Free the Seeds achieved what we set out to do. We purchased seeds from William Dam Seeds and Saanich Organics, both suppliers of high quality organic, non-gmo seed. Additionally, one of our team members acquired a significant number of seeds from Good Earth Farms as a donation. Another team member had seeds donated from a supplier of indigenous plants in Victoria. Inspirations, the printing supplier on Quadra donated 20% of our costs of printing brochures and signs in-kind. The Quadra Community Center agreed to donate their courtyard in-kind to set up a “self-serve” area outside, since public health guidelines permitted this. We held our “Seedy Sunday” on March 28th from 10-2.
What we learned from this process is that there are many gardeners on Quadra who are happy to bring their seeds to a seed-exchange, and that there are also places which appreciate seed donations in the spring. The school, new Quadra Senior’s Centre, and Wei Wai Kai’s Elders program are all grateful to accept donations of seeds following our event. A small number of seeds were also retained by one of our individual members for a Seedy Sunday/Saturday event next year, so this grant has also planted seeds for future seed saving and exchange.
The most memorable moment came after the event, when two of our volunteers (Lea and Liz) were walking at Rebecca Spit. We bumped into two elder women who had met at our Seedy Sunday and were now enjoying a walk while making plans to get involved in land-protection initiatives together and apply for a NSG grant for mushroom growing classes. It helped us to realize that in addition to plants, the seeds of friendship had also been sown.