Seabrooke and I followed up Mudpuppy Night on Friday with Seedy Saturday in Ottawa. The nasty weather that had been forecast did indeed arrive and there was cold, steady rain all day. Fortunately, Seedy Saturday is an indoor event! Seedy events are associated with Seeds of Diversity, a Canadian volunteer organization that conserves the biodiversity and traditional knowledge of food crops and garden plants. Seedy events include a swap table, vendors selling heritage and organic seeds and information displays.
Here’s Seabrooke, checking out the swap table. She saved quite a number of seeds last year and came prepared with lots of packages to add to the seed exchange. There was quite a crowd. In the main room where vendors were set up, it was difficult to get close to the seed displays. As one man I jostled shoulders with noted “Who knew looking at seeds was a contact sport?” It was nice to see so many interested people in attendance.
I purchased a few varieties of tomatoes to try this year: Green Zebra, Black Sea Man, Jaune Flammé, and Persimmon.
We signed the petition in support of a moratorium on GM Alfalfa. The petition was organised by the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network, a collaborative campaigning for food sovereignty and environmental justice. Alfalfa is used as pasture and high-protein feed for dairy cows, beef cattle, lambs and pigs and is also used to build up nutrients in the soil, making it important for many types of organic farming. Because alfalfa is a bee-pollinated perennial, GM contamination of organic crops is inevitable. The main purpose of GM Alfalfa seems to be to allow Monsanto to extend its grip on agriculture and farmers (GM Alfalfa is “Round Up-ready”).
Pictured below is a display by USC Canada. Their goal is to support programs, training, and policies in Africa, Asia and Latin America that strengthen biodiversity, food sovereignty, and the rights of those at the heart of resilient food systems – women, indigenous peoples, and small-scale farmers.
Check for a Seedy event in a community near you at the Seeds of Diversity website. It’s great to anticipate the new growing season with other gardeners.