I was unable to continue the Seminole pumpkin breeding project I began last year for a couple of reasons.
- We sold our property in Florida and missed the spring of 2016
- Bringing seeds into our new country legally is difficult
I could have snuck some seeds in with me (as one native told me, roughly, “no one expects you’ll follow those rules! You got to stick them in your clothes, in your pockets!”) but I couldn’t in good conscience sign a piece of paper on the plane stating I wasn’t bringing in plant material while bringing in plant material.
I’m hoping to get a special permit to bring in my Seminole pumpkin seed lines but thus far have been denied because the seeds are not “professionally cleaned” and packaged. Since they’re my own line of seeds, saved right from the guts of pumpkins and spread out to dry on a kitchen countertop, they definitely aren’t professionally cleaned. I’m not sure why this is important but I assume it has to do with the potential for viruses to some into the country, which would be terrible for local farmers. I’m okay with it – eventually they may let me bring some in if I meet the right people and/or figure out a way around the issue of cleaning.
For now, I’m gathering varieties of local pumpkin from the markets as I spot them.
Pumpkins like the one I just posted on my Instagram account yesterday:
Isn’t that beautiful?
This is the pumpkin I also feature in yesterday’s video, where I talk more about my plans to breed better varieties:
When life doesn’t let you take your Seminole pumpkin breeding project with you… make lemonade!
Or something like that.