I have been doing business with Horizon Herbs since 1991 when I decided to grow medicinal herbs. There were not many sources of medicinal seeds back then so finding this company was a blessing. Richo has been an excellent source for advice on germination & growing, making plant medicine, trouble-shooting, encouragement, & potential customers. He is knowledgable & experienced & willing to share this with others through the very detailed Cultivation Guide & many books on growing & using herbs. I highly recommend this company to anyone looking for high quality seeds, prompt, friendly service, & a standard of excellence.
Horizon Herbs is amazing!!! They've got such a vast array of herbs-- including very rare and hard to find medicinals. (The catalogs are super cute too!) I was amazed last fall when my pawpaw seeds came and 3 of them had sprouted in route. They were packaged with great care and even had a special note attached. These are people that truly care about the healing plants they provide, and are very willing to give advice to those experimenting and growing with their seeds. I will be ordering from them for years to come!
On Mar 26, 2007, BenKamm Occidental, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:
Horizon is a one of a kind down-to-earth family run business. I've been ordering from these folks for years and am continually impressed by their excellent catalog, the diversity of their offerings, the high viability of their seed (which is no small feat, considering the difficulty of some species), and the health of their plants. Horizon founder and master plantsman Richo Cech has contributed a great deal to our understanding of the germination and care of many challenging plants, and without the horticultural crutch of industrial chemicals! Through his books and work with United Plant Savers, Richo has significantly invigorated the hands on conservation of endangered medicinals. Horizon Herbs rocks!
I have been dealing with Richo Cech / Horizon Herbs for over ten years, both as a customer and as a supplier of seeds. I consider them a national treasure - much of the progress in the movement to grow our own medicinals can be directly attributed to Richo's untiring effort to locate and supply top-quality, fresh seed of previously unobtainable (or, if obtainable, of poor quality) species. Customer service is excellent; messages are answered promptly.
It is worth mentioning that germination of many of the species in the catalog can be tricky - the mysteries of seed dormancy mechanisms are still being unravelled. I have found it worthwhile to save my seed pots for at least two years. That said, I have also found that many species which I previously considered difficult, slow or erratic germinators (using seed from other sources, botanical gardens, etc.) pop right up from Horizon seed. I attribute this to the freshness of the seed (dormancy can deepen as seed ages).
On Mar 24, 2007, pbotanicals kamsack Canada wrote:
Horizon Herbs has supplied us with high quality medicinal herb seed for over ten years. We had great commercial success with Gobo burdock seed and recorded yields of 5,000 pounds trimmed root per acre. The people who own and operate this company are genuine gardeners and very good to deal with. I highly recommend Horizon Herbs.
On Mar 22, 2007, Mikebrook Somerset United Kingdom wrote:
We've been buying seed and plants from Horizon for over 10 years. They not only provide probably the largest range of organic seeds that we have come across but what excites me is that most are grown by themselves and if not they are of known provenance. I have also found their service excellent - and the passion and knowledge that comes through in their catalogue is unique. We tend to buy European seed species from Europe, but for every other origin, Horizon is our first choice.
I was very happy when I saw Horizon Herbs was offering Mandrake plants which we had wanted for our display greenhouses for awhile, but they are hard to find as well as challenging to grow. I ordered two mid winter but they ended up dying in their containers before they broke dormancy. Horizon Herbs willingly replaced them with two recently sprouted, healthy plants.
I rely on Horizon Herbs for my hard-to-find, rare and endangered seeds. I have been purchasing from them for 3 years now and I have had good experiences with every seed that I have planted. Their seeds germinate more dependably and produce much better plants than "commercial" ones that I have purchased from local stores. I can't complain at all and when people ask where I bought my seeds, I direct them to Horizon Herbs.
On Mar 22, 2007, rutlandbio oakham United Kingdom wrote:
I farm herbal medicines in UK and Horizon is well known on the side of the pond as an important and reliable supplier of unusual and as well as the most popular herbal seeds. The service is personal and attentive. In addition, it is really helpful to be able to talk to someone knowledgeable about seeds, germination and also the plants themselves. Dormancy is a common problem with so-called 'unimproved' varieties (some suppliers will even call them 'weeds'), which have been designed by nature to wait until conditions are right. We have bought many millions of seeds from Horizon over almost 10 years and would have no hesitation in recommending this supplier to anyone.
On Mar 22, 2007, natropractica Vancouver Canada wrote:
I have an herbal medicine practice here in Canada.
After seeing Richo Cech demonstrate some of his plants at the Northwest Herb Faire I became interested in learning more about his company Horizon Herbs. I made a trip down to Williams, Oregan and took a tour of his gardens and facilities. I was greatly impressed with the personal attention and integrity that is used in every aspect of the business. I have since bought a fair amount of seeds from Horizon and remain greatly impressed and happy with the results I have had growing their seeds. I make herbal medicines from scratch and would not think of buying my seeds anywhere else.
I've been working a small organic farm with my family for the past ten or more years and in the last four have taken an interest in growing herbs and medicinal plants to sell at our local farmers market. We do all our own starts for the farm, so it was natural to use the same soil mix and plug trays to grow herbs as we use to grow lettuce and basil. I started growing chamomile and feverfew and borage, don't ask why, I can't really remember now and shyly brought the little plants to the market. People bought them! Encouraged by this, I started looking at herb seeds in our usual farming catalogs, then doing research online to find more. Finding Horizon was super exciting and probably changed my whole life. Getting to know each plant by opening up the envelope and looking at the seeds became a great adventure, one that is still unfolding with each plant in the garden. I also discovered that not everything likes the same media as our garden starts, and am beginning to wander down the path of experimentation with soil media and growing conditions. where next?
A note: I use plug trays to start most things and am a compulsive counter. "Generously packed" means most seed packages contain double or more the number of seeds listed in the catalog. Thanks Richo!
After having looked around a bit trying to find a decent store I could rely on for herb seeds of all sorts, I discovered Horizon Herbs. I have to say I was initially impressed with the vast range of selection that this company had [and, not only initially impressed, I still am]. However, knowing that looks can be deceiving, I further investigated. I spent some time on Google trying to find user reviews of Horizon Herbs, and I scoured Usenet too. Because really, if I am to place an order somewhere, I better know if the site is legit or not.
The result? Well, all I could find was positive feedback - and a great deal of it too - this is important as it builds trust. That a company has returning customers over time is a must.
I ordered my selected seed batch and got it after something like a mere week, which to me is quite fast (I live in Norway by the way). The seeds are of good quality, and they are all at a very affordable price too, which is important.
I've come to the understanding that Horizon Herbs may be the best there is, atleast in what they do, which is to have a large number of medicinal herbs, and similar. Another thing that I like is that you are dealing with human beings that really cares about their work. That means something.
If yet another person stumbles upon this site, not knowing whether to use Horizon Herbs or not, then I hope this little feedback of mine was helpful. The ones I read were helpful for me, so...
And as for me, I need to get a bigger garden, because I have plenty of seeds to work with now (perhaps even too many!)
On Mar 21, 2007, TxHorsegal Albuquerque, NM (Zone 7a) wrote:
I've been ordering seeds from Richo forever. I think, ever since he got started in the seed biz. In all those years, I've never received anything but the finest service and products. The germination rates of the seeds are spectacular, and the seeds are about as fresh as they can be without going out to gather them yourself, and then re-planting them immediately.
There's millions of reasons a seed, or seeds, might not germinate, and I'm not saying Natural didn't do all they could to get their seeds to germinate. Some seeds won't even show above dirt level for a year, maybe longer, but still be growing actively underground forming their root system. Sometimes it might even be just a matter of a degree or two, either way, in temperature, or the addition or subtraction of a component in the seed starting medium, or maybe they need to be struck by lightening! :) Some seeds are that finicky, and those, I don't even mess with.
It would be intersting to know, Natural, what seeds you have that didn't germinate. Just curious! Whatever they were, I can guarantee you that Richo will help you out in any way possible to get your finicky seeds to germinate. It would be really interesting to hear if you're successful at germinating your seeds, and how you went about it. I can tell you for sure, that I've had plenty of varieties that were stubborn. Sometimes when you're just getting ready to throw the dirt out of their starting pots, you see an itsy bitsy speck of green, long after you'd given up on them. Hopefully that will be what happens in your case, but in any case, summon Richo for help! If he didn't answer the first time, go after him again!
On Mar 21, 2007, Kraeuterguru 27367 Germany wrote:
Horizon herbs is since many years one of my favourite seed sources for rare herbs. I want here to express that I have had - compared to some seeds of other companies - even also with the more difficult to germinate seeds, very good results.
Richo Cech was always fast to answer any question that came up. As the owner of one of the best known herb nurseries in germany I really know what is the meaning of "good seeds". Richo's seeds are really good.
I recently ordered Horizon's Tincture Press and was impressed with both the service and the product. Also needing cactus stems for tincturing, Richo Cech made every effort of providing me with what he had available. His efforts saved the day and it was most appreciated. Being an herbalist myself, I have come to rely on Mr. Cech books and extensive knowledge. I will definitely continue doing business with Horizon Herbs, and can only hope other companies would follow their fine example. John Kaleel LifeThread Herbal Formulas, LLC
On Mar 21, 2007, Natural001 Idaho Falls, ID wrote:
I ordered some books and seeds from this company last year. I was impressed by the selection of products that they had and that they were a family company. I wanted to have my own herb garden and wanted to grow several of the plants from seeds, even though I knew this to be difficult at times. I ordered several different seeds and was meticulous in planting them to the careful specifications to assure the most optimal plants that I could grow. Unfortunately only one of the seed packets that I purchased ever grew. I was quite disappointed in this. I thought that perhaps I had done something wrong, but even in contacting my local county agent, it didn't sound like I had, but I knew that sometimes seeds won't germintate for whatever reason, however so many varieties, and none of them to even germinate? That seemed odd to me. I contacted the company about my experience but never heard back from them, so I don't believe I will order any seeds from them again. I still believe they have excellent products as others have said, but I was very disappointed in the lack of help as I had requested for my poor luck with the seeds I purchased. The books I got from them were excellent. I received my products in good time and the transaction was good. Perhaps mine is a rare case, but they do happen. I have since purchased seeds from another company and they did germinate and I had a good variety that grew. I would hope that in the future if I order from them again I'll have a better experience.
On Mar 21, 2007, Horizon Herbs, LLC responded with:
On Mar 21, 2007 8:55 AM, Horizon Herbs, LLC added:
In my work with seeds, I always find that, even with my best efforts, some things that I expect to do well simply fizzle. This the reality of starting plants from seed, especially wild-derived medicinal herbs that can be naturally loaded with germination inhibitors and often require extended periods of time before germination is even remotely possible--there are so many variables--from moss in the pots, to drainage aspects of the potting soil to hungry little birds--I've seen it all. Since Natural 001 has not specifically identified the seeds that he/she had trouble with, I can't give any specific advice right here in this venue. What I do know is, I treat people as I would like to be treated, and I'm dedicated to distributing LIVE seeds. Once those live seeds arrive at the customer's door, then its up to THEM to make it work! I do sometimes send people free seeds so they can try again. Bottom line, my best advice for how and when to plant the seeds is all in one or the other of my seasonal catalogues (fall planted seeds in the fall catalog, spring planted seeds in the spring catalog). And, if the seeds don't do the job, I often have the plants available. Sometimes self-described "beginning medicinal herb gardeners" go through the catalog and choose, from among the 800 or so species offered, the most challenging germinators, things like Gentian, Rhodiola, Goldenseal--even relatively robust plants like Black Cohosh can be quite challenging to start from seed. When I see orders like this, I really wonder if they will result in much success at all, and knowing humans as I do, I realize that some of these gardeners at least will blame me specifically for their failure, instead of using the failure as a learning experience, and trying again, with modifications. Try planting some in outdoor conditions, and some in indoor conditions, some well-watered, some with watering on the shy side--this kind of thing--to gain more information--little garden-derived experiments--fine tuning the skill of gardening. Sometimes I get orders for poppy seeds in June, and I think, wow, this person is planting poppies just about when my poppies are in full bloom--how can they possibly expect to get results? So, sorry to Natural 001, you can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can try to work together in a positive way to make sure you get those plants in your garden. This is an open invitation.
I have never been disappointed with ordering from Horizon Herbs. The pride and care that Richo and the Cech family take with both their customers and their products are, from my experience, unsurpassed. The website is amazing, the catalog is a delight, their knowledge of the cultivation, use and properties of the plants is joyously shared to anyone who asks. All of this while being so very down to earth! I will continue to order from them, and unhesitatingly recommend doing business with Horizon. My seed orders have always arrived promptly. My plant orders have been meticulously wrapped and always of a very healthy nature. I am very pleased.
On Nov 12, 2006, tedroonio in Parker, CO (Zone 5b) wrote:
These people are great! My order had two problems and they were both handled wonderfully.
First, I ordered at the end of the season and they didn't have as many plants available as I had ordered. They sent me what they had, placed the order in a smaller shipping box, and lowered the shipping charges accordingly (lowered shipping charges never happen on eBay, let me tell ya...).
Second, they sent the plants to my billing address instead of my shipping address (where they sat for weeks and died). When I called Tracy, she couldn't find my shipping address in their system but promptly refunded my money anyway and didn't even insist on seeing the receipt confirming the addresses.
For superior customer service, I wholeheartedly recommend Horizon Herbs.
I too Have gotten nothing But The Best Service from Richo and His People...They are Prompt to return emails and it is often Richo himself that does...Their Catalog Is The MOST Thourogh I have Ever Seen..and Most Items are Priced Very well..The Press Looks to be of VERY High Quality, My Only Negative is, That they do not offer a cheaper Press..GREATLY Needed by us poorer people.lol..or Low enough that we all can Make Our Our Plant Medicines..as The Book with the same name instructs..I have 2 of his books and Both are wonderful tools..My whole family enjoys learning from..I help w/ the tech Things..Please tell of any lower priced plant press if you would..Thanks for everything you do Richo, and Your Efforts..Our Lifes'are better for them..Take Care, B.K. Medley
On Sep 24, 2006, Horizon Herbs, LLC responded with:
On Sep 25, 2006 10:26 AM, Horizon Herbs, LLC added:
Hi Medley and Family,
Thanks for your positive note. The least expensive tincture press (and the most valuable) is actually your own two hands. You dump the macerating tincture into a cheesecloth in a bowl, gather up the edges and squeeze and squeeze. The tincture press we make out of stainless steel presses out so much more of the tincture, though, that given the high price of alcohol, you make your money back in the end, by way of higher yields. We're hard pressed by inflation over here at Horizon Herbs--all the transport costs and raw material costs and labor costs keep going up. For all of us small scale manufacturers that keep the business here in the good ol US instead of parting off the work to Malaysia or China, well, our goods end up supporting American labororers but costing our customers more. I'm dedicated to keeping the work local, so as a result our tincture presses cost what they do. I can't make a cheaper one, because I am unable to compromise quality to save on cost...
On Sep 5, 2006, B1ZZYL1ZZY Javea Spain (Zone 10a) wrote:
Richo - thanks for your personal attention to my tiny order. This company is a breath of fresh air.
Seeds arrived in tip top condition and in five days all the way to Spain. I have had supurb germination from all so far. Quilquina seed came up in 3 days - Wow - super fresh seeds makes all the difference. Zaatar also within 5 days. Can't believe it!!!
On Sep 5, 2006, Horizon Herbs, LLC responded with:
On Sep 5, 2006 8:35 AM, Horizon Herbs, LLC added:
Thanks for your kind note. In ordering seed from far away there are many variables involved--there's the quality of the seed, the reliability of the mail service, the environmental factors of season, soil, sun, moon and rain... Some say that the good vibes of the planter are the most significant factor in getting seeds to sprout. Clearly this is what happened in your case!
Keeping it green,
I've never been more pleased with a plant/ seed order.The beautiful healthy plants were packaged securely and arrived in record time. While I try to buy and trade locally and have some guilt about the energy spent on long-distance shipping this is one exception I will continue to make. Wonderful company whose organic values, caring and expertise comes through in the quality plants I will treasure.
On Apr 22, 2006, Horizon Herbs, LLC responded with:
On Apr 23, 2006 10:46 AM, Horizon Herbs, LLC added:
Thanks for your comments. I know what you mean about shipping. I've been doing a lot of thinking about bioregionalism these days--its not a new concept, and in fact was at one time a working reality in the US and of course worldwide. But now our tomatoes, even the organic ones, if we don't watch out, are coming from Bolivia or something... Anyhow, my cogitations over all this have lead to one conclusion, which is that gardening is at the core of bioregionalism. And, if our mother plants that we ship all around the US go out and get integrated into local gardens and used to further the efficiencies and good energy of a newly emerging bioregional lifestyle, then I am not worried about the shipping. We'll all eventually learn to keep it closer to home, either by choice or by necessity. Richo"
Horizon Herbs is the best source of seeds there is, period. Most of the seeds (and all of the cooler-climate seeds) are FARMED, i.e. they are grown on Richo's farm and harvested each year to provide FRESH seed. This is very unusual, despite what many other companies claim. The bottom line is that seed germination rates are very, very high.
Someone always answers emails.
The catalog is amazing (and free).
When you order from HH (and JL Hudson too, it must be mentioned), you get your money's worth.
Horizon Herbs's work is great!
Mr. Cech personally finds always time to reply, kindly and fast, to every single e-mail.
HH also ships fast and the packages arrive soon.
The products are excellent (especially if you want to use them for herbal medicine), and the service is perfect both in professional and human terms.
Purchasing Mr. Cech's books and seeds you don't simply buy a product: you come to share the secrets and the powerful wonder of herbs with a true expert, who truly knows and loves them.
I've been buying from this company for years and have always been happy with them. When their catalogue arrives, it's a great day at my house- reading material for WEEKS! The Cech family not only runs a good business (ie, quick response, quick shipping, etc), but they also run an ethical business and a business providing an absolutely invaluable service to the world -- the conservation of medicinal plant species from all over the world. Really very great and good and Richo even answers silly questions over e-mail without much complaint.
LOVE THE CATALOG. If their plant and seed quality match up to the quality of their catalog, I will be a customer till I've filled every sq inch of my yard and home with herbs. I've never found an herb catalog that was this complete of a qrowing quide as well as having this kind of selection. Can't wait for my order.
On Dec 7, 2001, MikeD Liberal, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:
Like many small, family operated organizations, Horizon Herbs is more than a business. It is their life work. Although I do not know Mr. Cech personally, I know that I share many common values and recommend the company whenever people are seeking uncommon herbs.
They have been working at this since 1985 and offer about the most complete selection of herbs around. As an added bonus, the are organic certified.
The work that the Cech's do is valuable and worthy of our support.
If you are interested in medicinal herbs this is THE place to look. Their seeds germinate reliably and their plants are generous and healthy! Though their catalogue is newsprint with no pictures, it contains a wealth of information including detailed descriptions of each plant, its medicinal uses and its cultural requirements. I've ordered from them 3 years in a row and have had nothing but outstanding results. They are FAR better than Canada's Richter's Herbs, whose shipping season is so late as to make it very difficult to succeed with their plants here in California. The only down side to Horizon is that their plant selection is so small, mostly just seeds. A friendly, excellent company.
On Jan 1, 1999, Horizon Herbs, LLC responded with:
"I want to personally thank Fireman7 (Fireman7, THANK YOU)for this constructive comment, which got me to thinking (in 1999) about growing plants for general distribution. We improved our greenhouses and built a state-of-the-art shadehouse, which allowed us to start many more plants and make them available to our gardening friends. Now, at the date of this writing (2005) we offer about 300 different species of plants for sale, and we will be adding many more, common and rare, on an ongoing basis. I still really encourage people to use the seeds instead of buying the heavier and more expensive plants, but the reality is some folks do not have the facilities for starting seeds and prefer to get plants. Yours truly, Richo (HORIZON HERBS, LLC)"