Selling and Saving Seeds at Seedy Sunday

This past Sunday, February 13th, was Toronto’s Seedy Sunday at Hart House, kicking off a variety of Seedy events throughout the GTA. For anyone not familiar with Seedy Sunday, it’s the first official event of the gardening season, a day which brings together gardeners, seed vendors, non-profit organizations, and community members to share the excitement of planning the upcoming gardening season.

The First Seedy event was held in Vancouver in 1989, and was organized by Seeds of Diversity and Canadian Organic Growers as a seed exchange. This was an event where people interested in the burgeoning organic gardening movement could meet and share information, resources, and of course, last year’s most successful seed varieties. The event was developed to promote awareness and engagement around heritage seeds – traditionally grown varieties of vegetables and flowers that had been saved for their special traits or ability to thrive in Canadian climates. The organizers of the original Seedy Saturday, as well as Seedy events today, work to remind people that seeds are at the heart of all food security; without safe and reliable seeds, there can be no safe and reliable sources of food.

This years Seedy events in the GTA have chosen to build upon this message by choosing an additional theme for the 2011 events: Access. This means providing access to seeds, gardening and knowledge, not just to groups who are typically associated with urban growing, but to anyone who can benefit from getting involved in gardening. For the Toronto event, access was explored in a variety of ways: through a pay-what-you-can entrance fee, exhibition of gardening tools and techniques that can be used by people with limited mobility, and workshops on a range of topics including balcony gardening, greening sacred spaces, and accessibility audits.

The event was a resounding success, staying true to its roots with a vibrant seed exchange and welcoming numerous perspectives on the engaging capacity of gardens through diverse vendors and non-profits. If you missed Seedy Sunday, however, don’t fret, there are more events yet to come in the GTA! Check out or our events calendar for more details!

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