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Organic vegetables start out as seed...

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For the past few years there has been an uproar in the vegetable seed business as Monsanto purchased Seminis in 2005 (a seed conglomerate that has 40% of the U.S. vegetable seed market) and in 2008, De Ruiter Seeds (one of the top vegetable breeders in the world). Monsanto is now in the vegetable seed business for the first time, and it's in big time. More than 55 percent of store bought lettuce, 75 percent of U.S. tomatoes, and 85 percent of peppers now originate through Monsanto's fingers.* Our salad plate is now being dished out by Monsanto! We now have yet another reason to buy organic produce. Hopefully this will not go to naught, and it will be the impetus to get even more Americans to start a vegetable garden...and possibly a fruit garden as well! 


In 1980, the Supreme Court ruled in the case of Diamond v. Chakrabarty that genetic coding could be owned. This changed the seed industry from public to private, and corporations outside of the seed business (mostly pharmaceutical and chemical cos) started buying up seed companies. A few multinational companies now own our plants' genes! And our choices keep getting smaller as these hybrid seed companies 'perfect' our seed for us, breeding out all of our food history.

Due to Monsanto's huge purchase, you'll need to do a bit of homework if you wish to steer clear of purchasing their seed, as even reputable seed companies that have signed the Safe Seed Pledge, are still selling Seminis (now Monsanto) seed. Buying seed from a seed exchange, buying open-pollinated and organic, are safe ways to avoid Monsanto seed. 


It is good to remember that although hybrids have been 'naturally' manipulated, their genes are stable. But their successive seed will be either sterile or revert back to a parent's tendencies. Some hybrids have been around a long time and you will even see some sold as organic. Hybrids keep big seed companies in business, as you must buy the seed each year. Genetically modified seed on the other hand, is manipulated in a laboratory. Foreign genes are 'forced' into a plant which causes other unintended gene changes as well. Then the plant is cloned.  Many times the genes are unstable and can jump to other plants, contaminating whole fields. And since GM seed is patented, if you are found with a GM plant on your field, that you did not buy that year as fresh seed, you can be sued. As so many farmer's can already attest to. Monsanto has a huge budget just for investigating and prosecuting farmers for patent infringement. Although Monsanto has yet to release genetically modified vegetables into the market, they spend almost 2 million dollars a day on research and development,** so GM vegetables are probably not very far away. Monsanto currently holds the technology for more than 90 percent of the world’s genetically engineered crops. And it holds thousands of U.S. seed patents.*** If you see PVP (Plant Variety Protection) listed, that means the seed or plant carries a U.S. patent.


Another term to note when buying seed is heirloom. There is no standard as to what 'heirloom' means. To a small-town seed exchange it might mean one thing, to a seed conglomerate another. Most often heirloom means that seeds are open-pollinated with at least a 50 year history. See the heirlooms wiki page for a good synopsis. Also note, before buying seed, that 'treated' seeds are coated in chemical anti-fungals (most likely Captan or Thiram) and dyed. Most small seed companies let you know if a seed has been treated. As to organic seed- best to buy- but most seed varieties have yet to be certified organic. We need to keep certifying varieties as organic, and this is a fairly slow process.


The first list below is a list of Safe Seed Companies- the first few listed under each region sell only organic- then those below sell some conventional seed as well, but it is noted if they sell Monsanto seed. If they do, avoid their conventional seed or check the second list, which lists Monsanto's vegetable varieties.


The second list below is a list of popular Monsanto seed. It would be very lenghty if all were included, but there are links to Monsanto's products pages so that you might do further research. Many seed re-sellers buy seed from a broker who has purchased a huge block of seed, the broker breaks up the order, and then re-sells to numerous mail-order seed companies. So, many companies carry the same seed. And unfortunately many of these seed companies then re-name the seed, adding to the further confusion as to which is a Monsanto seed. :-(


NorthEast _____________


High Mowing Organic Seed
100% organic certified seed: vegetables, fruits, herbs and flowers.
Over 450 organic heirloom, open-pollinated and organic hybrid.

Dirt Works
100% organic vegetable seeds and hardy organic heirloom seeds. Some open pollinated. Grain, hay, forage, wildflowers, compost, organic fertilizers, pest control and accessories as well.
Safe Seed Pledge.

Turtle Tree Seed
Vegetables, flowers, herbs, grain and cover crops.
Mostly organic- clearly marked.
Biodynamic, open pollinated, no hybrids.
New York

Untreated vegetable, tubers, herb, & flower seed. Many certified organic.
Cover crops, soil amendments & supplies for organic growers.
Safe Seed Pledge. No GMOs, etc. Good prices. Order early.
Website a bit difficult to navigate.

Heirloom Seeds
All seeds are open pollinated (non-hybrid) and untreated.
No GMO. Many Organic. Good selection of organic.
Many garden packages. Organic fertilizers.
SW Pennsylvania

Harris Seeds
22 organic veg choices- large selection of untreated seed.
Sells only large quantities. Sells Monsanto conventional seed.
New York

Johnny's Seeds
Johnny's has 324 organic products, including 198 vegetable seed varieties.
Many heirloom. Safe Seed Pledge.Still carries 40 Monsanto varieties, which is about 4% of their conventional vegetable varieties. Their intention is to replace them. See Monsanto vegetable seed list below, if you wish to avoid.

Cook's Garden
is owned by Burpee Seeds.
50 Organic Vegetables and Herbs. European and American heirlooms. Good recipes.
Their conventional vegetables might be Monsanto seed.
Check list below for list of Monsanto vegetable seed.

Mid-Atlantic _________________

Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
Vegetables and herbs. Most certified organic, all untreated.
99% of seeds open-pollinated. No GMO. Safe Seed Pledge.
Grows 40% of own seed. Also sells bulk. Nice catalog.

Sow True Seed
Vegetables, herbs and flowers.
Only non-hybrid, untreated, open-pollinated, heirloom and organic seed.
Safe Seed Pledge.
Asheville, NC

Seeds for the South
Untreated heirloom vegetable and herb seed.
Very small selection of organic. Sells Monsanto seed.

Park Seed Company (bought Sow Organic Seed Co. in 2007)
Flower, vegetable and herb seeds.
Untreated, non-GMO, and some Certified Organic seed.
Note- it is easy to go off their organic pages onto the conventional
and they sell some conventional Monsanto seeds.
See list of Monsanto products below.
South Carolina

MidWest  _____________

Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds
Vegetables, flowers, herbs, bulk seed.
1400 heirloom varieties. Hugh selection. Good prices.
Only open-pollinated seeds: pure, natural & non-GMO. Good reviews.

Botanical Interests
400 untreated vegetable, flower, herb seeds. A large selection of Certified Organic.
Signed Safe Seed Pledge. No-GMOs.
Beautiful packets- good info. Nice website.

Sand Hill Preservation
700 heirloom seeds- vegetable, herbs, flowers, grains. Root vegetables, poultry.
Produce 90% of the seed they sell.
Untreated, some certified organic.
Signed Safe Seed Pledge. No GMOs.
Ordering only by regular mail.

Seed Saver's Exchange
A non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of heirloom seeds.
Largest non-governmental seed bank in the United States. Maintains more than 25,000 endangered vegetable varieties. Hugh selection of open pollinated vegetables, beans, potatoes, flowers and herbs. Many certified organic. Good prices.

Heirloom Acres Seeds
1000 varieties of open pollinated and heirloom seed.
Good selection of Certified Organic.
Very few seeds treated.

Nature's Crossroads
Seed varieties grown in Indiana for Midwestern gardeners.
Vegetables, fruits, herbs, flowers. Safe Seed Pledge.

Most seed certified organic. Produce much of their own seed.

Grannys Heirloom Seeds
Good selection of heirloom vegetables and gardening suplies. Strawberries, onions
No organic but all open-pollinated. Signed Safe Seed Pledge.
Inexpensive peat pots.

Annie's Heirloom Seeds
Nice selection of non-gmo heirloom vegetable seeds, only unaltered long-proven varieties. No hybrids. Family owned and operated.

Northwest ________

Abundant Life Seeds
Certified Organic and Biodynamic vegetable, flower and herb seeds, garlic and potatoes.
Garden accessories. Safe Seed Pledge, no GMOs.

Wild Garden Seed
Certified organic farm-original varieties of salad greens, vegetables, herbs and a few flowers. Certified Organic heirloom and other open-pollinated seed varieties adapted for the Pacific Northwest.

Victory Seed Company
Rare and heirloom seeds. All seeds open-pollinated, non-hybrid and untreated.
Signed Safe Seed Pledge. No GMOs. Good size selection.

Irish Eyes - Garden City Seeds
Potato, vegetable, flower and garden seeds.
Most all seeds organic, many heirloom. All untreated.

Territorial Seeds
Large selection of vegetable, herb, flower. Safe Seed Pledge.
Sells a small amount of Monsanto's conventional seed. See list below.*

Southwest _____

Bountiful Gardens
A non-profit and a project of Ecology Action which does garden research and publishes books and research papers. Large selection untreated, open-pollinated, non-GMO, heirloom seed. Vegetables, herbs, flowers, grains, mushroom kits, green manures, compost and carbon crops. Good prices.
Some Certified Organic and Biointensive.
Willits California

Peaceful Valley
Certified Organic Vegetable and Herb Seeds and much more. Packets or bulk.
Sells own brand of Certified organic- plus sells Seeds of Change, Renee's Garden Seeds, Turtle Tree Organic Seeds, TomatoFest Organic Seeds, Horizon Herbs Organic Seeds.
Grass Valley, California

Seeds Trust
Vegetable, wild flower, herb and grass seeds Sells only open-pollinated and untreated seed. Organic seeds are marked with an asterisk. Sells many of their own seeds. Website a bit challenging.
Specializes in high-altitude and southwest seeds. Safe Seed Pledge.

Sustainable Seed Company
Only heirloom open-pollinated seed. No hybrid, treated or gmos.
65% of all heirloom vegetable seed is grown on organic farms in California.
Over 100 varieties of heirloom seeds for less than a $1.
Petaluma, California

Native Seeds
Non-profit. Sells 350 varieties of heirloom arid-land adapted seed.

Natural Gardening Company
Vegetable, herb and flower seeds. Many organic and open-pollinated.
Organic plants, but hybrids too. Sells some Monsanto seed. Check list below.
Petaluma, California



Popular Monsanto (Seminis) seeds-

for full listing of Seminis seeds hit vegetable name, which will take you to appropriate Seminis' page. To see De Ruiter varieties hit De Ruiter link under cucumber, eggplant, tomato, pepper. To make things even more confusing, each mail-order seed company might resell the same seed but use a different name for it. The only way you can be 100% positive you are not buying a Monsanto seed is to check with the re-seller or buy from a company selling their own seed or organic or open-pollinated.

Beans: Aliconte, Brio, Bronco, Cadillac, Eureka, EZ Gold, Goldrush, Kentucky King, Lynx, Storm, Strike, Stringless Blue Lake 7, Tapia, Tema, Xera...

Broccoli: Captain, Coronado Crown, Heritage, Liberty, Major, Packman

Carrot: Nutri-Red, Sweet Sunshine, Karina, Chantenay hybrids, Chantilly, Lariat

Cauliflower: Cheddar, Fremont, Minuteman, more...

Cucumber : Babylon, Dasher II, Daytona, Homemade Pickles, Speedway, Sweet Slice, Yellow Submarine, Sweeter to De Ruiter cucumber list...

Eggplant: Black Beauty, Dancer, Fairy Tale, Gretel, Hansel, Lavender Touch, Tango, Twilight, White Lightening...De Ruiter Eggplants...

Lettuce: Baby Star, Blackjack, Braveheart, Conquistador, Esmeralda, Lolla Rossa, Monet, Red Butterworth, Red Sails, Red Tide, Summer time...

Melons: Alaska, Bush Whopper, Casablanca, Dixie Jumbo, Early Crisp, Early Dew, Sante Fe, Stars and Stripes, Sugarnut, more...

Okra: Cajun Delight

Onion: Arsenal, Candy, Hamlet, Mars, Red Zeppelin, Superstar, many more...

Peppers: Aristotle, Biscayne, Camelot, Caribbean Red, Cherry Bomb, Dulce, Early Sunsation, Fat and Sassy, King Arthur, Northstar, Red Knight, Serrano del Sol, Sahuaro, Super Chili, Valencia, many more...De Ruiter pepper varities...

Pumpkin: Buckskin Pumpkin, Orange Smoothie, Prizewinner, more...

Spinach: Bolero, Cypress, Melody, Unipack 151, many more...

Squash: Autumn Delight, Blackjack, Bush Delicata, Butterstick, Daisy, Early Butternut, Fancycrook, Gold Rush, Latino, Lolita, Patty Green Tint, Really Big Butternut, Seneca (all), Sungreen, Sunny Delight, Table Ace...

Tomato: Amsterdam, Baby Girl, Big Beef, Beefmaster, Beaufort, Beefmaster, Betterboy, Burpee's Big Boy, Celebrity, Favorita, First Lady I and II, Early Girl, Geronimo, Golden Girl, Maxifort, Pink Girl, Sunguard, Sun Chief Sweet, Sweet Baby Girl, Sweet Million, to De Ruiter tomato varieties...

Watermelon: Bambino, Crimson Glory, Royal Flush, Royal Star, Stargazer, Starbright, Stars and Stripes, Tiger Baby, Yellow Doll





As an alternative way to shop for seed, visit the non-profit Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) Organic Seeds Database- -  lists certified "final handlers" for organic seed. List is by produce. Pick a vegetable and find a seller.





Here are some of the brand names that Monsanto owns and 'packages' their seeds as:


American Seeds, Asgrow, Barham, Campbell, DeKalb, De Ruiter, Diener Seeds, Fielder's Choice, Fontanelle, Genecorp, Gold Country Seed, Hawkeye, Heartland, Heritage Seeds, Holdens, Hubner Seed, icorn, Jung Seed Genetics (no affiliation with family owned, Jung Seed), Kruger Seeds, Lewis Hybrids, Peotec, Petoseed, Poloni, Rea Hybrids, Seminis, Seymour's Selected Seeds, Specialty, Stewart, Stone Seed, Trelay, Western Seeds. ****

But remember seed companies buy Monsanto seed in bulk

and then repackage it under their name as well...

Bruinsma BV & Royal Sluis (Holland), Choong Ang Seed & Hungnong Seed (Korea), Agroeres & Horticeres (Brazil), plus Seminis, worldwide.

For large graph showing all of Monsanto's seed and pesticide companies see:






2013 report: Seed Giants vs US Farmers:


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Anders Svenson
Posts: 38
How To Grow Best Tomato | Happy Tomato
Reply #38 on : Fri February 26, 2016, 06:43:49
Hello. Last Sunday I have ordered some seeds of tomatoes from a safe seed company. So please tell me, Are they ok to grow the best tomatoes? Waiting for your response. Thanks
Posts: 38
Re: Organic vegetables start out as seed
Reply #37 on : Wed April 29, 2015, 08:49:27
While we're at it do NOT plant any seeds you purchase from NON-GMO companies in MiracleGro soil, as this would defeat the purpose of avoiding Monsanto since MiracleGro soil & other related products made by Scott's ARE Monsanto products.
Posts: 38
Seed Companies
Reply #36 on : Tue March 10, 2015, 13:48:08
Monsanto does not own and is not affiliated with:
R H Shumway
Seeds for the World
Seymour's Selected Seeds
Totally Tomatoes
Vermont Bean Seed
HPS Seed
All of those belong to to Jung Seed Company (the family owned garden seed Company)
Posts: 38
Re: Organic vegetables start out as seed
Reply #35 on : Mon February 23, 2015, 18:33:37
Please tell me what you know about the seed company Stover. They claim GMO free.
Posts: 38
Reply #34 on : Wed January 14, 2015, 15:47:42
Hybrids keep big seed companies in business, as you must buy the seed each year. Genetically modified seed on the other hand, is manipulated in a laboratory. Foreign genes are 'forced' into a plant which causes other unintended gene changes as well. Then the plant is cloned. Many times the genes are unstable and can jump to other plants, contaminating whole fields.

The reason hybrids are grown is because there is a genetic advantage, rather it is yield, flower color or disease resistance. GMO's are not unstable. The only way genes move is through cross pollination to a receptive species. They do not jump around. I understand and sympathize with your beliefs but please do not fear monger.
Posts: 38
Watch out for Syngenta too!
Reply #33 on : Sun December 28, 2014, 14:10:34
Thanks very much for this information. Syngenta seeds are also to be avoided. They have a list of their seeds at
francis jackman
Posts: 38
Reply #32 on : Thu July 17, 2014, 10:49:26
i am francis jackman a beekeeping
Posts: 38
safe seeds for deep south
Reply #31 on : Thu December 26, 2013, 18:55:16
I Am New To Organic Gardening And Looking For A Place To Order Non Monsanto Seed Varieties That Are Good For Growing In South Louisiana
brian Tyus
Posts: 38
Reply #30 on : Sun September 22, 2013, 13:39:38
I want a heirloom seed catolog for southwest Ga.
Posts: 38
GMO seeds
Reply #29 on : Wed June 26, 2013, 19:54:28
Great info on how to avoid the GMO curse. I am 46 and recently made aware of the poisons I have probably been eating my whole life. Lucky for me I come from hardy stock(lol). I am looking into starting my own farm for small income but mainly to feed my family and friends good, clean food. Thanks again for the info. It has helped me greatly.
Posts: 38
Jung Seed Co. NOT owned by Monsanto
Reply #28 on : Wed May 08, 2013, 14:34:43
Posts: 38
Black beauty eggplant
Reply #27 on : Tue March 05, 2013, 13:54:10
black beauty eggplant was introduced in 1902... I don't think monsanto has this one on lockdown....
Posts: 38
To Nicki
Reply #26 on : Wed January 30, 2013, 22:11:28
If you read the last line of the leaflady's safe seed list, it states it is from inspirationgreen. It is a copy of this page, she copied and pasted this page without consent, I did not copy hers.
Posts: 38
Copied article?
Reply #25 on : Mon January 21, 2013, 12:32:03
From the paragraph that starts out, "The first list below is a list of safe seed companies..." this article appears to be an exact copy from the link:

Just make sure to give credit where credit is due.
Posts: 38
request catalog
Reply #24 on : Tue January 08, 2013, 08:32:31
i would like to request a catalog for giant vegetable please could you send me a catalog please thank you appreciate your time ..
Posts: 38
seed links
Reply #23 on : Fri January 04, 2013, 20:36:31
I find it very interesting that all of the seed links have been blocked. Guess either its a IT issue....or Monsanto really doesnt want us know. Bet you cant guess which one I think it is. :)
Posts: 38
Reply #22 on : Wed October 17, 2012, 21:13:50
Helpful info as we're going over the Geertson Seed Farm V. Monsanto case in Environmental Law.

Keep it up!

Posts: 38
Reply #21 on : Tue September 25, 2012, 14:47:31
As an artist and designer I really appreciated your site so well presented and a joy to explore with lots of great information.
How do we upload our eco-art? I do papier mache from recycled paper and other materials.
Posts: 38
Is it safe to eat beans sold as seed
Reply #20 on : Sat September 15, 2012, 20:22:22
I ordered some beans
online from a safe seed company. Are they ok to cook and eat?
Posts: 38
big banana seeds and big tomato seeds
Reply #19 on : Mon September 03, 2012, 10:05:22
hi, my my name is kevin. i sure hope one cof these cseeds company will help. i am asking for a little help like a donation of some big banana pepper seeds big tomato seeds; i live in a nursing home call saint france. address 417 indrustrial dr oberlin la 70655 ph 337 639 2934
Posts: 38
big tomato seeds and big hot peppers seeds
Reply #18 on : Sat August 18, 2012, 12:41:16
hi my name is kevin. iam living in a nursing home. i am asking for a little help from someone like a donation of big tomatos seeds and big hot peppers seeds plesae. address 417 indrustrail dr oberlin la 70655. ph 337 639 2934
A. McReys
Posts: 38
pure seed
Reply #17 on : Fri June 22, 2012, 01:21:00
Thank you for your informative article, and especially for inclusion of OMRI's database of true seeds, seeds evolved over and sustained through countless centuries. We purists cherish our precious earth and its biodiversity essential to our very existence. Nothing is worse for the long haul than attempting to re-engineer/manipulate what is pure, particularly so out of impure motives. Monsanto's reprehensible irresponsibility is an abomination even beyond imagination. Bravo, Inspiration Green, for sharing your critical research.
Joel Bennett
Posts: 38
Recovery Ventures Corporation
Reply #16 on : Thu May 17, 2012, 12:08:45
I am with Recovery Ventures Corporation. We are a two year treatment center for people who suffer from substance abuse and chemical dependency. We are also a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit charitable organization that will provide our Federal Tax ID Number for those who donate to our program, this makes all donations 100% tax deductible. We are not asking for a monetary donation, but rather a donation of grass seed to sow at our facilities. Please consider helping us out. Thank you so much for your time and consideration.
Posts: 38
west coast organic seed company
Reply #15 on : Thu May 17, 2012, 10:04:58
Thanks for sharing this good information with folks! May I request that you add our seed company to your 'southwest' category? We are a young company dedicated to offering only certified organic, quality seed to organic farmers and serious home gardeners. We have signed the 'safe seed pledge,' and are adamantly opposed to GMO's and Monsanto.

All Good Things Organic Seeds

Sokota Ireland
Posts: 38
another good seed company
Reply #14 on : Mon April 16, 2012, 14:43:00
Mad River Seeds of Life
Wholesome seeds, Humans who care!

All our seeds are open pollinated, grown organically, and hand harvested on our small family farm!
Posts: 38
Re: Organic vegetables start out as seed
Reply #13 on : Wed April 11, 2012, 22:08:19
Btw, hope you don't mind the reference...correctly cited of course :) Thanks, just helpin' ya spread the word!
Posts: 38
Re: Organic vegetables start out as seed
Reply #12 on : Wed April 11, 2012, 22:05:47
Love the blog! Check out mine and perhaps collaborate.
Diane Emerson
Posts: 38
Thank you for this valuable information
Reply #11 on : Thu March 15, 2012, 12:50:38
I feel both sad and scared knowing now how much of our seed Monsanto owns, and encouraged and hopeful to have these alternatives you have shared. Knowing about the alternative seed companies out there meets needs of mine for safety and ease and partnership. Thank you for all you have done to make this so easy for us to share the word with others.
Posts: 38
Seed sources
Reply #10 on : Thu December 29, 2011, 07:11:36
Thank you so much for this very valuable information.
Vegetable Seeds
Posts: 38
Reply #9 on : Tue August 30, 2011, 11:58:39
Thanks for the tips! They were great.
heirloom seeds
Posts: 38
Heirloom Seeds
Reply #8 on : Mon August 08, 2011, 04:32:43
I am so appreciative of these varied resources that have been published for anyone’s benefit.

Interesting post and thanks for sharing. Some things in here I have not thought about before.Thanks for making such a cool post which is really very well written.will be referring a lot of friends about this.Keep blogging
Posts: 38
Reply #7 on : Wed March 16, 2011, 11:49:45
Just wanted to say thank you for the great info. Its nice to know there are still people out there that care. God Bless you
Posts: 38
this article
Reply #6 on : Mon February 14, 2011, 19:49:34
Thanks for the information. I'm sharing this!
Posts: 38
Safe Seeds
Reply #5 on : Sat February 12, 2011, 15:57:04
Thank you! *** xo
Adrianne Schmidt
Posts: 38
Proactive Pay it Forward~ from our "Seed List"~ By Stacy DeHart : Thank you Stacy this is a must sha
Reply #4 on : Tue February 01, 2011, 08:47:35
I have been sure to let everyone that has written me about your note that I am not the creator of it, only the messenger ~ as the link to your site is attached to the bottom of the note: this was sent to me yesterday and asked if it was ok to post as well as to forward it on to you... I have permission 2 do so~ & I promised to forward it 2 you as well as, other small seed companies that would like to be added to your list. as well (I will post other seed company's separately) <3
Hi Adrianne,

I appreciate your list of "Good Seed" providers, and shared it with my friends list. It in turn was shared by several of my friends.. so good work getting the word out there.

I live in the same town as that where Territorial Seed Co. is located. Their call center is just two blocks from my house. I have used their seed for years, and was dismayed to find that they are on your list as carrying or selling Monsanto seed. I wrote them, and this was their response. I am assured by it that they are operating in the home gardener's and small farmer's best interest.:

Thanks for spurring me to action,

Stacy DeHart


Territorial Seed Company

Hi Stacy, here is a letter from Tom Johns, owner of Territorial regarding our relationship with Seminis (the company that was purchased by Monsanto) along with our view on the situation. Thanks for the question.

Territorial is NOT a seed dealer for Monsanto or Seminis the vegetable seed producing company acquired by Monsanto. Seed dealerships from Seminis are reserved for those wholesale seed companies that serve Seminis’ primary market: the commercial vegetable farmer/grower.

Seminis, (formally Petoseed) does maintain a very small division devoted to marketing seed varieties for the home garden market. We do buy a small and ever decreasing amount of items from their wholesale list. These are primarily older home garden classics like Celebrity, Big Beef, and Super Marzano tomatoes. These unique varieties were bred by Petoseed, which at one time was the nation’s premier seed house. This is the company we originally signed up to do business with 30 years ago. Many of these items are truly works of living art, crafted by old school seedsmen who utilized traditional breeding crosses as their canvas to create new varieties specifically for home gardeners. These items have been no less loved and appreciated by generations of home gardeners than the works of Monet or Warhol have been to the visual arts community.

Since Monsanto’s purchase of Seminis I have become increasingly unsure of their continued commitment to their home garden seed division. Personally, I was surprised this tiny revenue generating department was not axed the day Monsanto bought Seminis. After all, Seminis Home Garden sales figures expressed in a company wide Monsanto revenue pie chart probably could not be detected as even a sliver. Recent actions reveal a trend that indicates perhaps a winding down of this historically important division. For the last two years many more varieties have been dropped from their lineup than new varieties added.

The aggressive actions of Monsanto with regards to their hugely profitable GMO corn, sorghum, and soy beans have earned them much bad press. It has brought calls by some people to boycott their products. By directing calls to action towards the home garden seed division will only help to speed the elimination of the smallest and, in my mind, the best part of this huge company.

All this comes at a time when home gardeners need more varieties not fewer. The major seed companies in the world today are focused on what makes them money-commercial seed varieties for commercial growers. It’s merely a byproduct of their commercial efforts that will lead them to discover selections that benefit home gardeners. As a person who has spent their productive years trying to keep discontinued varieties in the hands of home gardeners, I find no joy in losing these old Petoseed varieties regardless of who currently owns the art.

As another chapter in the seed industry comes to a close, another chapter is yet to be written. Looking forward, we remain very optimistic about the future and are busy getting prepared for the changes ahead. As our customers know, Territorial funds extensive vegetable, flower and herb trials. For the past couple of years we have been evaluating for suitable replacements for current Seminis varieties. As replacements are found we are making the changes in our catalog offerings. Given the speed at which Seminis Home Garden is dropping varieties from their wholesale list, and the rate at which we are finding substitutes for others, our business dealings will soon be in the past. Sadly, some unique home garden classics will never have a true replacement and will become just a memory.

The opinions and perspectives in this blog are mine alone, and are just that.

Tom Johns


Territorial Seed Company

For information about Territorial’s certified organic seed production program featuring open-pollinated and heirloom seed, log on to

For information about saving your own seed varieties log on to Territorial’s sister company; Abundant Life Seeds- an all organic seed company.
Posts: 38
Re: Organic vegetables start out as seed
Reply #3 on : Mon January 31, 2011, 10:22:36
Wow! Thank you! What a great resource! I will definitely be sharing on my blog and on facebook!
Adrianne Schmidt
Posts: 38
Thank you!
Reply #2 on : Fri January 28, 2011, 07:45:54
I have posted this list on FB getting huge response Thank you for all your hand work and research in putting this together. ~ I have the link posted at the bottom of the list... Also posted this to our group called Karma Experiment Pay it Forward we have over 1 Million people around the world participating by doing random acts of kindness~ for the future of People, Animals and our Beautiful Planet. Much love and respect~ Adrianne
david nieskoski
Posts: 38
Reply #1 on : Tue January 04, 2011, 19:15:18
thanks for this info! i had not been keeping
up to date on this important topic.
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