Why you can trust ZDNet
Our recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We may earn a commission when you purchase a product through our links. This helps support our work but does not influence what we write about or the price you pay. Our editors thoroughly review and fact check every article. Our process

‘ZDNet Recommends’: What exactly does that mean?

ZDNet’s recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNet nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNet's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.

Close

The 5 best seed delivery services: Start your garden

What is the best seed delivery service, website, or store? ZDNet's top pick is seedsnow.com. We analyzed delivery time, seed quality, price, and customer service.

Growing a garden is a beautiful thing. It can be meditative, increase your physical activity, get you outdoors in the sun, and even provide you with homegrown food you can use in your dinner recipes.

We know not everyone has a green thumb, but if you get the right seeds for your location, you can grow an outdoor garden that will provide you with nutrition and pride in the crops you grow for years to come. Finding the right seeds is extremely important, and there are plenty of places out there to get seeds from, including the ability to buy seeds online.

To make it easier for you, we've rounded up the best seed delivery that offers monthly subscriptions, curated seeds, unique and rare seed varieties, and more. 

Seedsnow.com

Best seed delivery

Seedsnow.com
Seedsnow.com

Our pick for the best seed delivery is Seedsnow.com. You can find anything for your budding garden with seed options like vegetables, culinary herbs, medicinal herbs, flowers and pollinators, sprouts and microgreens, and roots and bulbs. There are even variety packs like leafy greens, mosquito repellent, hydroponic garden, wildflowers, and more.

Seedsnow.com signed the Safe Seed Pledge, a commitment many seed companies sign or support that says they will not knowingly buy or sell genetically engineered seeds or plants. Its seeds are 100% non-GMO, non-hybrid, heirloom, and open-pollinated. You can shop for your seeds based on the grow zone you are located in using the handy interactive map.

Individual seeds start as low as .99 cents, and seed banks can go up to $240 depending on your needs for your garden, but the website always has daily deals where rotating seeds are discounted.

Pros:

  • Daily deals on rotating seeds
  • Offers individual seeds, seed variety packs, and seed banks
  • Signed the Safe Seed Pledge

Cons:

  • Customer service can be hard to reach if there is an issue 

Also: Best indoor gardens 

Urban Organic Gardener Seed Club

Best curated seeds option

Urban Organic Gardener Seed Club
Urban Organic Gardener

The Urban Organic Gardener Seed Club is an excellent option if you are new to gardening and don't know where to start. Its membership includes up to five hand-selected seed packs curated for you based on your needs, as well as plant labels, planting instructions, and soil fertilizers.

The website will prompt you to take a survey to find out your Garden Profile. It'll ask you questions about where you will be growing your garden (container, raised bed, or land), where the garden will be located (windowsill/indoors, balcony/patio, or backyard or front yard) if your space gets full sun or partial shade, and if you have any gardening experience. Then, the company sends you curated seeds monthly based on your answers.

A month-to-month membership costs $15, three months cost $35, six months is $89, and one year is $178. Urban Organic Gardener Seed Club's seeds are 100% non-GMO, 100% heirloom, and open-pollinated.

Pros:

  • A survey that will curate your seeds to your specific location and needs
  • Good price range

Cons:

  • Limited seed options: mostly edible garden options with only the occasional flower seeds
  • It doesn't mention anything about the Seed Pledge 

Also: Best indoor plants

Seed Bank Box

Best monthly subscription option

Seed Bank Box
Seed Bank Box

If you're looking for a simple subscription option, Seed Bank Box will send you monthly subscriptions of seeds right to your door. Starting at $24.95 per month, you'll receive eight to 10 varieties of seeds ranging from root vegetables, vining vegetables, fruit plants, leafy greens, edible flowers, rare heirloom varieties, and medicinal plants.

Instructional cards also come with every seed type to learn how to care for your new budding plant. Seed Bank Box says its seeds are non-GMO, heirloom, and organic. And, if you are looking for something specific, Seed Bank Box also lets you buy seeds individually, starting at $1.25 per seed pack.  

Pros:

  • The subscription box is well organized
  • Large quantities of each seed

Cons:

  • Could use more seed varieties
  • It does not mention the Safe Seed Pledge 

Also: Best plant subscription services 

Seed Savers

Best nonprofit option

Seed Savers
Seed Savers

Seed Savers has been a nonprofit organization since 1975. Its mission is to "conserve and promote America's culturally diverse but endangered garden and food crop heritage for future generations by collecting, growing, and sharing heirloom seeds and plants."

Seed Savers sells seeds like vegetables, flowers, herbs, trees, and transplants to raise money for the organisation's efforts. Its seed bank, located in Iowa, houses a collection of more than 20,000 rare, open-pollinated varieties across 890 acres.

You can also choose to become a member to get member-exclusive seeds, discounts, a membership magazine, and free or reduced admissions to gardens and arboretums across the country.

Pros:

  • Good quality and variety of seeds offered
  • Signed the Safe Seed Pledge

Cons:

  • On the expensive side for seeds
  • Some customers have experienced shipping issues
  • The website can be overwhelming to navigate 

Johnny's Selected Seeds

Best seed variety option

Johnny's Selected Seeds
Johnny's Selected Seeds

As one of the nine original signers of the Safe Seed Pledge, Johnny's Selected Seeds has been an independent company since 1973. Its 40-acre certified organic farm in Maine offers some of the best varieties of seeds on this list.

Johnny's seed varieties include certified organic seeds, hybrid seeds, open-pollinated, heirloom seeds, and enhanced seeds (film-coated, treated, pelleted, and primed). You can also request a catalog if you prefer to order the old-fashioned way.

There are also plenty of educational resources offered on the website, including a handy "Ask a Grower" tool where you can ask a question about your garden, and they will get back to you with expert advice.

Pros:

  • Carry unique seed varieties
  • One of the original signers of the Safe Seed Pledge
  • So many educational resources available on gardening

Cons:

  • Shipping rates are expensive 

What is the best seed delivery service?

Seedsnow.com, but here is your decision tree

Seedsnow.com is our pick for the best seed delivery because of its seed varieties, competitive costs, and commitment to the Safe Seed Pledge and 100% non-GMO and heirloom and open-pollinated seeds.

However, we think all of our choices offer something for someone; it just depends on what you want and are looking for in your garden.

Choose this seed delivery service...

If you want...

Seedsnow.com

Great quality and variety of seeds at good prices

Urban Organic Gardener Seed Club

Personalized seeds based on your level of gardening, sunlight needs, and garden location

Seed Bank Box

A monthly subscription box that chooses the seeds for you

Seed Savers

To support a nonprofit organization's efforts while getting high-quality seeds delivered to your door

Johnny's Selected Seeds

Rare and unique seed varieties you can't find most places

What are seed and gardening terms to know?

Heirloom: Seeds from a plant that has been passed down from generation to generation.

Crop Rotation: Planting a specific crop in a location different from the prior year.

Direct Seed: Placing your seed directly in outdoor soil rather than starting your seed indoors first.

Germination: When plant growth finally begins and the seed sprouts, buds, or shoots above the soil.

Open-pollinated: A seed variety where the seed can be harvested from the plant, saved, and replanted, and that same seed variety will grow year after year. Open-pollinated makes heirloom seeds possible.

Tilth: Refers to the soil's health terms of its balance of nutrients, water, and air.

Transplanting: Moving a plant from one growth medium to another. 

What to look for in seeds?

Always look for seeds that are 100% non-GMO. Other things to look for that are not as necessary but may be for some gardeners are heirloom seeds and open-pollinated seeds.

Also, make sure your garden has some type of pollinator plant in it, even if you're just growing lettuce. Flower seeds added to a vegetable garden will attract bees that can improve your yield. 

How did we choose these seed delivery services?

There are many seed delivery services out there, but to narrow down our top choices, we considered critical factors like the price of seeds, seed varieties, and that the seeds offered were non-GMO and heirloom. We also considered if the companies supported or signed the Safe Seed Pledge.

Another thing we were sure to pay attention to was actual customer reviews about these seed delivery services. We combed through both the positive and negative reviews to make sure we chose the right companies. 

Are there alternative places to buy seeds online?

Here are a few other options to look into: