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Category — Seeds

France: “You reap what you sow”

By Ruud Sies (photographer)

Jean-Luc Danneyrolles – Peasant, Philosopher and Poet

By Ruud Sies (photographer) and partner Hanneke van Hintum (producer)
Resilience Food Stories
2020

Excerpt:

Jean-Luc, selects and harvests his own seeds, grows vegetables and forgotten plants, and actively campaigns to protect farmers seeds.

Agriculture started with a garden and I love that concept of horticulture. In fact I’d rather talk about agro-ecology than about organic horticulture. Only seeds that are registered in the official catalogue can be put on the market.

To get through the registration process, however, large sums need to be paid and there must be proof that the variety is genetically stable. As a consequence, 80% of the vegetables grown in France have disappeared over the past fifty years.

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January 17, 2021   No Comments

UK: Call the cavalry! Horses ride to rescue of an inner city garden

Plant force … PC Ben Ballard, right, riding Clyde, and PC Jo Brown on Iris create divots and trample in seeds at the Barbican Wildlife Garden. Photograph: Jill Mead/The Guardian

Mounted City of London police receive a surprise order: to help trample in wildflower seeds at the Barbican

By Phoebe Weston
The Guardian
Dec. 28, 2020

Excerpt:

The garden’s lead volunteer, Jo Rodgers, wanted grazing livestock to come and stamp in autumn seeds but there are none in London’s financial district. Instead, she called in the local police horses who came and walked around it for 30 minutes as part of their community engagement work. “In the countryside, you graze animals after you’ve cut the grass to help churn up the soil. We tried to think about getting in sheep or goats, and then we thought, ‘Horses!, we have them locally!’” she says.

Grazing animals play an essential role in maintaining traditional wildflower meadows because their hooves create dips and furrows that help push seeds into the soil and create microhabitats. More than 97% of the UK’s wildflower meadows have been lost since the second world war.

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January 3, 2021   Comments Off on UK: Call the cavalry! Horses ride to rescue of an inner city garden

Leave the Leaves to Benefit Wildlife

Where the leaves are in contact with the soil, I often find great numbers of earthworms that help make better soil for my garden.

By Scott Hoffman Black
Xerces
12 November 2020

Excerpt:

Out of sight often means out of mind for people and fall is a time when you do not see the bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects that where flitting around your flowers all summer. Where do these insects go when they are not visiting your garden? Some do migrate—like the monarch butterfly, flying south to overwinter in trees in Mexico or along the California coast—but the vast majority spend their entire life in and around your property. Many of our native solitary bees have laid eggs and provisioned nests in soil or in standing dead trees or hollowed out branches where the young are pupating. Bumble bee queens have found areas to overwinter under branches, in rock walls and in other relatively dry, snug places.

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November 18, 2020   Comments Off on Leave the Leaves to Benefit Wildlife

Canada: West Coast Seeds Announces its New Dr. Bonnie Henry Pollinator Blend

Dr. Henry’s catchphrase, “Be Calm, Be Kind, Be Safe,” is the inspiration behind the Dr. Bonnie Henry Pollinator Blend.

Press Release
November 16, 2020
Vancouver, British Columbia

Canadian sustainable gardening leader West Coast Seeds, announced today that the company will be honouring BC’s Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, with a new pollinator blend in her name. The company also announced that 100% of proceeds from Dr. Bonnie Henry Pollinator Blend sales will be donated to Food Banks Canada. The West Coast Seeds giving campaign was created to honour Dr. Henry and all healthcare providers and officials across Canada and support families who face challenges because of the COVID19 pandemic.

“We are concerned about the health and safety of our fellow citizens, and unfortunately, many more Canadians need support to provide food for their families this year,” said Aaron Saks, Director of Finance, West Coast Seeds. Adding “West Coast Seeds has been a Canadian-owned company since our inception in 1983, and we are deeply committed to supporting families across Canada. We hope that the Dr. Bonnie Henry Pollinator Blend will honour hardworking healthcare providers and officials across the country while supporting Canadian families through these challenging times.”

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November 16, 2020   Comments Off on Canada: West Coast Seeds Announces its New Dr. Bonnie Henry Pollinator Blend

Saint Kitts and Nevis: Ministry Of Agriculture Supplying Seeds To Community Groups To Encourage Community Gardening

Saint Kitts and Nevis is a dual-island nation situated between the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea. Population: 52,441

By Chaïra Flanders
Zizonline
Oct 19, 2020
Basseterre, St. Kitts

Excerpt:

The Ministry of Agriculture is continuing with efforts to bolster food security, access and availability by providing seeds and seedlings to groups in various communities to encourage community gardening.

The gardens will be opened in several communities across the island.

While in Cayon, representatives from the Department of Agriculture joined with members from the Elem Gospel Hall for a brief handing over of seedlings.

Chair of the World Food Day Activities, Tonisha Weekes and Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Ron Dublin Collins presented the group with four different types of seedlings; Cucumbers, cabbages, tomatoes and sweet peppers.

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October 25, 2020   Comments Off on Saint Kitts and Nevis: Ministry Of Agriculture Supplying Seeds To Community Groups To Encourage Community Gardening

Canada: British Columbia Eco Seed Co-op

4 Seed Firms Control 56% of the Global Brand-Name Seed Market

Funding Drive on Wayblaze
Oct 2020

Excerpt:

While the demand for local organic produce has risen rapidly, the supply of locally grown organic seed has not kept up and the farmers you rely on for delicious local food struggle to locally source the quantity and quality of seed they need.

A handful of farmers knew it was time to increase the quantity and improve the quality ecological and organic seed grown in BC, and the BC Eco Seed Co-op was born! As a producers co-op of 18 farmers we’re working together to provide seed to growers of all sizes in bulk and packet quantities.

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October 20, 2020   Comments Off on Canada: British Columbia Eco Seed Co-op

Seeds of Hope in Uncertain Times

Diverse maize varieties from the Caribbean Region of Colombia (Valeria García López).

Increased demand for seeds during Covid-19 shows the need for stronger, decentralized seed systems in Latin America and the United States.

By Valeria García López and David Greenwood-Sánchez
NACLA
October 9, 2020
(Must read. Mike)
Excerpt:

Seeds are the essential input of our food system, yet we know little about how local seed systems are adjusting to the Covid-19 pandemic. Media coverage tends to ignore seed production, and to route our attention through the lens of our own personal consumption. However, seed producers’ ability to adapt to this crisis has important consequences for our agrobiodiversity, food security, and food sovereignty.

The Covid-19 pandemic has forced local seed systems across Latin America to adopt a range of diverse strategies to confront this new reality. These challenges are shared by small seed producers in the U.S., who serve as primary sources of access to quality, organic seeds for the Latinx community in the U.S. For this reason, it is informative to analyze seed systems in Latin America and the U.S. in an integrated manner. We also aim to draw attention to the diversity of initiatives available for Latinx communities interested in becoming more involved with seeds.

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October 10, 2020   Comments Off on Seeds of Hope in Uncertain Times