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On Oct 5, 2010, magnaastra Charleston, IL (Zone 6a) wrote:
Posted on October 4, 2010, updated October 5, 2010
I recently ordered Bogatyr (Marbled Purple Stripe garlic) and Georgian Fire (Porcelain Garlic). Even though their website allowed me to add it to my cart, their customer service team phoned to let me know that the Bogatyr was out of stock. Okay, it's pretty late in the season: no problem, just send me the Georgian Fire, which is the cultivar I most wanted, anyway. Well, my order arrived today. It most definitely was NOT Georgian Fire; it clearly wasn't even in the Porcelain family. It's unambiguously a Glazed Purple Stripe, probably Purple Glazer, since that's the one they carry. I emailed customer service back, only to be told "That's how our Georgian Fire looks this year." Well, unless Georgian Fire bulbs have eight - ten slenderish cloves, with thin, satiny-white bulb wrappers, and beautiful dark purple clove skins with silver overtones, I'm pretty sure they sent me the wrong thing. Just to make sure, I held a bulb of my own bonafide Georgian Fire Garlic next to these from Nichols, and asked my husband, who doesn't know a Porcelain garlic from a hole in the ground, if they looked anything alike: even he, bless his heart, could spot the difference from across a pretty dark living room. Everybody makes mistakes, but PLEASE don't insult my intelligence. I would hope that's all it is, just garlic that got put in the wrong bag, because I can't imagine that THEY don't know a Porcelain from a Glazed Purple Stripe. I did get a refund, both for the out of stock item and the Porcelain-cum-Glazed Purple Stripe, but I don't believe I'll be doing business again. Shame, they had some cool things in their catalogue, but I want to know that what I'm putting in the ground is what I THINK I'm putting in the ground.
On October 5th, 2010, magnaastra changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
Just received an email from Mrs. Nichols McGee herself. I'm impressed that the owner of the company took the time to look into this. Am going to grow these bulbs out, next to 'my own' quality control specimens, and see what next July brings.
Posted on January 12, 2010, updated March 10, 2010
I visited their store this last weekend and was impressed with the collection of seeds they have. I bought a wide range of vegetable seeds and I will report on my experience as I start planting them.
The lady working that day was very knowledgeable and extremely friendly. She definitely knew what she was talking about and was able to offer sound advice for the area (planting times and varieties that work ...). She also told me about their warranty on the germination rate and quality of their products.
On March 10th, 2010, rwouhaybi changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:
Update: Mar 10th, 2010.
I am not changing my rating of them from Positive to Neutral.
I have purchased 2 kinds of Artichoke seeds (Green Globe & Imperial Star). The germination rate of these seeds has been 40% and the survival rate is half of that; meaning for every 10 seeds I start, I get 2 healthy seedlings. This is quite low, even for artichokes. I tried talking to them during an exhibition in Portland Oregon and they gave me an additional packet of the Imperial Star for free. The new packet had the same rate. I am employing a heating mat and being patient with the seeds but even after waiting for over 3 weeks, the rate is the same. I tried emailing them through their website asking for help and advice 4 weeks ago on this but they never answered me.
I am rating as neutral instead of negative because I had a better luck with their broccoli and tomato seeds.