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Seedy Saturday a promise that spring is on the way

County residents and visitors to this weekend’s Seedy Saturday event will swap, share, learn and get a jump on spring garden plans.

Prince Edward County’s eighth annual celebration of seeds has found a new home to accommodate the growing enthusiasm from the community.

On Saturday, Feb. 18 from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m., the gymnasium at Prince Edward Collegiate Institute (PECI) will welcome gardeners, exhibitors, growers and seed swappers.

The event has come a long way since it began in a church basement in Picton and organizers this year knew they had to find a new location after last year’s event welcomed more than 500 visitors.

This year there will be room for everyone to participate in seed swapping, workshops, and purchasing seeds from heirloom seed vendors. Seed vendors include some local producers such as Edible Antiques of Prince Edward County and Terra Edibles of Foxboro, as well as some nearby organic seed growers like Bear Root Gardens and Mountain Grove Seeds, both based north of Kingston.

Seedy Saturday is also about encouraging people to save and propagate local, heirloom plants. One way that’s done is through supporting other community efforts to protect local seeds, like the Milford Seed Library. Since it began, stocks of seeds at the library have been depleted which means people are growing heirloom plants, but they are also encouraged to save some seeds for the swap table and seed library.

Highlights from this year’s event include free presentations.
The day will be launched with a special talk by Carson Arthur about Gardening in the Media (10:30).
Gardener Pat Joslin from Bear Root Gardens is offering Seed Saving 101 (11:15). Pat is helping those who have never tried seed saving before, so be sure to bring your questions.
For those who aspire to grow a forest, Tim Gray of Forests Ontario will talk about saving tree seeds (12:15).
Peter Fuller of Fuller Native and Rare Plants will be sharing his knowledge about saving native plant seeds (1pm).
Heather Coffey of Fiddlehead Farm will talk about when to plant seeds for both eating and saving (1:45).

This year, the talks will take place in a separate room from the rest of the event. This means there will be room for more people in each workshop and participants will be better able to hear and be heard if they have any questions.

As usual, Seedy Saturday will feature a seed swap table to share and collect local seeds for local gardens. There will be a group of volunteers on site who are knowledgeable and excited to share their tips and tricks for planting and saving seeds.

The new location has also enabled community food vendors to participate, so you can enjoy some lunch, a snack or a treat while there. PECI is located at 41 Barker St., in Picton.

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