It’s that time of year again, many gardening clubs and growing groups get together to exchange seeds for the coming season. Not only is this great for individual gardeners saving them time and money, it’s fantastic for the bio-diversity of our planet. Large seed companies tend to ignore some of the more vulnerable varieties, including indigenous and heirloom plants. Don’t even get us started on Monsanto suicide seeds.
One thing gardeners can do to combat this decline of bio-diversity in native flora is to save seeds. We try to save as many as possible every year. As spring approaches groups can meet for seed sharing. If you have a few different types of bean seeds for example you can build your collection or if your bound for a large harvest, find more of the seeds you want. Scientists have been warning us for years that the loss of seed bio-diversity leaves our food chain in a perilous position. As plant pests and diseases evolve it’s harder for mono cultures to keep pace. If an enemy takes a shine to one of your bean types it’s a relief to have planted two or three others that may have more resistance. Once a heritage plant is extinct it’s gone forever, seed saving is a way of keeping these valuable ancestors in the here and now.