Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Preserving Summer

I've been worried about the 'end of summer' which I have read so many eloquent posts about over the last week or so in blogland. Usually I'm in the front row of the "autumn appreciation society" but this year, I've been clinging onto summer with the tips of my fingers! It's strange and not at all like me. I can sniff out the faintest whiff of the approaching darkness, usually from about mid-July. It builds up as excited anticipation and even sends shivers of glee down my spine.. but not this year.

I solved the problem this weekend, after spending a while first at The Marmalade Patch and then in the kitchen processing the summer. Potting, pickling, preserving the bounty of the sun, has given me more of a sense of peace about laying this summer to rest.

And while working with all that fire, ofcourse I had a burst of unexpected inspiration... An idea which sprung into my mind whilst painting packets for the seeds I have also harvested, sunflowers, pansys, sweetpeas, hollyhocks, marigolds, aliums....

What about a seed swap?
Would anybody be interested?

Wouldn't it be lovely to receive some seeds from a fellow blogger to plant in your garden or your patch next year? Wouldn't it be such a lovely symbol of the sharing and kindred spirit feeling of the creative blogosphere? Something lovely and tangible to remind us of the friendships found and nurtured over the web, rooted in our gardens?

I envision a swap of two or three flower or vegetable varieties, from seeds which you have grown and cared for all summer long, and harvested the seeds from for next summer. They could be packaged up creatively, and sent along with a recipe or two for preserving summer - your favourite jam or chutney recipe, or a good way to pickle something, or a nice autumnal cake ...

What do you think? If you're interested, leave a comment here and if there's enough interest, i'll organise it.


dottycookie said...

OK, so this is when I get cross with myself for not labelling the varieties well enough - I have stacks of bean seeds but can I remember the varieties? Nope. This is a lovely idea though - let me see if I can actually harvest any seeds I can identify ebfore I commit to it though!

Pink Feather Paradise said...

It would have to be a uk only swap as you aren't allowed to send seeds to certain countries... and unfortunatley I could not take part as I have nurtured nothing this year... not even myself! lol ;D

sounds like a fab idea though!

x Alex

Gina said...

Love the idea of this but like dotty cookie I've not labelled anything! Doh! Would "beans" and "peas" be okay? I might manage that.

summerfete said...

Ooh your seed packets are better than mine!
Mine are just brown envelopes!

Clare x

Kitty said...

Our garden is only just being 'made' so I don't have anything to offer - but I think it's a fabulous idea. Hope you get lots of takers. x

Anonymous said...

I would to do this, however as its my first year, Ive not been focusing on saving seeds. The only thing I would have is my amazing red velvet sunflower seeds. They are astonishing, but I would feel guilty taking part with just them!

Pomona said...

Yes, I'm on for a swap - I think I can rummage around for some, although I haven't been very organized this year!

Pomona x

Anonymous said...

hi julia,
i am clinging onto summer too~ yesterday was just gorgeous weather and today looks promising.
i have swapped seeds with caireen recently (patchwork dress).. purple poppies to her and she has sent me some yellow poppy seeds... i think it is a great idea to seed share and i love your painted packets.
i shall have a look and see what seeds i have saved.
p.s.thanks for your lovely comment yesterday xx

Fancy Elastic said...

we harvested som nigella seeds, but we ate them.

Great idea though, maybe next year when we are a bit more on top of our garden, and we might even have an allotment by then (we're number 3 on the list after 3 years - getting close!)


thegreengal said...

I've never harvested seeds, is it simple?! Is there a specific way to do it or do I just look for things that look like seeds and pick them? Sorry to sound clueless but I am a bit! Like the idea of a swap v much.

twiggypeasticks said...

Hi Julia
I was thinking about a seed swap a few weeks ago, I'm in please!! Although, I'll have to go and have a rummage around for seeds now :)
Twiggy x

angharad handmade said...

Lovely idea, I'll join in, though I'm not sure I have anything very exotic to offer!

Celeste said...

Hi, I'd love to take part. I love swapping seeds and plants with people.

I chopped everything down in the front garden last weekend but luckily the back garden is still pretty wild with lots of seed heads around... I'll just have to learn what the flowers are called, I know the poppies but beyond that I'm stumped.