Farm, Garden and The Land > Gardening and Agriculture

Banking on an Emergency Seed Bank?

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Nicodemus:
I appreciate everyone for reading the thread and I appreciate the replies as well. It ended up being a little longer than I had originally intended when I started typing.

There's a lot of good information in your responses on where to start and where to go for information while the resources are plentiful and readily available. And that's really the key it seems, getting started in gardening at a time where you can make mistakes and learn from them and when the compounded impact of those mistakes doesn't affect your families health and well being.

fritz_monroe:
Congrats on a great post # 5000.  This is so good and will benefit so many people that I'm going to set it as a sticky.

I agree with everything you posted.  I've spoken out on here many times when it seemed like people were planning on banking on an emergency seed bank for their food in the future without any practice.  But I've never posted anything so comprehensive about why this will likely not work. 

I'd like to add that this is not my first year gardening, but I am so disorganized this year that I'm way behind on where my garden should be at this time of year.  It doesn't take a newbie to have issues staying on the ball with a garden.

TwoBluesMama:
+1 Nic -  absolutely great post. 

One thing I don't think you mentioned specifically and that's something we have absolutely no control over - the (blankety-blank-blank) weather.  We've been gardening for more than 30 years and this year the weather has been a real pain. Hopefully we'll have something to harvest.

Sometimes gardening even under the best circumstances can fail.  I will say that we do save seeds - our seeds from our crops that we know work for our climate, our soil, etc. but you never know.  I still think seed saving is a great idea but as we know here on TSP that two is one and one is none so storing food is a priority.

Nicodemus:
I finally got a sticky, and it only took me 5000 posts over a year and three quarters! :D

Seriously though, thanks Fritz!

Something else that just struck me, which I should have included in the thread starter, is that in most cases there needs to be a gardener available throughout the year to tend to the gardens. Sure, there are some permaculture solutions to this, but you're not going to get those from an emergency seed bank.

This year I stepped on a piece of glass that broke up in my foot and subsequently caused an infection that had me out of commission for a couple of weeks. Luckily I had family members that could step in and with a little guidance do some of the work that I was incapable of doing. If I'd been incapacitated in such a way where I wasn't capable of doing work on the garden, couldn't convey what needed to be done to someone else or had no one available to step in and help it would have been a big problem.

Nicodemus:
Thanks, Two Blues!

Weather! How could I have forgotten to include that?

Just a few days ago we had a few severe thunderstorms with high winds that rolled through the area. About 30 feet of the top of our huge oak tree cracked and fell. Luckily, it fell between my fruit trees and the power lines and didn't make it far enough to hit the garden.

I'm also reminded of our friend Cedar here. She is definitely an accomplished gardener and seed saver, but due to heavy rains on a continual basis had a lot of trouble last year. She's working on hoop and greenhouses now to fight that kind of problem in the future.

Floods, drought, storms and similar could take out our gardens quickly or over an extended period of time. And it takes quite a bit of effort to build in protection against the elements for our gardens.

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