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Comments regarding Seeds of Change

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71 positives
17 neutrals
47 negatives


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Negative ViviP
(1 review)
On Jul 11, 2017, ViviP Placerville, CA wrote:

Avoid this company at all costs! I am posting this for one reason only: to save other growers from failure and frustration. For three years in a row, our order from Seeds of Change contained the wrong seeds inside the packets. This is more than a coincidence, it's a clear indication of poor business practices, perhaps even fraud. Instance one: we ordered Martian tomato for our main red slicing tomato crop, 2015. We have a small commercial market garden and we are organic growers. We really liked Martian from previously years. By July, we could see the crop was going to be little yellow pear shaped tomatoes, and indeed, that's what they were--bland and watery. Contacted Seeds of Change, they said the only thing they can do is to send me another seed packet. They reassured me that they were aware of the problem, so no worries with the next batch. Instance two: Spring of 2016, we planted the new Martian tomato seeds they had sent us. I was disturbed by the fact that the lot number was the same as the bad packet, but now it is printed with the statement, "Packed for 2016." Otherwise, same lot number. So I called them up and asked them about the lot number. Again, they reassured me and said the problem was fixed, go ahead and plant the seeds. Which we did, and to our utter dismay, the same thing happened: little pear shaped yellow tomatoes. Both years, this significantly affected our income from our market garden, because by the time the wrong tomato was obvious, it was too late to plant another variety. Third instance: This year, we ordered Calabash tomato from Seeds of Change (although you'd think we would have simply given up on this company, but we were willing to keep trying, since we believe in the original company, their mission and company culture). Incredibly, now it is July, and all the plants that were supposed to be calabash are again, those pathetic little yellow pear shaped tomatoes. I have heard that a lot of companies are outsourcing growing seed to China, perhaps the yellow pear tomato is the go-to seed that they throw into every packet that otherwise had a failed crop. Who knows? I assure you we will never, ever order from them again. We used to be regular customers. I haven't even mentioned the other issues: seed packets with hardly any seeds in them; and poor to almost zero germination for some varieties. At this point, it's a waste of time and money to deal with this company.

Negative Brianfin
(1 review)
On Jun 8, 2017, Brianfin Unionville, VA wrote:

We have been buying seeds of change seeds for 5 years and the past 3 years we have seen a drop in succesful germination rates. IE: beans, cucs, corn, squash and peppers. We have some luck with melons and better luck with tomatoes. Most are mail ordered and seems store bought do overall better.

Negative Aakbay
(2 reviews)
On Apr 6, 2017, Aakbay Cranbury, NJ wrote:

I've had a very bad experience with Seeds of Change. I have only bought one item and I'm never buying again. I bought a packet of the Padrón Pepper Seeds vía their website. Even though it was 2017 I received seeds that were marked sell by 12/2016. I contacted customer service and asked for fresh Seeds which I was told would be sent out. No fresh seeds arrived. Out of desperation I planted the old seed and 0 germinated (my pepper from other companies has 80-95% germination rate). I contacted customer support and asked for a refund. No refund has arrived.

Also they charged me $11 to ship the one packet of seeds that weighted less than an ounce. Bad seed, over priced, and terrible customer service.

Negative HokieChick
(1 review)
On Jun 26, 2016, HokieChick Blacksburg, VA wrote:

I have repeatedly tried to order a catologue, have filled out the form several times. However, whenever I try to submit the information I cannot. A red "e-mail not valid" error is reported on the screen. I have checked my address repeatedly, re-entered my e-mail address repeatedly, and even tried alternate e-mail addresses.. Same error message - no way to order a catalogue. (Probably just as well considering the number of negative reviews.).

I want to add - to Dave's Garden - thanks so much for your company reviews. I have declined to order from several different seed companies due to the number of negative reviews and saved a lot of trouble. I am grateful for this service, and for all your members who post both positives and negatives. 🙂

Negative LizCtish
(1 review)
On Oct 21, 2013, LizCtish Mount Sinai,
United States wrote:

I so wanted to love this company! Their mission statement made me so happy when my daughter gave me a $100 gift certificate. However, it's been nothing but problems since.
1.) The website did not credit my $100 even though I entered all required info.
2.) Even though it was late at night, I called immediately because the website says they have 24 hours a day service. Not true.
3.) The next day, at the first second they were open, I called and was told not to worry because they would immediately credit my charge card for the $100. Immediately turned out to be five days later AND they only credited me for $72.18.
4.) I called again and they gave me some explanation that was totally convoluted and seemed to be connected to when my items shipped. This made no sense to me but I couldn't get the person to understand so I decided to wait for the rest of the gift certificate to show up on my credit card. After all, my ordered items, they said would be delivered within the week.
5.) Here it is weeks later and nothing has arrived, nor has the missing $27.82 from the gift certificate been credited.
6.) I politely e-mailed them a few days ago inquiring as to a shipping date. The e-mail I received back today says that my garlic will arrive this Thursday but not as much as I ordered since it was unavailable. They wrote that of course I knew this from the phone message they left me. No message was ever received.
7.) I called today to find out what's going on with the $27.82.
The woman has to "talk with someone else" and they'll "call me back." So, I'm still waiting for them to apply the full gift certificate!
8.) Turns out none of the non-plant items I ordered (including a tool sharpener which I really need) will arrive for at least another week or more. That will be over a month since I placed my order.
As I said, I really wanted to like this company. They may be full of the best intentions, but their service really stinks. I won't be using them again.

Negative Vella1967
(1 review)
On Jul 10, 2013, Vella1967 wrote:

Worst customer service I've ever experienced! They messed up my order for very expensive raised garden planters, and then never responded to my phone calls. I finally resolved the issue with zero help from them by contacting the manufacturer directly. Regarding my order for seeds- it was a nightmare. There was never any communication from them regarding things being back ordered. At one point after waiting over a month for tomato seedlings, I assumed they weren't sending them and bought some from a nursery...and then they arrived (leaving me with more tomato plants than I know what to do with!). Just this morning I noticed they charged my debit card $33.98 and called to ask why and was rudely told it was for the tomato plants I received over a month ago (which I had already been charged for). Now I have to fax my bank statement to them in order to get the charges reversed. From 1 order, I've ultimately made 5 phone calls to customer service. Never one time did anyone apologize, or make any effort at all to rectify their mistakes. I will NEVER, NEVER do business with this company again.

Negative tkh
(4 reviews)
On Apr 30, 2013, tkh Macon, GA wrote:

Posted on March 9, 2013, updated April 30, 2013
I ordered an item almost a month back but have not received it yet. I now wish I had checked with DG's review on SoC before I had even ordered.
I have bought seeds from them in the past for a number of years without any problems but I suspect the change of location (the address mentioned at the top is not current) as well as ownership must have resulted in detrimental changes. No business can survive for long with poor customer service! I want my money back or the product I paid for.

On April 30th, 2013, tkh added the following:

My order for a single item, Mycorrhizae languished without action from SOC but my complaint to the BBB of Albuquerque, NM five weeks later was transferred to the BBB serving Los Angeles and the product was delivered (with some bonus seed packets) 75 days after placing my order. As a self-regulated agency, supported entirely by the dues of the member businesses, the BBB does a wonderful 'public service' without depending upon taxpayer funds! I am grateful for their influential intervention.
Negative tomatotime
(1 review)
On Apr 1, 2013, tomatotime Los Altos, CA wrote:

Seeds of Change is the worst company I've ever dealt with. I placed an order months ago and still waiting for it. I've called customer support which I suspect is just contracted to Seeds of Change as they really don't know anything other than what they can pull up on their screen --- which is worthless. As you can see from the website, whoever runs it is hiding like a coward. You can't even find out where they're located. Do yourself and favor, don't count on these idiots to get you anything. You'll be disappointed and probably ripped off.

Negative hopflower
(27 reviews)
On Mar 8, 2013, hopflower Santa Rosa, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

Posted on March 8, 2013, updated March 8, 2013
I wish I had read this sooner. All these negative comments and I did not know about them. Years ago this company was one of the best, and I ordered from them with no problems. This time, I have waited over a month for one packet of tomato seeds, and have received two responses for my emails about it telling me that they were being shipped. I know the check has been cashed, which turned out to be about $9.00 for shipping and the seeds themselves, plus tax. This was in early February and now it is March. I live in northern California, and they are supposed to be in southern California. It does not take over a month to get a packet of seeds. When I call them, I get some music and no answer from a live person at all. I have tried three times.

If you wish to donate to a seed company, write these people a check. But you won't get any product; just excuses that they are "updating their computer system" and that "the seeds are on their way".

On March 8th, 2013, hopflower added the following:

Of all times to respond, someone finally told me that they have just shipped (again). They should be here Monday; having been put in the mail yesterday. I don't appreciate being told that they had shipped when they hadn't. I learned, too, that the company contact is in Minnesota, not California; because I asked.

I still give these people a negative rating: never have I had such a hard time getting a packet of seeds from anyone. I won't place an order again.
Negative conilowe
(1 review)
On Sep 27, 2012, conilowe Canada de los Alamos, NM wrote:

I have used them in the past and had overall positive experiences; they are the only source I know of for some varieties I really like. I will never buy from them again, though; at the time they were bought out by Mars they took their good reputation and nearly all their jobs from Santa Fe to Los Angeles. They did not, however, take their warehouse cats. //

Negative Heirloomseeduse
(1 review)
On Sep 23, 2012, Heirloomseeduse Ridgemark, CA wrote:

I have been attempting to get paid for the nearly $20,000 of plants I supplied to Seeds of Change's customers for them for over 2 years. When they closed their Santa Fe, NM headquarters, their research facilities and moved their office to the Los Angeles area, they either destroyed their records or stored them and they apparently refuse to pay the money they owe. They also laid off all personnel with knowledge of the facts of the purchasing and changed computer systems apparently. Be cautious in dealing with this company and please help me save my family farm's finances by helping us to get paid. I have contacted them by telephone dozens of times, made a special trip to their listed address and do not get contacts back. I wish their president would respond with the payment!

Negative chocolategarden
(1 review)
On May 31, 2012, chocolategarden Bunker Hill, WV wrote:

I ordered 4 packets of corn seed, all to be sent 2nd day air. Although two packets were sent correctly, the remaining two were sent at the same time, but through regular mail. When I contacted customer service, I found that they knew of no reason for the separate package, and said it was probably a computer glitch. I was disappointed that no attempt was made to ameliorate the situation. I was also rather disappointed to find that there were so few seeds in each packet -- substantially fewer than other companies I have used. I will likely not purchase from this company again.

Negative Evilchicken
(3 reviews)
On Mar 16, 2012, Evilchicken Bernardsville, NJ (Zone 6a) wrote:


I got their catalog this year and placed a small order. My order arrived promptly, but it only had three of the four items in the box. The last item wasn't listed on the inventory slip as coming separately (it wasn't mentioned at all), and I received no communication from the company about my order at all so I emailed them via their website, which says that they respond within 48 hours. Three business days later I hadn't gotten a response so I came here to check them out. Uh-oh.

Because of what a previous reviewer said regarding them charging more than your shopping cart says, I immediately double checked on that. I had no confirmation email from them, so I went directly to my bank records. Sure enough - there were two charges from Seeds of Change, back to back. They looked like my charge split into two until I added them up and discovered that it was $0.70 more than it should have been. At this point I took a day to cool down.

During that time, Seeds of change did reply to my email, informing me that part of my order was shipping directly from the manufacturer. The stuff arrived as promised not long after.

I sent them another email, informing them they had overcharged me and demanding that they refund me ASAP. To their credit, they did send out a refund check right away.

They still get a negative rating because 1) they're a PIA to work with. No communication unless I initiated it, and I had to double check them at every turn. Although they refunded me the money they took that I didn't owe, I had to spend time checking my accounts, writing the company, and now I have an extra errand to run to deposit that check. All for $0.70. It's not worth it, but I'll be ***ned if I let them have that 70 cents.

2) I don't trust them at all. I'm not the only one to get overcharged, and it happened in such a way that I never would have noticed if someone else on here hadn't alerted me to their problems with Seeds of Change getting overenthusiastic about money. 70 cents doesn't sound like much, but if you do it to 1000 customers, it adds up to 700 dollars.

3) If they "error" this much with money, can I trust them with anything else? Are my seeds really organic? I purchased a rare variety. Is it really what they say it is? I have no faith in the answers to these questions now, and will never do business with Seeds of Change again.

Negative trollfarmer
(2 reviews)
On Apr 1, 2011, trollfarmer Greensboro, NC wrote:

After ordering 6 packs of seeds in February, 3 were said to be crop failures and weren't shipped. I was not sent a refund check along with my 3 packs of seeds that they did send. A month later, a phone call and 3 e-mails and I still don't have a refund check! I will never do business with them again.

Negative Grocer14
(1 review)
On Mar 25, 2011, Grocer14 West Columbia, SC wrote:

My store has been a wholesale retailer for Seeds of Change for many years. I took over ordering seeds for the store several months ago, and every order has been a struggle. E-mails are sometimes answered after several days, even weeks, but are usually ignored altogether. I have also called the company several times and have yet to speak with Shari Garman about my last order, which was ordered a month before it arrived, missing several of the items I ordered and was charged for in full. The company does not have a specific ordering process, and the wholesale area on their website is not helpful and explains nothing. This is not acceptable. My store typically moves large amounts of seeds, especially during this time of year, but if it takes a month to receive an incomplete order, it may be time to reconsider my decision to remain with Seeds of Change. It seems I am not alone.

Negative Pitcom
(24 reviews)
On Mar 24, 2011, Pitcom Avondale, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

I have been dealing with seeds of Change for several years and have recommended them to countless friends. But I am sad to say that as time goes by, their customer service seems to have fallen further by the wayside. Their online system needs some serious updating. Their website commonly shows items as being "In Stock" and you get a copy of your order in e-mail. Then to your surprise when you receive your order, items may show up as "canceled, or back ordered", without warning. Instead of charging you for your entire order, they partially charge you for each portion of your shipment they send out. One of my last orders has come in 4 different packages! It's no wonder they charge astronomical prices for shipping and handling. I ordered some seed potatoes that never arrived. I called their CS and was informed that their system showing them as being delivered, but they offered to send out a new set. This company just needs to overhaul their ordering system, and i think a lot of the problems will go away.

Negative steveparadis
(1 review)
On Mar 11, 2011, steveparadis Louisville, KY (Zone 6b) wrote:

We are a retailer. We ordered the rack program from Seeds of Change in February 2010. We bought over $6000 of seed packets from them. The unsold seeds were returned for refund (as offered by Seeds of Change) in September 2010. Shari Garmen and Tim Lien, who work for them, both promised payment of the refund of $2957. It is now March 2011. We still havent received our refund, despite email and phone promises. This company, owned by Mars, has no integrity and considers theft of others money as business as usual. BEWARE! We are pursuing with a civil suit if not refunded this week.

Negative iliketobike
(1 review)
On Mar 5, 2011, iliketobike Brunswick, ME wrote:

Seeds of Change appears to have serious quality control issues regarding the amount of seeds in their packs. One would think that the exorbitant prices they charge could pay for better quality control.

Out of all 21 seed packs (originals and replacements) I received this year, 13 of them contained significantly less than the amount of seed advertised:
-Three packs of calendula ranged from 60-70% of the advertised amount.
-Three packs of beans ranged from 35-60% of the advertised amount.
-All seven packs of onion seeds contained less than 30% of what was advertised!

In summary, if you order from Seeds of Change make sure to double-check every pack for quantity when you receive your order. Thankfully their customer service is very good about quickly sending out replacement packs.

Negative doghill6
(34 reviews)
On Mar 3, 2011, doghill6 Central Point, OR (Zone 8a) wrote:

I ordered from this company 2 years ago. They back ordered half of the seeds, and then only sent one of the back ordered items a couple of months later. I never heard a word about the rest of them. I get their catalog still, full of mouth-watering varieties, but no way. Even the catalog comes late.

Negative lemurianne
(16 reviews)
On Mar 2, 2011, lemurianne Ida Grove, IA (Zone 5a) wrote:

Posted on May 14, 2008, updated March 2, 2011
I'm so sad to hear of the negative experiences other shoppers have had with Seeds of Change. They have an amazing selection of certified organic seeds and I have always received good service. This year I made multiple seed orders that arrived promptly and thus far have had 100% germination, with the pumpkin plants doing amazingly well already just in my south windows! Their shipping rates can be outrageous, but otherwise I'd highly recommend this company based on my experience with them!

On March 2nd, 2011, lemurianne changed the rating from positive to negative and added the following:

I cannot believe the time I've had trying to get seeds from this company this year!!! This is THE WORST service I have ever had from a seed company, EVER!!! I placed an order on on January 4th, including ONE pack of seeds that was backordered. I was informed on another board by someone who seemed to know what they were talking about that the backordered seed would be available in a few weeks time at the most. It may have been, but Seeds of Change does not hold the items that are available in an order with a backordered item. Meanwhile, by the time the originally backordered seed was back in stock, other items had become backordered, and in one case DISCONTINUED. But Seeds of Change did not cancel the item from my order, instead my order sat in limbo for 6 weeks. Finally in mid-February I emailed them asking about the order and they apologized that since one item had been discontinued my order could not be filled (!?!!), but promised that the remaining items would be shipped out "next week". Well, the next week came and went, and I emailed again only to receive an apology that it hadn't been shipped yet but would definitely be shipped "tomorrow". Well that was last week and today I emailed again, and the final word is that THREE of the FOUR items that were available to ship two weeks ago are now backordered. I would cancel the order if only I could purchase the Blush tomato anywhere else!! I'm really tempted to cancel anyway. This is just ridiculous. If you must order from SoC, I suggest that you DO NOT choose to have your entire order shipped when the backordered items are in stock. The shipping is absurd, but go ahead and pay it twice if there's something you really want! I, however, will never order from these hooligans again.
Negative redjeep
(9 reviews)
On Feb 12, 2011, redjeep hillsboro, OR wrote:

Posted on January 17, 2010, updated February 12, 2011
Website orderers beware! I ordered today from Seeds of Change. I printed my confirmation, after submitting my order. I noted the shipping was expensive, $9.14, for 6 packs of seeds, but I let it go. Then, I then recieved an email, listing my order. Imagine my surprise, when I discovered, in the time it took from my printing my confirmation to recieving the email, my order went from $30.78 to $34.08. Why? Because in several minutes the price of Tejas Pepper seeds went from $3.99 to $6.29. I do not know if there is a pepper on earth I would pay $6.29 for a pack of seeds. A pack of sunflowers went from $2.79 to $3.79. My impression is they are total crooks, because this is obviously automatic, you make an order, look at the price, put in your credit card, and then the confirmation adds an extra 10% here or there within your order. Talk about hypocrits, I should have known, the more anyone babbles about carbon neutral and organic the more likely they are to be crooks and liars. Abundant Life and Bountiful Gardens are not perfect, but they are not crooks and they fix their mistakes. Don't be an organic lemming charging forward to get ripped off. Just because they use enviorobabble does not make them good!

On February 12th, 2011, redjeep added the following:

2011 update. This is golden, I forgot and ordered from Seeds of change. I can almost promise you, that if you do not make a print out of your final cart, and compare it to the bill they email you a minute later, you are getting ripped off and do not know it. I made my order January 25, I recieved my order Feb 11, this is the longest of any company I ordered from. I paid $12.95 to ship, I thought, 17 packs of seeds. I only recieved 12 packs of seeds, cost of shipping on the envelope, $1.73, profit on shipping for Seeds of Change, $11.22. In the packet, a list of the 12 packs they deigned to send me, along with a list of two backorders. No mention of the other 3 packs of seeds. While checking my order, noted the price of one of the packs they did manage to send me, in my cart and on the reciept I printed for Sivan F1 was $3.29. Price on emailed reciept $3.99. Yes, it is only 70cents. But, considering the price of the packs, the exorbitant shipping, the extended time to recieve the order, the lack of any interest in informing buyers the seeds they want were never available in the first place, all adds up to CROOKS. Order from Bountiful, Seeds from Italy and Victory. Good family companies, not corporate jerks.
Negative aklor
(1 review)
On Jul 7, 2010, aklor Tucson, AZ wrote:

Ordered asparagus in early March. Was told they'd be shipped in about a week. A month later, they still hadn't been shipped so I requested the order to be canceled as it was getting too hot in Arizona to plant them. They said they would cancel the order but 3 months later (late June), they showed up on my doorstep (no notice they shipped or anything) mostly dead.

Negative carolinavic
(1 review)
On Feb 8, 2010, carolinavic East Flat Rock, NC wrote:

My concern is with their down wind proximity to Los Alamos National Laboratory. Not only are they just a few miles from the largest source of airborne radioactive emissions in America, but some years back there was a huge fire in and around LANL that dumped a couple of feet of ash on the Rio Grande valley below. It was reported that the lab told some nearby residents their vegetables were contaminated (the lab did not distinguish if it was "uptake" by the plants or contact with the ash.) I inquired about their testing for radioactivity with a supervisor because my sister had given my folks some sprout seeds. The super (who was not on the farm at the time) told me they didn't have any ash fall on the farm. (Totally impossible) He was also rather rude and very defensive. He did tell me that the farm was only for research and that their seeds actually came from Cal. He did admit that they did no testing for radioactivity, but if their farm is for research, doesn't radioactivity effect genetics? He also told me they moved their farm to the present location to be closer to the home office in Santa Fe, NM. Anyone who knows anything about NM knows that you don't set up shop in SF if sustainablity is a goal. Very rude, questionable genetics, and not responsive to legitimate concerns.

Negative amiracle
(1 review)
On Jun 25, 2009, amiracle wrote:

I must state that Seeds of Change has some of the worst customer service I've ever experienced. I am a vegetarian and eat only Organic, so I am a large customer through buyer's clubs, direct ordering, etc.

I placed an order on March 7th for a variety of products including asparagus crowns and strawberries and never received them. I was told multiple times via email that they were at the warehouse/drop shipper/on-their-way and the never showed up. I was finally told on June 12th that they were gone and I would not be receiving any.

Why was I not corresponded with regarding this matter at a much earlier date when I could still purchase elsewhere?

I just got off the phone with a supervisor, who was completely unhelpful in explaining to me why this happened. He proceeded to say "what do you want me to do," for which I stated nothing at all, just wanted to voice my displeasure with the way this was handled.

I was then told that other asparagus crowns were available. I asked, since it's late in the year and because of this fiasco, if he could send a small amount at no charge so that we could try to establish them for next year.

He said he couldn't do that and only offered free shipping if I were to purchase. Very sad.

While I will still be supporting Seeds of Change, I will never attempt to purchase live plants from SoC again; I will make known to others of my ordeal and to heed my recommendation to stay away.

I hope SoC does better in the future and develops a better mode of communication with their customers.

Oh, and I found it sad that SoC is owned by M&M Mars:

Negative scarfingartist
(1 review)
On Jun 3, 2009, scarfingartist Westminster, CA wrote:

I ordered 12 heirloom tomato seedlings in February for April Delivery. I dug and prepared a large new bed for them. It is now June, and they have not arrived.

I have spoken with SOC's customer service company (it's an out-sourced vendor) 4 times. 3 times I was promised that the plants would arrive at the end of the week. Today, in addition to being spoken to rudely, I was told that I was not allowed to cancel my order. It's clear, from reading the preceding reviews, that SOC is not the same great company it once was. How nice for all of us that there are now several other retailers to choose from when purchasing organic seed.

I wish that SOC cared about our business, but I don't think they do.

Negative Puke
(1 review)
On May 13, 2009, Puke Watchung, NJ wrote:

I am very frustrated with the customer service of this company! They are rude and terrible to deal with. Only buy from them if what you want cannot be found elsewhere. It is too bad because I agree with their mission. I will just have to find another company with a similar mission, and thank goodness there are many of them!

Negative BunSmoke
(1 review)
On Apr 27, 2009, BunSmoke Salt Lake City, UT wrote:

Seeds of Change has terrible customer service and has wasted my time. I will never give them my business. I ordered a garden tool, paying significant shipping charge (shipping was 23.7% of the cost of the item) because I really needed the implement. They promptly sent me an email saying that my order was received and that item will arrive in 4-10 days. 17 days later I call them and they shrug and say "sorry dude, that item is on back order". The email never said it was on back order. I canceled. The people at Seeds of Change need to lay off the weed and get their act together.

Negative Hintont
(3 reviews)
On Apr 27, 2009, Hintont Cincinnati, OH wrote:

First, I've supported them in the past because of their socially-responsible company mission: to preserve biodiversity and promote sustainable, organic agriculture; permaculture; becoming carbon neutral; and their outstanding seed donation program. However, their horrible service and excessive shipping costs are inexcusable.

After ordering online I called on 2/16/09 to cancel my orders of seeds and two varieties of potatoes. I did so because I had horrible customer service with these orders--incorrect shipping charges, no order confirmation with corrected charges, no response to email inquiries, several unhelpful calls to customer service, no updates on internal changes made to my order, seeds not shipped expediently (eight days after ordering at time of cancellation). The customer service rep, Joe, assured me that he had canceled my orders entirely. Meanwhile, I ordered organic potatoes from another company (for $15 less than what SOC charged in total).

Two weeks after I'd canceled in disgust, SOC nevertheless charged my credit card. When I emailed to repeat my request --"Please cancel this order in its entirety and remove all pending charges to my account"--I received a form-like response in which they explained that they couldn't cancel my order with their grower! Days later, the charge had disappeared from my bank records. Two weeks later, it reappeared and was processed by my bank!

Not only do i have a lasting headache from this ordeal, but I've got more potatoes than I know what to do with!

Never, again, will SOC get another penny from me.

Negative 1SickPuppy
(12 reviews)
On Mar 4, 2009, 1SickPuppy Waukesha, WI wrote:

I was all set to order 2oz of onion seeds which would of cost just under $50. When I found out it would cost over $11.00 to ship 2oz of seed I canceled the order.
They can say what they want to justify this but I won't buy it. The profit should be in the seed itself and not hidden in the shipping cost.

Negative thgardeningfool
(3 reviews)
On Jan 30, 2009, thgardeningfool Orlando, FL wrote:

Positive: they do reply quickly to emails (within 8 hours). However, they seem to lack a bit on the listening and comprehension department (see below for explanation).

Thus far my experience has been negative. Placed an order online. Upon receiving their confirmation email I noticed that there were three shipping charges:

1 for the fingerling potatoes (correctly charged)
1 charge of $4.75 for S&H 2 seed packs (??)
1 charge of $4.75 for S&H 2 seed packs (??)

**Upon reading the comment right below mine it appears there is a trend as the S&H charges for four seed packs added up to $9.50 as well.**

Six emails later and getting replies that indicated the associate did not read my questions (I'll spare you the painful details of their answers), which were basically "Why am I getting charged S&H twice?" & "Could you guys send me all 4 packs in one order so I can save myself $4.75?" I decided to call. The Cust Service associate was kind and polite...but it did take a lot of explaining for her to understand my question (which she had also read on my emailed version). It went like this:

Me- "How much do you charge for S&H of 1 seed pack?"

Cust Svc- "$4.75"

Me- "How much do you charge for S&H of 2 seed packs?"

Cust Svc- "$4.75"

Me- "How much do you charge for S&H of 3 seed packs?"

Cust Svc- "$4.75"

Me- "How much do you charge for S&H of 4 seed packs?"

Cust Svc- "$4.75"

Me: "Are my seeds being shipped all together?"

Cust Svc- "Yes. ***silence*** OOOOOOOOOOOOH, I see what you mean!"

She was slow to get to it but in the end she understood and tried to fix the damage. They will now post a credit on my card and she agreed to email me back saying that they would do so (just for me to keep for my records).

I hope I don't have to again send repeated emails and make additional calls to ensure the refund is taken care of. If you see no further updates it means they kept their word about that...if they don't I'll be sure to post it here.

Why the negative rating? For one, I am suspicious of a company that appears to have a trend of making errors that benefit them (If I was being charged $9.50 but they would only pay $4.75 for shipping...guess where the extra $4.75 was going...). Also, it really should not take frustration and an additional hour to place one simple order of a few seed packs. This felt like homework.

PS: Also placed a very large order with Southern Exposure Seed Exchange ( and their site is easy to navigate and it all went through without any issues. What a difference!

Negative Pandora75
(1 review)
On Jan 14, 2009, Pandora75 Staten Island, NY wrote:

I attempted to place an on line order and was surprised to find that 7 virtually weightless small seed packets generated more than a $9 shipping charge, and so I did not complete my purchase. Many on line companies are restructuring their shipping charges to be fairer and use a "weight basis" instead of a "price total basis" . The inequity becomes very clear for customers buying "seeds only". I spoke to the customer service area but they were not helpful.

Negative tanyaf
(1 review)
On May 4, 2008, tanyaf Swanquarter, NC wrote:

Has this company been bought out by a larger corporation in recent years? We have purchased seed and other products for a long time, but this year, the customer service is a disaster. I purchased a $78 Permaculture book from them in early April. It arrived in a timely manner, but inside the box was a $10 Misto oil sprayer instead of my book. I was told that the corporate office had to issue me a return slip through UPS so I could send it back and get my money, which also included a large amount of shipping and handling (supposedly to cover the weight of the missing book!) I have called Helena at customer service multiple times, emailed her multiple times, and also left a message at the corporate office customer care coordinators voice mail. Still no return slip. Am I really going to get stiffed by this company that is supposedly resting on the moral high ground of businesses? Any advice?

Negative ElixirMixer
(1 review)
On Apr 14, 2008, ElixirMixer Lansing, MI wrote:

I have ordered from SOF for years without trouble until last year. When my order did not come after 2 1/2 weeks I called and was told that my order would be shipped "tomorrow". I waited another 2 weeks and called again. Still it hadn't been shipped. After 2 more phone calls I reached a supervisor and discovered that they had a packaging problem and it still wasn't resolved. When I asked why this had happened, she said "it's not our fault that we couldn't get the machine we needed". I asked why they didn't communicate with their customers about it, she said "gee, I never thought of that". I lost early plant sales over this and was very upset but since I had been a long term customer, I ordered again this year.

I faxed my order in and it didn't come. I called and they had no record of my order! So I ordered again over the phone. I asked if all my items were in stock and was told they were. Half of my order came quickly, the other half backordered. I was furious. I called and was told the remainder would be shipped by a certain date. Again I waited for an order that didn't come and finally called. "I don't know why you were told that!" was my answer. After 3 more phone calls, I finally reached a person who at least acted like she cared, and she helped me get all but one item, even though I still had to wait 2 additional weeks! Again it was a packaging issue.

It's such a shame - it used to be such a good company. If I treated my customers this way, I'd be out of business in no time. I understand that problems arrise, but customers should be kept informed about anything that affects their order. This company has no clue what good customer service is. If they had told me about these problems ahead of time, I probably would have ordered from someone else right then, but would have cheerfully returned in future years. Now I'm fed up and I doubt that I'll ever order from them again.

Sidenote: Their new packaging is horrible! Small seeds stick (from static) to the inside and it's very difficult to get them out without spilling them or hacking the package to bits.

Negative gleng
(1 review)
On Apr 9, 2008, gleng Lower Lake, CA wrote:

I ordered 6 seed packets which were expensive already, and was then told shipping would be $7.81. I ordered anyway, and the actual shipping was $1.31, and when I called to complain they were completely unsympathetic, offered no reimbursement or credit or even an apology. I even said twice that this would be my last order, due to the extreme high cost and that didn't seem to bother them in the slightest.

Negative CintiMG
(1 review)
On Apr 2, 2008, CintiMG Richboro, PA (Zone 6a) wrote:

I ordered two Cox Orange Pippin Apple trees Sept 21 2007 over the internet and received confirmation of the order. Today, 4/2/2008 I called to enquire when they would be shipped and was told "They cancelled the order - I'm sorry they didn't tell you. Those trees are no longer available"

Negative greengiraffe
(1 review)
On Mar 26, 2008, greengiraffe edmonton,
Canada wrote:

Be wary of ordering from Canada! I ordered seeds from Seeds of Change in Feb 2008. The website would not accept an order from Canada, so I called in to place an order. I was told the order could not be shipped until the shipping amount was calculated at the warehouse, and that this would happen quickly "usually within 24 hours". Noone contacted me with the shipping amount for days and I called the company later in the week only to be told that my order was still being processed and that I would be called. I ended up calling the company approximately 4 times over a 2 week period. Each time the staff were very friendly, but noone seemed to be able to tell me what was happening to my order! Noone ever did call me back with shipping amounts and on my second last phone call to them (2 weeks after my order was placed) I asked the clerk to have someone call me back that day with information as to what happened to my order and a shipping quote. I informed them that I would cancel my order if I did not hear back. Two days later I called them intending to cancel my order. The clerk informed me that the order had shipped already, and sure enough it arrived later that day. Noone ever did give me a shipping quote (by phone or email), it was just automatically billed. To top it all off, the company always sends out a free pack of seeds in your order as a token of thanks for your business...they included the thank you card saying that there were free seeds enclosed but there were no free seeds! I sent an email back to them about my experience and asked to be contacted and noone has responded to me. I have ordered from this company years ago with no problems, but this is the last time I will order from them, I will find a local supplier of heirloom organic seed.

Negative Skibird
(1 review)
On Mar 25, 2008, Skibird Cobleskill, NY wrote:

I placed an internet order for a fairly large amount of seed. I noticed that some of the seeds were on backorder. I called customer service to find out what the availability time frame was. I was told that the seeds just needed packaging and that they would be ready in a few days. I placed the order. I called back a few weeks later and asked about my order. I was told that they would have a better idea in a few days. I called back and was told that some of the order was still not available. I asked which items that might be as I could get by without some of them. The operator told me that the only way that she could tell was by looking at each item separately. I said go ahead and do that. Well, it turned out that a large portion of the seeds were on back order. Even ones that did not show that when I submitted. I was also told that they did not know when they would be available. It was getting very close to the time to start many of the seeds, so I cancelled the order. I sent an email to the company describing my experience. I also said that I would like to do business with them in the future. I never got a response.

Negative grdngrwr
(3 reviews)
On Mar 8, 2008, grdngrwr Wonder Lake, IL wrote:

I started to order online, but ended up calling them after I noticed that a few of the seeds I wanted were backordered, with no information as to when they would be available. The person on the phone did not seem to know when they would be available either, but I placed the order anyway. We received our order noting the items on backorder. About 2 months later, we received all but one of the backordered items, and were charged another shipping charge, even though they clearly state that back orders will not be charged additional shipping. When we called to inquire about the shipping charge, they told us that we placed two different orders, and ARGUED with us when we stated that the backordered items were on our original invoice! They still did not know when the remaining backordered item (peppers) would be available, so we had to cancel those and order from another company, as we need to start peppers now. We are certified organic growers, thus we have used seeds of change as our "go to" company. After this very frustrating experience, we are going to try to buy elsewhere in the future. Thankfully there are more and more companies now offering certified organic seeds.

Negative zebraman
(9 reviews)
On Oct 7, 2007, zebraman Venice, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

I ordered Tahitian melon squash seeds as I didn't have enough from the seeds I bought from Sandhill to grow a healthy germplasm.I had already had the Sandhill seeds sprouting and Sandhill takes Forever to ship.The seeds (2 packs) from SOC came really quickly,however the resulting plants produced everything but Tahitian melon squash,half the squash grew like TMS but stalled half grown,never getting ripe,some were egg shaped,two of them had the seed cavity at the stem end.This is Not the same company now that M&M Mars owns it.They are clearly not saving seed from a large enough Germplasm.I called the Company and the person I spoke too had No Idea what a Healthy Germplasm was.Did Not understand the term "Out-Breeding".I will Never buy seeds from this Co. Ever Again!

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