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donald_vargo

Ferry -Morse is garbage

last month
last modified: last month

I posted earlier how last year I got a new seed pack, packaged for sale months before (honeydew) with zero germination from the entire packet (float tested and germination tested). I bought some more this year, new packet packaged for 2024 sale. Zero germination. Zero from the entire packet.

Ridiculous.

Comments (14)

  • last month
    last modified: last month

    Last year I also bought a pack of FM Honeydew seed (off the rack) and they did not specify the variety on the pack. The seeds geminated ok but I got zero fruits from them. I also bought a pack of FM Brandywine tomato seeds which did not produce BWs but instead produced much smaller hybrid looking fruits no larger than a hen's egg. Donald did your FM HD package list the variety?

  • last month

    Responsible seed companies always check for germination before shipping. You should provide FM with the lot numbers, and I suspect they'll come back saying that they have records that when they left their facility, they were good. I often wonder about transport and storage, from seed-provider to rack. Especially in the summer, when temperatures can get fierce and people handling them don't have a clue about proper treatment.

  • last month

    My local Lowe's has one seed rack inside and another one semi-outside in the nursery section where both the daily temps and humidity are wide ranging. I'd never buy from the outside seed racks.

  • last month

    Both packets were packaged for sale that year and purchased on or before May of that year - you literally cannot buy fresher seeds to use unless you live so far south you can plant a few months earlier.



  • last month

    I also had some FM spagettia squash seeds grow some kind of pumpkin with some, but not all seeds. This means they combined 2 different seeds - even worse then the wrong kind! This happened to me twice over the years from 2 different packages.

  • last month

    Given the seeds are packaged for that year that implies they are the "freshest" available. I find it hard to believe that exposure to temps or humidity will have any affects beyond a couple percent less germination (if that). Here is the packet from this. Also I keep asking what their germination rate was with no response. They ignore that question and apologize and say pick a free seed packet online - but do not have honeydew online, so I typed in honeydew where it says "other not listed here" they never sent one and never said pick another.



  • last month
    last modified: last month

    Once temperatures get over 100F, seeds start to get killed. When shipped in trucks in the summertime with no active cooling, temperatures can easily get to 140F. That's not common, but it can happen. All it takes is sun and poor ventilation. If you're in the south, getting seeds by mail order, it's smarter to do it in the winter. Would be interesting to understand how nurseries and big box stores protect their large seed shipments.

  • last month

    There are federal minimum standards that seed sellers need to follow. For melons the minimum germination rate is 75%, watermelons are 70%.

    https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/7/201.31

    Rodney

  • last month

    Yep David that's the same 2023 FM seed pack I bought with no specific honeydew variety listed. I checked out the Wilhite seed co but they just have one HD variety offered called "Greenflesh".

  • last month
    last modified: last month

    This is likely not a vendor issue, because they DO follow those federal standards, and germination testing is a standard procedure for ALL lots of seeds. Seed companies know that their reputation will go down the drain if their lots don't meet those standards. It would be insane marketing-wise to ship seeds with poor germination. I'm guessing that this happened to your seeds after they left Ferry Morse. Ferry Morse might still be to blame if they didn't arrange for safe shipment, but as a major national seed source, I have to guess they thought they did.

  • last month
    last modified: last month

    Like vgkg, I avoid seeds from racks that aren't in a climate controlled area - but how can you be sure that the packets weren't stored somewhere too hot or humid before they went out onto the rack?

  • last month

    I am still pressing Ferry for germination results. Here is their latest response:


    "Hi Donald,

    I am a member of the gardening staff, and your question was referred to me. I will try my best to help with your inquiry.

    Since we sell our seeds to home gardeners, mainly for small and hobby gardens, and not for commercial use, we generally don't provide customers with the results of germination tests.

    It's difficult to know why the seeds didn't germinate as so many factors must be considered. We advise customers to follow the instructions on the back of the seed packet for the best results.

    We have a seed replacement process in place to give customers another chance to try the seeds.

    We advise you to check with your local master gardener's association or agricultural extension office for additional guidance. Please use the following links to find them: Master Gardeners—American Horticultural Society (ahsgardening.org); Find Your State's Extension Office | List of all 50 Extension services (uada.edu).

    All the best,

    Donna A."

  • last month

    It seems very suspicious that they are not giving me the info.....................

  • last month

    Hmmm. They seem reluctant to admit that something might have happened to the seeds between the time they left their site, and when they ended up in your hands, and seem to want to presume that you did something wrong. They also conspicuously did not reassure you that their germination tests for that lot didn't show anything wrong.

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