The Royal Botanical Gardens, Burlington, Ontario, has a collection of 30,000 historical seed catalogs
. Once produced as ephemera, they are now of interest to historians, biologists, and others. [more inside]
Monsanto Is Going Organic in a Quest for the Perfect Veggie
- "The lettuce, peppers, and broccoli—plus a melon and an onion, with a watermelon soon to follow—aren't genetically modified at all. Monsanto created all these veggies using good old-fashioned crossbreeding, the same technology that farmers have been using to optimize crops
for millennia. That doesn't mean they are low tech, exactly. Stark's division is drawing on Monsanto's accumulated scientific know-how to create vegetables that have all the advantages of genetically modified organisms without any of the Frankenfoods ick factor." [more inside]
is just the thing for all of the gardeners who feel the walls starting to close in. Give it your ZIP code and sproutrobot will do the rest. [more inside]
A seed library is a long-term lending institution, for plants. Seed Libraries Preserve Heirloom Varities [more inside]
The Fungarium & The Millenium Seed Bank Partnership:
A Pair of 5-minute Documentaries on the Research Institutions at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew, London. (Previously 1
, Previously 2
, papaya, honey locust, paw paw, persimmon,
and many more
: fruits that have outlasted the gomphotheres
and other megafauna
. These "anachronistic fruits" can be a key to understanding their intended consumers
. And even more
Monsanto’s Harvest of Fear.
"Monsanto already dominates America’s food chain with its genetically modified seeds. Now it has targeted milk production. Just as frightening as the corporation’s tactics–ruthless legal battles against small farmers–is its decades-long history of toxic contamination."
The last hope of life on earth: Svalbard.
Most of humanity depends on just 12 plant species
, down from over 7,000 historically. Fortunately, seeds can be viable for up to thousands of years
, and seed banks have already preserved many species, including the entire plant population of Antarctica
. But with seed banks being destroyed
as the result of wars and accident, Norway has has begun work
on an underground facility, protected by polar bears, in the Arctic permafrost
that is designed to hold millions of seeds, as "final safety net"
The 8th Conference of the Parties (COP8) to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity
begins March 20th. On the agenda? The possible overturning of the 2000 de facto moratorium on genetically modified Terminator Seeds
. The US, Australian, New Zealand, and most recently Britain
are already on board. Other countries and environmental groups are not so keen, and are pushing to ban terminator
Farmer Homer McFarland is being sued for hundreds of thousands of dollars by the Monsanto corporation.
His crime? Replanting his crops' own seed
, as farmers have done for millennia, which violates the biotech giant's intellectual property rights, the company claims. Quietly, Monsanto's aggressive "seed police" have been suing farmers in 25 states for years, often settling out of court for huge sums, according to the Center for Food Safety's
new report, Monsanto vs. US farmers
[PDF link]. For more information, also see a new documentary called The Future of Food
Hundreds of kinds of mixed seeds, soil humus, and dry powdered red brown clay, form the solid components of seed balls
Farming origins gain 10,000 years
. Humans made their first tentative steps towards farming 23,000 years ago
, much earlier than previously thought. Stone Age people in Israel collected the seeds of wild grasses some 10,000 years earlier than previously recognised, say experts
from the well-loved "helicopters"
to the hated Cottonwood
, here's everything you need to know about the wind-borne seeds
Listen to a true ready made Halloween horror story about a David vs Goliath type struggle.
On her October 24th show Caroline Casey creator of the VisionaryActivism Radio show interviewed Percy Schmeiser a canola farmer from Saskatchewan Canada whose organic Canola fields were genetically contaminated with Monsanto's Round-Up Ready Canola. Schmeiser a 40 year organic canola seed saver is in the fight of his life against the powerful Monsanto corporation. This powerful interview should make you cry and provoke you to clean your pantry and refrigerator and rethink food choices like I did.
Have you ever wanted to try painting a portrait of Pappa Hemingway
or Joey Ramone
using poppy seed, grits, brome grass, millet, lentils, and white rice? Do you have the patience to recreate Van Gogh's Starry Night
in cream of wheat and split peas? Crop art
showcases artists who use only harvested natural materials to create their art. Via Coudal.
While Americans celebrate history by eating (I have two cookouts to attend tonight), take a look at history you can eat
. The Garden State Heirloom Seed Society is trying to make sure we don't lose the thousands of varieties of vegetables and fruit developed over the years.
Monsanto, the megacorp who brought you terminator seed technology, and who is known for suing farmers who harvest seeds from crops grown from patented Monsanto seeds, has had a busy couple of weeks. On April 4, they merged with pharmaceutical giant Upjohn to form meta-megacorp Pharmacia. That same day, in a spurt of overactivity, they decoded the genetic sequence of rice.