McFayden Seeds Question

bdgardener(3 AB)March 15, 2011

Hey all, I won a gift certificate for McFayden and upon receiving my seeds noticed that the carrots (scarlet nates) were a Mckenzie package and the three free seeds packages that came were also mckenzie seeds (morning glory, radishes, and romaine lettuce) all the other seeds mostly veg were all in McFayden packaging. I was under the assumption that seed companies harvested their own. Does anyone know if Mckenzie is a parent company for McFayden or visa versa? Just strange I guess never thought about it before. Anyone else had anything similar? I might as well buy off the rack. Which I do too.

And speaking of racks Peavy Mart has seeds on for 3 for $1.29 great for the veggie garden. Cheryl

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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

I never noticed that, but you're right. I have no clue why, though. Maybe someone else knows.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 7:03PM
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I may be totally wrong about this, but maybe someone else can verify. Somewhere, possibly on the growing from seed forum, I thought I read that there were only a few seed suppliers in Canada and that most mail order places got their seeds from them.

When I ordered some seeds from Vesey's a packet came that said the beans were grown in France and packaged in the U.S.A. They also turned out to be treated seed, which I didn't want, so I had them replaced.

Before this happened, I met an author at a book store and he mentioned Heritage Harvest Seeds. They have heirloom seeds and apparently grow about 3/4 or something like that, of their own seed. If you're interested you could probably find something similar from Alberta. Heritage is in Manitoba. I actually met her at a Seedy Saturday, too, so it was kind of interesting to meet the person I had bought seeds from.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 8:04PM
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bdgardener(3 AB)

I guess I was just shocked because on quite a few seed catalogs you see information where individuals from the company are out in the fields checking out seed trials. And I know that the seed trails would be somewhere warm like California simply because the weather is more reliable. I would then think that the seeds for specific varieties would be purchased in bulk and then packaged under the companies name. It just gets you thinking about how much we as consumers over pay for the product, because in this situation we all know that both Mckenzie seeds and McFayden are making money.

Well there goes my rant. Guess I will be saving more seeds and trading more in the Canadian Exchange this year. C

    Bookmark   March 15, 2011 at 9:17PM
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Here is a writeup that was done in 1993 about McKenzies and McFaydens....

Since then Jiffy's has purchased McKenzies.

They are based out of Brandon, Manitoba.


    Bookmark   March 17, 2011 at 7:39PM
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bdgardener(3 AB)

Thanks for the info, it was a very interesting article. I just double checked the price in the catalog and the price listed on the package and they are indeed the same price. I guess now what we as consumers need to think about is if the shipping a reasonable. Since a got a gift certificate the seeds did not cost me anything just the shipping. I mostly order things that I have not been able to find off the rack but in the last couple of years they have been few and far between. I'm getting less experimental as I get older, I want things to grow and produce. (and be easy)


    Bookmark   March 17, 2011 at 8:17PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

I have never really been surprised by seed companies buying in bulk, it's pretty obvious when you order from Stokes and get a measured weight of seed with the name printed on their generic package. It can't be efficient for one company to grow 5,000 varieties of plants for seed.

What did surprise me at first was that the Lily Nook imports (some? most?) of their bulbs from Holland. I was really under the impression that they were field grown in Neepawa.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2011 at 8:38PM
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bdgardener(3 AB)

I think I will do some more research before buying. And definitly shop more off the rack, don't get me wrong I love receiving those wonderful, colorful catalogs they get me through the cold blah winter. And there always seems to be pkgs that you can't get off the rack, darn it.

They will probably suck me in again when the next round of catalogs comes around.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2011 at 9:31AM
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mamahoohoo(2a Regina SK)

Seeds of diversity ( has a pretty complete list of seed companies in Canada, including a lot of the smaller ones who grow and sell their own organic seed. I love getting good old reliable varieties that are already acclimatized to my area. :)

    Bookmark   March 28, 2011 at 10:31AM
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bdgardener(3 AB)

I looked at seeds of diversity several years ago but can't remember, do you need to buy a membership?

    Bookmark   March 28, 2011 at 2:26PM
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I don't think you need a membership, but I haven't read all their fine print yet =:)

If you go to their links, you'll find a Seeds of Diversity Resource List. There's names of all kinds of seed companies in there. I ordered from Heritage Harvest Seeds in Manitoba and the woman was very nice and also helpful. I've also heard good things about the guy from Salt Spring Seeds.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2011 at 3:14PM
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