Saving your own seeds is important for a multitude of reasons:
- Saves money
- Lets you keep growing the crops you love
- Preserves important plants
- Allows you to trade plants
- Possibly even preserves cultural heritage
Saving seeds also strikes back at companies attempting to patent and own seeds and the future of farming.
Saving seeds is an age-old tradition that people have honored since mankind began to farm, and it has led to the development of many of the crops that we know and love today.
By saving seeds from their best plants, farmers gradually developed better and better crops, with more disease resistance and higher yields.
And all of these great plants have made their way to our gardens today.
6 Reasons You Should Save Seeds
1. Cost Reduction
Buying seeds can get expensive, especially if you grow a lot of your own crops and have to purchase a variety of specimens.
So, if you don’t save your seeds, you’ll need to buy them every year.
Continuous buying will eat into what you’ve saved from growing your own food.
Thus, if you can cut out this cost, you won’t have to spend near as much each year, especially if you can produce your own compost.
However, of course, you may occasionally have to buy tools and other equipment or replace some seeds after a particularly bad year.
But overall, you will have few ongoing costs, and therefore you will save more money.
2. You Can Regrow the Exact Same Crop
Since almost all serious vegetable growers will have favorite crops, you’ll probably have items you’ll want to grow year after year.
Yet, if you buy your seed commercially, you depend on others to keep perpetuating your favorite crop.
Commercial growers frequently let individual varieties die off and develop alternatives, so the offerings can change every few years or even annually.
Thus, you may lose access to your favorite kind of plant, even if some similar alternatives are available.
But, if you harvest and save your own seeds, this won’t happen.
Instead, you can continue to grow your best vegetables for as long as you want.
Read Also >> How to Harvest and Store Seeds?
3. Seed Sharing
Growing your own vegetables is often a communal effort, or at least has some community spirit wound into it.
You will likely find that you share your crops with neighbors, that friends help with your harvesting in exchange for some fruit, or that you get to know other growers nearby who are interested in seed swaps.
This kind of exchange is at the heart of growing food, and whether it’s produce or plants, you are swapping, having seeds to share is a great way to contribute to the art of farming.
You’ll also diversify your yield.
Plus, seed sharing keeps popular varieties in common use, so if your crop fails one year, you can turn to a friend you have shared seeds with and get some of theirs.
Otherwise, you may have difficulty finding the particular seeds you have grown before.
Naturally, you’re never guaranteed to get your seeds back from someone else, but seed swapping can reduce the risk of losing your favorite varieties after a lousy year.
Read Also >> How to Save Heirloom Seeds?
4. Strikes Back Against Seed Patenting
Some big companies have, in recent years, started trying to “own” seeds and rent them to farmers.
And when they do this, they hike up the price of growing, and they take control of the food system in a sinister way.
They also ensure that the plants that grow from their seeds are infertile so that no one can produce new crops from them.
Thus, growers must come back and purchase more seeds the following year, which increases the company’s profits.
So, saving your own seeds strikes back against this trend and minimizes your dependency on such companies, reducing their grip on the farming world as a whole.
Keeping your seeds also reduces the risks associated with monocultures.
And it makes it so that you don’t participate in a movement wholly motivated by greed and profit, making it harder and less profitable for companies to try to “own” seeds.
Denying seed ownership ensures that everyone can have access to food they can grow, meaning that you’re also helping in the fight against hunger.
Therefore, while it may seem like a small act, every person saving their seeds increases the number of viable seeds still in circulation.
It also reduces the hold of these companies while simultaneously making the practice of patenting seeds less profitable and less attractive.
Read Also >> How to Prevent Cross-Pollination
5. Increases Diversity
The more we depend upon commercial varieties, the less diversity we have in our food.
And less diversity can be dangerous because diverse foods are more robust.
Thus, you are more likely to find varieties that are pest and disease resistant when you have a whole range of plants to choose from, rather than just one culture.
You also get more options and a more varied fruiting season, helping to spread food around and reducing the impact of a bad harvest for everyone.
Therefore, variety often increases safety because if one crop fails, others can fill in the gap.
So, by saving seeds from your individual cultures, you increase the diversity of the world’s stock and ensure that certain plants do not go extinct.
6. Allows For Adaptation
Over the years, crops will adapt to the conditions in your garden, and the seeds from these crops will be more likely to grow well in the unique conditions you can offer them.
Thus, you are more likely to get good, strong crops year after year.
Read Also >> Hybrid vs. Heirloom Plants
There are many reasons to save your seeds, including personal gain and the ability to contribute to the health of the farming community.
So, learning how to save your seeds is a great way to reduce your costs, protect your stock, and invest in the future of farming.
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