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Peas, the SoCal Winter Legume! Now through December, plant more each month!This just in from Margie Bushman! A celebration to bring seeds & people together!

Hi Everyone,  so much going on with the fire, the holidays, and our recent trip to India for the International Permaculture Convergence.  So we are a little behind with organizing, but wanted to remind you all about the upcoming 10th Annual Community Seed Swap at the end of this month, please save the date.  With a new location & time!  Lot’s more space, both indoors & outdoors, and excited to be co-sponsoring with Trinity Community Gardens.  Stay tuned for more information soon. 

10th Annual Santa Barbara Community Seed Swap – a Decade of Seeds!

Sunday, January 28, 2018, 1:30 -4pm, Free – Rain or Shine!

NEW LOCATION Trinity Gardens @ Trinity Lutheran Church, 909 North La Cumbre Road, Santa Barbara, CA

Event Facebook page (English & Spanish):  https://www.facebook.com/groups/632203483488117/

Choosing Seeds: Catalogs to Seed Swaps!

Smart Design for Your Spring & Summer Garden, Seed Selection!

 


More Info: Margie@sbpermaculture.org(805) 962-2571

A community event hosted by Santa Barbara Permaculture Network & Trinity Gardens
(805) 962-2571
P.O. Box 92156, Santa Barbara, CA 93190
margie@sbpermaculture.org
http://www.sbpermaculture.org

Please consider the environment before printing this email

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Thomas Jefferson was a gardening enthusiast, but his passion for growing food went beyond his own backyard. Apparently he believed that America was incapable of true democracy unless 20 percent of its citizens were self-sufficient on small farms. This would enable them to be real dissenters, free to voice opinions and beliefs, without any obligation to food producers who might hold their survival at stake. ~ Katherine Martinko

Container Carrot Patio Planter Haxnicks

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You can start with any container you wish right outside your door, upstairs or downstairs, on the roof, for the freshest tasty organic veggies! (Haxnicks container)

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xVegTrug Stand Up Gardening bed for people with disabilities

Winner of the 2012 Green Thumb Award for Outstanding New Product, the Vegtrug’s back-saving design allows you to garden while standing. Bad knees, bad back? No problem! Get outside, raise your spirits, improve your health! There are no age limits to veggie gardening!

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Container Wall Cans! Any fence or wall will do!

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Any wall or fence will do! Be creative!

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Creative Container gardening on your Balcony!x

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Garden anywhere! The Balcony is perfect! Every which way but loose!

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On the ground Strawberries Pallet Gardenx

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Strawberries in Pallets on the ground…

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STRAWBERRIES, LOTS OF STRAWBERRIES! Overhead planted in rain gutters!x

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…to Rain Gutters overhead!

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Residential Tower Gardeningx
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Grow Fast food in space saver Tower Gardens at home, to feed the homeless, at the office or hospital!

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LA Veggie Roof Garde, architect Norman Millar’s Arkhouse

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At owner/architect Norman Millar’s Arkhouse in the Los Angeles area, the rooftop veggie garden gets plenty of SoCal sun in between polycarbonate panels. Photo: Robin Horton.

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It’s a “liberating DIY revolution,” as writer Megan Mayhew Bergman calls it. In her article “Democracy needs gardeners!” which is an inspiring call for Americans to dig up their lawns, convert empty spaces, and utilize available windowsills, Bergman urges Americans to start gardening as an act of patriotism.

The Back 40 or a gorgeous Food Not Lawn front yard! Do it!

Food Not Lawn Vegetable Garden Front Yard

Guerrilla Gardening has changed the face of many a landscape, raised neighborhood pride, and often feeds many!

Neighborhood Guerilla Garden Before After

Started in 2009, Seattle’s 7 acre, 2.5 miles from downtown Seattle, Beacon Food Forest includes an Edible Arboretum with fruits gathered from regions around the world, a Berry Patch for canning, gleaning and picking, a Nut Grove with trees providing shade and sustenance, a Community Garden using the p-patch model for families to grow their own food, a Gathering Plaza for celebration and education, a Kid’s Area for education and play and a Living Gateway to connect and serve as portals as you meander through the forest. It’s all done by volunteers and the food is free for foraging!

Small to large, Community Gardens, often urban, but not always, give landless apartment dwellers, children, disabled and seniors the blessed and grateful opportunity to garden, enjoy the outdoors, events – weddings, concerts, art exhibits, share friendship, learning and beauty with each other!

Urban garden, Fort Mason Community Garden, San Francisco, CA

Urban Community Garden, Fort Mason, San Francisco CA

Per the GrowNetwork.com: Only a few generations ago, our recent ancestors all kept their own seed supplies. I’m not talking about ancient history… I’m talking about your great-grandparents. They traded their favorite seeds with their friends and neighbors, and they passed on the best seeds to their children. In doing so, they bred vegetable varieties that were tailor-made for their local climates. And they maintained a healthy level of genetic diversity in their food supply.

Seeds Jars SeedsavingIt’s important we do the same! SeedSaving is as simple as collecting seeds from your best plants. Over the fence seed trading has always been done. These days it can be buying from online seed houses, seed exchanges, like Southern Exposure that intend to preserve heirloom plants. You might trade seeds online like at Seed Exchange – GardenWeb! You may want to contribute to a Seed Library 
or get started with free seeds from a Library. Santa Barbara CA’s Foodbank offers free seeds and instruction to people in need to help them grow their own food! Local annual Seed Swaps are usually held in January so gardeners can plan their gardens, have plenty of time to start seedlings for spring planting.

Seeds are a precious resource. Take good care of them. In any natural disaster, they are the first thing I would take with me other than my dog! If you are political, work to secure our right to have non GMO seeds and the right to collect our own seeds.

National Heirloom Exposition Santa Rosa CA 2016

Uncommon and common EVENTS! Local and international festivals, presentations, symposiums, exhibits and more! From Permaculture to rainwater catchment – graywater, soil building, seed gathering trainings, garden design, container gardening to farming, community gardens, vertical gardening, local food, edible flowers, bees, pests & diseases, organic, perennial vegetables, sustainability, to research! And then there are your favorite veggie & fruit festivals, the Gilroy Garlic Festival, The Avocado Festival, Pumpkins, Apples, Strawberries, Tomatoes! All bring out our very best and inspire more conscious gardening!

In the US, the National Heirloom Exposition in Santa Rosa CA is September 6th, 7th & 8th, 2016. There will be over 100 national and internationally acclaimed on-topic speakers. You can learn and grow with some of the top names in the pure food movement and young people speakers from age 17 up! Three Day Pass only $30, kids 17 and under free! 3 Days isn’t really enough! Three proud sponsors include the City of Santa Rosa, Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds and Mother Earth News!

The terms Permaculture, then Food Forests/Forest Gardening, have come into use. They have changed the ways gardeners approach gardening and their interactions with each other! Simply put, permaculture is the development of agricultural ecosystems intended to be sustainable and self-sufficient.

Forest gardening is a low maintenance sustainable plant-based food production and agroforestry system based on woodland ecosystems, incorporating fruit and nut trees, shrubs, herbs, vines and perennial vegetables. Making use of plant guilds, companion planting, these can be intermixed to grow in a succession of layers, to build a woodland habitat. Forest gardening is a prehistoric method of securing food in tropical areas. In the 1980s, Robert Hart coined the term “forest gardening” after adapting the principles and applying them to temperate climates. (Wiki)

The keyword here is sustainability! It’s a contribution to the planet. It makes living here a good quality option for our children. This is a revolution that makes sense and is well worth fighting for! Plant seeds today!

San Francisco Permaculture Guild Man with outspread arms standing in Mustard taller than he is!SAN FRANCISCO PERMACULTURE GUILD BLOG

Take super good care of yourself and your loved ones. Fuel your body, mind and Spirit with the very best!

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The Green Bean Connection started as correspondence for the Santa Barbara CA USA, Pilgrim Terrace Community Garden. We are very coastal, during late spring/summer in a fog belt/marine layer area most years, locally referred to as the May grays, June glooms and August fogusts. Keep that in mind compared to the microclimate niche where your veggie garden is. Bless you for being such a wonderful Earth Steward!

See the entire July 2016 GBC Newsletter!

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Seeds Rock! From Catalog to Seed Swap or Seedy Sunday!

December, January is one of the happiest times of year for veggie gardeners! The holidays are when you give yourself your seeds for your whole garden for the year to come! Catalogs are out, you supplement with what you seed saved yourself. If you have some old iffy seeds that may not germinate, you might want to order some fresh ones to make sure you get good germination!

Seed swaps, or the like, are usually at the end of January in southern locations like SoCal. In northern areas it may be later. Seed swaps are exciting and wonderful, and are a random event! There may be seeds there you want, there may not be. They may be old non-viable seeds or fresh as they need to be! Guaranteed you will come home with some you want to try! Use Seed Swaps as fun backups to your catalog orders. Reliable seed companies have a reputation to uphold. You know what the seed is, how old it is. If you wait until after the Seed Swap, seed companies may be sold out of rare seeds or seeds that they only were able to get a few of due to weather last year and such. However, Seed Swaps ARE LOCAL – seeds of plants that grew well in your climate area!

Catalogs!

From reputable seed houses you are sure of what you are getting, organic, non-GMO. If a packet is on sale, pay attention to the year it was packed for. Make sure it is current or still viable.

Catalogs have endless marvelous varieties including from far away places! Southern states, warmer countries may have seeds that will do well in warmer weather times or areas.

Consider if drought or heat tolerant, cold tolerant when selecting seasonal veggies

Take a careful look at disease and pest resistance/tolerance.

Though much of companion planting is untested, look specially for plants that enhance each other’s growth, not just pest prevention.

Compare days to maturity. Do you have the land to wait for large fruits or would you like a steady table supply of smaller varieties, favorites.  Or will just a few be fine for a taste once a year? Smaller fruits may be perfect if you are a one person family or are not a big eater, enjoy quality versus quantity.

If space available is no consideration, order as you wish, experiment to your heart’s content! If space is tight or you are container planting, note spacing requirements. Think about dwarf varieties

Over planting lets you thin for tender trims for your salads. Harvest to leave enough space between your seedlings or young plants to allow the remaining ones room for their mature size. With some plants, like Chard, thinning can occur in stages. Thin leaving enough room for them to get bigger, thin again, even again. If you have few seeds, you might want to presprout, or plant at the mature distance. That can be a wee challenge if the seeds, like radish or carrots, are tiny. Do your best.

Seed Swap Tips, Considerations and Etiquette!

Planting from seeds, especially free seeds, is frugal and enjoyable! Meet other gardeners! Continue the race of super plants adapted to your area!

Some tips for swapping your saved seeds

Take your best clean seed – no chaff that might decompose and rot the seed. Remember, we want to inspire and be an example! We want new gardeners to succeed, to plant and save their seeds too!

Either take your seeds in a bag or container and let swappers select the number of seeds they need, or pack them in paper coin envelopes or plastic baggies so everyone gets some. Label seed packs with botanical and common name, and DATE – including the year – they were gathered! Note the location they were grown and, if large seeds, the number of seeds in the packet helps. Five seeds per pack for larger and common seeds is good. Thirty seeds or so is good for smaller seeds. If you don’t have small coin envelopes or want to buy little plastic baggies, you can cut up junk mail envelopes into smaller envelopes to hold your seeds. Whatever packaging you choose, make sure it will stay securely closed. No fun losing your little pups on the way home.

If your seed is unusual, you might include growing information as well. Many swappers are new gardeners or never planted that plant before. They will be most grateful since you already have had the real experience with that plant in our locality!

Tips, considerations, etiquette for choosing swap seeds

It’s not always certain exactly what you are getting or how old the seed is, but the price is right! However, old seed may not germinate at all, you lose time waiting for it to grow.

You get only what’s at the Swap, but the beauty of it is it’s local, adapted to your area! If it goes well for you too, please save some of your seed to share at the next Seed Swap!

Crazy surprises are terrific! You might try something you never would have thought of, and because it’s free you think there is nothing to lose! Hey, I’ll give it a try!

  • Take your garden plans, both summer and winter, with you. Find out how big that plant will grow, decide if it will really fit in your available space.
  • Take small baggies or envelopes and a pencil with you.
  • Label what you get when you get it. Name, date harvested.
  • Take only what you need and a few more in case those fail or you love them and want to plant another round or two! Leave the rest for others. Try not to get seed greed fever! 🙂
  • Look for the date on packages or containers. Are the seeds still viable?
  • Is it a summer or winter, or year ’round plant?
  • Ask tons of questions!

The last word! Remember, a Seed Swap is a random affair. Get your standby favorites from those reliable catalogs. Use Seed Swaps as a fun backup source and especially for local seeds.

Enjoy the suspense, the surprises, the tasty goodness of growing fresh wholesome food!

If you are from out-of-town but near enough, and enjoy adventurous journeys, come make a day of it at our Sunday Jan 27, 2019 SEED SWAP in our fair city, Santa Barbara CA!

If you don’t live in our area, please check to see when Seed Swaps will be in your area! If there are none, if you are willing, please, please, please, contact local permaculturists, garden groups/clubs, to see about starting one! Preserving our heritage, not GMO but heirloom seeds, is vital to our continued nutritious future, and for our children’s healthy futures!

ONLINE SEED SWAPS! As the National Gardening Assn says: One gardener’s extras are another’s treasures! Here’s how they do it!

See Seeds Rock! Choosing the Perfect Ones for You!
See also Smart Design for Your Spring & Summer Garden, Seed Selection!

With great gratitude to you and all our ancestors!
Happy seed hunting!

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Updated 12.5.18


The Green Bean Connection started as correspondence for our SoCal Santa Barbara CA USA, Pilgrim Terrace Community Garden. All three of Santa Barbara city community gardens are very coastal. During late spring/summer we are in a fog belt/marine layer area most years, locally referred to as the May grays, June glooms and August fogusts. Keep that in mind compared to the microclimate niche where your veggie garden is. Bless you for being such a wonderful Earth Steward!

Love your Mother! Plant bird & bee food! Think grey water! Grow organic! Bless you for being such a wonderful Earth Steward!

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Oh, Yes, It’s SEED SWAP time again!

Dear Santa Barbara area Gardeners,
this is an event not to miss!

Seed Swaps are wonderful exchanges of local seeds, all for FREE, and offer the magic of trying a seed you would never have bought!
Chicago Garden friends? Chicago Botanic Garden 2014 Seed Swap info!

Seeds are BIG!  And super important!  They are amazing living beings that carry our best plants forward through time.  Preserving them and saving them from interference, is essential.  The University of Georgia is just one place that has a Seedbank, in their case, the “Southern Seed Legacy.”  You can get seeds and recipes from them!



Saturday January 25, 6:30 to 8:30 PM  With a theme of plants from the Western Hemisphere & Mesoamerica this year, the Seed Swap kicks off with an evening talk by Lorenz Schaller of the Kusa Seed Society, titled “Modern Science Meets Ancient Maize.” Ancient Mayans had over 300 Maize foods, while the Incas, an advanced agricultural civilization, skillfully developed an amazing variety of plants like quinoa, beans, amaranth and potatoes. They prized Maize above all others as the plant that nourished and allowed their civilization to rise and thrive. Please come and share your examples of plants from the Americas like squash, corn, chayote, potatoes, beans, tomatoes, avocados, guavas, chili peppers, manioc, agave, and prickly pear.

Lorenz Schaller, a longtime Ojai resident,  is a remarkable steward of his environment. Formerly a staff member at the California Institute of Technology (Cal-Tech), Schaller studied and taught the nutritional, culinary, and ecological significance of bio-diverse seed crops for many decades. Kusa is a Sanskrit word meaning sacred grass.

Workshop at SB Downtown Public Library, $5 donation please or more if you can do it! Your generosity will be put to good use.


Sunday, January 26, 11 AM to 3 PM
6th Annual Santa Barbara Community Seed Swap!

FREE! Santa Barbara Public Library, Faulkner Gallery, 40 E. Anapamu St, Santa Barbara, CA. If you are from out-of-town but near enough, and enjoy adventurous journeys, come make a day of it in our fair city!

Seed Swaps are wonderful exchanges of local seeds, all for FREE, and offer the magic of trying seeds you would never have bought!

More than 400 people attended last year, sharing seeds and knowledge with other backyard gardeners, plant lovers, and farmers! Come be a part of this seed saving movement! Be sure our locally adapted varieties of seed & plants are passed on to future generations. Children are welcome!  Local groups will table, including the Santa Barbara Seed Saving Guild, who will share valuable seed saving techniques and encourage local gardeners to grow out and harvest some of their best seeds for future gardens and seed swaps, making us a truly food secure community. Seed saving is a fun and easy way to connect to the circle of life.

Bring seeds, plants, cuttings, and garden knowledge to swap.

Don’t have these?
Come anyway and get seeds!
Seeds to sow, grow, harvest!
Grow seeds to save and share next year.
Activities for all ages
Music that will have your toes tapping – Honeysuckle Possums
Special Speakers throughout the day
A gathering of garden friends old and new.

A community program hosted by the Santa Barbara Permaculture Network Non-profit
Event co-sponsors: Island Seed & FeedHealing Grounds Biodynamic Nursery, & the Santa Barbara Seed Saving Guild, a program of the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County.

Santa Barbara Annual Community Seed Swap on Facebook

Exactly where is MesoAmerica?

Map of MesoAmerica, Central America



Some tips for swapping your saved seeds:

Pack them in paper coin envelopes or plastic baggies. Label seed packs with botanical and common name, and DATE they were gathered!  Five seeds per pack for larger and common seeds is good. Thirty seeds or so is good for smaller seeds. If you don’t have small coin envelopes or want to buy little plastic baggies, you can cut up junk mail envelopes into smaller envelopes to hold your seeds.

Why seeds?!?  First, a Swap is a fun way to meet other gardeners and people interested in beautifying their communities and growing their own food.  Starting your crops from seed is frugal.  Watching a tiny plant sprout and grow is an incredibly special experience, totally inspiring.  You learn about life while getting plenty of sunshine!  Seeds you get at a local SWAP, are adapted to your area, and will grow super well!

How to select your new seeds! 

  1. Take your garden plan with you.
  2. Take small baggies or small envelopes and a pencil with you.
  3. Label what you get when you get it.
  4. Take only what you need and a few more in case those fail or you love them and want to plant another round or two!  Leave the rest for others. Try not to get seed greed fever! 🙂
  5. Look for the date on the package or container. Ask when seeds were gathered.  Are the seeds still viable?
  6. Find out how big that plant will grow, decide if it will really fit in your available space.
  7. Is it a summer or winter plant?
  8. Ask tons of questions!
  9. Have a great time!

See Seeds Rock! Choosing the Perfect Ones for You! 


If you don’t live in our area, please check to see when Seed Swaps will be in your area!  If there are none, if you are willing, please, please, please, contact local permaculturists, garden groups/clubs, to see about starting one!  Preserving our heritage, not GMO but heirloom seeds, is vital to our continued nutritious future, and for our children’s healthy futures!

ONLINE SEED SWAPS! As the National Gardening Assn says:  One gardener’s extras are another’s treasures! Here’s how they do it!


With great gratitude to you and all our ancestors! 
Happy seed hunting!

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