Seeds for the Future
by Alex Binck, Farm Apprentice
We hear a lot about seeds lately. Genetically modified seeds, heirloom seeds, organic seeds. And rightly so: soil, water, and sun on their own can’t accomplish much. It’s the seed that holds the secrets to transforming these inert ingredients into beautiful and bountiful life. A lot of people are concerned about the safety of the seeds used to grow their food, whether they are genetically modified, or tainted with pesticides. These issues are important, but I want to talk about something I think is even more important.
While crop breeders do great work to breed improved seeds today, a few bright and hardworking individuals cannot replace millions of farmers working by trial and error across the world. I believe this is one reason why, despite many-fold increases in pesticide and fertilizer use, growth in yields has slowed, and damage from pests is rising. Our seeds are homogenous and stagnant; they have ceased to evolve while changes in our climate and our pests have only accelerated. But the solution is easy! All we have to do is start saving our seed each year, in our gardens and our farms, and share that seed with our friends and neighbors. Because seeds are not just about what we can produce today—seeds are our tomorrow. And without them all the soil, sun and water in the world won’t feed anyone
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