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and life along the winding road

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Seeds - Hybrid vs. Heirloom

I hadn't thought very much about seeds, I just buy ones that I like the picture of. This doesn't happen often as I get so many plants from neighbors and a lot that come up voluntarily from the compost pile. In Novella Carpenter's book Farm City, she says any hybrid seeds she's given, she throws in a box and randomly distributes them periodically on empty lots. She finds F1 hybrid seeds "unsavory" as they are the offspring of two inbred parent plants which weakens the next crop of seeds referred to as F2 seeds.
In an article by Wanda Cannon she states it is not wise to save seeds from hybrid plants.
Novella Carpenter also likes the stories that come with heirloom seeds such as those she came across at a seed swap in Berkley or purchased from Seed Savers Exchange (They also have a page for planting dates). One of the seed packets I found while hunting for heirlooms at Russell Feed and Supply in Benbrook is Lovage, an herb with the flavor of celery. I remember bottles of Lovage cordial on shelves in local Cornish pubs , when I lived there, and the legends were of smugglers who deliberately shipwrecked vessels, but found that sea water often seeped into the wooden casks. To mask the salt tasting brandy and rum, lovage cordial was added to brandy and Shrub in rum.


K9friend said...

I love looking at seed packets and envisioning a beautiful garden. Of course, I never actually plant a beautiful garden, I just enjoy thinking about it!

Critter Alley

Joanne said...

never been patient enough to grow plants from seeds. Lots of preparation,etc -but I admire folks who take the time and do it right.