The Great American Seed Up returns to North Phoenix Baptist Church, 5757 N. Central Ave., Phoenix for its first live event since March of 2020.
The seventh Great American Seed Up is slated from 4 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 1; and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 2. For the first time, the event will feature a live stream at fb.com/GreatAmericanSeedUp with host Terra Rose Ganem of Brilliant Planet.
The popular “pop up” seed bazaar offers well-known garden varieties in a bulk seed format where customers can scoop up as many seeds as they want from popcorn buckets. An easy tally sheet and properly-sized teaspoons or cup sizes allow patrons to quickly record how many portions they scooped and move on to the next variety.
This one-of-a-kind purchasing option eliminates the high cost of packaging, printing and mailing so that seeds can be dramatically discounted, according to a press release.
With the onset of this global pandemic, the release said home gardening and seed sales increased as more than 20 million novice gardeners picked up a trowel for the first time swelling the ranks of American gardeners to more than 63 million, according to Bonnie Plants CEO Mike Sutterer.
“The need for seed education grew quickly as new awareness flourished making it more evident than ever that true sustainability begins with seeds saved from one’s own garden --not from a catalog from far away,” said Greg Peterson, owner of the Urban Farm and co-founder of the Great American Seed Up, in the release.
When the pandemic eliminated a live event last year, the coordinators of the Seed Up took this bulk seed opportunity online. Since doing that, the group has offered Seed Up Saturday education platforms regularly in conjunction with seed sales, always underscoring the importance of seed saving.
Whether online or in person, seed that is sold at the Seed Up is land-race and heirloom, meaning it reproduces “true to type” and is known for its adaptability to different regions and climates. These qualities are said to “make for great seed stock from which to save seeds.”
Seed varieties include numerous tried-and-true vegetables, herbs, beans, greens, grains and flowers, including some newcomers to the Seed Up. This year, Morris Collards, Florida Highbush Eggplant, Southern Giant Curled Mustard, Yellow Sweet Spanish Utah Onion, Black From Tula Tomato and a new Marigold Mix will join the lineup of choices.
Additionally, the Great American Seed Up features virtual workshops and presentations with all education to be available online, noted the release. The Seed Up will host a virtual live Q&A, added the release.
Tickets are $7.50 and include access to the Seed Up, an array of educational webinars, podcasts and Seed Up Saturday recordings. Limited tickets will be sold for specific time slots, so patrons should register early to secure their slot of choice.