Germinating Peach Pits is Easy: Check Out These Pics

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My video on germinating peach pits has garnered almost 30,000 views since I posted it back in July:

Since posting that instructional video, I have received multiple comments and emails from people thanking me for showing them how to grow their own peaches from seeds.

My friend Amanda, who is NOT obsessed with me at all, sent me these two pictures recently of her peach sprouting success:

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Some years ago I discovered in some dusty corner of the internet that peach pits require cold stratification to germinate.

I put this knowledge to the test with great success, starting about 50 peach pits I found beneath an abandoned and squirrel-ravaged Tropic Beauty peach growing a few miles from my old place in North Florida.

SproutingPeachPits

I did this despite the fact that there are hordes of small-minded gardeners in the world who take great pleasure in lecturing everyone about the utter worthlessness of starting fruit trees from seed.

These people are wrong. And boring. And stupid. And they smell.

Here’s a video I did showing some of my seed-grown peach trees in fruit:

And here are two pictures of some of the delicious fruit I got as a result of germinating peach pits in my very own refrigerator:

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In their SECOND year, my two seedling peach trees produced about five gallons of fruit. They continued to massively outproduce the grafted peach trees I planted before them, plus they grew with more vigor.

Growing fruit trees from seed isn’t a dumb thing to do. It’s a great thing to do. It’s a YUGE, high energy thing to do.

Sometimes the “experts” aren’t really experts. They’re just people who say things adamantly because they’ve heard other people say the same things.

Heck with that.

Better Gardening Through Experimentation isn’t just a film I made… it’s my modus operandi.

Thanks for the pictures, Amanda, and may your peaches grow and produce abundantly.

Finally, here’s how you germinate peach pits:

GrowAPeachPit-Update

Have fun!

Sprouting Avocado Pits the Easy Way

Today we’ll cover sprouting avocado pits the EASY way!

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Though you are probably familiar with the “toothpicks and water” method of sprouting avocado pits, there is an easier way that seems to have a higher success rate.

The short of it? Plant them in pots!

The long of it? Well, watch my video on how to sprout avocado pits, then we’ll meet on the other side for a step-by-step. A couple of important things should happen in order to guarantee your avocado pits sprout.

Avocados, like many tropical trees, have seeds that are designed to hit the ground and grow. The pits are not designed like many cold-climate seeds which have an embryo sitting in suspended animation that can be saved on a shelf for a long time and then spring to life when planted.

No. These guys need to get into the ground fast, so it’s important to plant your avocados quickly or keep them damp until you can plant.

But I’m getting ahead of myself – let’s do a step-by-step picture guide, breaking down the frames from the video.

Step 1: Open an Avocado and Take Out the Pit

how to Sprout Avocado Pit sprouting avocado pits

This avocado grew out back of our current homestead. They are nice and large with rich buttery interiors. An excellent tree and well worth reproducing.

When I took out this pit it already had some small roots growing on it – all ready to go! I took it along with a half-dozen other pits outside to plant, which takes me to step two.

Step 2: Plant Your Avocado Pits in Potting Soil

 Sprout Avocado Pit

HowToSproutAvocadoPits-Step5There is a right side up on avocado pits. It’s the rounded side. Plant the flat side down since that’s where the roots will emerge. You could probably make a mistake and still have the tree come up fine, but I like to give my sprouting avocado pits every advantage.

A nice, loose potting mix is good but you can also easily germinate avocado pits directly planted in the ground – or, what seems to be even more successful, let them “accidentally” come up in your compost pile and transplant them.

Step 3: Water and Wait!

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This is the hard part – waiting for the avocado pits to sprout.

They will, though. Keep them watered but not soggy in a nice sunny location. Then, one day…

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germinating avocado

Beautiful!

When you sprout pits in water indoors, they then need to go through a “hardening off” period of adjustment to the harsher, brighter outdoor conditions or you can kill the young trees. When you instead sprout them in pots in full sun, you don’t have this issue. They’re ready to go.

How Long Does it Take for a Seedling Avocado To Bear Fruit?

The earliest a seedling avocado tree will fruit is at four to five years of age. My friend Eddy, however, scared his tree into fruiting at three years.

I have a beautiful seedling avocado tree growing in The Great South Florida Food Forest Project that is getting close to bearing size.

Rachel took this picture a year ago and it’s even bigger now.

avocado seedling I started by sprouting avocado pitsI wish I could pay that tree a visit again. Maybe when it fruits. The avocado I started it from had fruits as big as honeydew melons. It’s some sort of Thai avocado variety that was being grown passed around the local Thai community in South Florida. I’m excited to see this thing produce!

The California Avocado Commission claims it takes 5-13 years for a seedling tree to bear but you’re much more likely to see it fruit on the earlier end of that spectrum if they are well-tended, watered and grown in full sun.

Why Sprout Avocado Pits?

Common objections to growing avocado trees from seed are:

  1. Trees don’t always come true from seed 
  2. It takes a long time for them to bear
  3. Purchasing grafted trees will give you exactly the type you want

All of these objections are easy to answer.

  1. Who cares? Maybe you’ll get something better!
  2. So? Are you planning on dying soon?
  3. What if you don’t want to spend money? And like experiments?

I really find the arguments against growing fruit trees from seed tiresome. The “common wisdom” on the subject is lame. Man has grown trees from seed, including avocados, for thousands of years. We have the varieties we have today because of gardeners like you and me who love to experiment and take joy in raising up good things from tiny seeds.

If you get a variety that just isn’t great, graft it! It’s easy to graft, as I demonstrate in my “Get Grafting!” film which is available for a donation of any amount.

Get_Grafting_Preview

Seedling trees make great root stocks. Heck, even if they don’t fruit for you fast enough you can graft on a piece from an already fruiting tree and speed up the process.

Start your own avocado pits the easy way and eventually you’ll be bringing in baskets of fruit. It’s great fun, especially when you can plant seeds with children, and totally worth the time.

Trees you grow from seed cost nothing and will give you a sense of accomplishment like nothing else. I still remember how excited I was when my seedling peach trees fruited for the first time. It’s a great feeling.

So go – start sprouting avocado pits. I’m rooting for you… and so will they!

How To Save Pumpkin Seeds

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Just in time for Halloween, let’s cover how to save pumpkin seeds.

How to save pumpkin seeds demonstration

Learning how to save pumpkin seeds is a good idea, especially if you’d like to grow next year’s jack-o-lanterns yourself.

I’ve been growing pumpkin and winter squash for a long time and I’ve always loved how easy it is to save pumpkin seeds.

Recently I posted a new video on how I save pumpkin seeds – and how I make seed packets to hold them until it’s time to plant them in the spring.

Here’s the video:

Now let’s break it down into a nice visual guide with pictures and everything!

How To Save Pumpkin Seeds, Step by Step

Are you ready to pack away seeds like a kleptomaniac squirrel so you never have to buy another pumpkin from the store again? I will help.

Step 1: Gut the Pumpkin and Save the Slop!

How to save pumpkin seeds step 1

The inner cavity of pumpkins and winter squashes is filled with a stringy mess of pumpkin bits and seeds. This isn’t the “good eating” part of the pumpkin, so it’s not worth trying to save any of the stringy mass, except for the seeds. In order to do that, move on to step two!

Step 2: Clean the Pumpkin Seeds

saving pumpkin seeds step 2

I dump pumpkin guts and seeds into a colander and swish them around under running water to clean them out, smashing the goop through the holes and separating the strings. If you’d like to save pumpkin seeds for eating rather than planting, you can just go directly to roasting them at this point.

For seed-saving purposes, I’ve sometimes let pumpkin guts sit on the counter for a few days and rot around the seeds. This smells bad but really loosens up the seeds when you wash them out. I think it may also increase the germination rate but I haven’t tried a side-by-side trial.

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Step 3: Dry The Seeds

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Seed-covered paper towels on counters, windowsills, shelves, tabletops, dressers and even the bathroom counter are common in our house during the fall as we save pumpkin seeds alongside the other heirlooms we want to plant in our spring gardens.

Spread your pumpkin seeds out someplace where they won’t get wet again. Make sure they aren’t too wet when you spread them out (sometimes I pat them down with one paper towel, then spread them onto a second) and have good air circulation as you most definitely do not want them germinating on your counter. They should dry fast. This will also keep them from molding as easily in storage and potentially losing their ability to germinate.

Step 4: Make Seed Packets and Pack ’em Up!

 saving pumpkin seeds making homemade seed packet

There are better ways to make seed packets, but I just rip a sheet of paper in half, fold that, then fold up the edges a few times and tape them. You can see how in the video – it’s very simple.

Because I’m cheap and hate throwing things away too fast, I use scrap paper from the children’s homeschool assignments or pieces the toddler has doodled upon. My friend Steven Edholm has better looking seed packets, but they’re a bit small for the amount of pumpkin seeds I store.

saving pumpkin seeds homemade seed packet step-6

I also illustrate my homemade seed packets, which is NOT OPTIONAL. You have to draw on them. You just have to. It’s the rule.

Along with a drawing of the mother pumpkin, I also note the variety, the harvest year and notes on type. This is important as I work on my pumpkin breeding projects, but for your pumpkin seed saving you likely just need to note the type or draw a nice picture of the headless horseman.

If you live in a humid climate or need to store seeds for a longer period, you can dry pumpkin seeds a little further in a dehydrator (I like this reliable and inexpensive one for everything from fruit to jerky) and then pack them in tightly shut Mason jars stowed in the fridge.

That’s it – the whole scoop on how to save pumpkin seeds.

If you’re interested in going much deeper into saving seeds of all kinds, Seed to Seed is my own go-to resource on the subject. It’s a must-have for serious gardeners.

Happy gardening and enjoy the rest of October.

Steven’s Seedling Apple Tree Update

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Steven recently posted a new video updating us on the progress of his seedling apple tree – the first one to fruit – which is bearing good apples, in complete defiance of conventional “wisdom.”

I am a vigorous advocate of growing fruit trees from seed and Steven provided the inspiration for my own apple-growing.

Though I have to leave behind my Florida apple orchard (ouch!) in order to move to paradise, I am growing apple trees from seed again. Just because.

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Though we lost some of them to cutworms or something, we still have some growing nicely in pots. When we find our new homestead, I hope to get scion wood from the US to experiment with here in the tropics.

Why not? If Steven can grow good apples from seed, maybe I’ll be able to grow good apples in the tropics!

Sea Coconuts

Sea-coconut

The sea coconut (Manicaria saccifera), not to be confused with the true coconut (Cocos nucifera), is a common drift seed.

I recently captured multiple images of this kid-pleasing aquatic rambler at a local beach.

Sea-coconut-2 Sea-coconut Sea-coconuts

While wandering the shoreline, I also saw this crazy-looking drift seed and wondered what it was:

Unknown-sea-seed

I did some research and discovered that spiky capsule is the container from which sea coconuts are released!

Check out this old illustration:

I should have just busted one open; however, I failed to bring any home with me. Next time I see some at the beach I’ll take some home to open up.

Back in Florida I almost always found the spherical seeds without any accompanying pod. One time I found a single, half-broken pod but didn’t connect that with the multi-lobed things washing up on our local beach.

Here are some of the seeds I found back in Florida, including a sea coconut with most of a shell on it:

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We must be much closer to where the trees grow so the action of the surf hasn’t opened all their shells yet.

The bumpy things are everywhere.

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I have a fascination with sea beans, as I’ve revealed in previous posts.

I’ve even painted their portraits.

David-the-good-drift-seeds-painting

 

I’ve germinated some of them, too.

Sometimes they germinate right on the beach, like this tropical almond:

Sprouting-tropical-almond

The tropical almond tree in The Great South Florida Food Forest Project was that size when I planted it.

Now it’s a beautiful, big and productive tree.

If you’re interested in learning more about drift seeds and sea beans, you’ll enjoy this page.

I love the beach. The sea life, the birds, the surf, the driftwood and the strange botanical debris always washing up from strange shores.

Anyone else collect sea beans?

Back to Pumpkin Breeding

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I was unable to continue the Seminole pumpkin breeding project I began last year for a couple of reasons.

  1. We sold our property in Florida and missed the spring of 2016
  2. 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.

Sprouting Apricot Pits

Germinated-apricot-pit

Sprouting apricot pits is easy. You germinate apricots just like you germinate peach pits… and if you watch my video, you’ll be starting your own apricot trees from seed in no time.

sprouting apricot pits germinate apricot

Look at the beautiful apricot pit bursting into life!

That said, no matter how many times you do something, once you do it on film you start to worry if you did it right.

When I did my “How to Germinate Peaches (and Other Stone Fruit)” video back in July I hoped I would have some success, even though I’ve done this before and never had it fail:

After buying the fruit, doing the work to make a nice video and posting it to YouTube… doubts entered my mind.

Could the fruit I chose be sterile? Might the pits fail to germinate and just mold over instead? Should I have cracked the pits first and just taken out the kernels?

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Will the universe conspire against me to make everything I do fall into weeping and ashes?

Apparently not:

Now I have no idea if I can get an apricot to grow in the tropics but, by golly, I’m going to give it a go. I know it will be fine for the first half-year until it needs a winter dormancy. Maybe I can build a big outdoor fridge! Sprouting apricot pits is just the start… now I actually need to grow the trees.

That said, if my seedling peaches are any indicator, we’re going to do fine with the tree part:

Apricots are one of my favorite dried fruit. I wish I’d tried this with apricot pits back in Florida or Tennessee where I’d have a better chance of getting fruit, but we’ll try tricking them into fruiting here by leaf-stripping during the dry season. It could happen, and if not: well, we pulled off a good demonstration on how to germinate apricots, at least! The other pits haven’t germinated yet but they can take a few months. I’ll bet we get a few more soon.

Sprout Apple Seeds for Fun and Fruit!

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How would you sprout apple seeds like these?

sprout apple seeds

If you’ve ever wondered how to sprout apple seeds, I demonstrate the process in a recent episode of Totally Crazy Easy Gardening:

A couple of days ago I followed up that demonstration with a report on how the germination had turned out…  and, I got Rachel to join me in potting up the young apple trees.

I was quite happy with the results. I believe we got a 100% success rate, as we didn’t find any seeds in the jar which hadn’t sprouted.  It took one month for the seeds to germinate in the refrigerator. Not bad at all.

As for the question “will these apples grow in the tropics,” yes, they should, since Kevin Hauser knows his stuff.

However, we may have to wait 8 to 10 years to find out if they will actually fruit…  and if that fruit is good, so-so, or poor. If it is poor, it will still be good for pies. Even crab apples have their uses.

How to Sprout Apple Seeds

All you need to do is eat a few apples and save the seeds. Plant the seeds rapidly and don’t let them dry out.

You’re not planting them in their final location at first. As you can see in the first video, Rachel simply puts them in some moist potting soil in a jar, and then places that jar in the refrigerator. A Ziploc bag works even better than a jar. Within a month, the seeds had already sprouted and were growing roots.

sprout apple seeds

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Once you see little roots and shoots, transplant them just as we did in the second video.

Occasionally, apple seeds will already be germinating inside the apple or will start right away from the fruit. My friend Steven Edholm at Skillcut, remarked in the comments of the first video that many apples are stored under refrigeration which breaks the dormancy cycle of the seeds, so sometimes all you need to sprout apple seeds is to plant them directly.

Don’t place your newly transplanted apple seedlings right into full sun. Find a shady spot and put them there and take extra care when they’re young. Soon they’ll be large enough transplant into your orchard or food forest.

Why Sprout Apple Seeds?

I’ve always been a fan of growing trees from seed, particularly edible fruit trees. There’s a certain magic to growing something from a tiny little sprout into a productive and useful tree. I gained a huge amount of satisfaction from the peach trees I started from seed some years ago. When they started producing peaches, I firmly believe they were the best peaches in the entire world. In the entire history of peaches, there were no peaches as excellent as the peaches I started from seed. You can’t talk me out of this fanciful belief so don’t even try.

Sprouting apple seeds is an excellent homeschool project. The same goes for germinating peach pits, though it generally takes longer. If you live in a climate where apple trees grow, and they grow in a lot more places than you might think, why not start your own apple trees from seed? Then if they don’t turn out to be what you expected, go ahead and graft them.

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You can get my grafting movie for a donation of any amount at this link. It demonstrates three simple methods of grafting. (If you’re poor, or a widow, take it for free. If not, please deposit a huge amount of money into my PayPal account. Thank you in advance. Every little bit helps. And huge amounts of cash help even more.)

There’s really nothing to lose when you plant fruit tree seeds. You can plant more seeds for trees then you need, then thin them out. It’s not like you have any money invested in the process. All you’re out is a little bit of time.

If you had a tree that was absolutely abysmal and you didn’t want to graft it,  apple wood is great for smoking!

My friend William at Permacuture Apprentice wrote a nice big post on growing trees from seed that you might enjoy.

Go, plant those seeds. Once you start you’ll never look at an apple core the same way. So much potential!

Can You Grow Black Sapote From Seed… and will it make GOOD fruit??

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Richard in South Florida recently sent me a question asking if you can grow black sapote from seed and have it make good fruit.

“Can you get fruit from growing a seed from from the fruit of a Black Sapote. I’ve read that it is not true to seed. I bought a tree from someone here in South Florida in a 3 gallon pot. Tree looks great and the grower had many growing from seed. Can you elaborate a bit regarding this topic?”

Here’s a photo of Richard’s tree:

Black sapote from seed

Your tree will almost certainly do fine and make good fruit – I’ve never heard of a “bad seedling” and many chocolate pudding fruit trees are propagated by seeds. They vary in size and number of seeds, but they’ll be good. Also, I have heard that young trees produce smaller fruit and they will get better and bigger as the tree matures. I’ve found this to be the case thus far with the black sapote I planted in my parents’ yard in Ft. Lauderdale.

It was bearing its first crop of a few fruit when I took this photo:

South_FL_Food_Forest_David_The_Good_Chocolate_Pudding_Fruit

And here is one of the first fruits:

black sapote from seed

It’s small and wasn’t of the best flavor, but the tree was young and they do get better and better.

This makes sense as it takes a lot of energy for a tree to produce fruit. More leaves bring in more sunlight which produces more sugar for the fruits – and more roots bring up more water and more minerals which will enhance the size and flavor of your black sapotes.

Germinating Black Sapote Seeds

 

Like many tropical trees without real winter dormancy periods, black sapote seeds deteriorate in germination rates rapidly once mature. They need to be planted right away, if possible, for good success.

Again: The seeds need to be planted immediately as they don’t keep long, so
if you get some and want to start them, plant quickly. I’ve planted some seeds that were a few months old and they didn’t grow at all.

Like papaya, black sapote seeds need to get in the ground fast.

How Long Does it Take a Black Sapote Tree to Bear Fruit?

 

Everyone wants one of these as quickly as possible:

Chocolate Pudding Fruit from seed

As Richard writes:

“How long can I expect for my (black sapote tree) to fruit? I worked hard on mending the soil prior to planting my trees. Lots of compost, earthworm castings, fish fertilizer, mycorizzae, and plenty of water and sun.”

According to the University of Florida:

“Black sapote may be propagated by seed, marcottage (air-layering, budding, and grafting. Black sapote varieties do not come true from seed and seedling trees may take up to 5 or 6 years to flower. Trees with only male flowers will not produce fruit; trees with female or male and female flowers will bear fruit. Superior fruit varieties and selections are therefore propagated by budding and grafting.”

I hadn’t heard previously of there being some trees that are solely male; however, this is the case with their cousin the persimmon.

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If you did have that kind of poor luck, then I would simply graft on some female scion wood.

The Rare Fruit Club of Australia covers the issue in short:

“Black sapote is usually andromonecious, ie it has both male and hermaphrodite flowers on the same tree. The axillary flowers are normally solitary if hermaphrodite and in clusters of 3-7 if male. They are white and tubular-lobed with a persistent 4-lobed green calyx and an ovary with 8-12 carpels. Self-incompatibility has been reported for some isolated trees; others may produce only male flowers. Pollination is by insects.”

Since many gardeners grow black sapote from seed and it’s the most common means of propgation, I can’t see that the “male only” thing is much of a problem.

So – how long?

 

According to an Australian government site:

“Seedling trees usually take 5 – 7 years to fruit.”

Another site in Australia claims:

“Trees begin to bear fruit in 3-5 years.”

This may refer to grafted specimens, however.

My black sapote tree fruited two years after planting and it had less care than you are giving yours. I started with a sad, marked-down, root-bound tree.

I pruned the roots when it was planted to undo some of the damage and it has rewarded us with good growth.

Getting a Black Sapote From Seed to Fruit Faster

 

The way to get fruit trees to grow fast is three-fold:

  1. Keep the grass away from the trunk. Mulch is better than bare soil.
  2. Water regularly and deeply
  3. Feed it regularly

Mulch really helped my fruit trees in North Florida to take off. I also tossed a lot of kitchen scraps, waste paper and rough compostable materials around the base of my seedling peach trees and they went nuts.

MushroomsCompostWeb

You can see me following this method in my film Compost Everything: The Movie.

Following that up with regular feeding and compost tea was a help. Urine is also very good. Regular water is a must for quick growth.

Black sapote trees are quite undemanding and are known for slow growth but you can definitely speed up their advance towards fruit-bearing. There’s no way a I wouldn’t grow a black sapote from seed if I have the chance… I’m always growing fruit trees from seed and had plenty of success, plus I’ve seen and documented many other success stories, such as Eddy’s avocado and these additional stories and photos here.

My bet is that you get chocolate pudding fruit in three years or less.

Keep us posted!

Where to find non-GMO seeds?

Lowes Trap
non-GMO seeds

I collect and grow only non-GMO seeds.

Eleanor asks where to find non-GMO seeds:

“I want to plant NON-GMO crops, and wondered if you had a good outlet for seeds?  I plan to use sweet potatoes and tomatoes bought from Whole Foods; plant the potato eyes, and glean and dry the tomato seeds from the various heirlooms. Also will use garlic from Whole Foods, unless you say otherwise.”

Great question.

As GMO crops become more common, finding non-GMO seeds is a concern for many gardeners. It’s such a concern, in fact, that when I had my plant nursery and would do plant shows, I was regularly asked whether or not my vegetable plants and even perennials and trees were “GMO” or not.

Fortunately, it’s very unlikely that you’ve ever seen a GMO fruit tree for sale. Most every tree for sale was created the old-fashioned way, via breeding and grafting.

That’s not to say there are no GMO fruit trees. An apple named “Artic” was approved last year that contains genes that keep it from browning when sliced. You’re probably not going to see it for sale at Lowes anytime soon, though… though one day, unless things change, we will have GMO fruit trees there.

Lowes Trap

With perennial vegetables and rarer varieties, you’re not likely to encounter any GMOs. Keep trading around those chaya and Malabar spinach cuttings, folks. If you plant organic potatoes and garlic, etc., from Whole Foods they should be GMO-free as well.

The problem we’re mostly facing now is in the realm of seeds. That’s where it gets tricky.

Why Finding GMO-Free Seeds is Getting Hard

 

Two words: cross-pollination.

Or maybe that’s a compound word that counts as one word. I should look it up.

Hmm… not sure this helps.

The problem – with seeds that is, not with grammar – is contamination. Some extra promiscuous crops such as corn send pollen through the air for miles, making it very hard to save pure seed. That airborne pollen contains the genes of its parents, meaning that spliced and diced genes can get into your corn patch and render your saved seeds non-heirloom.

Fortunately not all plants spread their pollen far and wide. Saving non-GMO seeds from tomatoes, beans, eggplant and other “inbreeders” is easy since they don’t spread their pollen far and wide. But grains are a different matter.

When I grew this corn…

Corn-TexCuban

…I had to plant it a few weeks late on purpose because in the neighboring field a farmer was growing GMO corn test varieties for UF. If my corn was tasseling at the same time his was, I would no longer have non-GMO seeds to plant the next year.

I love growing corn. I find it to be a miracle of nature and man’s hard work that a wild grass now bears big, beautiful ears. And the variety you can get is amazing!

Yet all that hard breeding work is being threatened by scientists in labs. We don’t know how this experiment with GMOs is going to end but my bets are on “badly.”

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So – how do you get non-GMO seed? There are some sources I’m familiar with and have used; and I’m sure you all have more companies worth sharing. Post in the comments if you know of good places I’ve missed.

Sources for Non-GMO Seeds

 

Right now I can name multiple non-GMO seed companies who have pledged never to knowingly offer any contaminated seeds.

 

Territorial Seed Company

Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds

Johnny’s Selected Seeds

Peaceful Valley (GrowOrganic.com)

Richter’s Herbs

Southern Exposure Seed Exchange

The Seed Savers Exchange

Fertile Valley Seeds (Carol Deppe)

 

SeedSaving-TithoniaRotThere’s a much longer list here, broken down by state.

Ebay also has lots of seeds for sale, many of which are heirlooms.

Saving seeds is harder than it used to be but it’s also becoming more important than it used to be.

If you care about maintaining heirlooms, learn to save your own seeds (I recommend this book – it’s a MUST HAVE for any seed saver) and actively support the companies and organizations who are offering non-GMO seeds.

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