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Comments regarding Whatcom Seed Company (

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  Feedback History and Summary  
51 positives
12 neutrals
44 negatives


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Positive reyreyspeak
(1 review)
On Oct 10, 2008, reyreyspeak Cheltenham, MD wrote:

i bought a small order of about 8 products (around $20) and recived them fast and in great condition.. i have grown some of them and they are perfect to have around

Positive SierraTigerLily
(7 reviews)
On Sep 1, 2008, SierraTigerLily Boca Raton, FL (Zone 10b) wrote:

I got an immediate email confirming my order and listing each item. I will update this post when I receive my seeds. I ordered (what I consider) a large order of 32 items including both common vegetables and exotic palm seeds.

On September 4th, 2008, SierraTigerLily added the following:

My order arrived quickly. It was complete and all seeds were perfect in appearance. Each seed type came with very exact sprouting instructions. I was quite anxious after having read reviews. I will germinate seeds and post again.
On October 12th, 2008, SierraTigerLily changed the rating from neutral to positive and added the following:

Sadly, my seedlings were destroyed by a storm. I was able to salvage the palm seeds and will continue to work with them. I can say that germination rate for my veggies was good.
Negative shashp
(1 review)
On Aug 10, 2008, shashp Los Angeles, CA wrote:

I have ordered and never got the item.
When i emailed, the answer was we have shipped it.
They could never provide a tracking number.
And never replied my emails again.

Positive ngiann
(4 reviews)
On Jul 29, 2008, ngiann Aegina
Greece wrote:

I bought many times from them. Always ship was very fast. Shipping cost is low, packaging is very unique and good & germination rates are very good.
You receive emails that report when your order was delivered & shipped.
I mostly bought palm seeds but many other seeds too.

Positive dmdula
(5 reviews)
On Mar 21, 2008, dmdula Morganton, NC wrote:

I placed a small order with them on March 17. On 3-19, I emailed asking if they had an approx. ship date. I have had no response so far. Good news is they have not charged my account.I really hope they send my seeds because they have some that I've been looking for. will update this when I know something.

On March 24th, 2008, dmdula changed the rating from neutral to positive and added the following:

Recieved email from them on 3-22 saying order shipped on Fri. 3-21. I recieved the seeds today! They are packed very well and have clear, understandable planting instruc. Overall, I'd order from them again. I'm very happy at how quickly these seeds came.
Positive Bodie59
(2 reviews)
On Feb 13, 2008, Bodie59 Daly City, CA wrote:

I have had great success with the protea seeds, the dracena draco, the lithops seeds and all of the other many seeds I have bought from this company over the years. I have never had any problems receiving the items ordered. I am pleased with the variety and the growing instructions.
Exotic seeds are not always for the novice; I think that often failure may be attributable to the wrong soil, the wrong temperature or root rot / seed rot from excessive / stagnant water.
This company is prompt and their seeds are great! Give them a try.

Positive jessesopinion
(1 review)
On Jan 8, 2008, jessesopinion Wilmington, NC wrote:

I placed my order last year. It arrived on time and all well packaged. i could tell that lots of care went into the packaging. i also had leaflets with information on each seed variation i ordered. some of the plants did not germinate but i place the blame on myself. i feel it was beginners bad luck. i plan on getting new seeds this year and trying my hand again. the peppers i orders produced a huge output. i was giving them away by the baskets full.

Negative quadradox
(1 review)
On Sep 17, 2007, quadradox Helena, MT wrote:

ordrer placed 9/5/07, 2 weeks ago. Invoice received. No product yet, no info on anticipated shipping date. No info that order is backordered. THE SITE DOES NOT HAVE A PHONE NUMBER FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE -- only email. I consider this a poor prognostic sign. I have emailed. I have called directory assistance and been given the same number as the Better Business Number shows as well as a back up number. In both cases the answering machine does not identify as a business nor sound in any way sound professional. It provides instructions to leave a message which has not returned so far today.

About a year ago I did have an order from them arrive. I do not remember the timeliness but it does not stand out as having been a problem.

However, the process this year does not correspond with how any reliable business, including a home business, should run. I have always had very strong doubts about any US based mail order business which does not bother to have a customer service phone line. Now I know why.

On September 20th, 2007, quadradox added the following:

I received no response after 4 more days. Either they are out of business or only occasionally "in" when it suits them. I cancelled my order. I expect to work with companies which can at least be counted on to communicate reliably when an order cannot be shipped yet and is pending or back ordered. (Though I still have no idea whether the inappropriate silence from Whatcom is due to the fact they just don't have the merchandise to ship or they are out partying somewhere instead of filling orders.)

Positive cereal_tiller
(1 review)
On May 7, 2007, cereal_tiller South Padre Island, TX (Zone 10a) wrote:

Great company. excellent customer service. Great packaging. Professional, prompt, courteous and extraordinary response. My large order had many back orders. Nothing shipped without my okay. Germination of the seeds was outstanding. Will do business with them again. Sometimes I wonder what people expecet as the negatives I read didn't even seem anything like what I experienced. I am a difficult and demanding customer; an attorney and I say the company is A+. Will do business with them again without any hesistation.

Neutral cammu
(3 reviews)
On Jan 5, 2007, cammu Granby, QC (Zone 4b) wrote:

The service excellent and the delivery fast.
It was my first order in the US and it went great.

I order Lithops and Dionaea
The first one never germinated (probably beacause of me) but the second on, is doing pretty good.

Negative saralu
(1 review)
On Nov 10, 2006, saralu Ogden, UT wrote:

I ordered some palm seeds which were completely crispy feeling and some were moldy. Of course, they never germinated. The only thing that did germinate was supposedly split-leaf philodendron or 'monstera deliciosa' which I ordered as such and was labeled as such but was in fact heartleaf philodendron, a VERY common plant of which I already have a few! I still even have the bag that was labeled 'monstera deliciosa' -- and like an idiot began to stake the heartleaf when it grew and was limp!

Positive TxTurqoize
(1 review)
On Sep 3, 2006, TxTurqoize San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

Wow...I was surprised at how many negatives that I saw! I've had 3 experiences with Whatcom that I found to be completely satisfactory. My buddha belly and turtle back seeds arrived very promptly and in great condition. The packaging was ideal too....

Positive LATeach
(1 review)
On Aug 13, 2006, LATeach Arvada, CO wrote:

I have ordered 3 times from this company and have had great results. Originally, I ordered an assortment of exotic plants I found interesting and every variety had some seeds that germinated. I now have ordered an assortment of seeds from Asian and African species for my geography students. Because baobabs may take months to germinate I planted them three weeks ago - 4 of 5 are growing already...

Negative dixie_angel
(23 reviews)
On May 18, 2006, dixie_angel Trenton, TN wrote:

ummmmm.....nothing has germinated.......and palm seeds old and moldy......but they are sending replacements for the palm remain neutral until I see the state the NEXT seeds are in.....I truly hope things are better :0)

On May 22nd, 2006, dixie_angel changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:

I just want to cry. I got my replacement seeds and, while not being moldy......they bad as the last batch.....I feel bad making this a negative but....nothing I ordered from them germinated......and with 9 kids between my husband and I we cannot afford to waste our money on items from compaies who obviously put more value on pretty plastic baggies and photo cards for their seeds than in the seeds themselves...or their customers PLEASE learn from my mistake.....think twice before giving away your money. :0(
Positive droughtlover
(3 reviews)
On May 1, 2006, droughtlover Igo, CA wrote:

Packaging was excellent, and instructions very informative. Fast shipping. Most (but not all) seeds are germinating fine; any problems have been my own fault. Some complaints about the low quantity of seeds shipped are out of place, IMO; their website clearly stated the number of seeds I would receive for each species. I'll order from them again.

Neutral marrowman
(3 reviews)
On Apr 13, 2006, marrowman shrewsbury
United Kingdom wrote:

Seeds arrived quickly and so far all sown have high germination and establishment rate. On down side you only get a small number of seeds.

Positive Erynne
(10 reviews)
On Feb 20, 2006, Erynne Orangeville, ON (Zone 4b) wrote:

Placed an order back in December 2005 and before I knew it, it was in my mailbox....super quick shipping! I ordered three types of seeds, for what I felt were very reasonable prices and included were some great planting instructions.
So far, I've just sowed one type, brug.sanguinea, and all seeds have germinated. The other types ordered were Sarracenia purpurea and Eryngium planum.......I will report back only if they fail to germinate but I'm hoping that won't be the case.

Positive wvtreehugger
(8 reviews)
On Jan 28, 2006, wvtreehugger Charleston, WV wrote:

reasonable prices, fast shipping, nice packaging and instructions. Cant wait to get the seeds in the dirt!!!

(13 reviews)
On Jan 5, 2006, DONBROWN Halifax
Canada wrote:

I have ordered many times from this company, and everything has been shipped in a prompt and professional manner, with great little instructions sheets included. They have a neat site, with lots of reasonably priced stuff and they have never disappointed me. I never hesitate to recommend this company. Thanks to Whatcom, I have some great stuf growing in my garden!

On October 24th, 2006, DONBROWN added the following:

Just placed another order with this company, and as always , have received personal attention and helpful emails, even though my orders are only small. I find that my germination results with their seeds have improved as my skills with germinating difficult seeds has improved. For those who have had disappointing germination results.......keep in mind that many of these plants have tough requirements and long germination periods, so any disappointing resluts may be a reflection of that, as opposed to the quality of the seed, which, in my case, has never appeared to be substandard.

This is a great little company which deserves a try!
Positive ikigar
(3 reviews)
On Jan 4, 2006, ikigar Maribor
Slovenia wrote:

Recived seeds in 10 days (Europe). Nice packaging and instructions. Let them know not to write total costs on the package and not to include invoice when sent to Europe (becouse of tax).

Waiting to see germination results.

P.S.: My friend orderd seeds from them in february and germination results were OK, above 70%, some species less, but 50% was surely.

Negative pardygwyn
(3 reviews)
On Dec 30, 2005, pardygwyn Port Angeles, WA wrote:

I bought some hot pepper seeds which arrived quickly. Most germinated, but many of the plants were cross-pollinated and nothing like advertised - carribean red peppers were small and yellow, chocolate peppers were orange, etc.

Negative mollitor
(1 review)
On Dec 13, 2005, mollitor San Lorenzo
Puerto Rico wrote:

I am more fortunate than most. I got 1 PawPaw seed to germinate. None of the pepper seeds I purchased germinated.

Negative 1alphatla
(2 reviews)
On Nov 3, 2005, 1alphatla Alpharetta, GA wrote:

I ordered 22 palm seeds so far. I got 1 germinated and growing but 21 rotten and moldy.

I believe only if you are looking for seeds that are easy to germinate, regardless of who is selling, this is the one.

Positive mlm01
(16 reviews)
On Aug 8, 2005, mlm01 St. Louis, MO (Zone 5b) wrote:

I ordered from this company back in January. The delivery was quick, packaging was very very nice, I got everything I ordered no problems. I will use thime again.

Positive amorning1
(6 reviews)
On Aug 6, 2005, amorning1 Islamorada, FL wrote:

They are great! I trust them competely.

Positive mountainmeadowseeds
(5 reviews)
On Aug 6, 2005, mountainmeadowseeds Augusta, WV (Zone 5b) wrote:

Nice packaging - speedy delivery - good seed germination. I wanted to add that the growing instructions were appreciated. From personal experience on growing plants by seed it is mostly trial and error. If the seeds don't grow it doesn't necessarily mean the seeds are bad! Of course if they are crumbled or crushed then the seller should be contacted, but if the seeds don't grow and you planted all of them at once......your fault for not saving some to try another method. I know that many factors contribute to the germination of seeds. Not all seeds should be planted the same. Some need more watering than others and some need darkness to germinate. Bottom heat is useful and humidity domes work on some seeds. It's all trial and error..........saying a little prayer won't hurt either :)

Overall I rate my transaction as a good one. I'll buy again.

Negative voytek
(5 reviews)
On Jul 10, 2005, voytek Chicago, IL (Zone 5b) wrote:

I've bought 3 times from this company. First time on ebay (2 years ago), second time last year - in both situation everything was OK. I placed my last order about 6 weeks ago. Seeds arrived decomposed in plastic bags. I sent emaisl with complain twice. No response. This is respect-less. I left them positive feedback on ebay, second time I sent them "Thank you" email. This time this is my negative feedback for this company. If you are going to place an order be very careful.

Positive mjkerkau
(1 review)
On Jun 27, 2005, mjkerkau Gainesville, FL wrote:

I have ordered with this company and so far my seeds are germinating just fine.
I wanted to add this little tidbit:
I've been trying to start my own milkweed seeds harvested from my own plants this year, and have one out of twenty success rate. Just goes to show, not all seed problems stem from freshness.

On June 28th, 2005, mjkerkau added the following:


Today I received my missing seeds from a previous order, only a week after emailing the company to tell them they never arrived. NO hassle!
Positive poundingsurf
(1 review)
On Jun 17, 2005, poundingsurf Seattle, WA wrote:

Look, I have ordered fro Whatcom Seeds and found them to be perfectly good. Most people here seem to be clueless of the requirements for seed germination. Want a hard one? Try growing Balsa. If you want to grow coffee, get your plants from in Florida or in Hawaii. Quit trying to grow coffee for yourself, it takes a lot of time and care and in The US it is nearly impossible. I grow and export Cacao plants from my Seattle greenhouse and I know the requirements of most tropicals. If you contact tell Dave that Rob sent you from Seattle. If you contact Oscar at tell him I said hello as well. I have a variety of sources for rare plants if you need more info.


Negative kropit
(1 review)
On Jun 15, 2005, kropit Bear, DE (Zone 7a) wrote:

I ordered seeds 3 weeks ago and did not get them. Sent email note to them 1 week ago - no response. Emailed again today - will give them 2 days and if no response will dispute the charge with credit card company.

Positive broomhandle
(1 review)
On May 9, 2005, broomhandle Milwaukee, WI wrote:

I am quite surprised with other peoples' experiences with Whatcom seeds. I have had very good luck with their seeds. I have ordered every single cycad species and a couple palms and others, sometimes repeatedly, and I have never had a species NOT germinate. For every palm and cycad I've ordered, I have never experienced germination below 60-70%, which is great for these prices.

I can really only speak for palms and cycads, but I hope people realize that these seeds often require very specific conditions and sometimes a great deal of time before they germinate, up to a year for some species. I say this not to belittle in any way the reviews of those who have been truly wronged, but only as a cautionary note that you must employ a scrupulous germination procedure before passing judgement on the supplier.

Negative Daisy123
(2 reviews)
On Apr 27, 2005, Daisy123 Pearl, MS (Zone 8a) wrote:

Oh dear, poor stupid me. Wish I had known about this site before I spent my precious money. Oh, yes The package was pretty neat and the picture on the package was pretty, too bad I didn't plant the cute little package with the nice foam and the pretty flower picture. My shock was when I opened it up and saw there were only 5 seeds (5) five lousy seeds. I spent $23.00 building a special bed for Edleweiss because they only grow under special conditions. I sent Seedrack a email and complained and told them they ought to be ashamed, never got a reply. After that, I ordered from a different ebay seller called Seedmart that says there are 100 seeds in their packages, but, now I see that the reports here are not all that good either because they are also HIRT's Greenhouse and there were conplaints about old seed. Will hope for the best and will let you know.

Negative tofinosurfer
(2 reviews)
On Apr 13, 2005, tofinosurfer Vancouver
Canada wrote:

I filled my shopping cart, but when I went to check out, the first page in that process, which contains personal information, is not an encrypted page (https). I emailed them and asked for an explanation, and none was given.

Screw them. Off I go to a more reputable company.



Negative garyj59
(13 reviews)
On Apr 2, 2005, garyj59 Sheboygan, WI (Zone 5a) wrote:

I ordered some seeds last year figuring I would save some money,what a waste.Planted them this spring and no seeds germinated.I will definately never order from them again.

Positive JaxFlaGardener
(5 reviews)
On Mar 6, 2005, JaxFlaGardener Jacksonville, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:

I bought seeds only once from Whatcom/Seedrack through eBay about 2 years ago. My experience was completely positive. I ordered Japanese Black Pine (Pinus thunbergii) and Buddha Belly (Jatropha podagrica) seeds. I followed the instructions for cold stratification in my refrigerator for the Black Pine seeds. The cold stratification process took several months, but I did get germination from at least four of the seeds. I have three of these healthy Japanese Black Pine plants in my garden and one in a pot awaiting Bonsai treatment (it has remained only a few inches tall whereas the others are now about 1 foot tall). I got zero germination from the Buddha Belly plants from the first shipment I received. I contacted the company by E-mail in regard to a possibly placing another order for different seeds and mentioned the lack of germination of the Buddha Belly seeds. They told me there had apparently been a problem with the previous Buddha Belly seeds and that I would receive a replacement. I basically forgot about the replacement offer, but several months later I did receive replacement Buddha Belly seeds at no cost to me for the seeds or shipping. These replacement seeds germinated well and I now have four mature and flowering Buddha Belly plants.

Negative Plumeriagod
(2 reviews)
On Mar 5, 2005, Plumeriagod Houston, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I too was "duped" by seedracks cheap prices for seeds on ebay. I recieved the seeds quickly with germinating instructions. The only thing "good" about this company!!! I bought some of their more expensive seeds (cycad seeds). I bought 4 packages and 8 out of 10 seeds were old!!! I soaked them in water like they instructed, but 8 of the seeds floated! I found out later, during some research, that cycad seeds that float are generally old seeds and don't germinate!
I emailed them several times to try to solve the problem; I even offered to send pictures of the floating seeds and pay for the shipping for new seeds. They emailed me ONCE and asked where I found my info. I replied, "From the president of the Cycad Society." I even copied and pasted the info for them to read! They have never responded back!!

Negative chunx
(35 reviews)
On Mar 3, 2005, chunx San Diego, CA wrote:

I was taken in by the low prices and bought about 20 packets of seeds from Seedrack on eBay and then from Whatcom's website. The only seeds that germinated were the Purple Bells and the Abutilon, and the germination rate wasn't very good on those. I just chalked it up to cheap seeds and wrote it off. I don't know if they buy leftover seed or what, but I wouldn't recommend them. They do ship quickly though and don't rip you off on shipping, but that's pretty much worthless when they send old seeds. I always have good luck with Park Seed and J.L. Hudson Seed. Can't go wrong with these two companies.

Negative Southerngurl
(4 reviews)
On Mar 1, 2005, Southerngurl Yellville, AR wrote:

I wish I had checked here first!!!

I bought several seeds last fall, including some coffee (Coffea arabica), purple dragon carrot seed, pawpaw seeds, among others.

I was mainly excited about the coffee seeds. I researched like crazy to find all the info I would need to get those babies to grow. By the way, their instructions were incomplete for growing coffee, good thing I looked it up (well not really, didn't matter as the seeds were crap). I knew they lost their germination quickly, so I got them planted immediately. Anyway, I waited and waited, keeping them at just the right temp., and just the right moisture. However, I finally had to give up after 5 months or so. I sadly tossed them in the trash. I have not yet had a chance to plant the others, spring is around the corner. I have had the pawpaw seeds outside stratifying all winter (I also researched them a bit). I pulled on of the seeds out and it looks crummy, so I am thinking they are going to follow suit with the coffee seeds. I am giving them every chance in the world though, buying pawpaw plants is a bit pricey.

So far a big fat negative, if I have a better experience with the other seeds, I might change it. :(

All those with negative experiences should contact the bbb (, so they can get a report generated on this company. Some people check there before ordering from a company.

On March 27th, 2005, Southerngurl added the following:

Every pawpaw seed also failed. I wonder if any seed I recieved was viable. I will soon be planting the others. I will probably have similar luck as with planting a rock... the only difference being the green mold that seems to be a trademark of their seeds (mind you I have grown, so far, peppers, tomatoes, onions, echinacea angustifolia, pallida, and purpurea, broccoli and parsley [from bakercreek, high mowing seeds, and walmart] this year in the same mix used for their seeds, and all those did fine).
Negative throneofyord
(7 reviews)
On Feb 21, 2005, throneofyord College Station, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

No seeds germinated.
I ordered these seeds in July 2004. Camellia sinensis (Tea Plant), Coffea arabica (Coffee Plant), Coffea catura (Dwarf Coffee Plant), Cortaderia selloana (White Pampas Grass), Cortaderia selloana rosea (Pink Pampas Grass), Zwolsche Krul (Par-Cel), Asimina triloba (Pawpaw) I bought extra packets of pampas grass. Not a single seed germinated. They warrant seed to be of the variety and quantity advertised. There is no assurance of viability or age. I

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