is there a difference in seeds?

Now that I'm being inundated with seed catalogs, I find myself wondering if there is a difference between the seeds I can buy at the local drugstore and the seeds from these catalogs --other than the catalogs having a better variety. Are the mail order seeds going to be more likely to germinate, or to produce stronger plants?
Dawn
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I cant answer your question, but I have been very happy with seeds from the mail-order catalogs. Plus, if they don't perform to your satisfaction, the catalog will refund your money, send new seeds, or maybe even give you credit on other seed. I have never had a local store do that without a receipt. Plus you have a much larger selection to chose from in the catalog.
Dwayne

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We live in Phoenix AZ where we get some pretty extreme high temperatures and low humidity (often reported as "trace"). Many garden centers display their seeds, usually under a roof but otherwise exposed to the environment. Most of the major catalog seed companies can store their seed in a temperature-humidity controlled ambient and for some like Johnny's, Park, Burpee, I get nearly 100 percent germination. Some of the seed companies will double the a seed order at no extra cost when they know the germination rate is low. I would say generally the mail order seeds re better in our case but that would not necessarily apply in other regions.
Olin
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Don't know about the drugstores. But all the major players buy thir seeds from the same groups of international seed producers. Many feed and seed stores buy in bulk and can sell an oz o f seed ror about the same price as a packet of a couple dozen seed. Plus you save the shipping and handling. In this area the major prepackaged players are Burpee and Ferry Morse. Prices about the same whether off the rack or mailorder, except for shipping and handling which can be pricey. There a few stores that will keep old seed on the rack so look for the "packaged for date"
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (FarmerDill) wrote:

We bought seeds last year at Tractor Supply. Pretty basic selection. We got ours at the end of the season. 4 oz beet, 4 oz carrot, 8 oz beans. Each bag was listed at about $2.50 and were on sale at 1/2 price. We could feed a large army with these seeds.
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Dawn wrote:

I've had good experience with both, but the local stuff tends to be less expensive. I've had very good luck with seeds from the local "feed and seed" stores in town. The seeds they sell are specific to the area, and they can usually offer some good advice as well. Your local extension office could probably point you in the right direction.
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wrote:

I would say that on average, regular ol' seeds from any commercial source are about the same. The advantage of brand-name catalogues is the variety and usually guarantee of satisfaction. If I want to grow generic flat-leaf parsley, I pick up a 10-cent packet at the dollar store. If I want to try a new pepper hybrid, I go with a catalogue (or a well-stocked garden center). I think my own care in starting seeds has a lot more to do with germination rate than brand, 'though statistically, the respectable seed houses performance *could* be superior. Since one of my perpetual problems is too many plants, a failed seed here and there doesn't bother me much. :-)
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Frogleg wrote:

I'm the same way, I'll order from catalogs to get the less common varieties I like to grow but I also use the 10 cent a pack seeds from the dollar store and the 25 cent ones from Walmart quite a bit, mostly for ornamentals but for many edibles too. I've never noticed any significant difference in germination or quality. The only real difference is sometimes the cheap packs have not so many seeds in them, particularly for the large seeds like nasturtiums which may have only 5 or 6. But like you say, too many plants can be a problem.if
Lorenzo L. Love http://home.thegrid.net/~lllove
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Lots of companies sell seeds for profit. Most are good. If you really care search heirloom seeds on the net and buy the best. Here's a place for peppers.
http://www.pepperjoe.com /
twh

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Try Lonniesbulkseeds.com they have large seed packs for only a buck! and free shipping. Seed quality matters, meaning when the seeds were harvested (at peak or prior or before peak ripeness) and how they are stored. Seeds will lose germination if left in moist or fluctuating temps/environments. Seeds will also lose germination over time of course how much germination they lose again depens on how they were stored. Unless a seed is very rare I just can't spend $2.50+ on a pack of 150 seeds from a big name catalog. If only i were that rich....
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