Tag Archives: argriculture

Episode-1054- The How, What and Why of Saving Seeds

There is Magic Within Seeds but Saving Them Isn't Mystical

There is Magic Within Seeds but Saving Them Isn’t Mystical

I was talking with Ben Falk of Whole Systems Design yesterday about how more and more small seed companies are now buying at least some seed from companies associated with the ilk of Monsanto.

Ben was pretty shocked to hear the Johnny’s Selected Seeds is buying some of their seeds from Semanis, which is owned by Monsanto.

There is a lot of fear about GMO contamination both legitimate and ridiculous specifically when the word Monsanto comes up.

The best solution is to save your own seeds but we are going to also discuss how to know who you can trust when buying seeds and times where you simply do not have to worry about GMO at all.

Join me today to hear about…

  • What is “the safe seed pledge” and why should you care
  • Why we need to be saving seeds in the first place
  • Breeding improvements vs. hybrids vs. GMO (all three are different)
  • Exchanging seeds – a great form of barter
  • The easy plants to save seed from – beans, lettuce, peppers, tomatoes
  • Separation rules – why they exist and not stressing them
  • Staggering pollination times to create effective separation
  • Herbs and unusual plants are often easy to save for and over looked
  • Storing your seeds once they are harvested (is cold storage a good idea)
  • How to clean your seeds, what you need, what you don’t need
  • Growing your own hybrids – hybrids are not always bad
  • How to hand pollinate and ensure purity with squashes and melons, etc
  • Saving root crops like garlic, potatoes, sweet potatoes for replanting
  • The rewards of regionally adapted plants
  • Breeding for any and all traits, it really isn’t hard

Additional Resources for Today’s Show

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Episode-162- HR 875 Targets Small Farms and More

Today we take a look at a new proposed bill currently in committee in the House called HR 875.  There is a lot of resistance to this bill (with good reason) but there is some hype as well.

Does HR 875 really say a home gardener can’t grow an organic tomato in their back yard?  Does it say that home gardeners are subject to inspection by Federal Agents?  The answer to both of these questions is a big no.  That said there is still a LOT wrong with this proposed legislation, not the least of which is that the sponsor of the bill, Rep. Rosa DeLauro, is married to a lobbyist for Monsanto!

This bill places huge government power into a single agency, creates a huge bureaucracy for small and micro farms and small scale livestock producers.  It clearly steps on states rights and further it consolidates power and hence the potential for mistakes, abuse and incompetence into a single orginazation.

Further it is being championed by Monsanto and other big agriculture companies that stand to profit hugely but requirements to use specific chemicals, pesticides, etc.

However the opposition is hyping some other aspects that are not in the bill such as shutting down the home gardener and ignoring the exemption for growers selling “direct to the consumer”.  This is a bad bill, we should try to kill it but if we hype it that is a big mistake.  There is enough bad here that we don’t need to be hypesters of alarmists.

Resources for Today’s Show