Producing an open pollinated seed crop on your farm can improve the quality of your future crops, increase plant adaptation to local conditions, give you access to new varieties and new skills. Seed production can also bring an added income stream to your farm through contract growing or direct sales in the future.

Our 12-month seed production training is designed to give you the tools to grow open pollinated vegetable seed crops competently. It will offer you an overview of the political, ethical, and economic context of seed production in Wales. We will cover topics as broad ranging as plant botany, seed cultivation, seed sovereignty and seed justice.

The course is being delivered as a partnership between Tyfu Cymru and the UK Seed Sovereignty Programme. We will welcome outside teachers to lead on specific topics, as well as working closely with expert trainers from the Heritage Seed Library.

The course will be delivered via online workshops, with the opportunity for in person farm visits in the Summer (COVID-19 restrictions allowing). You will also be asked to produce a seed crop while taking part in the training to give you some practical experience.

The course is designed to be taken as an entire 12-month programme; we do not recommend attending single sessions. One to one mentoring can be provided to those who need it between scheduled sessions.

To register for the programme, please click here. If you have any questions about the programme please contact us at tyfucymru@lantra.co.uk or katie@gaianet.org

Programme

A full overview will be provided prior to the start of the programme, however please see information below outlining the first 6 webinar sessions.

Session 1: Seed Sovereignty

Tuesday 26th January 2021, 4pm

This first session will look at the background of the Seed Sovereignty Programme and the partnership with Tyfu Cymru. It will look at opportunities such as on farm adaptation, seed swapping, seed selling, participatory plant breeding and genetic diversity.

Overview:

  • History of Seed
  • Political Seed Landscape
  • Agroecological growing practices

Session 2: Plant Reproduction

Thursday 25th February 2021, 4pm

Overview:

  • Basic plant botany
  • Pollination: insect, wind, self
  • Basic isolation strategies
  • Population sizes: inbreeders and outbreeders

Session 3: Crop Planning

Thursday 18th March 2021 – 4pm

Overview:

  • Annuals: overview of considerations
  • Biennials: overview of considerations
  • Rotation
  • Space requirements
  • Support structures

Session 4: Cultivation

Thursday 22nd April 2021 - 4pm

Overview:

  • Healthy seed crops
  • Quality
  • Seed pests and diseases
  • Seed testing
  • Record keeping
  • Storage

Session 5: Selection

Thursday 27th May 2021 – 4pm

Overview:

  • Healthy seed crops
  • Quality
  • Seed pests and diseases
  • Seed testing
  • Record keeping
  • Storage

Session 6: Seed Businesses

Tuesday 29th June 2021 – 4pm

Overview:

  • Looking at different seed business models
    •  A chance to hear from a small seed business and their practices.