A high-quality source for true-to-name seeds, including many rare varieties. I obtained a 93% (!!!) germination rate with their Meconopsis seeds, while Meconopsis seed I've acquired from other sources never had a germination rate above 40%. Generous seed packets, fair prices, and quick, inexpensive shipping are also halmarks of this company. Highly recommended.
On May 15, 2006, zville123 Zanesville, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:
I've placed several orders for seeds and have always been satisfied. They have a great variety of seeds, generous seed packets with essential info and an easy to navigate web site. Will definitely order from again and recommend them highly.
On May 10, 2006, mimiy Boulder, Co United States wrote:
I've ordered seeds from Swallowtail Garden seeds for a few years now, and I'm very happy with the seeds, the service and the selection. The seeds germinate well, the directions are good, and I'm happy with the plants. Swallowtail carriers seeds I can't find anywhere else. Next year I'm going to order a few of their remarkable selection of tomato seeds.
On Apr 10, 2006, Gourdlady2006 Rienzi, MS (Zone 7a) wrote:
My order arrived in exactly one week, much sooner than expected. Every thing was in excellent conditon and packaged in a bubble enevelope. They have earned a return customer. Shiptment fees are cheaper than other companines.
On Apr 7, 2006, tripplestone Preston Hollow, NY wrote:
I can't believe people are complaining about the 2.95 shipping charge! The postage on my order was over 4 dollars. Though that probably means I'm buying too many seeds. I found this company late this season, but they will definitely be one of my sources next year. The shipment arrived earlier than I expected, and was very well packed. One of the items I ordered was out of stock, and they replaced it (free) with a new cultivar that I can't wait to grow.
On Mar 25, 2006, goatster Pine Mt, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:
This was my first order. I was also upset by the message the shipment would be delayed but I also got them much faster than expected. Very well packaged and they had the very hard to find Alpine Strawberry seed I was looking for. I would buy from again.
Ordered a fairly large number of seeds. They are very well packed - triple enveloped. Large paper envelope, small plastic ziplock and inside that the seeds are in a glassine envelope. Seeds I ordered last year ('05) and that I planted over the past two weeks and are germinating now (03/06) at close to 100%. It is a bummer about the delay in processing and shipping as I'll have to go to another vendor to get seeds that I am ordering today.
I have to give this company credit - their customer service is impressive.
I placed a small seed order - geraniums and gaillardia - and received my seeds within a week (a complete order - no back orders). I did not have good germination rates with the geraniums seeds and left a voicemail for customer service on Sunday.
They called me back on Monday - let me say that again - They called me back on Monday!
That alone gives them high marks in my book. Gail was very pleasant and concerned with the poor germination rates and confirmed that I should have gotten an 85 to 90% rate. After we talked, I realized that it was likely my error that caused the poor germination. I offered to repurchase the seeds - I really like the variety - but Gail was more concerned with my satisfaction as a customer and is sending replacement seeds.
The entire experience with Swallowtail has been a pleasure. I will definitely order more seeds from them again.
On Mar 12, 2006, pooklette Janesville, WI (Zone 5a) wrote:
I placed a small seed order on Feb. 25th and it arrived on March 9th. All of the packets came with very detailed instructions. Their website was quite easy to navigate, had great product photos and offered a wide variety of seeds.
The website says that they send email order confirmations, but I never received one. That did make me a little nervous. Despite the lack of confirmation, I did get my order and it was shipped by the date given during the checkout process. Overall, I would definitely order from Swallowtail again.
On April 21st, 2006, pooklette added the following:
Now that I've had a chance to sow the seeds, I just wanted to add that all of my Swallowtail seeds have shown excellent germination. Without a doubt, Swallowtail is getting an order from me again next year.
On Feb 28, 2006, kqcrna Cincinnati, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:
I placed an order on 2/22. I really wanted to plant some of those seeds nowbefore spring. I contacted the company by phone yesterday (2/27) to see when I could expect to receive them. They couldn't tell me, only that it usually takes 2 weeks. My order has not shipped yet. I don't think that's very efficient service for a few seed packs at the charge of $2.95.
Karen, zone 6, Ohio
On March 1st, 2006, kqcrna added the following:
I guess I missed that message on the shopping cart; I would have ordered the aquilegia and poppy elsewhere. (I plan to wintersow those and want to get them outside ASAP). By comparison I ordered seeds several times from the Pumpkin Nook (seeds always half price) and received the order promptly; in one case they arrived the next day! The only other place I ordered from where delivery took this long was valueseed.com. For seeds at 49 to 89 cents/pk and 99 cents shipping, that's OK with me. But I think a company selling seeds for $2 to $3 a pk plus $2.95 shipping, I still think 2 weeks is a long turnaround for an order. Notice, I did not rate Swallowtail as neg, only neutral so far. If the seeds germinate and bloom beautifully I will be happy. Does it seem odd that a company who is so busy it is backlogged this far for shipping orders can manage to respond within hours to a neutral review on gardenwatchdog?
KarenOn Feb 28, 2006, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
On Feb 28, 2006 4:54 PM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds added:
We post the ship date for every customer on the first page of our shopping cart (and that date for this customer has not yet arrived as of 2/28) so it is our sincere regret that our attempted communication failed in this instance.
For others using the site, be sure to look for the ship date on the first page of the shopping cart, it is in red letters. This is the peak of the season and shipments are taking longer than than they have in previous years to ship (although virtually all orders arrive within two weeks of the order date, and usually somewhat sooner.) And as the season begins to slow, we will return to our regular 2-3 day shipping.
It is ironic that all the nice comments both here and in the convential press about our selection, quality and fast shipping have actually caused us to ship a few days slower during this peak time. We are currently growing at nearly a 40 percent rate; and as exciting as that is, as affirming as that is, it does present challenges when it comes to getting orders out fast.
Our selection and quality however has not changed and the fast shipping we have been known for will return-- and in the mean time we will always disclose to you on the shopping cart the the day your package will ship, so you can make the decision to wait or not.
We thank you all sincerely for your continued support and for sales that make this truly a year to remember. Thank you so much....
On Mar 1, 2006 8:06 AM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds added:
We respond to everyone who expresses disappointment with any aspect of our business, whether it is through Garden Watchdog or through our web site, and we do it promptly at all times."
I ordered several types of flower and vegetable seeds last year (2005), and was very happy with my experience. I especially like the way the seeds are packed. Most come tripple packed in an inner plastic zip lock bag, a waxed paper envelope, and an outer paper envelope. I had good germination with most of them. I think the only ones I had an issue with were the type that take a long time to germinate, because I sowed them in peat pots and they dried out too quickly.
I had a slight problem with the website when I ordered, where at the very end I got an error and the order did not go through. However I called and they were able to solve the problem by having me paste the list of items I had ordered into an email.
On Oct 26, 2005, kbaumle Northwest, OH (Zone 5b) wrote:
Nice packaging. I bought only columbine seeds and sowed them as soon as they arrived (back in September). Most of them germinated, but a couple varieties did not.
On October 26th, 2005, kbaumle changed the rating from neutral to positive and added the following:
EDIT: I have to change this to a positive, as I heard from Lynn from Swallowtail within an hour of posting my rating. I received a refund for the order, although I assured Lynn it wasn't necessary. They have good prices and I wasn't out that much anyway, but it was a nice gesture and for that, I have respect for them as a company that cares about their customers.
On Sep 30, 2005, gardenstone Centerburg, OH (Zone 5b) wrote:
Excellent customer service! I had trouble sending my order through their online secure server. I e-mailed them with my trouble and Don from Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded within the hour! My problem has been resolved and my order will be filled. I will post again once I receive my order.
On Aug 25, 2005, sweet_whitney Tucson, AZ (Zone 8b) wrote:
I am very happy with the quality and price of their seeds. When I ordered, the seeds arrived within a week. The germination rate of the seeds was excellent, and the plants were true to type. I've ordered twice from this company, and plan to order again.
On Aug 9, 2005, mlm01 St. Louis, MO (Zone 5b) wrote:
My experience with this company was very positive, just about every seed germinated (I say just about because I assume there may have been one that didn't germinate, but I didn't actually see it!) Very well packaged with great instructions, timely shipping. I'm very satisfied and I will use this company again.
On Jul 24, 2005, jestelleoan Tyler, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:
I was having a hard time sending in an order so I e-mailed them and got back an e-mail with in hours. They had checked there computor and others and then offered to help me with mine even to the exstent of having there computor department help me. It was me [computor dumb]. I sent in my order and got my order number right back. There service is outstanding and I am looking forward to do busnisses with them.
After placing a small order and receiving it within 4 days, I planted all of the seeds I received. I only had a problem with one variety germinating, so I wrote the company asking them if they had any other complaints about these seeds. Within 12 hours, I had a response from Don with 3 options....refund, choose a different seed, or replace. He also gave me detailed germinating instructions, what their germination rate was on this variety (82%), and an apology.
I wrote back telling him that I didn't expect them to replace the seeds or give me a refund. Since I've killed a LOT of plants in my time, had some unsuccessful germination rates, etc., I didn't feel it was necessary. Besides, the seeds were very inexpensive and it was most likely my fault. Much to my surprise, I received a replacement package AND a bonus package of another variety.
I'm not hard to please, but my priorities in ordering seeds are quality, customer service, and variety. I have always been an avid fan of Park Seed, but I must admit, Swallowtail will now be right up there with them and have my business for life. The customer service was way beyond what I expect, plus they have a great selection of seeds I can't find anyplace else and with great prices to boot. I'm sold on this company.
On Jul 19, 2005, flowercrazy39 Manchester, NH wrote:
They've really improved the website recently with lots of pictures and descriptions, which I really like. I ordered three packets from them this year and received one packet with the right seed name and description but the wrong seed as I recently found out. But I've already called and spoken with customer service and they are sending me a free replacement. They were very courteous and pleasant and I like their seeds a lot. Will definitely order more next season as they've got lots of new stuff!
I have ordered from this company over the past three years and their seeds have always germinated extremely well and have always been true to type. Customer service has been very courteous and always willing to help in providing further information beyond what their website supplies. They also select certain seeds and give them a highly recommended rating. I have found this to be very helpful in deciding what plants to grow. I hope they continue this practice and even expand it wherever possible. They use this practice on, for example, Benary's Giant Zinnias, where their prices are lower than any I have been able to find elsewhere. Add free shipping to reasonable prices on seeds and you have an outstanding bargain!
On January 3rd, 2006, marcop changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:
There is now a $2.95 shipping charge!On April 15th, 2006, marcop changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
I am changing my rating to neutral. My original complaint was that the company does not provide the extensive cultural information of ,for example, Johnny's Selected Seeds.
Over priced seeds that did not come true to type. Poor customer service.
On Jun 26, 2005, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
On Jun 26, 2005 8:42 PM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds added:
It is our commitment that any customer who contacts us with issues about "true type," germination or any other concerns about the quality of their experience with our seeds will be dealt with quickly and generously. Although we don't have a record of shipping to Chardon Ohio within the past 3 years (we do understand the shipping address could have different) we have contacted this person through this web site and offered a full refund.
This is terrific site and we certainly encourage anyone with opinions about us to post. We do ask however, if you have a problem, to at least consider coming to us first. In almost all cases, customers are pleasantly surprised at how far we will go to make things right. We can make 99 out of every 100 customers happy, but we will always be sad about the one we missed. If we are aware of a problem, we fix it...always. "
I've ordered seeds from this company for 3 yrs now. They have a great selection, user friendly website, and quite reasonable prices. My order always arrives very promptly and with a friendly invoice. The seed packets are labeled with detailed instructions and each packet is *very* generous with the amount of seed. I've had excellent germination rates with the seeds. No problems! I also like the fact that the seed packet labels are dated (unlike Park seeds-their packets are not dated & I always wonder just how fresh they really are). Highly recommend!
Ordered quite a few different kinds of seeds...order came fairly promptly with seeds nicely packaged. Will be planting them right away...the proof as they say ...is in the pudding. I'll post again to update as to the quality of the plants.
On Apr 8, 2005, revclaus (Judith) Denver, CO (Zone 5b) wrote:
I ordered a small number of morning glory seeds, and reordered when one package rotted -- not due to Swallowtail, but due to saturated soil. I reordered those and some other seeds. They sent me an email that I didn't even bother to look at, supposing it was confirmation of shipping. (I do a lot of online ordering.) So imagine my surprise when a jumbo package of the seeds I had allowed to rot arrived without the other seeds I'd ordered. I then went back to my email message from Swallowtail to see if I could find something to indicate why the rest of the order hadn't been sent. What I found was that my credit card had expired and they couldn't send the order. But they DID send me a jumbo package of Early Call seeds to replace the ones that had rotted.
It wasn't their fault, but they went out of their way to see that I was satisfied. I call that TOP customer service!
I would definitely buy from them again. I'm sure they lost money on my order, and it wasn't their fault.
Less than 2 weeks ago, i placed a fairly large order with this company after discovering they were a Garden Watchdog 30 company. The website was excellent; well organized, great pictures, easy to use. I received email confirmation of my order and delivery was fast. And best of all....NO ADDITIONAL SHIPPING CHARGES. All the seeds I ordered were nicely packaged and labeled. Every seed package has planting instructions and valuable info on germination time and plant description. I'll keep you posted on how they turn out.
On April 8th, 2005, hvnlyhibiscus added the following:
6 days after starting all the seeds I purchased from this company and everything is growing. I started all the seeds in peat pots inside my home... no grow lights.. I just sat the trays in front of a window....hard to believe EVERYTHING I started is growing. I'm very impressed with the quality of everything I purchased. I HIGHLY recommend this company.
On Mar 19, 2005, NitaBee Calabash, NC (Zone 8a) wrote:
I found Swallowtail when searching for Blue Peal Vinca seeds. I ordered those and a few other packs of seeds just this past January. They arrived fast and I have them planted in my small greenhouse and they are doing great! The Blue Pearl Vinca seeds are actually doing better this year (much better germination) than others I have bought in the past from well known companies. My future orders will include many more items now that I have found Swallowtail!
Swallowtail Garden Seeds deserves to be on the Watchdog 20 list; everything about them is top-notch. My seeds arrived in a week and were extremely well packaged, the best I've ever seen. The seeds themselves are generously counted. The packets have good germination information, too. I'm so happy I've found this online seed resource, and look forward to doing business with them again.
On January 29th, 2006, ccobanshee added the following:
Another year, another fabulous experience with this company. I urge everyone who hasn't tried Swallowtail to place an order! I had great success with the seeds I purchased last year. Their customer service is a refreshing improvement on the norm, as is the fair and reasonable shipping and handling rate. Recommended without hesitation!
I placed a large order with Swallowtail Garden Seeds and the order was lost....just my luck. However, when I contacted the company they replaced the order for me with a 10% discount automatically. I did not even ask for the discount or complain. They volunteered it. The lost order was just a website issue and really not a big deal. They seeds were shipped quickly and arrived well packaged. I have already started most of the seeds inside and they appear to be doing very well. This has been the best expierence I have had so far with online ordering.
I highly recommend this company for seeds. I ordered last year and again this year. My seeds came very fast, my order was complete and correct. The planting instructions well detailed. My morning glories and other vines started from seed grew into beautiful plants that bloomed all summer and into late fall. I started many of the plants inside and they transported well. Very high germination rate that turned into hardy and beautiful plants.
On Jan 28, 2005, MitchF Lindsay, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:
I just got my seeds in - they where well packed with very easy planting instructions. Even the primerose had special extra tips for growing! I cannot wait to see these in my garden - they are in seed trays now I will update this to let you know how many come up.
On March 12th, 2005, 75154 changed the rating from positive to neutral and added the following:
Out of seven packets three came up near 100%, two came up less then 50%, and one was a no show. I had close to 100% from every trade so I have no idea what the problem is . I will order again because they have good prices, but only after trying to trade for it first. On May 21st, 2005, 75154 changed the rating from neutral to positive and added the following:
Replaced and all growing - wonderful place to get your seeds. I have my fall order ready to place now, they really stand behind their seeds. On August 11th, 2005, 75154 added the following:
Everything is up and blooming this year! They look great and are stunning! Thanks! Now to look in here to find some more seeds!!!! On Jan 28, 2005, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
On Mar 26, 2005 2:57 AM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds added:
All our seeds are 100 percent guaranteed. The three packets mentioned were replaced at no charge."