Buying Garden Seeds and Other Fun Stuff ... from Jung Seed!
Mar 20, 2009 (Updated Mar 21, 2009)
When I found that Jung Seed carried a must-have item, I visited their website to order. It's been several years since I last ordered from them. I can't even remember how they dropped off my gardening radar. Here's the scoop on what I bought and their service.
What is Jung Seed?
Jung Seed has been in business for over 100 years. They primarily sells flower, vegetable, and fruit -- bulbs, seeds, plants. They offer annuals and perennials as well as a selection of shrubs and trees. In addition, they sell gardening related supplies such as: books, garden decor, seed starting items, tools, fertilizers, pest and weed control.
Overall, I find that Jung Seed offers a nice selection of flowers, vegetables and herbs. Their prices are good, too, though if you are ordering from more than one seed source, comparison shop to gain the best value.
Navigating the Website
While I like the products I've purchased, I hate navigating their website! It's difficult for me to locate items. The easiest way for me to find the products I want is to have their print catalog in hand and type the item/SKU numbers into the Quick Order area on the home page.
Worse yet, this website doesn't have a decent search feature. There is no search box on the home page where you can type in a word or phrase. Their home page Quick Search feature includes drop-down menus where you can select a Category, Flower Color, Sun Exposure, or Zone. This does me little good when I want to locate plastic domes for plant trays. If you look closely, there is tiny text in the left navigation bar that says "Detailed Search". Click the link to open a new web page where a text search is allowed. However, it doesn't work well for me. Typing in "plastic domes" yielded one result ... but the page did not show the result, instead it wanted me to refine the search by: Foliage Color, Fall Color, Flower Color, or Fruit Color. Since when did plastic domes fall into any of those categories? I never found what I wanted to buy using the search feature or any of their navigation links (ex: Supplies). It's a good thing I had the print catalog with the SKU number. Typing the SKU number into the Quick Order area yielded instant results.
To The Left
The left navigation bar includes several information links: Home, My Account, Contact Us, Gardener's Corner, Bare Root Guide, Site Map, Detailed Search, Quick Search.
Beneath this are links to categories on the website: Annuals, Bonus Buys, Bulbs, Fruits, Gift Certificates, Herbs, New Items, Perennials, Roses, Sale Items, Shrubs & Trees, Strawberries, Supplies, Vegetables, Web Specials. (Ex: Click "Vegetables" to open a page where you can view vegetable seed by alphabetic listing ... Veg Seed A-E, F-N, O-R, S-Z, and Vegetable Plants. If opening "Veg Seed A-E", the types of vegetables are listed, and click on one (ex: eggplant) to view the available varieties.)
Along the Page Top
The category navigational links are listed along the top of the page with flower pot graphics.
In the Middle
There is a brief blurb about the company with some links to various areas already covered in the navigational links. Toward the bottom are links to Top Selling items. This seems a wasted space that could be put to better use highlighting more of what the website offers.
At the Right
Here you can order their print catalog. Also, my favorite, a listing of what is currently in the shopping cart as well as a running order total is displayed.
Let's Go Shopping!
As I said earlier, I found it fast and easy to shop this website by typing in the SKU numbers from the catalog into the Quick Order box. However, if you know pretty much what you are looking for, then the navigational links will be of help.
For instance, if you want to buy tomato seed, you can click on "Vegetables" and then "Veg S-Z". Wait a minute for the page to change (the website could be faster). Then select "Tomatoes". Currently there are six subcategories in tomatoes: Cherry, Early, Heirlooms, Large Red, Non-Red, Paste. Once you reach the varieties offered, each thumbnail image displays how the item is sold (ex: packet or 1/2 ounce), and there is an area to type the quantity wanted and a "Buy" button ... NOTE: the price is not displayed. If you wish more detailed information, you need to click the product picture or the text link beneath it. If an item is currently unavailable, it is mentioned beneath the thumbnail picture.
The product page displays a photo of the item (or in some cases and illustration), the item number, name of the product, and description. In the case of seeds and plants, more detailed growing information is provided. (Ex: number of days to harvest, plant size, spacing, planting season, light requirement, the number of seeds per packet. Sometimes not all the information is provided in the Product Detail form, though. The page does list detailed pricing with a "Buy" button.
In my case, I specifically wanted to order plastic plant domes (6 for $32.95) for my Perma-Nest plant trays, large 12" wooden plant stakes (50 for $12.95), pumpkin seed (1 packet of 25 seeds for $1.65), and some eggplant seed (1 packet of 30 seeds for $2.95).
When you are ready to checkout, click the View Cart link at the right of the page (where you can see a list of what is currently in the cart and the order total).
Checking Out & Shipping
Clicking "View Cart" opens a new page where one can double-check their order and update quantities. Click the "Checkout" button when ready to make the purchase. There are three choices: Login to an existing account, Create a new account, or checkout as a guest. I opted to be a guest. The screen changes to request billing and shipping information. Here you have the option of allowing substitute items should something not be available (it's a checkbox).
Jung Seed does not accept pre-paid gift cards that are issued by credit card companies. They do take: Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover. You also have to supply the security code on the back of the card. If you have a gift card, you can enter the information.
To find shipping information, you need to click the "Contact Us" link. Jung Seed does not do international shipments, and seeds going to Alaska and Hawaii are subject to a $15.00 surcharge. Shipping Charges are:
Up to $20.00 -- $4.95 shipping
$20.01 - $35.00 -- $5.95
$35.01 - $50.00 -- $6.95
$50.01 - $75.00 -- $7.95
$75.01 - $100.00 -- $9.95
$100.01 - $150.00 -- $12.95
$150.01 - $200.00 -- $14.95
Over $200.00 -- $16.95
Receiving the Merchandise
After placing the order, I did receive a follow-up email to confirm the order. However, no tracking number was ever sent to me. Not for either order. I was comforted to know that the website does list their physical address, email, and a telephone number in case I needed to contact them.
Shipping was timely. They state it takes 5-14 business days for transit. The plastic domes arrived in their own sturdy cardboard carton. The other items arrived in a separate box. I also liked that Jung Seed included three free packages of plant seed: a flower, herb and vegetable. All of the items arrived in excellent condition.
I'm torn between an Average and Above Average Rating since the search feature and navigation of the website is more difficult than I would wish. However, I ordered from Jung Seed twice this year and have been happy with their service. Even though I placed two orders about a month apart, Jung Seed each time gave me the three free seed packets. A nice touch!
I hope you found this review useful.
Enjoy the day!
Please read my other reviews:
Park Seed (online store)
Burpee (online store)
Cook's Garden (online store)
Totally Tomatoes (online store)
Upside-Down Tomato Garden
Deluxe Pyramid Composter
Perma-Nest Plant Trays
Clear Plastic Domes for Perma-Nest Trays
Rubbermaid Big Max Storage Shed
Black & Decker Cordless Battery Mulching Lawnmower
Copyright 2009 Dawn L. Stewart
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