Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Not babies in the human sense, but I planted some seeds and I feel such a connection to my little seedlings! It's my first time growing anything so I decided to get seeds and a seed growing kit from the company Burpee. This year I'm attempting to grow chives, swiss chard, tomatoes and mixed peppers in the vegetable arena. I have also planted some Cosmos in memory of a beloved family member. For that reason alone, I really hope my babies bloom.

Here is a picture of the little ones, all tucked into the soil:

My number one concern in planting my own vegetables and flowers was to ensure the seeds were non-GMO. After some brief research, I realized I am not the only one with this thought! Burpee has an entire page dedicated to proving they are non-GMO seeds.

For the record, I own W. Atlee Burpee & Co.  Burpee is NOT owned by Monsanto.  We do purchase a small number of seeds from the garden seed department of Seminis, a Monsanto subsidiary, and so do our biggest competitors. We do NOT sell GMO seed, never have in the past, and will not sell it in the future.  [Burpee]
As I've ventured into this foray of sustainability, I have started to think about things I never knew existed. I wish there was a way to know a seed's history. Where did it start? Where was it grown? I know there are several non-profits dedicated to this cause now but I wish each packet of seeds listed it's history. A family tree of sorts for seeds.

I am also did not realize there were such things as organic seeds. What makes one seed organic but not the other? I always associated non-organic as associated with pesticides but since I'm growing them without pesticides, what could be non-organic about my non-organic seeds? I even picked up organic soil to re-pot my vegetables as they get bigger.
Organic gardening is more than simply avoiding synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. It is about observing nature’s processes, and emulating them in your garden as best you can. And the most important way to do that is to understand the makeup of your soil and to give it what it needs. If anything could be called a ‘rule’ in organic gardening, it’s this: feed the soil, not the plant.
Hm, to be perfectly honest, I still don't quite understand the difference.

Viewing some gardening forums were more helpful because they spoke in layman's terms without all the fancy language. I see that this is another question that has come up quite often. There are two groups on this issue: the philosophical group and the fearful group. The philosophical group believes that by buying organic seeds, you are telling the company that you are willing to pay extra for organic, lessening the grip that GMO companies have on growing and slowing down their spread. The fearful group believes that with winds affecting growers, a GMO farm next to a non-GMO could potentially become contaminated by GMO seeds blowing over. To ensure that you have no such contaminated seed, buy organic. Both make sense. Just to lessen my guilt, it is true that all produce grown from the regular seed will be organic. It's just the seed itself that has the unknown origin.

So for next time, organic seeds, good to know! I will keep everyone updated of the progress of these little fellas. Until then, all advice on gardening, growing, GMOs, organics, etc. is very very welcome! This rookie could use the help!

Until the next adventure,
Mama A

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