Full Member
Posts: 43
Joined: Thu May 31, 2007 4:25 pm
Location: Taylor, TX ZONE 8

How do you verify Seeds, Bulbs and Starters are Organic?

I have one place near me, which claims that everything it has is organic. I would tend to trust that they are, but, there are some things that they just do not have.

I want to grow edibles, as part of a new healthy lifestyle, and I want it all organic. How can I be sure that if I get something online that it is actually organic? Online, people will sell you anything.

I guess what I am asking is, are there any sites that you guys trust 100 percent in your own experience, that sell organic seeds, bulbs or even starters?

Thanks for the help

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Site Admin
Posts: 9197
Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2004 5:59 pm
Location: Amherst, MA USDA Zone 5a

Hi Sage,
Welcome the Helpful Gardener Forum! :)

This a great question and very important. Someone told me about a an Australian scandal in which a farmer labeled non organic produce as organic then sold it for years that way.

Fortunately there are a number of certifying bodies to help you identify genuine organic products. If any of the providers display a certification logo on their website (which they should) you can always contact the certifying agency to verify it.

The [url=]CCOF[/url] (California Certified Organic Farmers) Trade Association is one such certification body.

The [url=]Oregon Tilth[/url] Certified Organic organization is another major organic certification association.

So basically, any organization that displays a certification badge can be verified if they are still members in good standing. The CCOF even has a page listing members who are decertified. They seem to be pretty serious about their standards.

Full Member
Posts: 43
Joined: Thu May 31, 2007 4:25 pm
Location: Taylor, TX ZONE 8

This is amazing information,
worthy of a sticky (IMHO)...

I have a friend in Austin (a good 45 minute drive from me as he is in south austin) TX, who has bought varieties which he knows have not been taken care of organicly, although he does try to get all organics, there are certain things (such as safron) which are impossible to find "untouched".

This guy is amazing. He has a simple half acre of property, but has no lawn anymore, it's all just his garde with paths to get to everything.

He only has a couple of plants that can't be eaten because they help to bring benificial criters.

He started because he had a heart attack and his doctor said it was mainly due to stress, since he is a very healthy person anyway. So he figured, if he got out and gardened it would relieve the stress, then, he decided to make it all foods and to be organic about it because he believes (like I do), that many of our health problems can be, in part, blamed on these un-natural sprays and treatments that are done to our plants.

he started a business out of his home now, where he harvests the seeds and bulbs of his plants and ships them to people. I like the concept that he has, and he's honest, he will tell you if a plant that he is selling is 100% organic, or if he can't be certain it was, or even if it's grandparents weren't organicly grown...

I am amazed at what he is doing frankly, but, I guess that's all a digression of this post. The point is that, I am getting freakish about organic stuff.

In the past, I had bought plants from Walmart and home depot, before I ever thought of their origin... Lemon Balm for instance, bought from walmart at one time, tasted ok, but, the organic one that I just bought has a more potent lemon flavor (as well as sent), which is yet another reason why I am going all organic at the moment.

Sorry my post is so long, I am just getting excited about what all I am planning, I am going to take some major before during after pictures while I build up my garden.

Thanks again for your wonderful information.

Senior Member
Posts: 155
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2007 1:13 am
Location: Middle Georgia USA

If they say something is ORGANIC and its not they can be fined 10,000 dollars U.S. per incident. Thats a hefty reason to not say something is organic when its not.
Places like these have certified organic thru the USDA National Organics Board.

htttp:// In their magazine they have organic and non organic check to make sure what is and isnt.
and there are plenty more where that came from.
Many of them tell me if they don't have a particular thing I am looking for that they may be able to help me find it.
Good luck and thanks,
Mike :)

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