Here at My Green Space we believe strongly in supporting local businesses and working with people who are as passionate as we are about sustainable agriculture.
This belief is mirrored by our seed supplier, Salt Spring Seeds, better than with anyone else. Dan Jason, the owner and founder of the mail-order seed company based on Salt Spring Island, BC, has been passionate about gardening since he got his first garden space (a two by three foot patch of ground under the back porch of his parent’s home in Montreal) when he was just 13 years old. He explains his start in the world of gardening was the result of a strong force compelling him to grow: he’s always felt drawn to growing food and attributes seeds to his successes in life and the spark that began his purposeful journey in life. One fond memory he carries with him is of showing his aunt the carrots he had grown that first year in his backyard, and her fascination that they didn’t grow on trees.
Dan started living and growing on Salt Spring Island in 1976, and founded Salt Spring Seeds in 1986. He uses his company to empower people to grow their own food and save their own seeds by providing good quality seed to each and every customer. All Dan’s seeds are proudly organically grown, untreated, open-pollinated and non-GMO. Not only that, Dan firmly believes in the power of and need for abundance and diversity from seeds, but also in life. Diversity is the key to abundance, he says, and we need both if we want to continue living and eating healthy for generations to come.
The author of many books, he also uses his platform as a writer to educate on sustainable organic gardening and farming, food politics, and seed saving. Dan is an advocate for seed saving in every aspect and often raises his concerns about large corporations patenting seeds and preventing farmers from saving their own seeds. In his eyes, seeds are our saviour and restricting access to them is not the way forward for society; so he works hard to encourage people and farmers to save their own seeds. Look for his books if you want to start your own seed saving journey!
My Green Space has partnered with Salt Spring Seeds because we believe in Dan’s mission and want to spread his message as far as we can, while also giving you access to the best, most sustainable seeds available to the home gardener in Vancouver.
Please join us and Dan Jason in our efforts to promote safe, sustainable and local agriculture.
Here is the transcript of our recent interview with Dan that inspired this blog:
Interviewer (I): In the beginning, what got you into gardening?
Dan Jason (DJ): In the beginning, it was totally in my bones and in my blood because living in the suburbs where nobody ever thought of doing gardens in the suburbs of Montreal and I just wanted to dig up our lawn...where that came from? Who knows. And then I started to see that there are a lot of things that we can grow that nobody grew! I just had it in me to explore that and I really couldn't do much until I came out West and then I saw that it was possible to grow gardeners and I started and they got bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger.
I: Amazing. And at what point did you decide to make Salt Spring Seeds a company?
DJ: I applied for a grant to popularize and promote soy beans as a crop around here and I had all kinds of really good back up and they refused the grant and I decided well, I'll just do a seed company and do it myself.
I: Right now, why would you say growing your own food is really important?
DJ: Because the corporations have taken over everything and they've hybridized seeds and they've bioengineered seeds and the seeds that we have are in danger of getting lost and we've had them for ten thousand years and they worked all this time.
I: That's great. Okay last question...What are you favourite seeds to grow right now?
DJ: My favourite seeds to grow right now are chickpeas, favas, lentils, all kinds of dried beans, wheats, barleys, oats, and rye...