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FAQ | New World Seeds & Tubers

Frequently Asked Questions

I don’t see any shipping costs on my order. Is this a mistake?

We pay shipping when the order total comes to $6 or more. If the order is less than that, we only ask for $1 to defray our own costs for packing and postage. We do that to avoid customer regrets over not getting everything they might want in one single order, and also to keep hidden costs out of your purchasing experience so as not to give you an unpleasant surprise at the end.

If you consider the lack of add-on costs, our prices are low.

I didn’t get a confirmation of my order.

Paypal handles the order processing. When we increase the number of products, we will switch to a new system.

Why are you using Paypal for order processing?

We apologize for any inconvenience or lack of flexibility. In order to get our business up and running, we needed a merchant order-processing system that did not require a lot of overhead or high sales volume, and that we could install quickly and easily ourselves.

How can I send you an order and pay for it without going through Paypal, or without using a credit card?

Technically it is possible to pay using Paypal without needing a credit card; there are instructions on the Paypal system ( if that is the only concern. If you want to avoid Paypal altogether, contact us, tell us what you want, we will pull the items if they are in stock, and await your check in the mail.

Please wait for order confirmation before sending a check, and please be patient as filling special orders takes more of our time than filling orders from Paypal, including time to update our inventory in Paypal. Be aware that our inventory system is set up through Paypal, meaning that special orders might not be fillable if an item has run out. We are doing our best to accommodate non-Paypal orders. Thank you for your understanding.

Why don’t you have volume discounts available?

The seeds that are selling in the highest volumes also happen to be the rarest. They’re selling well precisely because they are rare. The purpose of volume discounts is to move large inventories faster, but we have a small inventory that is already moving fast. We could offer volume discounts on our more common seeds but there does not seem to be much interest in that.

Next year when we have specific lines grown out in bulk quantities we will offer some volume discounts on those varieties.

I’m a reseller and I would like to order your seeds in wholesale quantities.

Thank you. Please send us a list of which ones you want for next year, and how much you are likely to need, and we will plan accordingly, subject to harvest.

Why don’t you have all of your seed varieties listed?

Because they run into the thousands in number and it is practically impossible for an operation our size to list every variety. We will release a few hundred every year. Varieties released will depend on our own capacity to grow them out, and harvests. We appreciate your understanding.

How many seeds are in a packet?

Potato packs contain approximately 50 seeds. They are packed by volume not count as they are small enough, and we pack enough of them, that it would be difficult for us to get exact counts.

Tomatoes vary; please read the notice at the top of the sales pages. Our rare tomato packs tend to be small, but the common types run 30-50 or more.

Squashes run 15-20. That’s because most people don’t want more than a few hills of squash, and we don’t want to waste seed. You can buy more packs if you need them.

How many potato seeds do I need to plant an acre/hectare?

Assuming plants 12”/31cm apart and 3′/90cm between rows, you could use anywhere between about 12,000-25,000 seeds, or roughly 200 packets, per acre, which is the equivalent of roughly 30,000-62,000 seeds per hectare, and roughly 500 packets of seed.

We’re not actually set up to sell on that scale, but if you do need that many seeds you can let us know precisely what your needs are, most likely for future planning. We will try to have a few potato varieties available in bulk quantities.

How do you start potato seeds?

You start potato seeds somewhat similar to the way that you start tomato seeds. Keep the soil level in each cell of the seed tray high, water with a fine gentle spray, and bear in mind that potato seedlings are physically more delicate than tomato seedlings.

Potato seeds have naturally lower germination than tomato seeds. That’s because they still have germination inhibitors that prevent them all from germinating the same year. Plan accordingly.

We will make detailed instructions available after we have had time to write them. As of this writing we are still busy filling orders and have not even gotten to peak selling season yet. Thank you for your patience.

How long do potato and tomato seeds last?

That depends on how well you store them. If you just keep it dry and cool some of it will germinate as old as 10 years, but germination will fall off. If you dry it using something like silica crystals, pack it air-tight, and freeze it, it lasts at least about 50 years, judging from the viability of seeds from seed banks.


4 Responses to “FAQ”

  1. It would be of big help if you added to your descriptions of both the potatoes and tomatoes approx. DTM’s. Maybe you could add if the variety is suitable for short/long season climates. I live in Alaska and am thinking I might of purchased potatoes that take awhile to mature…Yungay and La Pan. You also sent me a bonus pack of Skagit Magic. I have no idea of when they are ready to harvest.

    • Hello. You’re right that would be a big help and I’m sorry we don’t have more information available to help customers choose potatoes and tomatoes. Let me explain why it’s not that way already: This site was thrown together in two days. Plus Tom has a backlog of thousands of potatoes. It was a classic bootstrapping problem and we didn’t want to keep people waiting forever.

      Here’s what I’m planning on doing to improve the information we supply to customers: as soon as this sales season is over I will create a database for Tom to list his lines in. Then we can record types, uses, and climactic factors where known, and download it onto the website.

      I will also redesign the website to improve navigation. And next year we’ll have more photos.

  2. Sue,

    You’ve made some good points about Days to Maturity (DTM) but with such a plethora of varieties available no where else; it would be up to me to determine a DTM value. I don’t think that way since I plant potatoes over a five month period and all bets are off to be accurate. I do have a general idea and maybe as I get more results from my work and from my customers…I will have a much better prognosis.

    I know Alaska from Wild Bill Campbell at Palmer, Alaska. He has grown many varieties but not mine. The long days of Alaska create rapid growth and even late varieties will grow fast and that should hasten tuber production.

    As for the varieties you received…Yungay is rather late, but all of the TPS (true seed) has been crossed to all maturities of other varieties. There will be all kinds of maturities. However Earlaine and Sequoia are on the mothers side of Yungay and those two have Irish Cobbler, Katahdin, and Green Mountain in their pedigree and those are varieties adapted to northern states like Maine. The male side of Yungay has Huagalina and Ranacimiento and those are late here in the USA.

    Based on previous testing of seedlings from Yungay in recent years..I would say about 3/4 of the progeny should be early enough for Alaska. If the later ones don’t die down by frost in Alaska, you will have some good tubers to eat but the plants may be grass-green.

    La Pan should throw a majority of medium to early maturing vines. La Ratte is early to intermediate and is the female parent and Gold Pan is the male and is intermediate. Since La Pan is self fertile, I can predict the maturity fairly well but many of my TPS lines may be crossed to ‘who knows what’ and DTM is thrown out the window.

    I do not have La Pan anymore and any seed that I offer of that clone will be from daughter vines and I would have to start all over to determine maturity.

    Growing potatoes from true seed…TPS…is an adventure…..all the rules are thrown out….and besides…..I recommend that you only save the best 10% of your seedlings for the next year for re-growing. You have the control then of the maturity you want, the flavor you want, and your observations are then more important than mine.

    Tom Wagner

  3. Bonjour Tom,

    J’aimerais avoir des précisions sur les pommes de terre :



    47032076 purple

    Bern brot

    Skagit Plenty

    Date des obtentions et à partir de quelles variétés, couleur de peau, couleur de chair, forme des tubercules, poids des tubercules, couleur du germe, hauteur des plants, couleur des tiges, couleur des fleurs, fructification, rendement. Utilisation en cuisine.

    Je vous remercie. Salutations distinguées.

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