Archive for May, 2013

TheDailyGreen: Russians Saving U.S. from Colony Collapse Disorder

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

Russian bees are stationed at the White House. (That’s a good thing.)

beehives

Here’s a thought on the current status of Colony Collapse Disorder. Long ago…well, just over 50 years ago or so, but not too far away from where I am now, a group of University and USDA Honey Bee Scientists gathered to study a problem that had been plaguing beekeepers in all parts of the country for a couple of years. Beekeepers were complaining that they were finding colonies devoid of bees, gone, empty and barren, and nothing was left behind to give a clue as to what had happened. Quick research showed that this wasn’t a new problem, and indeed had occurred quite a few times over the years…well, over the years that people had been keeping records about such things.

By the time the scientists had been rallied to do something by concerned beekeepers the situation had already gone on for a couple of seasons and was heading into the third. They wanted to meet it head on for the third year to see what could be done. Of course by the time they got together it was plain that the problem was abating…and in fact it was difficult to find samples to study.

One of the scientists was heard to say that it was a real task to study what they were calling disappearing disease, because every time they got together to study it…”the damn thing disappeared.”

This spring, the damn thing seems to have disappeared again. We’ve looked at why we think this is the case, and, indeed, beekeepers have gone a long way in improving how they keep bees healthy. Better nutrition management, cleaner homes for the bees to live in, safer mite controls being used by beekeepers and of course many of the bees and beekeepers that were susceptible to whatever it was are gone.

Late last week a press release was issued by the White House and the USDA about one more thing that seems to have shown CCD to the door this year: honey bees that have some resistance to one of the suspected precursors of CCD – the varroa mite.

The White House and CCD? Yes, the White House, the USDA and CCD.

Down in Baton Rouge, La., there’s a USDA Honey Bee Research Lab. There, they’ve imported and refined several strains of pretty much mongrel bees from eastern Russia that have been living with varroa for over a hundred years. In that time those varroa mites have taken a terrible toll on those bees. But not all of them died. In fact, some have thrived, and it was offspring from these varroa- and tracheal mite-tolerant bees that came to America. After vigorous inspections and extended isolation time to make certain they were disease and pest free, plus a few years of controlled breeding to increase even more this tolerance to mites, they have been released to the beekeepers here that need them. The result is that beekeepers using Russian bees use far fewer (and often no) mite control chemicals to keep their bees healthy. Because of this they spend less money and less time with this aspect of their business, and they have happier bees to boot. Plus, they lose fewer colonies so that cost, too, is reduced. All in all, keeping these bees saves time, money, environmental contamination and reduces or eliminates any threat of hive product problems. And now, there’s even a Russian Bee Breeders Association in place to insure quality control. For beekeepers everywhere, the Russians are coming.

And now, apparently, Russians are coming to the White House. This July the White House hive is to get one of these USDA developed Russian Queens so that varroa tolerance will reside in DC, too. The White House and the Secretary of the Department Of Agriculture engineered this late last week, and come July, a Russian will be living at the White House. How sweet is that?

http://www.thedailygreen.com/environmental-news/blogs/bees/colony-collapse-disorder-88041402

Two Years After Legalized Beekeeping, City May be Running Short on Forage

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

Andrew-holding-a-honey-comb-at-York-Prep New York has been a hive of activity since a certain rural hobby was legalized in 2010. Urban beekeeping has exploded with nearly 200 registered hives in the city, and experts say there may be another 200 off the books. It’s leading some to question whether the city can sustain the increasing number of hives.

On the roof of York Prep School on the Upper West Side beekeeper Andrew Cote, 40, peels off the tin top of a hive and pops out one of nine wooden frames. It’s covered by agitated honey bees.

“They’re working, they’re attending to their babies,” he said.

He turns over the honey comb-filled frame wearing elbow length leather gloves. A cloud of bees hovers around his veiled face.

Satisfied, he gingerly slides the tray back into the hive like a folder in a file cabinet.

Cote works with the school’s beekeeper club and assists with a curriculum on bees. He also harvests the honey to sell.

With hot summer temperatures, Cote is concerned about his bees getting enough water and not overheating.

It’s just not the heat that’s the problem. Like everywhere else in New York, there seems to be a shortage of available real estate. Cote worries there are not enough flowers to support the growing bee populations — especially in certain neighborhoods where beekeeping has blossomed..

read more at http://www.wnyc.org/articles/wnyc-news/2012/jun/25/urban-bees-may-be-running-out-foraging-ground/

Middle class fad for bee keeping sees doubling in number of hives

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

uk_hives

The British British Beekeepers Association (BBKA) said there are now more than 80,000 hives registered in Britain, compared to 40,000 in 2007. The organisation said there has been an increase in the number of honey bees in Britain over the last two years from 23 billion to 48 billion. They said the increase had partly been driven by concern for the environment and the recent fashion for grow-your-own food. Martin Smith, President of the BBKA, said people with large gardens or farms still make up the majority of bee keepers. But the recent “middle class fad” for allotments or inner city gardens on balconies and roofs mean there is also a growing number of people keeping bees in towns and cities

In central London the number of bee keepers registered with the BBKA has risen from 41 to more than 100 over the last couple of years. More than 400 hives have been set up by the Co-op in Manchester, London, Sheffield and Inverness. ”You cannot keep pigs in the middle of the city but you can keep bees,” said Mr Smith. “Also there is an element of people wanting to grow their own honey.”

Bee numbers across the world have been falling in recent years because of intensive farming, habitat loss and disease. Climate change, pesticides and a mysterious condition called “Colony Collapse Disorder” are also blamed.

In England it is estimated bee numbers have halved over the last 20 years and it is only recently, with the trend for bee keeping, that the numbers of honey bees has started to creep back up.

However there are downsides to the popularity of bee keeping.

Because so many people want to take up the hobby the price of a five-frame nucleus of bees, which is needed to set up a new hive, has gone up from £40 in 2008 to more than £150.

Mr Smith said experienced bee keepers can start their own hives and the price rise is driven by new comers.

He advised people to get advice and help from experienced bee keepers before starting a hive.

“The worst thing you can do is acquire a colony of bees when you don’t know what to do, then they will die,” he said. “The days of let-alone bee keeping are gone, you have to learn to manage them in a healthy and sustainable way.”

(by Louise Gray/Telegraph)

Read more at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthnews/7808793/Middle-class-fad-for-bee-keeping-sees-doubling-in-number-of-hives.html

 

USDA Farmers Markets Search

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

farmers_market_promenade_shot

The USDA National Farmers Market Directory, maintained by AMS Marketing Services, is designed to provide members of the public with convenient access to information about U.S. farmers market locations, directions, operating times, product offerings, and accepted forms of payment. Market information included in the Directory is voluntary and self-reported to AMS by market managers, representatives from State farmers market agencies and associations, and other key market personnel.

While AMS Marketing Services updates market listings in the USDA National Farmers Market Directory throughout the year on request from market stakeholders, the program also actively solicits new and updated market information from farmers market stakeholders each spring in order to keep the listings in the Directory as accurate and comprehensive as possible. Despite these efforts to maintain the integrity and accuracy of the data, there is no way to ensure that each individual farmers market listing in the Directory is completely accurate and up to date at any given point in time. To make it easier for users of the Directory search engine to evaluate the likelihood that market information provided in the Directory is still current, each market listing contains a date stamp at the bottom of the record. To avoid disappointment, users may wish to contact the listed market representative or consult the market’s own website, if available, before planning a visit.

http://search.ams.usda.gov/farmersmarkets

Bee Colony Collapse Disorder & Estimated US Bee Hive Population Chart

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

The following is the historical chart of US bee hive estimated population from 1947 to present according to Wikipedia:

BeeHiveUSPopulationChart1947-2013

Colony collapse disorder (CCD) is a phenomenon in which worker bees from abeehive or European honey bee colony abruptly disappear. While such disappearances have occurred throughout the history of apiculture, and were known by various names (disappearing diseasespring dwindleMay diseaseautumn collapse, and fall dwindle disease),[1] the syndrome was renamed colony collapse disorder in late 2006[2] in conjunction with a drastic rise in the number of disappearances of Western honeybee colonies in North America.[3] European beekeepers observed similar phenomena in Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Greece, Italy, Portugal, and Spain,[4] and initial reports have also come in from Switzerland and Germany, albeit to a lesser degree[5]while the Northern Ireland Assembly received reports of a decline greater than 50%.[6]

The growth in the use of neonicotinoid pesticides such as acetamipridclothianidin andimidacloprid, some of the most widely-used pesticides in the world, has roughly tracked rising bee deaths since 2005.[7] In 2012, several peer reviewed independent studies were published showing that neonicotinoids had previously undetected routes of exposure affecting bees including through dust, pollen, and nectar;[8] that sub-nanogram toxicity resulted in failure to return to the hive without immediate lethality,[9] the primary symptom of CCD,[10] and indicating environmental persistence of neonicotinoids in irrigation channels and soil.[11] These studies prompted a formal 2013 peer review by the European Food Safety Authority that said neonicotinoids pose an unacceptably high risk to bees, and that the industry-sponsored science upon which regulatory agencies’ claims of safety have relied is flawed.[12] CCD is probably compounded by a combination of factors.[13][14][15][16] In 2007, some authorities attributed the problem to biotic factors such as Varroa mites,[17] Nosema apis parasites, and Israel acute paralysis virus.[18][19] Other contributing factors may include environmental change-related stress,[20] malnutrition, and migratory beekeeping. Another study in 2012 also pointed to multiple causes, listing pesticides behind the varroa mite, genetics, habitat loss, and poor nutrition.[21]

Colony collapse is significant economically because many agricultural crops worldwide are pollinated by European honey bees. In April 2013, the European Union announced plans to restrict the use of certain pesticides to stop bee populations from declining further[22] and by the end of the month passed legislation which banned the use of several neonicotinoids for the following two years.[23] Shortages of bees in the US have increased the cost to farmers of renting them for pollination services by up to 20%.[7]

Read more at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colony_collapse_disorder

Safe Natural Organic Seed Company List

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

WallofTomatoes_2012

The following is a Farm Wars list of seed companies that provide organic and heirloom seed varieties.

Read more at http://farmwars.info/?p=8158

  • Horizon Herbs http://www.horizonherbs.com – Our greatest joy is to provide you with GOOD LIVE SEEDS. We consider you to be our “virtual neighbor,” and strive to treat you like a good neighbor should. The seeds that pass between us are energised with the LIFE FORCE. The positive nature of this energy helps us promote the plants that serve us so selflessly. We invite you to walk with us on this beautiful path of EARTH HEALING.

    We believe that the best way to support good health of friends and family is to get everybody out into the garden to do some work in the sunshine, then feed them up on fresh salads and vegetables that are the results of their own good labors. Positive work in the out-of-doors helps keep our bodies fit, frees our minds, helps us sleep well at night, promotes happiness and serves mother nature.

  • Seed Site http://www.seedsite.eu – All my seeds are harvested by hand from plants grown organically. The seeds are packed in plastic zip-loc bags and labelled with their botanical name, sowing instructions and expiration date. After that date seeds might be still viable, but less. It’s important to store the seeds in a dark, cool and dry place. If you don’t have too many seeds the fridge is ideal for that. Keep the seeds in well closed pots or plastic containers to avoid moist and vermin.

  • Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds http://rareseeds.com – Jere Gettle always had a passion for growing things, and at age 3 he planted his first garden. Ever since that day, he wanted to be involved in the seed industry. So at the age of 17, he printed the first small Baker Creek Heirloom Seed catalog in 1998. The company has grown to offer 1450 varieties of vegetables, flowers and herbs—the largest selection of heirloom varieties in the U.S.A.

  • Amishland Heirloom Seeds http://amishlandseeds.com
    Welcome fellow home gardeners! I am a single woman who created this website, Amishland Heirloom Seeds about 8 years ago in order to share with you my heirloom, heritage, exotic and foreign organically raised seeds. All of my seeds come from my very own plants. I NEVER sell or will sell anyone else’s seed, only my very own hand grown, hand selected seed. I have been growing my own organically raised seeds in this new farmette for a little over one year.In previous years I was growing out my seeds organically at my previous home and several other nearby locations as I did not have enough land for all in one place.

  • Hudson Valley Seed Library http://www.seedlibrary.org – The Seed Library grew out of a germ of an idea at a small town library in the Hudson Valley region of upstate New York. Over the past nine years, the idea has grown and blossomed into an online seed library focused on the Northeast and a full seed catalog for all gardeners. Today, the Seed Library has its own seed farm where open-pollinated seeds are grown, saved, and packed by hand. There are close to one thousand seed library members and thousands more buy our unique Art Packs and heirloom seeds every year. Seed Library gardeners can feel good about thier seeds because we care as much as you do about preserving genetic diversity and saving seed stories.

  • D. Landreth Seed Company http://www.landrethseeds.com – Since 1784, the D. Landreth Seed Company has been providing its customers with one of the most extensive selections of fine lawn and garden seeds in the world. Our founders introduced into the United States some of the most beloved flowers and vegetables known today including the Zinnia, the white potato, various tomatoes, and our own Bloomsdale Spinach. We have become the oldest seed house in America because we are passionate in our quest for excellence in quality, service and innovation.

  • Seeds Trust http://www.seedstrust.com – I am pleased to announce Seed Trust’s new Colorado-based growers, Penn and Cord Parmenter, from Westcliffe, Co, in the heart of the beautiful Wet Mountain Valley. They grow food and seed on their 43-acre ranch at 8,120 ft. in the Wet Mountains. They garden Bio-intensively, a method that results in more food using less water in less space. Adapting seed to the mountains helps all mountain gardeners succeed, as the seed learns its environment and carries that information into the next generation.

  • High Mowing Organic Seeds http://highmowingseeds.com – High Mowing Organic Seeds began in 1996 with just 28 varieties. After tilling up a portion of his backyard and turning his shed into a seed packing area, founder Tom Stearns had no trouble selling the seed he grew that first year. Suddenly, what had started as a hobby became a practical business pursuit, as Tom realized the growing and unmet demand for organic seed. This demand allowed Tom to expand the business beyond his backyard, renting parcels of land to produce the seed he was selling through a hand-made catalog. By 2001, business had grown to such an extent that Tom began to contract with other local farms to grow seed, in addition to continuing to produce seed himself on High Mowing’s own 5 acres.

  • Uprising Seeds http://uprisingorganics.com – Sharing this good, hard work with you is our passion and commitment as well as something we see as vital. As the seed community continues to change with more and more seed companies and varieties owned by a few, and the threat of GMO seed contamination looms, it is even more important to grow these seeds, pass them along to others, and learn from all those around us who carry a wealth of sustained knowledge. For sure seeds are ever changing, relevant to time and place with stories to tell, yet seeds in the hands of common people is something we believe should never change. This is why we bring you the best open-pollinated varieties that we’ve grown to love over the years. Grow them, save them, eat the fruits of your labour and share what you have and know. Each voice is another to be counted in this joyous uprising!

  • Wood Prairie Farm http://woodprairie.com
    -Greetings and welcome to our new Catalog. For those of you who are new to WoodPrairie Farm, we welcome you. By way of introduction, we are a small Certified Organic family farm in the State of Maine that market our products, and those of a number of other Certified Organic farmers that we know and trust, directly to our customers through our print catalog and this webstore. Our modest scale allows us to focus on producing high quality organic goods for you and your family. We tend to your needs with great care. We know that its your business and goodwill that keeps us in business and for that we are grateful. So let us be part of your kitchen and your garden, by supplying you with good food and good seed.

  • Organica Seed http://www.organicaseed.com – We provide fellow gardeners with heirloom soil friendly untreated vegetable and herb seed. Our wonderful Organica Seeds are also fresh making them perfect for seed saving and soil health.
    All of our seed packets are filled by hand as our customer orders come in. This insures freshness and personal attention by our staff. This joining of healthy seeds and friendly service is at the heart of our seed business.
    The untreated healthy seeds we provide for you and your family come from many trusted seed growers and farms. When you purchase these wonderful seeds many dedicated family farms benefit from your generosity and thoughtfulness!

  • Southern Exposure Seed Exchange http://www.southernexposure.com – Southern Exposure Seed Exchange offers more than 700 varieties of vegetable, flower, herb, grain and cover crop seeds. We emphasize varieties that perform well in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast, although gardeners and farmers from all over the country grow our seeds. We offer many unusual, Southern heirlooms, including peanuts, southern peas, naturally colored cotton, collards, okra, roselle, turnip greens, corns for roasting and meal, and butterbeans. However, we serve gardeners throughout the United States and Canada. We do not sell chemically treated seeds. Read in our resource library about why we specialize in heirloom seeds and primarily offer open-pollinated (non-hybrid) seeds.

  • Fedco Seeds http://www.fedcoseeds.com -WELCOME, Fedco provides cold-hardy varieties shipped in season, and gardening supplies year-round.

  • Family Farmers Seed Cooperative http://www.organicseedcoop.com – The Family Farmer Seed Cooperative (FFSC) is a farmer-owned cooperative that produces high quality, organic, open-pollinated, public domain seeds for farmers. FFSC took root in 2008, when eight experienced organic seed farmers from Colorado, New Mexico, Oregon, Washington and North Dakota formed a cooperative, seeking to protect seed sovereignty and the supply of organic, open pollinated, public domain seeds in the face of growing consolidation and homogenization in the seed industry. We now have 13 members, recently adding farms from Nebraska and Oregon, and soon to be expanding into California and Idaho. (See FFSC Membership if you are an interested seed grower.)

    We’re skilled, seasoned organic produce and seed growers who specialize in diverse vegetable crops and are located in several distinct bioregions in the US. This diversity strengthens our ability to offer a wide range of crops that are adaptive to many soils and climates, including multiple varieties of beans, corn, greens, lettuce, melons, root vegetables, soybeans, squash (winter and summer), tomatoes and garlic.

  • White Harvest Seed Company http://whiteharvestseed.com – The southern Missouri Ozarks is home to us. The Lord lead our family to these foothills and since then our hearts have never left. For a long time, we were ignorant of the blessings of growing our own food. We let the world’s cunning conveniences attempt to supply what we needed.

    Naturally, in the end, it left much to be desired.

    The taste, quality, and downright worth of store-bought food does not compare to any homegrown harvest. With each season, we’ve been learning that a little more. Upon our hilltop, we farm and garden on a daily basis. And like most folks, we’ve found that there ain’t ever enough time in the day. We love what we do, however, and consider ourselves blessed to – not only live here – but work here as well.

  • Heirloom Organics http://www.non-hybrid-seeds.com – Heirloom Organics Non-Hybrid Seed Packs are the sustainable gardening choice of home, homestead and professional gardeners throughout North America. Whether you are in the city, suburbs or country, Heirloom Organics Seed Packs are designed with your specific space, light and nutritional needs in mind.

    The Seed Vault is for emergency backup and 1 or 2-person use. The Family Pack is for larger family yards and seed storage. The Homestead and Farm Packs are for large properties, groups and investment-grade seed purchase. The Specialty Packs cover a wide variety of specialty needs.

  • Seed for Security http://www.seedforsecurity.com – Because my business is small and home based I am able to pay attention to minute details. Many of Seed for Security seeds are grown on my farm. You can not get fresher than that! I harvest, dry and hand pack my seeds. Great care goes into selecting the varieties of seed that I sell. I offer vegetable seeds that will provide protein and calories for any survival situation. All of my seeds are open-pollinated and NON GMO. I regularly do germination tests with excellent results.

  • The Living Seed Company http://www.livingseedcompany.com – Because my business is small and home based I am able to pay attention to minute details. Many of Seed for Security seeds are grown on my farm. You can not get fresher than that! I harvest, dry and hand pack my seeds. Great care goes into selecting the varieties of seed that I sell. I offer vegetable seeds that will provide protein and calories for any survival situation. All of my seeds are open-pollinated and NON GMO. I regularly do germination tests with excellent results.

  • Sow True Seed http://www.sowtrueseed.com – Welcome to Sow True Seed, specializing in open-pollinated, non-hybrid and GMO-free vegetable, herb, flower and cover crop seed as well as seasonal plant starts, sweet potato slips, asparagus crowns, seed potatoes and garlic from our retail store and seed warehouse in Asheville, North Carolina.

    Guided by a rich tradition of ecological wisdom and preservation practiced daily in the mountains of Western North Carolina, we feature heirloom, certified organic, traditional, and Southern Appalachia favorites. We grow and source over 500 varieties of untreated seeds that remain true to type when saved and replanted

  • Adaptive Seeds http://www.adaptiveseeds.com – We grow and steward rare, diverse and resilient seed varieties and distribute these to other ecologically minded farmers, gardeners and seed savers. Most of our seed is adapted to the Pacific Northwest and short season northern climates. All of our seed is grown by us and a few local friends who act as our isolation gardens. We strictly sell only public domain, open-pollinated (OP) seed, and some diverse genepool mixes. NONE of our seeds are proprietary hybrids (F1), patented (PVP) or genetically modified (GMO) and all of our seed is grown without the use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides or pesticides.

  • Seeds Now http://www.seedsnow.com – Grow Organic with 100% Fresh Heirloom NON-Genetically Modified (NON-GMO) Seeds

  • Livingston Seed http://livingstonseed.info – Livingston Seed is a wholesale company, selling only to the trade. We have done the research to find out what our consumers are looking for in a seed company. Our packets are designed to fill these needs. Each packet showcases beautiful photographs shot in our own trial garden. Every packet contains easy to read, helpful information. This year we have introduced over 20 new varieties to our collection, all aimed at increasing your sales. Each packet offers the same high quality seed for the same amazing value that Livingston Seed is known for!

  • Sustainable Seed Co. http://sustainableseedco.com – John Fendley, a.k.a. Farmer John, compiled for L.A. at Home a list of the top heirloom seeds that Southern California gardeners are ordering this season through his Sustainable Seed Co.

    Fendley, whose company is based near the Mendocino National Forest, was motivated to collect old varieties after he noticed that the number of broccoli seeds in the nonprofit Seed Savers Exchange catalog dropped from about 80 types in the 1980s to only four or five in 2003.

  • Grow Organic http://groworganic.com – Our Mission: Grow Organic… For a healthy and safe food supply, For a clean and sustainable environment, For an enjoyable and rewarding experience… For Life!

  • Victory Seeds http://www.victoryseeds.com – Victory Seed Company is a small, family owned and operated organization that works to preserve plant varieties by locating, growing, documenting and offering heirloom and rare open-pollinated seeds to home gardeners. We grow seeds on our farm and help to support other seed farmers by purchasing from our network of growers.

    Keeping focused on our original charter of working to preserve heirloom (heritage) seeds as well as horticultural history, we look forward to expanding our efforts and offerings to home gardeners in the years to come. Our heirloom seed variety preservation work is supported by sales from this web site as well as from private donations.

  • Botanical Interests http://www.botanicalinterests.com – At Botanical Interests our goal is to inspire and educate the gardener in you. That is why, since 1995 we have been supplying gardeners with the highest quality seed in the most beautiful and informative seed packets on the market. Curtis and Judy started Botanical Interests because they believed that gardeners were not getting the information they needed from their seed packets. Their desire for more information along with their passion for spreading gardening wisdom led them to create a unique seed packet that is not only beautiful, but is also filled with facts, tips, recipes and quality seed.

  • The Ark Institute http://arkinstitute.com – We at The Ark Institute believe that true, global sustainability begins with local, personal sustainability and self-reliance. We have spent our last 15+ years dedicated to that one principle, and we continue today with the same passion as when we first uncovered the patents for the “Terminator Gene” and the “Traitor Gene” in the mid 1990′s.

    If true sustainability and self-reliance is what you seek, The Ark Institute is here to help. We offer only the cleanest 100% non-hybrid, non-GMO, chemical free produce seed, to allow you to plant your own gardens, feed your families and friends, and then harvest your seed to save for use the following planting season. By growing your own food at home or at a community co-op garden, you can further ensure your produce is chemical free, and as organic as you want it to be, all for a fraction of the cost of store-bought produce.

  • My Patriot Supply http://mypatriotsupply.com – The My Patriot Supply’s survival store was founded in 2008 by people with a passion for self-sufficiency and emergency preparedness. We not only understand the drive to practice emergency preparedness, we are active participants in the survivalist lifestyle. We earnestly believe that true freedom comes from attaining a certain level of self-reliance and our survival store was created with this truth in mind.

  • Underwood Gardens http://www.underwoodgardens.com – We are a family owned independent heirloom seed company offering the finest untreated heirloom vegetable, herb and flower seeds for home gardeners and small growers. We offer heirloom and open pollinated seeds, soil building and seed saving education combined with personal service, great selection and fast shipping. Our philosophy is “From the soil to the seed to the food you eat.”

    We welcome you to a most unique seed company. We do much more than just sell seeds, as you will soon see!

    We are constantly reading, researching and digging out proven, unique, non-mainstream approaches, techniques and technologies that, for the most part, cannot be found elsewhere. Some of these are ancient, some are just old and others are the cutting edge of the most modern technology and science. We analyze, question, test and use these approaches to find out where they fit into a cohesive, comprehensive and holistic approach to gardening and human scale agriculture.

  • Heirloom Seeds http://www.heirloomseeds.com – * All the varieties of seeds we sell are open pollinated (non-hybrid) and untreated.
    * None of the seeds we sell are genetically engineered. ALL NON-GMO.
    * Selection of gardening books for the beginner or experienced gardener.
    * A variety of garden supplies and non-toxic products for insect control.
    * Quality seeds at low prices.

  • Wild Garden Seed http://www.wildgardenseed.com – We are an organic seed and vegetable farm in the Pacific Northwest. We produce farm-original varieties of many salad greens, vegetables, herbs and a few flowers.

    All of our seed is Organically Grown at Gathering Together Farm along the winding Marys River on the edge of Philomath, Oregon. All of this seed is open pollinated, untreated, germ and vigor tested in living soil mix, and well cleaned. These varieties have proven themselves popular and profitable in farmer’s markets locally and in fine restaurants on both coasts. Many of these same seeds are for sale in the other catalogs that we supply, but this is the only source for the entire commercial collection of Wild Garden Seed from Gathering Together Farm, organically certified since 1987.

    more organic seed companies:

  • Jonny’s Seeds http://www.johnnyseeds.com – Our mission is to help families, friends, and communities to feed one another by providing superior seeds, tools, information, and service.

    We are an employee-owned seed producer and merchant headquartered in Winslow, Maine, USA. Johnny’s was founded in 1973 by our Chairman, Rob Johnston, Jr. All of us at Johnny’s are committed to helping growers and gardeners succeed.

  • Burpee Seeds http://www.burpee.com – Burpee plants are grown under optimal conditions using state-of-the-art growing techniques. Now shipping for planting in your area.

  • Territorial Seeds http://www.territorialseed.com – Territorial Seed Company is a privately held company, wholly owned by Tom and Julie Johns. Purchased in 1985 from its founder Steve Solomon, Tom and Julie have grown the business substantially over the past 26 years but have never strayed far from the original course set by Steve.

    The first Territorial Seed catalog was written in the fall of 1979. Running a regional seed company responsibly meant sifting through the thousands of varieties available from a worldwide market to find the highest-quality, best-adapted ones, so Steve grew a serious trial ground in both summer and winter, consisting basically of comparison plots. The garden had clay soil with less than a gallon of water per minute from the well.

  • Park Seeds http://parkseed.com – One of America’s oldest and largest mail-order seed and plant companies, the Geo. W. Park Seed Company, was founded in 1868 by 15-year-old George W. Park in Libonia, Pennsylvania. Deciding to sell seeds he had harvested from his backyard garden, young George bought a hand press and printed a list of the seeds that he wanted to sell. In addition to circulating this list to friends and neighbors, he also bought an advertisement in The Rural American for $3.50. The ad resulted in $6.50 in seed orders. With this success, George Wyatt Park found his life’s work!

  • Seed Savers Exchange http://www.seedsavers.org – Seed Savers Exchange is a non-profit organization dedicated to saving and sharing heirloom seeds. Since 1975, our members have been passing on our garden heritage by collecting and distributing thousands of samples of rare garden seeds to other gardeners. Seed Savers Exchange is a non-profit, 501(c)(3), member supported organization that saves and shares the heirloom seeds of our garden heritage, forming a living legacy that can be passed down through generations. Our mission is to conserve and promote America’s culturally diverse but endangered food crop heritage for future generations by collecting, growing, and sharing heirloom seeds and plants. At the heart of Seed Savers Exchange are the dedicated members who have distributed hundreds of thousands of heirloom and open pollinated garden seeds since our founding over 37 years ago. Those seeds now are widely used by seed companies, small farmers supplying local and regional markets, chefs and home gardeners and cooks, alike.

  • Redesigning Civilization — with Permaculture

    Sunday, May 26th, 2013

    Transurfing by Vadim Zeland

    Saturday, May 18th, 2013

    Not long ago, I met a friend who introduced me to Vadim Zeland’s Transurfing. I have run some life experiments, to show to myself that at least a good portion of it is applicable and true and it works. Transurfing is like “The Secret”, but on steroids. Do enjoy.

    transurfing

    This book talks about some very strange and unusual things. This is all so shocking, that you won’t want to believe it. But you will not be asked to believe it. Methods will be presented that allow you to verify everything yourself. And only then will your ordinary way of looking at things fall apart.

    We all, in one way or another, find ourselves in the power of circumstances. Desires go unfulfilled, dreams never come true. And our worst expectations justify themselves, as if to spite us. Can’t we turn this around? It appears that we can. And you’ll learn how. Transurfing is the technology for controlling reality.

    In spite of the completely fantastic nature of the ideas presented in this book, they have already found practical affirmation. Those who have tried Transurfing, have experienced amazement, verging on ecstasy. The surrounding world of transurfers changes in an inexplicable way, literally before their very eyes. Those who ventured to employ these methods in everyday life were astonished (perhaps, even frightened) by how real and effective they are.

    Ever since the beginning of time, people have noticed that the world has a dual nature. On the one hand, everything that happens on the material level is quite understandable and can be explained in terms of natural science. On the other hand, when faced with phenomena belonging to the “subtle” (non-material) world, these laws fail. Why are these two aspects of reality not able to be united into a universal concept?

    It is nothing short of bizarre – as if the world were playing hide-and-seek with us, trying to disguise its true essence. Scientists discover a law explaining something, and, here, the world surprises us and something controversial takes place. This chase for the evasive, shadow-like truth doesn’t seem to have any ending. The world does not only conceal its real face – it turns into whatever we want it to be.

    This applies to all fields of science. For instance, if the world is perceived as an object of the micro-world, you may be certain that there will be experiments proving this theory. Suppose the world is not a particle but an electro-magnetic wave – well, it won’t mind, but will act accordingly, pretending to be whatever you want it to be.

    Ask the world a question: What does it consist of? Is it massive matter? You may be certain you’ll get a positive answer. And what if it’s still a mass of energy? Right again! It is acknowledged that formation and annihilation of micro-particles is a permanent process going on in a vacuum – energy transforms into matter and vice versa.

    http://zelands.com – in English
    http://zelands.ru – in Russian

    Krishna Das – Om Namah Shivaya – Arunachala

    Saturday, May 18th, 2013

    Space Oddity

    Saturday, May 18th, 2013

    International Space Station crew’s captain Chris Hadfield has recorded a first music video in space. This is a song by David Bowie called “Space Oddity”. Thus Chris has marked his last days on the station.

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