Niagara Seedy Saturday
I sat down at the computer this afternoon and heard the unmistakable pip..skitter of a hard seed, falling out of my sleeve onto and across the table. Not surprising really, considering I spent the day at an event called Seedy Saturday! This day is like the New Years Eve of my growing year. It won't be long now, before seeds are skittering everywhere and soil is tracked in underfoot. The new season is almost, but not quite upon us and I feel the same excited glee that others might have felt at the holidays, unwrapping seed packets like presents and leaving my gifts for others, at the seed exchange table.
Seedy Saturday has a real warm and friendly feel to it. I have to give huge thanks and congratulations to Linda Crago of Tree and Twig Heirlooms for that, she brings together wonderful experts, speakers, vendors and the people who attend round out a true community.
Rhizome Farms spoke about being a young farmer in Niagara. It was really encouraging to hear another farmer, my age, speak about the same struggles I've experienced, but also listening to the joys and accomplishments she's managed in just a short time longer than I've been growing. She was followed by Tiffany Mayer, a local blogger I read and admire, who spoke about her residential fruit picking program: Garden of Eating Niagara.
Reason #632 that I had a great day at Seedy Saturday (no really, it was that good of a day) I got to meet one of my favourite bloggers - Karen of The Art of Doing Stuff, who was the 3rd speaker I managed to check out. She was delightfully sarcastic in person, as she is in writing, but also quite heartfelt in how she conveyed her passion for her front yard garden (and illegal backyard chickens).
The swap table is my favourite but also most essential part of Seedy Saturday. Every year I save more seed than the last and I try to take as much as I can spare to the swap table. This year I managed to donate 30+ bags of seed, 15 types of tomatoes and the rest mostly beets and rapini since the last thing I did in the garden was let an entire planting of each go to seed. I was there all day so I tried to spread out my donations every few hours. Veggie seeds were slim pickings, but despite leaving the less abundant ones for others I still came away with a few very interesting specimens! Yellow Pear tomatoes, Purple Orach mountain spinach, Tom Thumb popcorn, Elva's chives, and Karen hooked us up with some Cubit's Organic Rainbow carrots - I am now incredibly impatient for spring! The rest of the afternoon went by quickly, chatting with other passionate growers and seed savers and enjoying the company of even more friends - Keri and Laurie, organizers of Niagara VegFest and Tikvah, representing Niagara Community Garden Network. I said it once before, but I have to say it again... spending the day with these strong women is downright inspiring.
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