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See(d)ing the Change: an Invitation to Delectable, Adaptable Diversity!

With all the injustice in the world, how do we be and sow the change we wish to see(d) in the world?

Together, we’re cultivating diversity in our gardens, ourselves & our world…

…and perhaps you’ve noticed that ‘v.1’ popping up in our variety names…

…what’s the story?

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There’s so much to share & here’s the nutshell:

The Only Lasting Truth is Change

All that you touch you Change. All that you Change changes you.

~Octavia Butler

Life is constantly adapting, evolving, everything is always changing…

…nothing stays the same and the seeds we sow are no exception.

The Brandywine tomatoes we love today (and indeed, all heirlooms & all living beings) are different than the tomatoes our ancestors fell in love with centuries ago.

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Industrial food systems have turned ‘varieties’ into largely stable, replicable populations of plants with nearly identical ‘fixed’ traits, paralleling an alarming trend in eugenics that give us great pause, to say the least.

Learning the history of eugenics while chewing on questions of just who ultimately benefits from ‘stable,’ uniform varieties (hint: they’re not humans), we continue to come back to this foundational tenet:

diversity is the foundation of resilience

Honoring this diversity, Fruition is sharing varieties that express delicious and vivid spectrums of diversity. Each plant, like each of us, is a unique expression of deliciousness, never before seen or savored! Often these varieties are natural crosses between other varieties we love. For example, Mermaid’s Tale v.1 is a cross between a purple and a green cone-headed cabbage.

The ‘v.1’ refers to the first generation shared (v.1 = version 1) with many, many more to come! Also, v.1 is distinct from F1 (first filial generation), and though some varieties may be shared as F1, like Plum and Snow in Tokyo v.1, others are not. For example, Mermaid’s Tale v.1 is the F3 generation. Also, since the parent lines of these crosses are not inbred lines, the F1 generation has much greater diversity than what the last century would label an ‘F1 Hybrid.’

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And we’d love to clarify: though ‘diversity’ can also be cast as ‘not making selections,’ See(d)ing the Change is deeply committed to selection with an emphasis on multiple traits within a range of expression. This is how adaptation happens so quickly and profoundly! And Friends, this isn’t anything new or novel: This is how all forms of life have evolved for hundreds of millions of years and how our indigenous ancestors co-adapted with plants for millennia. Think about it this way: Nike didn’t invent ‘champions,’ they just invite you to be one. Fruition hasn’t invented such ‘diversity,’ we are simply inviting you to grow in these (and all!) the ways with us.

Also, on the journey, we see the term ‘landrace’ often used to describe this adaptable diversity. Though the term is not always used in an intentionally derogatory light, its supremacy-inclined history makes us hungry to learn more and resist engaging it in the interim. As we individually and collectively (un)learn incessantly, please join us and share your thoughts, concerns, insights & delights, we’re here to adapt and become as adeptly as the plants that are our deepest mentors.

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What does this delicious diversity look and taste like?

After you sow Mermaid’s Tale cabbage, you’ll soon see and savor a vivid spectrum of light lime to emerald heads, each leaf veined lilac-lavender to rich burgundy, each one a kaleidoscope of color. “This is simply the most magical cabbage I’ve ever seen!” said Angela. Diversity unfolds as their conical shape may be sharp or subtle with mild, bright flavor and crisp-tender texture. A cross between Kalibos and an early green cone-headed cabbage, Mermaid’s Tale matures quickly though not all at once, ideal for moving beyond the industrial plant expectations of modernity. 

Delectable, dependable diversity, indeed!

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Food + Wine

We’ve always admired that the world of wine both lifts up and distinctly celebrates unique expressions of wine from season to season: A vintage of 2017 Dry Riesling, for example, so distinct from the year prior and following….!

Is it possible to extend this enthusiasm for change, for nuance, for shift across the rest of our table? 

See(d)ing the Change says yes…

…and it’s delicious.

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Saving Seeds, Saving Ourselves

We ‘save’ all of Fruition’s See(d)ing the Change seeds (who’s saving who?!!) and Friends, you can, too. We hope you do!

So can our collective great-great-great grandchildren, too.

We share an abundance of seed saving resources on our website, dig in!

 Together, we are sowing the world we dream of, where deliciousness and diversity are embraced, amplifying the beauty and abundance that is resistance as well as resilience.

See(d)ing the Change for Yourself:

Here you are, Friends! These seeds are our teachers, mentors, friends and family. May you both grow and thrive in each other’s company for seasons and generations to come:

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Organic Aha! Picante Hot Pepper

 A kissing cousin of habanero, savor a spectrum of glossy, searing hot crimson and tangerine fruits in glorious sizes and shapes from sleek, tapered habanero-style to ribbed round beauties to flying saucers and beyond! If you love hot peppers, brilliant colors, diversity and delectable surprises as well as easter egg hunting, Aha! Picante will delight you all summer long, maturing quickly even in cool, short seasons.

Aha! peppers are a cross between Habanada and Aji Dulce — two brilliantly tropical, citrusy-sweet peppers — Aha, get it?!! — and Friends, we learned (the hilariously hard way!) that though heat is the dominant trait of peppers, the genes affecting heat may be either ‘turned off’ or turned so far ‘down’ as to taste sweet. Turned off, the next generation is sweet; turned down, the gene is still ‘on’ and thus the next generation is, frankly, flaming hot. Long story short (and we can’t wait to share more!), what began as a ‘sweet pepper project’ has turned into three distinct peppers: one hot, one not and one that is, well, quite the combination. Organic Aha! 80/20 Sweet & Spicy is that combination, it’s true ~

Organic Aha! 80/20 Sweet/Hot Pepper

Not for the lilly-livered, Aha! 80/20 is a delectable spectrum of glossy crimson and tangerine fruits, 80% sweet and 20% spicy, a fabulous menagerie of sizes and shapes from sleek, tapered fruits to ribbed, round beauties to flying saucers and beyond. If you love both sweet and hot peppers as well as adventures, brilliant colors and diversity, Aha! 80/20 Sweet & Spicy will delight you all summer long.

The million dollar question: How to tell if a pepper is spicy or sweet? Find a toothpick and enjoy our video above!

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Organic Finger Lakes Long Paste Tomato

 Savor a spectrum of San Marzano-style fruits, some more plump and others more large (still others with tapered tops!) combining rich flavor and dense flesh with very few seeds perfect for salsa and sauce as well as salads. A cross between 10 Fingers of Naples and round tomato from Cornell resistant to early and late blight as well as septoria leaf spot (cu 79), Finger Lakes Long Paste matures quickly even in cool, short seasons and is a delicious bridge moving beyond the industrial plant expectations of our time.

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Organic Finger Lakes Round Paste Tomato

Savor a spherical spectrum of sizes from large cherry to small slicer, combining rich flavor and dense flesh with very few seeds perfect for sundried tomatoes, salsa and sauce as well as salads. A cross between 10 Fingers of Naples and round tomato from Cornell resistant to early and late blight as well as septoria leaf spot (cu 79), Finger Lakes Round Paste matures quickly even in cool, short seasons and is a delicious bridge moving beyond the industrial plant expectations of our time. 

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Organic Hope is a Verb Dahlia

Each plant of Hope is a Verb dahlia, like each of us, is a unique, never-before-seen expression in a spectrum of lemon, cream, tangerine, crimson and plum blossoms on dwarf to semi-dwarf plants. We share both tubers and seeds of Hope is a Verb and if ebullient diversity is what you’re after, sow the seeds: Dahlias are octoploids with 8 sets of homologous chromosomes (humxns only have 2!) and the resulting permutations are endless as well as extraordinary.

What’s in a name? Not a passive act, cultivating hope and growing dahlias are crucial in these times — and not always easy — and we are here beside you in all the ways & seasons, Friends!

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Organic Mermaid’s Tale Cabbage

Scrumptiously mentioned above, Mermaid’s Tale v.1 is the third generation of the cross with many, many more to come! For the full story, hop on over to our blog, Cabbage Re-Imagined: Remembering Our Food, Re-Imagining Ourselves.

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Medicinal Chamomile Mix

We love the floral flavors and sweet aroma of chamomile, so deeply medicinal and so easy to grow. After growing several varieties specifically selected for higher concentrations of essential oils and medicinal compounds, we let our favorites naturally cross-pollinate in our gardens to create this Medicinal Chamomile Mix! Savor a spectrum of delectably medicinal chamomile: Some plants have larger flowers, some are more sweet and others are more tall. They all will thrive in gardens as well as raised beds and containers. More than other plants, chamomile tends to thrive with neglect even in poor and compacted soil, so long as they establish. We are delighted to watch chamomile naturalize in our orchard and permaculture-style perennial gardens, where they readily re-seed themselves season after season.

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Organic Plum in Tokyo Salad Turnip 

Juicy sweet and marvelously mild, Plum in Tokyo is not your average turnip! Delectably tender and scrumptious in salads, about 75% of Plum in Tokyo are bright ivory with 25% beaming brilliant violet. No matter the skin color, each creamy white root melts in your mouth and, so magically, the purple roots often burst with burgundy at the center.

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Organic Snow in Tokyo Salad Turnip 

Juicy sweet and marvelously mild, Snow in Tokyo is not your average turnip! Delectably tender and scrumptious in salads, we love to harvest Snow in Tokyo between the size of a golf ball and a baseball, so tender and sweet in the cool of spring and fall. We savor Snow in Tokyo raw in salads, tossed on the grill, oven-roasted as well as a fabulous snack right in the garden.

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Organic They Might Be Giants Sunflower 

Imagine all the massive sunflowers, bright and swaying in the breeze, towering over our heads! We sowed an impressive collection of giant sunflower varieties and, instead of choosing one to share, we let them all cross and to bring even more glorious diversity to you! The name ‘They Might Be Giants’ is both an homage to a band we’re fond of (!) as well as perhaps an understatement: Friends, these sunflowers will most assuredly dwarf everything around them, lol ~

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Organic Unexpected Revelations Baby & Popcorn

Scrumptious baby corn as well as spectacular popcorn, if you’ve never grown your own baby or popcorn, get ready: nothing you can buy will prepare you for the deliciousness or joy of growing your own Unexpected Revelations! We often harvest 8 to 12 ears of lusciously tender and sweet baby corn (utterly unexpected and such a revelation compared to anything frozen or in can, hence the name…!) and if we miss their baby corn stage, each ear matures into gorgeous popcorn, easily maturing even in short seasons.

We’ve Only Just Begun!

Thanks for joining us on the journey <3

Sow Seeds & Sing Songs,

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& the whole Fruition crew

3 thoughts on “See(d)ing the Change: an Invitation to Delectable, Adaptable Diversity!

  1. Love your blog and the spirit of your organization! My great-great grandfather farmed in Naples. I live many miles away but ordering seeds from your company gives me a feeling of connection with him.

  2. Have you had a look at Joseph Lofthouse’s “Landrace Gardening” book?

    1. Indeed, Joseph is a dear friend and inspiration!

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