Genetic Preservation and Sustainable AgricultureSouthern Seed Legacy
The mission of this website is to educate people on the various projects being undertaken to conserve the southern legacy of seeds and knowledge.
Seed Savers Exchange
A non-profit, member supported organization dedicated to saving and sharing heirloom seeds.
Virginia Plant Savers
The mission of the Virginia Plant Savers to protect native medicinal plants of Virginia and their native habitat while ensuring and promoting the renewable supply of medicinal plants through education, research, and the promotion and construction of medicinal plant sanctuaries.
Regional Seed Companies Specializing in Genetic PreservationGarden Medicinals and Culinaries
Garden Medicinals specializes in seeds and plants of medicinal and culinary herbs, trees, and shrubs. Additional offerings include heirloom vegetables, and ethnic and heirloom flower seed. All seeds are open-pollinated, non-gmo varieties, many grown organically. Offers a line of seed-saving supplies.
Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
Specializes in open-pollinated, non-gmo, heirloom and traditional varieties, especially those adapted to the Mid-Atlantic and South. Offers many organically certified varieties. Offers some varieties in bulk quantities.
Seed Saving ProceduresSeed Saving Videos from Raven
For small scale seed saving, this site is a great resource for demonstrating various procedures for harvesting and processing seed. There are several serious problems with the lettuce and tomato harvesting demonstrated techniques such as: (1) not maintaining the proper isolation distance for lettuce varieties to avoid cross pollination and mechanical mixing of seed, and (2) not stirring the tomato ferment to prevent the growth of mold and damage to seed. With regard to lettuce, though it is considered self-pollinating it can easily be crossed, especially when being grown in adjacent rows. Those caveats aside, there is a lot of very useful information here, and definitely worth the exploration.
Seed Saving Procedures at Salt Spring Seeds
There is good information on this webpage about the seed saving procedures at Salt Spring Seeds. These folks are providing are very useful resource on techniques. That said, there are some problems with the lack of isolation distance information (critical for producing pure seed), and insufficient discussion of fermentation processes. For example all melon seed should be fermented before being washed and dried as the fermentation process will break down germination inhibitors and produce a cleaner, disease-free seed. For watermelon seed production this is especially important. Some pepper varieties may also benefit from a short fermentation period of 24 hours, up to 36 hours, or slightly more depending on the variety. Though this is not a site for professional seed savers, it is very useful for backyard gardeners wishing to save their own seed -- as long as they don't exchange seed of plants that have not been properly isolated.
Place-based Food, Sustainable Agriculture and EducationVirginia Food Heritage Project
The Virginia Food Heritage Project is a collaborative, community-based project that envisions a greater understanding and documentation of the food heritage of central Virginia, to enhance regional sustainability and resilience. The core activity of the project is to gather, document and publish information on four aspects of the food heritage of central Virginia.
Sources of Organic Products in VirginiaCountryside Organics
Located in Waynesboro, VA, Countryside Organics offers a large selection of organic products which can be ordered from their online store. They also deliver small product orders within a 135 mile radius of Waynesboro.
Educational ResourcesCornell Department of Plant Pathology Vegetable MD Online
This site is an excellent resource for extensive descriptions and excellent photos of plant diseases. Though not oriented for organic growers, there are many other valuable information resources here that are not to be missed.
Beneficial InsectsThe Beneficial Insect Company
Supplies beneficial insects such as green lacewing larvae, fly parasites, ladybugs, beneficial nematodes, praying mantids, whitefly predators and parasites, beneficial nematodes, yellow sticky traps, and milky spore.
Symbiont Biological Pest Management Company
Symbiont Biological Pest Management Company specializes in utilizing naturally occurring, beneficial insects to control pest insects and weeds in a variety of situations.
Seed Processing EquipmentPleasant Hill Grain sells a fruit and apple cider grinder/press that can be used for grinding tomatoes, peppers and eggplant into pulp which is then processed to extract the seed. Can also be used for other wet-processed seed crops that have a small seed size (less than one-eighth inch in diameter). Only the grinder portion is needed to macerate the fruit for processing.
Laboratory and Testing ServicesSoil Foodweb Inc.
This company provides laboratory services that measure the quality and quantity of organisms in your soil. Also offers other other resources to grow healthier plants.
Updated Hardiness Zone Map and Global Warming2006 ArborDay.org Hardiness Zone Map
This animation illustrates the general warming that has occurred from 1990 to 2006. After the page loads, click the play button to see how the hardiness zones have changed.