bean seeds
UC Davis Professor Paul Gepts shows some of the bean seeds he has collected from Central and South America. Most of the beans we eat today are derived from one or two wild plants. Photo by Lauren Sommer

“Seed saving” is a technique that has largely fallen by the wayside in modern agriculture. And that’s reduced the genetic diversity of the crops we rely on. But now, a handful of groups in the San Francisco Bay Area are starting their own seed-saving efforts.
Reporter: Lauren Sommer

QUEST: Slideshow, Reporters Notes, Resources

  • Lisa Marini Finerty

    Thank goodness for the new audience coming to gardening: backyard gardeners and small scale growers – and their local clients! – who will spend the time to plant, cultivate and grow a plant all the way to seed. They care about taste and nutrition – both really important! – rather than packaging shape and growing efficiency. Efforts to grow open-pollinated cultivars – let alone observe and select specific plants in a crop whose seeds should be protected — takes time now, yes, but preserves choice for humanity for food in our future.

    When we had to live by our agricultural wits, seeds were as valuable as children in a family’s patrimony; fortunately children are a more highly valued now than then — shouldn’t seeds be as well?


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