Why do I care about seeds?

heirloom bean seedsA fascination with little tiny objects – that’s probably how it started.

I remember collecting seeds in my mother’s garden as a child. I’d gather minuscule flat honey-tan alyssum seeds. In my pocket linings I’d hoard round red-brown glossy seeds from a special heirloom flower.

Vegetables came from seeds in those days. If nursery 6-packs existed, I didn’t know about them. The next-door neighbor would gift an occasional veggie start, but for the most part we sprouted everything ourselves.

Some of my favorite books

Q: Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?

A: One of the first books I remember loving was Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White. My forever take-away was that there are many things going on around us that people just walk by without noticing.  They’re not aware of what’s going on. That thread continues in my work today.

A high-school favorite was Frank Herbert’s Dune. Right now in the worst California drought in recorded history, it’s like Dune is somehow coming to life. Herbert’s characters had “moisture consciousness” and I feel like I have that too, and we’re all going to acquire it in coming years as climate change accelerates.

Crop rotations in So. Calif: When to change seasons

VCRW front 100 It’s autumn in Southern California.  Or is it?  The weather has changed.  Wait, it’s changed back again…

Contrary to what East Coast people say, Southern California does have its seasons.  But there’s rarely a clear “cutoff” date.  Add climate-change-driven Weather Weirdness to the mix and it can be totally confusing, even for veteran gardeners.

How do you tell when it’s time to change crops in your rotation?