Thursday, June 5, 2008

Help save genetic diversity

Ever wondered where to get some of those old varieties of "this or that" grown when you where a kid? How about old, or even kind of newer, varieties you hear good things about but never can find?

Well, if your willing to try your hand at propagation then look here:
Germplasm Resources Information Network or GRIN

You can search their data bank and request from the multitude of varieties they have ---and have some sent to you---if they are available at the time. Only problem? Most will come un rooted and need a bit of care on your part. But hey...what do you have to lose? You may help save a variety after all----or better yet get some really good plants for your property while improving your propagation skills.

I am going to request some fruits from them to trial and help propagate.

P.S....their free and some are seeds not cuttings. Oops! My mistake...not free to ship. SORRY!
June 6 update.....O.k...let me change that again: Maybe free shipping. I couldn't find a thing on any page that said one way or the other. Some of the items I have "ordered" are coming from one place....and they didn't ask about shipping. Some are coming from another....and they said they ask about whether or not I have a shipping account with UPS or FEDEX etc so..... We'll see. However, the plants do seem, as I originally thought, to be free.

2 comments:

SimplyTim said...

Hi Monica,

It's been a while since I've left a comment, but I follow your postings.

Concerning the GRIN process, I have a question. Is there anything on that website which addresses the possibility that the seeds / seedlings which are introduced into an area in the U.S. (or Canada) may turn into an "invasive species?"

I took a quick look at the FAQ but nothing jumped out at me.

As an anecdote I remember hearing a story somewhere about a couple of guys who had a backyard garden which they had devoted to creating edible plants and I think they were up to 100 or 125 of them. One of them mentioned a planting which came from another country. As I incompletely recall the story, he has simply placed some of the seeds in his pocket while visiting there, and brought them back to his yard.

I suppose it's a question of spreading the good stuff vs. creating a real tangle with something which has no current enemies.

Reminds me a bit of the story of the colorado potato beetle...as I understand it, they used to eat something else, but when potatoes were introduced to the U.S. they decided to munch on the potato leaves, and the rest is history.

Tim

farmer, vet and feeder of all animals said...

Tim
I do not know if some of the species might be invasive. I notice that if possible they made comments and also had comments from others who grew the items. However, since I was only interested in "common" food items that was all I checked out. I am getting raspberries, boysenberries, grapes, hops and figs so....I don't think I will have to worry about invasive problems with those guys. I didn't think about that though and it is a very good point...one worth remembering if I (or someone else) get some slightly less common items from them.
Monica