Monday, February 11, 2013

seeds

I've been asked about our strict adherence to open pollinated seeds. No F1 hybrids, certainly no GMO's. And asked about saving seeds ourselves. Why we grow with no chemicals: organic or synthetic.

We spent a couple of days at the PASA conference. The first hour and a half there I spent listening to a Mennonite dairy man speak about the low nutritional value of the grains grown in this country. How his herd health suffers from the awful feed and that he must buy supplements so they will stay alive. And build and entire building, kitted out with trays, water and temperature control, employ a person in growing sprouted seeds.

Then a session with the organic grain growers how have compared nutritional values of different grains. And compared trace levels of all of the "cides" that go into production.

Then onto the session about native pollinators, where the two entomologists agree that the evidence that an organic "cide" kills the bees dead, the moment it is near them. Certified Organic kills the bees.

Speaker Ben Hewitt on psychotropic drugs administered to a 2000% increase of children in our children's lives. How the brain is affected in developing, usually young male minds.

So I think again about our seeds. About our earth. About the parasitic, sometimes tiny bugs that eat away at the bugs that eat vegetables. How our pea crop was almost decimated by aphids last spring until the lady bugs, praying mantis, and a minuscule wasp set to eating them. And we harvested peas for weeks, only losing them when heat turned them brittle.

Or the toads and frogs that move about in our vegetable beds. With their skin that aspirates, they are highly vulnerable to any toxins, and we want them alive and eating the ridiculous amount of bugs each one eats daily.

Reading these two books on seeds, and why the diversity matters. Why in our small way, for the 40 vegetable shares we grow each year, we are buying seeds that help a handful of companies keep diverse seeds available. Seeds that don't need a lab to happen, that grow out and reproduce unassisted. Fertility of our soil, our plants, bugs (good and bad), nutritional value, water quality, animals, us. Just doing a little bit each day we get to be here to provide as much diversity of plant, animal, bug, reptile that we can. All the same is not so good for any if us. A bit different provides resilience, adaptation and survival. Inbreeding? Not so much.

Read these if you get a chance. One can be downloaded onto kindle, which is now a free app anyone can get. You can read it today. Plant a seed, any seed, that does not have a registered trademark in its title. Eat it. Get the vegetables from us, eat more beans fresh and dried, save some. Plant some next year. Learn about what we plant here, and how you can plant too. A little bit of compost does a body good.



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