Friday, September 3, 2010

Seeds for Pakistan


Pakistan Floods 2010
Originally uploaded by Islamic Relief UK
I am truly touched by the influx of support for sending seeds to Pakistan. I have found a British aid organization willing to distribute the seeds to small farmers. 

The Techure Foundation is a NGO whose main goals are to eradicate poverty, promote education and health issues, but they also respond to emergencies. They have accepted to take on the task of distributing the seeds we send to small farmers in Pakistan who have lost all their crops. All I need to do is to collect the seeds and send them on to their office in Islamabad.

If you are an experienced seed-saver (sorry, I don't mean to segregate, but seed-saving of certain food crops can be a little touchy at times) and have seeds to spare, email me and I will send you the address where the seeds should be mailed. If you are worried about your seeds being contaminated by pests, you can always freeze your package for 48 hours before sending it off.

I was asked for specifics on the kind of seeds needed in Pakistan... I will be honest, and admit that I have no idea. The climate in Pakistan is generally hotter, and more humid than USDA zone 5 (maybe close to a zone 7 or 8?); soils are generally quite fertile, but can be subject to droughts outside of monsoon season. I think that any food crop that is heat tolerant; productive even in poor soil (the floods will have washed away quite a bit of nutrients); open-pollinated (no hybrids please!); and not too uncommon (no green tomatoes?) will be greatly appreciated. I'm not particularly familiar with Pakistani food, but I am assuming that most farmers will have some familiarity with tomatoes; eggplants; peppers (hot and not); onions and other alliums; squashes of all kinds, including melons and gourds; beans and peas; herbs like basil, coriander (cilantro);  spices likes cumin, mustard, and nigella; and grains such as wheat and barley.

Again, thank you for your generosity.



3 comments:

  1. I'm spreading the word at one of my favorite garden hangouts.
    http://idigmygarden.com in the forums.
    I linked them back to your blog, so don't be alarmed. :-D They are good people, with lots of seeds and large hearts.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi there! I also have included the link on my site too. Thank you so much for doing this and good luck!

    ReplyDelete

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