Where Our Seed Comes From

 

We work closely with an ever expanding network of private seed producers and dedicated gardeners throughout South Africa to produce our 'locally grown' seed.


Mahlathini Organics

Mahlathini Organics is one of our local seed producers and is the source of our Certified Organic seeds. Mahlathini Organics obtains its Bio-Org certificate through the BDOCA (Biodynamic and Organic Certification Authority). Read more about the Bio-Org certification process here. The Certified Organic seeds listed on our website are indicated by the Mahlathini Organics logo on each product page.


Harvest Moon Heirloom SeedsIn addition to contracting with these independent local growers to produce seed for us, we also purchase seed from a handful of overseas private heirloom seed breeders and family owned heirloom seed producing companies. These overseas sources allow us to bring you one of the largest selections of high performing heirloom seed to be found in South Africa today, with many exotic and often unique seed varieties from over 70 different countries. All of these exotic seed varieties, as well as those locally grown 'organic but not certified' varieties, are indicated by the Harvest Moon Heirloom Seeds logo on each product page.


The varieties made available by all of these private individuals and companies represent an important addition to our own heirloom seed collection and we will continue to source and trial more new varieties and make available to our customers those that prove themselves under local conditions.


Would you buy seed from me?
We are often asked whether we are interested in, and prepared to buy, seed from private individuals who have saved/collected/inherited/been given seeds that they don't know what to do with. Well, we are always on the lookout for new and interesting seed varieties to grow out ourselves and we will gratefully accept any donations of spare seed that you might have available.


As far as purchasing seed for resale however, we would need to be able to verify a few things first:


  • That the seed was indeed produced organically (i.e. that the plants that the seed came from, were grown without any chemical inputs and that the seeds themselves have also not been treated). Whilst organic certification is not critical (although preferable), we do need some sort of proof/guarantee of this. We do sell Organic Seeds after all.
  • That it is indeed an Open Pollinated variety (i.e. that it is stable and will produce 'True to Type' offspring every time).
  • If it is claimed to be an old Heirloom variety then we do our very best to try and track down the origin and history of the variety, as far back as we possibly can. Including various growing information such as where, when and how it was planted in the past, its growth habits and crop characteristics, any resistance to pests and diseases etc.


Much of this information is often not available if the seller has been given the seeds by a third party or if they have only just begun growing it for themselves. In this case we would have to grow the seed out ourselves for at least a couple of generations before we could consider adding it to our catalog for resale.


If however, you do have all of this information and can verify the above mentioned points, then we would love for you to contact us and lets see what sort of deal we can come up with.


Can I join your 'local seed growers' network?

We are always eager to speak to experienced seed producers who are interested in joining our local seed growers network and helping us by growing out a few of our existing varieties specifically for seed for us. You don't need to have a farm or even a huge plot of land, just a big(ish) garden will suffice (the more space, the more varieties you can grow).


Of course you will have to also meet the high standards that all of our growers must comply with, especially regarding the prevention of cross pollination, preventing inbreeding depression (via the use of the proper population densities), ensuring seed purity and varietal stability (through the proper rouging out of weak and undesirable plants), preventing the spread of plant diseases etc, as well as ensuring that only organic growing practices are used in the production of the seed. Please speak to us if you are interested in joining our seed growers network.



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