Have you ever compared a packet of conventional seeds and a packet of organic seeds and wondered what the difference truly is? My guest this week — to demystify what it means when seeds are organic — is Tom Stearns, a pioneer of growing and selling organic seeds.
Tom Stearns is the founder and owner of High Mowing Organic Seeds in northern Vermont, the country’s first organic seed company. I had the pleasure of meeting Tom in 2018 during filming for an episode of my public television show, Growing a Greener World®. Still today, High Mowing remains one of the few sources of organically grown seeds.
As we are at the onset of seed-ordering season, I thought it would be a good time to revisit my conversion with Tom. For more information on what we discussed, you can check out the show notes from the original airing.
To help you get more organized and take stock before buying seeds in anticipation of the 2021 growing season, I have prepared two free resources to share with you: a seed inventory chart that you can customize in Google Sheets, plus a seed longevity chart for your reference when you’re deciding which old seeds to hang onto and which can be disposed of.
You can download both charts as PDFs, or text SEEDGUIDES to 44222 to receive the free download links.
As you look ahead to seed starting in spring, know that my joegardener Online Gardening Academy™ Master Seed Starting course is relaunching at the end of January 2021. The course covers everything you need to know to start your own plants from seed. You can sign up to be notified when enrollment begins.
Do you buy organic seeds? Let us know in the comments below.
Links & Resources
Some product links in this guide are affiliate links. See full disclosure below.
Episode 33: Savvy Seed Catalog Shopping
Episode 45: Succession Planting: Practical Tips for Growing More Food
Episode 64: Tomato Growing Season Lookback: Lessons Learned With Craig LeHoullier
Episode 78: Why Buy Organic Seeds: Fixing a Broken Food System, with Tom Stearns of High Mowing Seeds
Episode 125: Saving Seeds: The Basics, the Benefits and Beyond
Episode 182: Organic Urban Seed Farming, with San Diego Seed Company
Episode 187: The Informed Seed Shopper: What to Know Before You Buy
joegardener Seed Inventory and Seed Longevity Charts
joegardenerTV YouTube: How to Know if Seeds Are Still Good
joegardenerTV YouTube: How to Save Tomato Seeds
joegardenerTV YouTube: Seed Germination – Easy Tricks for More Success
joegardener Online Gardening Academy™: Three popular courses on gardening fundamentals; managing pests, diseases & weeds; and seed starting!
joegardener Online Gardening Academy Master Seed Starting: Everything you need to know to start your own plants from seed — indoors and out. Relaunching at the end of January 2021.
GGW Episode 904: Waking Up the GardenFarm™
GGW Episode 911: High Mowing Organic Seeds: The Power of a Seed to Change the World
Milorganite® – Our podcast episode sponsor and Brand Partner of joegardener.com
Wild Alaskan Seafood Box – Our podcast episode sponsor and Brand Partner of joegardener.com – Enter code “Joe” at checkout for two special bonuses just for our podcast listeners – 2 pounds of Dungeness crab with your first order and free scallops for the life of your subscription.
*Disclosure: Some product links in this guide are affiliate links, which means we would get a commission if you purchase. However, none of the prices of these resources have been increased to compensate us. None of the items included in this list have any bearing on any compensation being an influencing factor on their inclusion here. The selection of all items featured in this post and podcast were based solely on merit and in no way influenced by any affiliate or financial incentive, or contractual relationship. At the time of this writing, Joe Lamp’l has professional relationships with the following companies who may have products included in this post and podcast: Rain Bird, Corona Tools, Milorganite, Soil3, Exmark, and Wild Alaskan Seafood Box. These companies are either Brand Partners of joegardener.com and/or advertise on our website. However, we receive no additional compensation from the sales or promotion of their product through this guide. The inclusion of any products mentioned within this post is entirely independent and exclusive of any relationship.