Half-Million Mark for "Doomsday" Seed Vault

The Arctic island "doomsday" seed vault has amassed half a million seed samples in just two years. Although, an impressive number this article states that the Svalbard Global Seed Vault still has significant holes in its collection.

Read the story and watch a video on the doomsday seed vault.

"Haagen-Dazs Loves Honey Bees"

Seed packet given to me at a local event. It is a packet of seeds containing a "wildflower mix" of "bee friendly seeds."

Bee Friendly seeds packet by Haagen-DaszThe back of the seed packet reads:

Honey bee colonies are vanishing at an alarming rate. Their disappearance is unsettling considering they're responsible for pollinating one-third of all the food we eat, including many ingredients that define our all-natural ice cream. Fortunately, you can do something about it. Plant these seeds and with a little sun, water and luck, you'll grow some bee-friendly flowers that will provide much needed food for our hero the honey bee. Learn more about the plight of the honey bees at

Bee Friendly Seed Packet by Haagen-DaszThe directions read:

"Sow seeds 1/8 inch deep and 12 inches apart outdoors in an area of direct sunlight. Seeds can be started indoors in individual pots 3 to 4 weeks before setting out."

No information about what kind of seeds they are or who grew and packaged them.


Where are Zinnia Seeds Grown?

"...Zinnias seeds used to be grown in Colorado but are now grown in the Middle East, because of issues with water rights. Specifically, they are grown in places like Afghanistan and Pakistan..."

From a conversation with Barbara Melera, owner of the D. Landreth Seed Company, in the winter of 2009.

Ripley's "World's Largest Tomato" Seed Packets

This Ripley's Believe It or Not! seed packet dates from 1996. It was a seed packet distributed by Indianapolis Power and Light as part of a promotion.

Ripley's Believe It or Not! World's Largest Tomato seed packetThe copy on the Ripley's Believe It or Not! tomato seed packet reads:

"Delicious Tomato Variety. World Record Tomato. Grow 2LB...3LB...And even larger with this world record variety! This astonishing tomato variety is a record breaker in Europe and America! It consistently produces huge tomatoes with solid centers! It has an excellent flavor too! great for ally your salads and sandwiches!"

The box on the upper right-hand corner reads:

"A 7lb. 12 oz. tomato was grown by Gordon Graham of Edmond, OK in 1986, setting a new World Record."

Mr.Graham is deceased and I believe his "Delicious" tomato variety still holds the World Record.

The back of the seed packet doesn't contain sowing or growing information, but it appears there is more information on the inside of the seed packet. The outside of the seed packet doesn't list who grew or packaged the seeds. This thread on GardenWeb seems to indicate Ripley's also had a giant sunflower variety they sold, but I've not been able to find pictures of those seed packets on the internet. The conversation at that thread points to the Page's Seeds being the source of at least the sunflower discussed.

Seed packet given to met by

Selling the "Crisis Garden" is a seed seller that I've come across a few times. They're recently attracted some attention after becoming advertisers on the Glenn Beck show. I first caught wind of them after President Obama was elected and I started getting referrals to the MrBrownThumb blog posts about seed starting from survivalist message boards and blogs.

Their marketing campaign is interesting and this, commercial posted by MediaMatters, gives you an idea why.

While tame by advertising standards if you listen closely you'll be able to hear a couple of dog whistles. Seeds more valuable than gold or silver? I could get behind that. Although, I don't like the fear mongering in vegetable gardening I guess the "crisis garden" is the underground equivalent of the victory garden.