We try very hard not to buy seed from growers who are surrounded by known GMO crops. Several well known heirloom seed companies are located in Oregon. This area of Oregon has had a burgeoning seed business for many years. The challenge is GM crops moved in years ago. There is an estimated 5,000,000 acres of GM crops now planted in this fertile area of Oregon.
Many of the new crops being planted like the GM sugar beets have pollen grains that can float on the breeze for miles. Recently in this area of Oregon for example, bagged bark mulch was found to have GM beet seeds. Imagine laying down bark mulch in your garden only to discover you were growing GM crops! Would a corporate giant come after you for “stealing” there seed? Or more horrifying what if this seed contaminated any seed you were trying to save? You see this is just one of the issues facing heirloom seed growers these days. How do we keep GM crops from contaminating our seed crops?
Where does your heirloom seed company get its seed? Seed companies say they travel the world to collect exotic seeds. Many heirloom seed companies out there tout having hundreds of varieties, but did you ever stop and think where they are coming from? It may sound great at first that you are getting a rare seed variety from China, but did you know that there is an estimated 9.3 million acres of GM crops in China?
It is well known that the prices are much cheaper for seed abroad, but then again so might be the quality of the seed. In many of these countries there is little regulation to ensure seed quality. In fact to import many of these seeds into the U.S. our government requires them to be chemically treated (fumigated) to kill any harmful pest or pathogens. Are you buying treated seeds?
Then there is the whole issue of sending our money abroad. That is the whole reason we have such a foreign trade deficit now. Do you really want to support farmers in another country when our family farmers are literally “losing the farm”? It is important to support local farmers to grow our food and seed crops. We don’t need to transport our food or seed crops for thousands of miles using petroleum when it is grown right here.
More important than all the above listed issues is just the plain fact that farmers have known for hundreds of years…plants grown and acclimated to your area just plain perform better. Any good gardener knows this. I used to spend hours as a kid seeking out heirloom varieties from old gardeners not because I knew what an heirloom seed was, but because it produced better. These plants have acclimated to the area and the strongest survived to pass on their genes. These seeds were coveted and passed down even through family lines.
So ya see there are many things to consider the next time you buy seeds. I can’t claim that we don’t have some level of GM contamination. Although we strive hard to prevent that, we were recently told by a climatologist that the #1 form of pollution they now find in air-born samples is GMO pollen. How do I as a seed grower prevent what is raining down from the sky? There is no easy answer. However, I can tell you this.
I live in Minnesota. I'm sure your seeds will grow here, but is there another closer company you know of whose seeds are sure to grow in our colder/shorter climate?
I really like your emailed newsletters. I'm a blind gardener and very into organic and sustainable gardening. Keep up the great work.Gilbert
Thanks for the speedy delivery. The wheat has been planted and the majority has taken hold... already 4" high and its only been planted for 9 days :) I can't wait to plant the other stuff next spring. I told others about your companySam
I ordered a variety of vegetable seeds last spring. I have to tell you that the germination rate was better than any other heirloom seeds I have had before, and the plants thrived! In this climate zone 4 in Minnesota, the weather can do just about...Diane
Also, thanks for the pink jumbo squash seeds; my wife is looking forward to those the most, along with a few Jerusalem melon plants that I am growing. Thanks for your website; I wish I had found it earlier. I've pretty much given up growing...Frank
Hi. wow great website and even better your goals and commitments.John
My last order was fantastic! So happy to do business with you again!Julia
Just wanted to say thank you for the free tomtato seeds! It was very kind and generous. I like many people these days am struggling, hoping that a backyard veggie garden will help out this year. Your free seeds are a very welcome gift. Just wanted...Deanna
Thanks a million! What a quick response too, really do appreciate it. WeJenny
All I can say is....WOW! The seeds are unbelievable and it is a fantastic company filled with great people. They have an uncomprehensible amount of seeds (more than 1,500) and they are ALL certified organic with tons coming in heirloom varieties....Big Germinator
I absolutely love your company and the work you do. I recently ordered my seeds and am waiting impatiently for Spring to arrive.Lara