Seedy Saturday Kelowna has been a tradition for at least 14 years in the Central Okanagan. Formerly organized by Jon and Sher Alcock of Sunshine Farms, this event just got bigger and better every year. In 2014 the Okanagan chapter of the Master Gardeners Association of British Columbia has taken on the organization and hosting of this one day seed swap and sale.
Seedy Saturday Kelowna is just one of at least 110 such seed swaps across Canada held between January and April each year. Many of these events set their tone and get organizational tips from Seeds of Diversity http://www.seeds.ca/ a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving endangered plants and promoting seed diversity. A portion of the $2.00 entry fee will be donated to Seeds of Diversity.
No matter who hosts a seedy Saturday, they all share a home-grown, grass roots flavor. Seedy Saturday Kelowna will be held at the Kelowna campus of the Okanagan College, 1000 KLO Rd. Over 30 vendors and groups will be at the event from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm on Saturday March 8th.
Local farmers will be selling organic, heritage, open pollinated and native seeds. Other vendors will sell seed potatoes, garlic, herbs and difficult to find plants. Because these seeds and plants have been cultivated locally, they are better adapted to the growing conditions of the Okanagan Valley. Other products either relating to gardening or made of plant materials such as honey, lavender, soap and bird houses will be available. People can even order their organic compost at Seedy Saturday. Supporting sustainable gardening practices, everything at Seedy Saturday must be organic. Seeds can’t be genetically modified. No hormones, herbicides or pesticides can be used in the process of growing the plants used to make the products or produce the seeds.
The best aspect of a Seedy Saturday is the knowledge and networking that is fostered by getting together with other gardeners. Information tables representing the Okanagan Master Gardeners, the Okanagan Community Garden Association, urban farmers, the Okanagan Xeriscape Society and the Invasive Species Council of British Columbia will be set up to answer questions. There will be a table featuring books for sale on many gardening topics. Three speakers will offer 45-minute presentations during the day.
Evan Rafuse will introduce the Plant Smart program from the Invasive Species Council of BC. Barbara Bowmar, an Okanagan Master Gardener will teach her Veggie Gardening 101 class. Jon Alcock, a local organic farmer and seed saver, will share information during his session on organic gardening.
The World Community Film Festival Kelowna http://www.worldfilmfestkelowna.net/ will be held in conjunction with the Seedy Saturday. These free films cover a wide variety of topics including the film Re-greening the Desert that deals with the environment and permaculture.
All in all, the Seedy Saturday Kelowna for March 8th, 2014 should have something for every type of gardener in the Okanagan. To read more about the participating vendors and organizations like us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/KelownaSeedySaturday
Submitted by, Gloria Harrold