Today I took a curious look round 'Seedy Sunday' Brighton, the UK's biggest and longest-running community seed swap event. It used to take place in Hove town hall which is just down the road from me- and I hadn't been since it changed place to the Corn Exchange in central Brighton. I've also had issues with our lanlord repeatedly accidentally getting rid of anything we attempt to grow in the shared garden so I've sort of gone off growing things at the moment.
It was busier than ever even though I didn't get there til around 2pm, I love the feeling of the event, a hive of activity, all passionate about growing or preserving seed. One of the main aims of Seedy Sunday is to enable the swapping of seed, basically mainstream seed companies are selling F1 seed, from which it is impossible to collect, re-plant and grow from the following year, so you have to keep going back and buying more! (very good for the companies involved!) "EU legislation reinforces this by making it illegal to sell or buy seeds from varieties which are not officially 'Listed' - a costly and time consuming process" This also means that thousands of garden varieties are dissapearing! However "by growing open-pollinated varieties, then saving and swapping the seeds, growers can keep alive 'outlawed' varieties, conserve biodiversity and limit corporate control of the basis of life."
There were over 60 stalls and the infamous free seed swapping area (if you bring your own to swap- otherwise it's just 50p per packet).
One of my favourite finds was a stall where you could mix up your own 'seed bombs':
And check out this amazing wildlife hotel:
As well as seedy/growy things I found people demonstrating spinning wool and roving making:
A beautiful exhibition of naturally dyed wool:
So in all the event was a fantastic, affordable way to source new varieties and plants that you want to try growing, but also I found some interesting knitting/wool activities going on. It happens every February and I truely recommend it for those with and without green fingers!
I have been informed that there is a 'Seedy Saturday' this Saturday 7th of February in Lewes, see here for more details: commoncause.org.uk