The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of local food systems, as interest in gardening has exploded. With higher demand, many experienced difficulties in accessing seed, which illuminated the critical role that seeds hold in food systems and generated increased interest in seed systems. To respond to the increased interest in seed saving, your local seed library has connected with a team of University of Vermont (UVM) researchers, seed saving expert, and Vermont resident Sylvia Davatz to offer a seed saving workshop.
To ensure that the workshop meets your needs as a seed saver and to understand the importance seed libraries hold in your community, UVM will conduct a research study involving a voluntary and confidential survey. We are interested in understanding your impressions of the workshop and your engagement with the seed library. The survey should take no more than 10 minutes, though we will send you an additional survey six months after the workshop to understand the lasting impacts of the workshop
Sylvia began seed saving about 25 years ago when she noticed some of her favorite varieties were disappearing from seed catalogs. Over the years, her work has expanded into preserving rare varieties, selecting and adapting regionally appropriate crops to support a year-round, locally-based food system, experimenting with borderline crops and season extension, and informally practicing permaculture. One driving interest is increasing the range of staple crops, such as grains and rice, that we can grow in Vermont to help create the most interesting and diverse selection of foods on our plates. Sylvia believes that given what is happening in the seed industry it is critically important that we learn and pass on the skills of seed saving and stewarding seeds into the future.
This workshop will consist of a presentation that includes introductory seed saving topics with the opportunity for a deeper discussion. This workshop is designed to fit seed savers from all levels of experience. To ensure that the workshop meets your needs as a seed saver and to understand the importance seed libraries hold in your community, UVM will conduct a brief research study involving a voluntary and confidential survey