to the catalog indicates a lack of commitment by Burpee to the company -- i.e. I don't want to see the Cook's Garden go the way of Shepherd's Seeds. (Bought out by a bigger organization, homogenized, and then ultimately folded.)
I wish the Ogden's well. I know they've moved on to bigger, more important things, and I'm happy for their success. But I'm sorry to say that there's now a void in my garden season that I hope some other company steps right up to fill -- and soon!
csl Jonesborough, TN (Zone 6b) (6 reviews) June 21, 2007
No order confirmation, as others have mentioned, but my large order of seeds arrived fairly quickly and I have had fantastic germination rates, and am thrilled to have found varieties that I can't find at my local garden center.
PetitPois Charlottesville, VA (7 reviews) March 16, 2007
The shallot bulbs and rhurarb look very healthy. I did receive good shipping/tracking information. So far, so good.
nc_marie Wake Forest, NC (Zone 7b) (2 reviews) March 12, 2007
On February 26, I placed on line order. Received a order number. Thought order was in place. Went back to page later and saw that additional information was required after I scrolled down to the bottom of the page. Tried to enter it but the session had timed out by then and I lost the order info.
Asked darling husband if the order confirmation had arrived in his email. It had not.
Reentered order. Got another order confirmation number. Entered the information at the bottom of the window. Still did not get an order confirmation.
(As of today, 3/12/2007, no confirmation for either order has been received.)
Wrote email complaining about lack of order confirmation and the difficult to use website. Asked for a confirmation that only one order had been submitted. Still have not had a reply to that email.
On February 27, called customer service (which is only open 9:00 until 6:00 EST) to check on order(s). The customer service representative said both orders had been submitted. I asked why there hadn't been any order confirmation sent, and she said that sometimes it didn't get sent.
She did state that she would try to get the second order pulled if it had not gone out, but if it had, I could refuse it.
Both orders have been charged to my credit card. An order arrived on Friday, March 9. The other one hasn't arrived so I can't refuse it, nor has it been credited to the credit card.
I will try to take time away from my job to call during their abbreviated customer service hours tomorrow and will update this account based on that conversation.
This catalog may have the same name and a similar look, but the heart and soul of the original are no longer here.On March 24th, 2007, nc_marie changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
I was able to contact customer service representative Brenda today. She stated that she processed a credit to my VISA account for the unshipped order. She was very accomodating. Credit takes 3-5 days to process. Will update when credit posts.
BTW - still no order confirmation or reply to email sent through website. Using RedHat Linux RHEL 4 and the Firefox browser. Perhaps website needs ot work on compatability issues?On March 31st, 2007, nc_marie added the following:
Credit has posted. Lesson learned: Don't order on line from this company.Company representative comment on March 13, 2007: On Mar 13, 2007 11:37 AM, The Cook's Garden added:
I work for Cook's Garden and would like to apologize for your poor experience with us. Can you please provide me with your Name and zip code and we will correct your situation immediately. Please send your information to PHofer@Burpee.com
I placed a small order of vegetable and flower seeds and got my order in less than a week. Some of my seeds were crushed during the mailing process (the company ships small orders in a plain brown envelope) and I wrote to customer service about it. They very promptly offered to send a replacement. I'm impressed and will gladly shop there again.
arcangel80 Longmont, CO (Zone 5a) (2 reviews) March 24, 2006
I probably won't order from Cook's Garden again. The website was great and easy to order from, but I did not receive an email confirmation of my order. When I checked on it under "my account," it was stated that my order had shipped, but did not provide a tracking number. When I called customer service, they were very, very nice, and said it had been sent by US Mail. I know the mail can take awhile, but it did take some time to receive my seeds. When they did arrive, the seedpackets (especially for the tomatoes I ordered) did not have helpful info on the plant - no "plant after last frost," or suggestions on spacing, etc. No pictures, either, and they didn't send a print catalog with my order. Although I really liked their selection, and their customer service was very nice when I called, because of the issues I had with confirmation/shipping/seed packets, I probably won't use them next year.
calypsa Plymouth, MI (Zone 5b) (19 reviews) February 21, 2006
I love the catalog, it's so much fun to flip through.
I placed a small order of 4 packets of seeds and they arrived safely today. I am pleased with the quick delivery! The only thing that irritated me a bit was that I received no order confirmation. And when I went to the web site to look at the "My Account" section, it said that I had not placed any orders! I contacted customer service yesterday and received a prompt response telling me that the seeds had shipped and would arrive soon. All in all a good experience. Hopefully the seeds will do well!
Tribeola Mogadore, OH (11 reviews) February 17, 2005
Ordered seedling trays amd humidity covers - they have the best-sized ones I've found (the 18-cell ones) and they usually sell out of them early in the year. Shipped with tracking number, received right on time. Another great experience with Cook's Garden!
Commonsense Rock Hill, SC (Zone 7b) (11 reviews) January 27, 2005
Although they are apparently affiliated with the spectacularly mediocre Park Seed, Cook's Garden has consistently performed well in every respect. They have some of the best selections, not only in vegetable seeds but in perennial seeds as well. Their prices are not low, but their customer service is top-notch and they ship in record time, with a trackable shipment system.
I have ordered from Cook's Garden for years, and I cannot say enough good things about them.
twitser Dawsonville, GA (14 reviews) March 7, 2004
I received the seeds much sooner than I had expected. One item was incorrect. I called customer service. To my surprise, someone picked up right away. They were extremely courteous and apologetic. They let me keep the incorrect item and immediately shipped the correct item to me and no additional cost. It came in less than a week. Their customer service is exceptional. I will definitely be doing business with them again.
RunnerBean Chicago, IL (11 reviews) August 20, 2003
I absolutely love Shep's approach. Natural, sound and very instructive. I also love their concentration on greens. The only suggestion I'd make is to get easier to open seed envelopes that reseal.
I have ordered from them several times and always found the service to be quick. Their seeds are high quality as well, and the selection is good especially if you are looking for unusual varieties that are organically grown.
hopflower Santa Rosa, CA (Zone 9a) (26 reviews) March 27, 2003
I have always had wonderful service from this company. There are a couple of things that they sell that I have a hard time finding anywhere else; and they have a great selection of lettuces and other veggies. The catalogue is attractive and the service consistent for many years now. They could beef up on the flowers a bit; but then they are the Cook's Garden, aren't they?
I ordered from them once; most seeds were OK, one packet arrived empty. Took them a long time to correct the mistake. I think they are expensive and I was not thrilled by the speed - or lack of - they deliver either.
I did not know that they are 'related; to Park Seeds. It was starnge though that I sent my order to Vermont(?) and got the seeds from SC