I love vegetable gardening. When I was a child, my parents had a vegetable garden and although there were times I thought some of the work was not what I wanted to do – all that weeding – I enjoyed the fact that we could go to our garden and pick our own tomatoes, rhubarb, and even strawberries during the summer months.
Both my grandfather and my father were big influences on me; trying new and interesting crops, teaching me how to save seeds from the previous year, and having plants in our gardens that many would not think of. I used to have horseradish that was transplanted from my grandfather’s garden, as well as interesting things like “Egyptian Onions.”
Up until about 1999, I always had my own vegetable garden and at some point during the 1990’s, I discovered Richter’s Herbs, a mail order as well as bricks and mortar retailer of seeds of herbs and vegetables. Located in Goodwood, Ontario, I would sometimes drop in to their retail location to browse or purchase something new I wanted to try, on trips between Grand Valley and Ottawa. Each spring, I would eagerly await their catalogue and pour over it, thinking about and wondering of the interesting herbs and vegetable varieties they had to offer.
In about 1999, I had some life experiences which meant I could no longer have either the time or the space for a garden, but I certainly missed it.
Last year, an opportunity came up for me to start a new vegetable garden. Being out of the habit for almost 15 years, it was both a joy and a frustration, having forgotten so much of what I had learned. In addition, it was one of the smallest gardens I’d ever had, but nevertheless, it was a garden.
This year, being able to continue with the same garden, I fondly recalled years ago looking through the Richter’s catalogue years ago and decided to order some of their seed products.
I probably left it a bit late in the season, which is my fault, and partly because they have so many interesting varieties of herbs and seeds; how to try all that I wanted to try in such a small plot?
Finally though, a few weeks ago I submitted my order and anxiously awaited it’s arrival, which was shipped via Canada Post on April 14th, 2014.
Well, there were issues with Canada Post as I wrote about here. I immediately got in touch with Richter’s, advising them of the delivery problems and their customer service was just awesome! They communicated with me in a timely manner, made arrangements to have another shipment to me via another courier company, and expressed their care and concern that I was a satisfied customer even if it cost them money.
And the day after I advised them of the delivery issues, I was thrilled to discover a replacement package arrive at my door. How amazing is that?
Both Kim and the founder of Richter’s, Conrad, emailed me and expressed their concerns as well as their desires of ensuring I was a satisfied customer. Their attention to making sure I received what I ordered also meant that my plans to plant some seeds with my 11 year old son over the weekend including “Amish Paste Tomatoes,” was possible to carry through with. David and I had a lot of fun and some special time together planting our seeds, planning our garden this year, and sharing and learning together.
So not only was their attention to customer service important to me, it also made it possible that the plans my son and I had for this weekend together, were able to be carried out, and for that I am truly appreciative. I’m sure David and I would have found other fun things to do, but it was nice to be able to do what we planned with the idea of also looking forward to working in our wee garden together, come this summer and also reap together, what we have sowed together.
If you are interested in some really interesting varieties of herbs and vegetables, I highly recommend that you take a look at the Richter’s catalogue yourself. I almost wish I lived in a zone and with enough property that I could try just about everything they have to offer!
While you can browse their offerings online, ordering a printed catalogue from them is also recommended. Their website is here.