This Berkshire Botanical Garden program on Saturday, January 28 from 10 – 12 will provide an introduction to the basics of saving vegetable seeds. You’ll discuss issues of pollination, isolation, timing, spacing, harvesting, cleaning, drying and storage. We’ll explain terms such as hybrid and open-pollinated, “selfers” and “crossers,” and touch on the different requirements of annuals and biennials. Finally, we’ll talk about choosing the best varieties to start with.
Sylvia Davatz has been gardening organically for over 25 years and saving seed for 18. What started as an act of protest against decreasing variety selection and a narrowing within the seed industry quickly expanded, fueled by curiosity about potential for season extension in our area and a desire for greater self-sufficiency. She is a member of the Seed Savers Exchange in Decorah, Iowa, and offers seed of over 80 varieties through their annual yearbook. An additional 60 varieties are maintained in her garden for personal use. Three years ago she launched Solstice Seeds, a small seed company dedicated to offering locally adapted, regionally appropriate, Hartland-grown open-pollinated seed. Register on-line ($22 BBG members, $27 non-members) at www.berkshirebotanical.org.