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Ever wondered where the seed you sow actually comes from?

I always thought (as much as I thought about it at all) that it was grown and collected in Suffolk, or Devon, or Essex, or wherever the seed merchant was based. But then I looked into it a little more closely and to be honest, I was a bit shocked by what I found.

The seed in the packet you buy at the garden centre is almost certainly better travelled than you are. The variety is bred and developed in one country – say the USA – then shipped to another (Germany, maybe) for testing. It’s then off to a third country – Chile is popular – to raise into stock plants which produce seed which are then harvested and sent to your country for packing and sale to you.

That all adds up to a lot of air miles, and a very high carbon footprint. And that’s not even counting the pesticides often sprayed on the stock plants, and the peat-based compost generally used for raising the breeding stock. Or the plastic-coated seed packets: handy, as they’re waterproof, but not so great for the environment.

There is another way. Sourcing seed sustainably takes a little more time and effort, perhaps: but it will lead you down paths you never even knew existed, and makes your gardening life that little bit more interesting as a result. Here’s how.

Read on at sallynex.substack.com