count your seeds!

alan haighMarch 16, 2014

Just want to note that I ordered 3 packets of Carmen pepper seeds from Park Seed and they shortchanged me several seeds. Given that they only offer 15 seeds per packet of this variety it is annoying and I wonder if any of you have had similar experience. In the past companies have usually added a couple seeds to the official count and Park Seed in particular has always been very reliable.

By the way, I have grown scores of pepper varieties in southeastern NY and Carmine is my favorite of all time in flavor and productivity. I have never tasted a sweeter pepper as a red-ripe Carmen and friends rave about it as well.

The other standout vegetable I'd like to recommend is Seafoam Swiss chard (so it doesn't disappear from the market). It is the most tender chard I've ever grown, similar to spinach without the chalky after-taste and early bolting. I've only seen it offered by Pinetree Garden Seeds.

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gardenman101(Z6 Spingfield, Ma)

Is the Carmen pepper a Hybrid, if not you may want to consider saving the seed from 1 or 2 of the fruits, that way you will never have the problem of being short changed. I am growing some old Seafoam seed this year with the hope of saving seed as it is getting harder to find the seed. I didnt have much luck with the garden last year due to groundhogs but hopefully this year they are gone completely and i will be able to grow and save the seed from my chard.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 6:46PM
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That is good to know about counting the seeds. I never have thought to count them. Yes, that is what they used to do in the past, throw in a few just to make sure. They are just seeds, so you would think they still would do it. But apparently even seeds are being shortchanged in addition to almost all other products.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 6:56PM
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Well, I have to start counting my seeds. I did order from Park Seed this year. Thank you for alerting us to this.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 7:03PM
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Agreed about Carmen peppers. It's the only kind I grow now. They are a hybrid, so I can't save seed, but they are so good and so productive that I'm willing to pay for new seed when I need it.

I hope you were able to call or email Park Seed's customer service department and get additional seed sent. Mistakes happen, but in all three packets? Not good!

I ordered mine from Jung Seeds last year and got 17 in a packet labeled 15. I planted 7 last year (all germinated) and have 5 more on a damp coffee filter on my water heater right now. All I need is 3 plants from those 5, so I'm hopeful the germination rate will get me there.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2014 at 11:16PM
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alan haigh

I also save the Carmen seeds, and as often the case with hybrids in my experience, the heirloom version is ALMOST as good- just a bit variable. I will be growing a few from my own seed as well.

I've never had a Carmen pick up heat from a nearby hot pepper but have had the reverse happen, where a hot became mild. Now I grow my Carmen's far away, and I too have stopped growing other varieties of sweets here, Carmen doubles my bang for the buck in production and quality.

Gypsy was my standby for years but it doesn't get the sugar of Carmen although, if you want more a classic bell, it is the most productive of that shape I've ever grown here. Small fruit- heavy and early crops.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 6:44AM
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weedlady(Central OH 6)

I often do count seeds (except for the teeny ones like nicotiana, foxglove, marjoram, LOL) and as someone mentioned, usually you will find a few extras in the packet over & above the number stated.

Reputable seed companies like Park should be quite willing to make up the difference. Contact their customer service people.

Earlier this year, I ordered a 3-lb. bag of organic fertilizer ($19.95) from a company and the bag arrived in a box but with the product sifting out through the cracks. When I opened the box, I found the bag had a hole in it up at the top that looked exactly like whomever packed it inadvertently had poked their finger through the top. I actually weighed the contents that remained (including that remaining in the box) and found it was about 4-5 oz. short. I wrote to the company, saying I did not expect a refund or adjustment but suggesting that their packers be advised to be more careful. I promptly received a response and was told a new, full-sized bag was on its way to me. Now THAT's customer service!

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 9:49AM
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alan haigh

I don't doubt that Park would make good on it and if it had been a single packet I wouldn't have made this post, but at least 2 of the three packets were short (I gave one to a friend), suggesting it may be intentional.

I don't want to have to bother contacting customer service for a few seeds that will arrive after optimum time for me to start the plants.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 5:46PM
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seysonn(8a WA/HZ 1)

I never bother with counting seeds b/c I plant much fewer than whatever is supposed to be in the packet. For example, I plant less than 4 of each variety of pepper, tomatoes, etc . Even if I double sow for just in case situation I'll still have more than enough seeds.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 6:52AM
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I have counted seeds from time to time, most companies are generally pretty accurate, but every time I order from Baker Creek they are well over quoted counts and sometimes double.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 1:19AM
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geosankie(5a NEPA)

Started my petunia seeds today and found that Pinetree shorted me 30% on one package. I also believe they will correct the shortage. Pelleted seeds are expensive.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 2:38PM
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