Seed libraries in Pennsylvania allowed to engage in free seed exchange

Seed libraries in Pennsylvania allowed to engage in free seed exchange

Thanks to a statewide coalition of concerned advocates, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture has clarified that seed libraries and other non-commercial seed exchanges are not subject to the cost-prohibitive licensing, labeling and testing requirements required of commercial seed distributors in the Seed Act of 2004 (Seed Act). In providing this clarification, Pennsylvania sets a precedent to protect and encourage seed libraries throughout the commonwealth.

The statewide coalition, led by the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA), Grow Pittsburgh (GP), the Public Interest Law Center, and members of the Pittsburgh Food Policy Council (PFPC), as well as individual growers and organizations, worked with the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA) to clarify protocol about the Seed Act.  The Act was originally applied to a seed library at the Joseph T. Simpson Library in Mechanicsburg, PA, which severely limited its operations as a result.

Seed libraries are nonprofit, community-based organizations. Through seed libraries, growers maintain and increase biodiversity, as they save seeds from season to season, and share seeds with one another.  The number of seed libraries has surged in recent years; there are an estimated 26 seed libraries across the Commonwealth, with more than 350 nationwide. Concern about the compliance with the Seed Act has been a deterrent to seed library operations in Pennsylvania.

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{name} Posted by Jamie Oberdick on 03/18, 2016 at 09:48 AM

Tags: seeds | gardening | PASA | |

Be authentic Irish for this St. Patrick’s Day dinner: Potato and leek soup

Be authentic Irish for this St. Patrick’s Day dinner: Potato and leek soup

If you are looking to have something that’s a traditional Irish food for your St. Patrick’s Day dinner, you probably do not want to serve corned beef. Corned beef is not something many folks in Ireland eat, and at St. Patrick’s Day tables in Ireland, you will find lamb and/or bacon, but not corned beef. Instead, corned beef is more a nod towards the immigrant history of Irish-Americans.

So, you can serve corned beef as a nod to your ancestors if you have Irish blood in you, but what if you want to serve something that Irish people eat? And what if you’re vegetarian?

Well, here’s a recipe that’s based on something Irish people actually enjoy. Potato and leek soup is a traditional Irish comfort food, enjoyed with brown soda bread. Plus, it’s colored green!

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{name} Posted by Jamie Oberdick on 03/17, 2016 at 10:12 AM

Tags: recipe | potato | leek |

Slow your roll, gardeners! Don’t let these warm temperatures trick you

Slow your roll, gardeners! Don’t let these warm temperatures trick you

The weather this week has caused many of us to catch a seasonal illness: spring fever. With temperatures more like May than March, the itch to start the garden may be really tough for some of us to resist. Is it too early to plant? Well, for the most part, yes. However, there are exceptions, but it will mean some extra work.

Continue Reading: Slow your roll, gardeners! Don’t let these warm temperatures trick you

{name} Posted by Jamie Oberdick on 03/10, 2016 at 10:17 AM

Tags: gardening | seeds | spring |

Elk Creek Fish Hatchery: 30 years and still hatching

Elk Creek Fish Hatchery: 30 years and still hatching

Dan Brigham has been the owner of the Elk Creek Fish Hatchery for about 30 years, in recent years with his loyal dog and co-owner, Rusty, by his side. It all started when Dan originally wanted to seek out a career in oceanography, but realized that there probably weren’t many related jobs he can do in a field around Millheim, Pa. So a fish hatchery it was!

After a nice scenic drive through the country, you reach the hatchery. I have to add that I have never been to one before, so I was really curious as to what it would look like. When you pull up look for the Alaskan license plate, that’s when you know you are at the right house. When I arrived the friendly Rusty, and Captain Dan, greeted me. He started to tell me how he just got back from borrowing some fish food from a fellow hatchery.

Continue Reading: Elk Creek Fish Hatchery: 30 years and still hatching

Posted by Alexandrea Scott on 03/08, 2016 at 12:28 PM

Tags: ElkCreek | fishhatchery |

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