Comments regarding Swallowtail Garden SeedsClick here to return to Swallowtail Garden Seeds's listing.
|On Mar 20, 2013, andreaclara Brooklyn, NY wrote:
I've ordered from Swallowtail three times and had no trouble with shipping. I garden in a full-sun 2000 square foot lot in Brooklyn with crappy alkaline industrial soil and scant irrigation. I've had tremendous success with their seed planted in these conditions and didn't always follow the detailed and useful instructions to a T. When the lot was severely flooded with saltwater during storm Sandy much of the topsoil was displaced so there will be serious depletion of both self and fall sown seed this season. This garden is large, watered by rain water cistern, and all the plants are donated otherwise it would be too costly to maintain. With the storm the losses may be significant and also a learning. Because of the storm related costs, this year there is no budget even for seeds. As I've ordered from Swallowtail in the past and was so looking forward to seeing those flowers come up again this year, I reached out to them to see if they'd be willing to donate some wildflower seeds. Granted I was asking a favor but the response I got from Ben at Swallowtail was sufficient to keep me from ordering from this company again. I can fully appreciate that a small company cannot afford to donate their product. It was simply that the officiousness of his tone took the joy out of my association to this company. I felt I was speaking to a bank representative who was justifying a policy rather than a human being who sold seeds for growing things. A loss for me as I had had such success with their seed and now I will research other companies and hope that they communicate with more courtesy - it matters.
On Mar 20, 2013, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
"On Mar 22, 2013 11:37 PM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
We can certainly appreciate this customer's desire to make something beautiful after the devastation of Sandy. At the end of the season, what little seed we have left over is donated to our local school gardening programs. We are sorry this customer was offended by her conversation with Ben. He can be formal at times but we have received nothing but positive feedback about his dealings with customers.
|On Mar 1, 2013, mrsilverado East St. Paul,
Just received my seed order on Feb.28th. I ordered it on the 9th and it was shipped on the 11th. Shipping only took 2 weeks from California to Winnipeg, Canada. Everything that was ordered was there. Looking forward to doing my seeding this weekend. Will post how everything turns out. Great service.
|On Jan 18, 2013, floradora Astoria, NY (Zone 7b) wrote:
I love this company. I've been ordering from them for at least 5 years-maybe more. They offer such a large variety of plant seeds that I too order way too much like the previous reviewer. They are my go-to source for allysums, lobelias (please bring back "paper moon"), violas and everything in between. The germination rates are very good- I had great success even with perennials such as: shasta daisy, crimson star columbine, origami blue columbine, platycodons fuji blue and white and even delphiniums. I didn't even do the pre-chilling of seeds procedure and they still germinated. Perhaps ordering in winter and their trip cross country in frigid temps was the pre-chill treatment? Once transplanted into the yard they bloomed the whole summer-especially "Bluebird". This year I ordered too many geranium seeds, violas (as usual), pansies, alyssums ( a large flowered type I never even knew existed) and alpine strawberry seeds among others. I haven't started the geranium seeds, so can't review the results, but the violas I've started have all sprouted, including the alpine strawberries which I didn't do anything special with. I also appreciate the careful packaging of seeds (love those little zip lock bags) and occasional free shipping offers on their web site.
|On Dec 26, 2012, carolmo Olathe, KS (Zone 5a) wrote:
I ordered annuals, perennials, vegetables. Selection was great and prices were reasonable. The order came very fast and even came with an email alert. They have the very best packaging of seeds I have ever seen. They were my primary seed company this year - and will be next year too.
|On Dec 12, 2012, jvw Clinton Township, MI (Zone 6a) wrote:
Both my mother and I have been ordering from Swallowtail for the past three years. We have never had a problem. This past month both my mother and I have ordered from them twice! On my mother's second order she forgot 4 items. She left a voicemail and emailed them. They were quick to respond that indeed they could add the items on to the order. All of our orders arrived in a timely manner and perfectly. At this time we cannot respond on germination rates but we don't expect any problems as we have not had them before.
|On Oct 26, 2012, wildflowerhoney Naples, FL wrote:
Ordered twice from Swallowtail Seeds. Perfect transaction both times. Super speedy and free shipping; excellent germination; vast and exciting selection of seeds; expertly packaged. The Benary Giant Wine Zinnias are especially stunning. Will buy from again.
|On Oct 12, 2012, arrowleaf Clearbrook Park, NJ wrote:
This is the first year I discovered Swallowtail, LOVE the selection, and the prices are so reasonable! The packaging is nicer than most seed companies: plastic or glassine envelope inside paper package, sometimes all three, sometimes a glass tube with a stopper for certain seed-types. It seems like so much care is taken. I ordered most of my vegetable and flower seeds from them last winter:
|On Aug 30, 2012, diknownana Glen Carbon, IL wrote:
I ordered a variety of seeds from this company and I am very pleased at the results. The germination rate was great (except for the seeds that something dug up and made a lunch out of). It's a shame the season was so hot and dry that the plants were suffering even with being watered, but they have survived and still producing. The prices and amount of seeds are really good. I am already looking and making my list for next years flowers & vegetables. Needless to say, I will be ordering again from Swallowtail.
|On Jul 25, 2012, hairyjo Danville, CA wrote:
Very happy with the seeds I have ordered from this company. I will certainly order again this fall. I like the many different viola seeds they carry and they work well in my garden and germinated reliably.
|On Jul 1, 2012, chlorophyll646 Tanglewilde-Thompson Place, WA wrote:
Posted on May 17, 2012, updated July 1, 2012 "On Jun 3, 2012 3:08 PM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with: Our email records are not in line with what our customer is reporting. Had we received these emails we would have responded. We have not heard from this customer except through Daveís Garden. We previously invited the customer to contact us using our toll free number in order to receive a quick, no hassle refund. The customer has not done this.
"On Jun 3, 2012 3:08 PM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
Our email records are not in line with what our customer is reporting. Had we received these emails we would have responded.
We have not heard from this customer except through Daveís Garden. We previously invited the customer to contact us using our toll free number in order to receive a quick, no hassle refund. The customer has not done this.
|On Jun 22, 2012, AuntieFlo Philadelphia, PA wrote:
Posted on June 13, 2012, updated June 22, 2012
On June 13th, 2012, AuntieFlo changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:
Shortly after I got my first order of seeds, a secord (duplicate) order came. I tried to call but could never get through. I emailed to inquire about sending the duplicate order back. The email response I got stated that I placed 2 orders. It's odd that I only got one email, not 2 emails, thanking me for my order and confirming what I ordered and when I might expect it. My order was $18-$19. It was not worth the hassle of trying to get in touch with them to get this resolved. They didn't respond to my second email. They might have sent me a second order that I really DIDN'T order so they got some extra business from me this one time. However, I will NEVER order from them again. They lost a customer forever.
On June 22nd, 2012, AuntieFlo changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
A representative from Swallowtail called me after changed my review from positive to negative. She apologized and said that they often get intentional duplicate orders. She gave me a credit for both orders. I may try them again but won't order online, I'll try to call, fax or email an order.
|On Jun 9, 2012, lisaaj Columbus, OH wrote:
This year I received seeds for 2 kinds of impatiens ("Xtreme Sappire Mix" and "Accent Lavender Blue"), 1 geranium "Maverick Light Salmon", and Candytuft. All germinated well and have survived nicely in the garden so far; the impatiens and geranium are blooming away right now. I will order again from Swallowtail.
|On May 14, 2012, PlantMomto3 Nevada, MO (Zone 6a) wrote:
I really hate to leave a negative review. I have ordered three times with this company (twice this year). I am not a novice and I follow directions. My problem was with germination rates. Very, very disappointing. I order from several different companies and these were terrible. I have a greenhouse and I spent hours preparing flats just so 11 out of 75 seeds would sprout (one variety). I think about 10 carrots sprouted (planted directly in the garden). 6 zinnias out of 72 planted. I know it's not me because my seeds from other vendors had excellent germination rates. I am just at a loss why this happened.
On May 14, 2012, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
"On May 15, 2012 10:44 AM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
All of our seed is germination tested and 100% guaranteed.
|On May 14, 2012, spswanson Mashpee, MA (Zone 7b) wrote:
Placed a medium size order of seeds which I received in a timely manner. Germination was excellent, even the grumpier seeds did well.
|On May 13, 2012, psychloman Brooklyn, NY (Zone 7a) wrote:
I am very happy with the germination and subsequent growth rates for the seeds mentioned here:
|On Apr 16, 2012, Ispahan Chicago, IL (Zone 6a) wrote:
While I think their shipping is a bit on the slow end, I love their seed selection and I have had wonderful germination results with almost everything purchased. I would definitely buy from them again, though well in advance of when I would actually need to plant the seeds.
|On Apr 12, 2012, itaslima Bachok,
I am from Malaysia. I order my seed on 30th march despite not knowing wheather they ship worldwide or not, by 12th April I receive my seeds. I certainly will order from them again since the service is excellent and they have many variety of seeds . Congratulation and keep up the good works.
|On Mar 21, 2012, Madisonwigarden Madison, WI (Zone 5b) wrote:
I've ordered seeds from Swallowtail for several years, ,as I was drawn to their site for the great variety (especially coleus -- look at how many they have!!!) Great seeds, great variety, and I've had incredible success with germination too. This year I ordered seeds in February, most came quickly, but a few packets were backordered. After a month I emailed them to ask the status of the backordered seeds. I immediately received an email AND a phone call with an order update, an explanation, and seeds were here within 3 days. They obviously felt that their customers matter and are important to them. Do not hesitate to order from Swallowtail. They are a great company, they will back their product, and they communicate quickly. Their seeds are also wonderful (did I mention they have lisianthus too? I think I had a 95% germination on these!)
|On Mar 7, 2012, SeniorGardening Sullivan, IN wrote:
Posted on March 6, 2012, updated March 7, 2012
On February 14th, 2012, SeniorGardening changed the rating from negative to neutral and added the following:
After emailing Swallowtail today, I received a very pleasant call from Lynn, the co-owner of Swallowtail. A refund has been posted, and she apologized for the incident.
We had a very pleasant conversation about seeds, gardens, teaching...
Sometime in the future, I'll give them another try.
On March 6th, 2012, SeniorGardening changed the rating from neutral to negative and added the following:
The refund Swallowtail promised in February for the bad geranium seed they'd sold me in December still hasn't appeared on my credit card...in March! While the credit card company has 30 days from the request to post the refund, they also advised, "We understand the situation and we would like to inform you that we have not received any refund from the merchant to your account."
Swallowtail says, "I checked with our credit card processing company and the credit has been taken from our account and applied to your card."
There's obviously a problem somewhere, as I still don't have the refund Swallowtail promised for the bad seed. The credit card company has never screwed up like this in the past, so I'm inclined to put the blame on Swallowtail. While they've answered emails and called (but only after I first embarrassed them here with negative feedback), they've not resolved the situation for which they are ultimately responsible.
Swallowtail could have contacted the credit card company to resolve the problem, or pushed their credit card processing company to resolve the issue. They could have even just cut and mailed a refund check to me. But instead, they've chosen to try to put their failure to make a refund on me. So I'm changing the rating back to a richly deserved negative.
On March 7th, 2012, SeniorGardening added the following:
Refund finally received.
On Mar 7, 2012, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
"On Mar 7, 2012 2:42 PM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
As SeniorGardening reports above, ďthe credit card company has 30 days from the request to post the refund.Ē We contacted all the proper sources, including the customerís personal credit card company, to find that the refund of $10.43 was given on 2/14/12 and posted to their account on 2/22/12. "
|On Mar 1, 2012, excellentjohn Binghamton, NY wrote:
THE best selection (and quality!!!) geranium seeds in the world! I've had E X C E L L E N T luck with this company for 2 years now. Almost all seeds come up, quick shipping, easy to understand instructions. Wish I could say the same of Park seed with their crazy gold wrappers and generic instructions. ST is THE best and a great web site! Thank you for great products!!!
|On Feb 20, 2012, Sadie984 Maineville, OH wrote:
This is the second year I have ordered seeds from this company. They send the seeds promptly and they sprouted at least as well as the ones from the "big" companies, if not better. They have lemon cucumbers and annual milkweed that both grew great in Ohio.
|On Feb 10, 2012, OldChurchEggery Mechanicsville, VA wrote:
I ordered seeds from Swallowtail during summer 2011. I haven't tried all of the varieties yet, but the ones I did plant have done very well thus far. I grew Valerian, Scabiosa House Hybrids, and Apache something Agastache, and Marvelous Marble Coral Bells. What matters more to me than how quickly I get an order confirmation is how well the seeds perform. I'm pleased to say that my seedlings have become nice, small plants in what I call my nursery bed. I lost a few to chicken trespassers, but the survivors are quite vigorous. I'm looking forward to seeing them bloom either this year or next. Since they're perennials, I'm in it for the long haul with these plants. I would definitely order from Swallowtail again.
|On Feb 10, 2012, vitrsna Colima,
Mexico (Zone 11) wrote:
Posted on February 9, 2012, updated February 10, 2012
On February 10th, 2012, vitrsna added the following:
I received a reply from Swallowtail Garden Seeds that said they had "proceeded to send me an email but hadn't received a response from me". In return i sent them copies of an email they sent to me and my response (both dated January 1st). They don't seem to have a clue about what is going on in their own company. I notice in other excuse responses to negative feedback, they have used this same tactic of saying the customer did not respond. It appears the truth is closer to "we don't know if the customer responded or not". This company does seem to make rather elaborate excuses for their irresponsible business practices. There are so many good seeds companies available with which to do business that i would not do business with this company again.
On Feb 10, 2012, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
"On Feb 10, 2012 12:24 PM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
We are sorry that there has been a lot of confusion regarding this customerís experience. Her situation has been thoroughly researched and below is what transpired:
|On Feb 5, 2012, drendel Yorkville, IL wrote:
I ordered from Swallowtail Seeds in 2011 and 2012. Germination has been excellent so far. The order arrived within 5 days of ordering. I am not happy with their email responses. I contacted them twice with questions, with no response.
|On Jan 11, 2012, lissas Deer Park, WA wrote:
I have placed two different orders already this year. Both arrived super fast and complete. The best part was the free shipping! I already have some "slow growers" going and germination is good. Thank you Swallowtail for a great web site, loads of choices and easy ordering!
|On Jan 9, 2012, Bernadette_Gourder Newaygo, MI wrote:
I recently ordered $30 worth of annual seeds. The shipping was reasonable and quick. I received exactly what I ordered. Good experience and will buy from again.
|On Dec 31, 2011, flowerscrazed Davenport, IA wrote:
First time order with this company. Came across it online while searching for seeds. Website is easy to navigate and prices are reasonable. Fast shipping (process and delivery took less than a week). Will do business again certainly.
|On Dec 7, 2011, BotanicalBoi Carrollton, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:
I am giving this company a positive review for the moment. I was very hesitant after seeing the other reviews on this site. Their website was easy to navigate, prices are fair, selection is good. I places an order this year. I got most of my order on the first shipment. One item had been back ordered. It quickly arrived just after the initial shipment. I will update on germination rate in the spring. So far, so good!
|On Nov 26, 2011, STxJimbo Seguin, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:
I can not speak to the quality of the seeds, yet. But the web site was easy to navigate, selection was excellent, prices competitive and shipping cost reasonable. My order was shipped extremely fast and complete with no out of stocks or substitutions. Over all this was a great experience and I would recommend this company. I am already working on my next order.
|On Nov 22, 2011, Tyankees10 Albion, NY wrote:
This past summer (July 2011), I had bought 3 packets of their strawberry seeds. The shipping cost was reasonable, spent about 10 dollars in all. The strawberry seeds after a month of stratification in the freezer were planted. A very good germination rate. Have recently transplanted them into bigger pots. Swallowtail is a nursery who you can trust.
|On Nov 6, 2011, hillfarm Quesnel, BC (Zone 4a) wrote:
Posted on December 6, 2010, updated November 6, 2011
On October 24th, 2005, hillfarm added the following:
Looking back on our 2005 gardening year, I want to comment that some of the most popular plants we sold through our nursery this year were grown from Swallowtail's seeds.
The heirloom tomatoes & hollyhocks were outstanding; it is wonderful to be able to get such a nice selection of otherwise hard-to-find separate hollyhock varieties in particular.
I will definitely order again & highly recommend this company.
On December 6th, 2010, hillfarm added the following:
It has been several years since our last Swallowtail order, as we took a 2-year sabbatical from our nursery business. We are getting ready to go again in 2011, and the first place I went to make my seed orders was Swallowtail.
Good selection, reasonable prices. I have just received my large order of freshly packaged-for-2011 seed - only 12 days after I placed it. From the USA to Canada that is very fast - other years the wait has been much longer as seed orders often sit at the border waiting to be passed through.
My only "issue" is that the online shopping cart was extremely time consuming to use. Other times I've faxed my order and I will do that in future. My computer was tied up for several hours making my order (and I had my list written out & ready to go). If there was some way the site could be a little quicker to navigate through that would be perfect! Too much clicking!
My rating definitely stays positive. Looking forward to dealing with Swallowtail again in the future. In my experience a very good seed company.
On November 6th, 2011, hillfarm added the following:
Getting ready to make my 2012 seed orders, and Swallowtail is one of the first of my regular sources I've checked that is "ready" - thank you! Great germination on most varieties ordered last year - I'm a very happy continuing customer.
|On Sep 4, 2011, dogs_eye Graham, NC wrote:
Ordered multiple seed sets from them and had varying luck with germination rates. Some were notoriously difficult plants to germinate, so I'm not overly surprised at my low success. My only issue was that my tomatoes seeds where subbed, Russian black for Cherokee Purple. On the west coast that may not matter, but in the south you gotta get a heat tolerant variety.
|On May 23, 2011, iluvsweetpeas Woodbridge, CA wrote:
What a wonderful company! The website is easy to maneuver and the seed selection is fabulous! Their shipping costs are the lowest I've seen in the industry.
|On May 20, 2011, Apachegirl Falling Waters, WV wrote:
I had a good experience with my order - it was processed in a week, took another week to get to WV from California (typical), and the growing information on the packets was very helpful. I will order from them again. (They gave me a tracking number from the Post Office, but the day the seeds were delivered the USPS still had no record of actually handling the package, so don't go by that.)
|On Apr 27, 2011, SteffieM Princeton, NJ wrote:
Posted on March 27, 2011, updated April 27, 2011
On April 27th, 2011, SteffieM added the following:
To re-confirm: terrible company. Order date, March 11. Received last two seed packets on April 13. Sent several increasingly irate emails (also two more phone calls to their answering machine) asking to cancel the remaining order, refund money and NOT send the two seed packets. Also informed them that if the order wasn't canceled I'd add to this negative review. Do I need to note that I received no response? Next will write to the Better Business Bureau.
Dave's Garden provides a wonderful review service. There are so many excellent gardening companies with living customer service employees and respect for their clients.
On Apr 27, 2011, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
"On Apr 27, 2011 2:53 PM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
During peak season, we are inundated with emails that range from the simplest questions to the biggest issues--and they come in 100s at a time.
|On Apr 26, 2011, utbiochemiss Novelty, OH wrote:
It takes a lot to push me to make the effort to go and make a comment about a business, but Swallowtail really deserves some serious criticism. First, they billed me for items that were out of stock/discontinued, no longer available - even though they let me place them on my order. Second - they sent me what they called a "free gift" to replace the seeds that weren't available - these seeds were the same except not the color I wanted - and not even close. What really gets me is - how are these free? This "free gift" is to replace the seeds they billed me for but are not available - how is that free? How about keeping your seeds and refunding the charge!! The worst part is that I spent $140 with their company and the seeds that they DIDN'T have were the ones I really needed the most..Also - other comments on here about not being able to get ahold of these people are accurate..NEVER AGAIN.
On Apr 26, 2011, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
"On Apr 26, 2011 8:34 PM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds responded with:
We are really sorry to hear this person has felt this level of frustration and disappointment. It is possible that we charged for an item we didn't have in stock, given the high volume of orders this time of year. However, it is our policy to refund an item in full, and we frequently provide a free gift as a show of good will.
On Apr 27, 2011 3:45 AM, Swallowtail Garden Seeds added:
Investigation into this order proved somewhat difficult, as the customer used a different last name than "Martin" when placing this order.
|On Apr 10, 2011, cooleybufo Bakersfield, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:
Ordered several packets of seeds and they arrived in a timely manner. All the seeds I have tried so far have all had good germination. I have no complaints and I will order from them again.
|On Apr 2, 2011, 6aseeder Arlington, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:
i have ordered 3-4 times in the last 3 years and received good quality seeds in a timely fashion. i am always happy to see some of the flowers that i cannot find elsewhere. i generally order early in the season (Dec or Jan), or in the fall.
|On Apr 1, 2011, finnskeeper Pensacola, FL wrote:
I placed two fairly large orders with this company this year and ($150.00 and $75.00) and both came fairly quickly within two weeks of ordering. The seeds all germinated quickly and I now have a garden full of seedlings. The only seeds that didn't grow were the five types of coleus I ordered - but possibly I did something wrong with those? Everything else looks great.