Friday, 6 June 2008


Early this year sometime I sent an email to the Irish Seedsavers because I thought it would be fun to have some contact with a group that looks like they do so much great stuff. One of my grandfathers was from Ireland, too, and my mother says I have a lot in common with him (that rebellious streak, evidently) so I have a soft spot for Ireland, in general. I never met him - he drove very badly and didn't 'hold with' the road rules if they didn't suit him! He was killed when his car collided with a bus.

Nothing. No email came.....until yesterday. A brief, friendly message floated through the ether to me, like a little note in a bottle, washed up onto my screen. Contact. Beautiful. That is what is so good about the internet. I would like to have contact with seedsavers groups everywhere but when I try to find them online, there are not many with websites or blogs but I search on.

Funny the traits we inherit, just like with plants. People often say to me that they saved the seed but the next generation was not the same. That is like saying that you are not the same as your parents! You have to go to a bit of trouble to save seed from the plants that worked best in your situation otherwise you have a greater chance of getting some dud plants that are tall and unproductive or very slow to mature; everyone has some dud relatives and its the same for plants!

After deciding I wasn't going interstate to be a wildlife vet, I went to uni and did languages but I also did biology and this is still a great love of mine, and fits nicely with the whole food-growing thing. After some particularly good lectures on genetics, I wanted, once again, to take the science route of study. But, things happened and I didn't pusue it but genetics is fascinating and the history of life on earth is a mighty interesting thing to read about. These days there are some fabulous books for the general public on evoltion and so on and one in particular is 'The Ancestor's Tale' by Richard Dawkins.

Below is a list of some of the courses the Irish Seedsavers are running; there are many more. Impressive, to say the least. Maybe we should be more proactive in this way...maybe not. Deb already runs courses on some of these things. I would like to run the one called "Planning your natural garden" or something similar. It would be also an introduction to permaculture at the same time. Maybe one day.....maybe not.

"Learning how to think differently about your garden" - now that is more like something I would run. It could be the first in a series about thinking. "Learning how to think differently about your food / life / impact on the earth / holidays / just about everything!"
I could do that but would anyone come? Are people ready to look beyond their own experiences for other ideas ? Doubtful. Too 'outside the square' maybe....maybe not! Or perhaps "Getting the most from the posts on this blog!" would be an easier way of saying the same thing. Ha, funny, maybe....maybe not that funny, actually. Food for thought, though. And I would just also like to say "Thanks Barb...."

Maintenance with Bud-Grafting
Dry Stone & Lime Mortar Walling
Creating an Orchard
Getting The Best Out Of Your Polytunnel Year After Year
Introduction to Planning Your Natural Garden
Introduction to Beekeeping
Lime Plastering & Cob Building Part 1
Country Wine-Making
Beginners' Organic Gardening Part 3
Writing from the Book of Nature
Making Herbal Preparations .
Introduction to Renewable Energy & Solar Power Installation
Building an Earth Oven
Exploring the Uses of Hedgerow Plants


Veggie Gnome said...

Fascinating programme! I'd go to all of them.

I think if something like this was offered by the Adelaide Hills & Plains Seedsavers (and widely publicised) there'd be quite a lot of people interested.

My feeling is that people are very slowly but surely trying to take back some control and be in charge of their lives. Get more involved. This can only happen in small steps, otherwise it'd be too daunting and discouraging.

Maggie said...

The Lime Plastering & Cob course sounds interesting.
Food Forest has a permaculture certificate course in Jan/Fed 2009 with David Holmgren.
So many interesting things to do & learn about.
I think I best go & wash the dishes!