October 2018 Newsletter
Welcome to the Seed Library Newsletter!
Join us for a Seed Cleaning Workshop
So you've saved your own seeds, now what? At this workshop attendees will get an overview of cleaning dried seeds with screens, fans, and even a special homemade open source seed cleaner. Threshing, winnowing, screening, labeling, storing your seeds will all be covered at this workshop. Whether your small or large gardener this workshop will give you the techniques you need to get your seed clean for next year.
Attendees will be able to bring their own plant material, or the material they wish to donate to the Ottawa Seed Library. During the workshop attendees will also learn about the Ottawa Seed Library, and how they can contribute and participate in 2019 season.
Where: Just Food Farm - 2391 Pépin Court.
When: Sunday November 18th 1:00 - 3:00 pm
Cost: $5.00 or pay-what-you-can
Participants can get to farm by car or bus # 94. Parking is also available behind the big red barn.
Tips for Over Winter Seed Storage
If you can't make the seed cleaning workshop, here are some tips for storage over winter.
Before you store your seeds be sure they are fully dry. If you need a refresher on cleaning your seeds refer back to Septembers newsletter or the current sidebar menu. Cold and dry conditions make your seeds dormant, so they last longer, and dryness is more important that cold. Though you should store your seeds cold, you won't harm them if you keep them warm for a few days while they dry. Avoid heat above 40C, since this can damage fresh seeds. Direct sunlight does not harm most seeds but drying inside keeps the elements out. A rough rule of thumb is that seeds stored in a fridge will live twice as long as the same seeds at room temperature. Keep them in an airtight glass jar because fridges have lots of condensed moisture in them. Plastic containers are not humidity proof.
Fall Planting and Clean Up
Garlic Bulbils are Available!
While supplies last, Just Food has purple Korean Rocambole available for anyone who would like to plant garlic this fall, 5 -10 per person. Bulbils - not the large bulbs that you're probably used to, but the tiny nuggets that grow in the scapes at the tops of the plants.
If you plant bulbils, be prepared to wait for two full years before harvesting fully-grown garlic, but the results should be better than clove-planted garlic, and growing from bulbils is a very economical way to scale up a diverse collection of varieties. Read more about this from our friends at Seeds of Diversity: How to Grow Garlic From Bulbils. Please email Just Food if you would like some purple Korean Rocambole bulbils.
You can plant these in pots and put them out anytime. Pots are easier to grow them in for the first year. Feel free to pick them up at the seed cleaning workshop.
Easily Improve Your Vegetable Garden Soil
How Legumes 'Fix' Nitrogen in Your Soil
After harvesting the last of the bean pods from your garden turn the bean plants back into your garden spoil to fix in nitrogen for next years growing season. Beans are part of the legume family and are great soil builders for your garden.
Legumes (peas, vetches, clovers, beans and others) grow in a symbiotic relationship with soil-dwelling bacteria. The bacteria take gaseous nitrogen from the air in the soil and feed this nitrogen to the legumes; in exchange the plant provides carbohydrates to the bacteria. This is why legume cover crops are said to "fix" or provide a certain amount of nitrogen when they are turned under for the next crop or used for compost.
If you have any questions about seeds or anything related. Please don't hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for being a member in the Ottawa Seed Library!
The Ottawa Seed Library Team!