Where to Buy Seeds

As with most things these days, there are more options for where to buy seeds then most people can handle.

Personally, I’m mostly pretty basic.  I head to my local nursery to get what I need each season, but I have been known to order some online.  For today’s post, I did a little internet research to find where other people are buying their seeds.  Hopefully, this will give you some ideas about how to get creative when trying to find good sources for seeds.

First things first – The following are a few important things to consider when looking for seeds:

  • Is it an heirloom? – That is, has the seed been passed down through generations of gardeners and continues to stay true to form?  You can save the seeds of an heirloom plant and replant them the next year.  The opposite is often considered a hybrid, which is a plant that has been created by cross-pollinating two different plants.  The seeds from a hybrid cannot be replanted and expected to grow the same plant.  They are not true to form.
  • Is it open-pollinated? – All heirloom plants are open-pollinated.  However, there are some non-heirloom plants that are also open-pollinated.  Open-pollination means that you can save the seeds and you will get the same plant when you replant them.
  • Are they organic and non-GMO?  This is incredibly important to me (especially the non-GMO part) and probably is to most of the readers here as well.
Next, where can you buy seeds that fit your requirements?  Here’s a list of places that I have put together.  I know that this is far from comprehensive so if you have seed source that you think we should all know about, please leave them in the comments.

Local, Brick and Mortar Store

As I mentioned above, this is often the way I go.  When it comes to seeds, I like to hold them in my hand and look at the package.  I also like to get the right home and plant them, so waiting for them in the mail is torture.  Some stores that I have used include:
Now, this is where things get overwhelming.  There are so, so many places to get seeds online and if you know of great sources that I don’t list here, please leave your thoughts in the comments.
  • Johnny’s
  • Gurney’s
  • Seeds of Change (Though they were recently bought by the Mars Company…. think what you will about this….)
  • Peaceful Valley/GrowOrganic.com
  • Territorial Seeds
  • Botanical Interests
  • eBay –  (I read online that a lot of people buy their seeds on eBay!  Who knew!?)
  • Etsy – (I’ve heard of people buying seeds from Etsy sellers.  And after a quick search, sure enough, you can buy them there.)
  • Native Seed Search (If you’re in the southwest, they have a great selection of seeds that are specially adapted to our area.)
  • Amazon – Survival Seed Vault Non-GMO Hardy Heirloom Seeds for Long-Term Emergency Storage Of course… what CAN’T you buy on Amazon?

Seed Libraries 

I’ve never used or been to a seed library but I’d love to learn more about the ones in my area.  My research online taught me that the purpose of most seed libraries is to promote plant diversification and they generally focus on promoting the propagation of local, native seed varieties.  They often “lend” seeds expecting that the person to whom they lend will grow the plant and bring back seeds to share with others.  They also do seed swaps or exchanges.  Check out your local area to see if one is close to you.

Harvesting Your Own

And of course, as I mentioned above.  If you are a good, organized gardener with some time on your hands AND you’ve purchased heirloom or open-pollinated seeds, you can always save your own seeds and replant them in the future.  I hope to do this someday… true self-sufficiency.
What have I missed?  What sources don’t I know about?  Please leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments.
Together we all learn more!