Saving Heirloom Vegetable seeds

by bestseeds on February 1, 2012

Each year we lose more heirloom varieties of vegetables, flowers, fruit trees, and other crops.  Hybrid seeds are much more profitable to the producers.  Yes, some of them produce greater quantities.  Some produce fruit that lasts better when shipped across the country.  Some hybrids are more resistant to disease or pests.  But somebody somewhere must be concerned with more than just the profitability of our food system.  What about the flavor of the food?  What about the nutrient content of the food?   What about the sustainability of the food system?  Will your grandchildren have a choice of what they will eat?  Hybrids do not reproduce themselves. Their offspring will not be identical to the parent crop.  We must maintain non-hybrid (heirloom) varieties so that we can produce hybrids.  Each year we lose more and more heirloom varieties.  Here is an article from  that will clue you in on how to begin saving your own seed.  You will be helping the cause, plus you will be saving money when you need not buy more seed the next spring.

Today, however, thousands of these old, open-pollinated varieties are lost every year as families disperse, elderly gardeners die, and there’s no one to inherit the seeds. Instead, gardeners rely on seed companies. But seed companies prefer to offer hybrid seed, more profitable because it must be bought every year since it doesn’t come true to type (won’t produce plants like the parent).

Hybrid breeding programs focus on produce that’s easier to harvest and ship, which big commercial farmers value. Home gardens, however, value flavor. With bigger and fewer seed companies controlling production, plant diversity shrinks as the nonhybrid varieties they offer for sale dwindle further and further.

So if you want to sow the same crops as the pioneers or grow the corn used as a staple of the Hopi people, you still can. But you need to help save the seeds. It’s easy, fun and provides a feeling of self-sufficiency and satisfaction that’s hard to beat.

More than that, though, seed saving helps preserve diversity and keeps some seed production in the hands of backyard gardeners. No need to settle for hybrids from some faraway company.

Get your heirloom supply from and start growing and saving your own heirloom seed!


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