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Set Ascending Direction

Welcome to our 2019 season!
For those of you who have followed our journey with seeds for a while, you’ll know that much of our inspiration in this work is a celebration of the relationships between communities and their food plants. So much of the identity of culture and a sense of place relates to its food traditions, rooted in the farmers, the trade routes, the soils, the immigration and forced relocation stories... We come together over meals and the ingredients of those meals tell the stories of the relationships between people and place in their DNA.

But that’s just the last couple thousand years.

What gives us as much joy in this work as a good meal created from the fruits of our labor, is to walk through the field with a sense of wonder, to slow down, and to notice.  The theme of this year’s catalog is POLLINATE and that’s, in part, to recognize that our own relationship with plants enjoys a barely significant fraction of the dazzling complexity shared between plants, bees, and other pollinators. We’ve accomplished some clever breeding successes in our day but frankly, bees have been breeding plants (and honestly, vice versa) since before we were a twinkle in the evolutionary eye. Bees and flowering plants were quite literally made for each other.

We came across Vancouver BC artist jasna guy’s work earlier this year, and it struck a chord with us in finding that magical balance of methodical inquiry and meticulous attention to detail with a joyous sense of wide-eyed wonder. All the images in this year’s catalog come from her artistic inquiry into the complex relationships between bees, pollen, and plants in various mediums, some as simple as  dissected and pressed flower herbarium samples, some as complex as a 40’x60’ installation made from tens of thousands of individual block prints. Of course, given the state of pollinator  populations worldwide, there is an underlying message of urgency in jasna’s work regarding how we as a culture relate to our place in the natural world.

I remember growing our first gardens and market farms with an eye towards productivity, but as time goes by we find more and more that we reap many of our rewards in less tangible metrics than pounds and bunches. We continue, of course, to strive for efficiency in our work, if only to be able to walk through the fields with less stress buzzing around our heads and more time to notice what’s buzzing around our flowers. We invite you to take some time to slow down and observe the pollinators in your field this year.  This simple practice has brought us much joy over the past several seasons, a feeling of connectedness with the farm ecosystem, and a renewed sense of wonder at the intricacies of this biological dance.  We also feel that a curious and observant mind is a first step in the work to improve the conditions of the pollinator populations we all so heavily depend upon.

Pollination, the moving around of plant genetic material, is responsible for much of the diversity that surrounds and sustains us. It is such a powerful action that we metaphorically use the term almost universally in the positive sense to describe synergistic exchanges of ideas that result in expanded understanding. 2018 was a fruitful year for us at the home farm. We wish you all abundance in the coming year. In 2019 may our communities provide fertile ground for pollination from both near and far, and may that diversity be reflected in our food, our friendships, our ideas, our compassion, and, of course, our pollinators. Thanks for joining us in this JOYOUS UPRISING!

Crystine, Brian, Rio, Eric, Anna, Erica, and Kether

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Consistent feedback we’ve gotten over the past several years has been that you'd like to see our catalog earlier in the winter to better plan for the coming year. While it is unlikely that we will be able push forward our catalog publishing date ahead of its usual release in the beginning of January, we decided to use this blog space as a “preview of coming attractions” to get you excited about all that's new for the coming season. While we have not dropped any varieties for 2018, we are adding a large collection of new specialty cut flower cultivars, as well as several new vegetables and culinary herbs. For many of these varieties, especially the flowers, this will be the first time (that we know of) they have been available as organic seed.

Several are still pending germination test results from the lab before we can be certain of availability, but the following is what we anticipate as new additions this winter. All but a handful will have both bulk and packet sizes. They will be available online by late December. Until then, happy perusing and enjoy your holiday season!

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At long last you find us here again just as the Winter season is upon us. From the photo above you can see that we are already dreaming of Spring even as more snow than we have ever seen fall and stick here and one of the coldest Winters continues.

Our 2017 offerings have been uploaded for all to see and we are thrilled to share all of them with each of you! It continues to amaze us that each Winter as we scurry about finalizing our catalog and website and getting ready for the mad rush that is January-March, we find joy in both what the coming season will have to offer and what this season has to offer to you. That said, we're pretty darn sure you'll like everything as much as we've enjoyed growing the seed for you. Even with the birth of our joyful and bright daughter Meira last September, we managed to grow more seed than ever at our home farm including more new varieties than ever! We owe our small crew a big debt of gratitude and love.

Although it's impossible to pick a favorite, if I had to highlight just a few I would choose, Iceland Poppies (above photo), Filderkraut Cabbage, and Cascade Glaze Collards (returning after an extended absence). Each of these took multiple years to produce seed for and a little bit of trial and error, hard work and selection. You'll be mighty pleased with all of them if I do say so myself!

Look forward to chatting and sending seeds far and away in 2017. Our phones will once again be answered come mid January. Until then you are always welcome to email with any questions or comments you may have. We enjoy writing you back. If you have any comments to leave about last season and how your garden grew, we'd love it if you left a review on the varieties you've tried. We've slowly but surely been adding content to this site so check back in often!

Now, enjoy what the Winter holds, keep doing good work and snuggle in close for warmth or better yet, get up to those mountains or hills or to whatever lies outside your door and go for a ski or hike and get yourself warm and do something to make sure others keep warm too. There is always something to celebrate and we're grateful to be part of yours.

Warmly,

Crystine

PHEW! Here we are at last!
Cheers to the 2015 growing season! We're so happy to be a part of yours...

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Set Ascending Direction