3 Enlightening Reasons to Start with a Seed so you can change your world!

Reading Time: 6 minutes

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When planting a garden start with seeds. Don’t be afraid it’s easy and fun to plant with seeds. It is also very beneficial for you, the plant’s health, and the planet. Here are 3 enlightening reasons to start with a seed.

Starting with non GMO, heirloom, organic seeds is a better option than cloned plants.

1) Biodiversity

The number one reason to start with seed is biodiversity. We hear this word thrown around a ton, but what does it actually mean and why would you care about it when gardening?

The dictionary defines biodiversity as “the variety of life in the world or in a particular habitat or ecosystem.” Yes, but what does that mean for my plants?

In regards specifically to seeds, we are looking for a starting point that is filled with a variety of behaviors and interactions. The more variety the better because the seed can use that variety to adapt to their environment.

A seed is a starting point. How genetically diverse that seed is may say if it survives the changing world or not.

Think of it this way … If a child was created naturally from a mother’s egg and a father’s sperm the combination would create a unique and hopefully adaptable new person who gets the best of each parent’s DNA. In a perfect world, they would be a stronger version of their parents. They would have a variety of genetic behaviors and interactions.

If we took one parent and replicated them or cloned them over and over we would get the exact same version of that parent without all the benefits of the variety. They would be an exact replica nothing new mixed in there.

So what’s the problem with that you ask? Well, it’s great for a Sci Fy movie but not great for biodiversity. If a disease or pest comes along and destroys the parent it is highly likely that the same outcome will happen to the replicated or cloned offspring. You reduce adaptability when you work with cloned or modified seeds, or plants, or kids for that matter.

Mixed genes from two parents have a better chance of being stronger versions of their parents and might adapt and survive better. The female part of the flower is pollinated by the male’s pollen and that makes seeds. Cuttings make clones.

Of course, this is a very simplified way to explain this because there are a million other factors that determine genetics but this gives you an idea.

Seeds have more genetic variation than cloned plants. In nurseries or at the big box stores you find a lot of cloned plants. They come from cuttings of a parent plant which makes them clones. They are the exact same genetic makeup of the parent plant they took the cutting from.

If that parent plant was pollinated and then went to seed and you planted the seed you would have a variety of genetic information. Each seed would be a little different and that is a good thing. That diversity or biodiversity gives the next generation of plants a better chance of survival from a disease, pests, climate change, and so on.

In wild nature, plants adapt to changes in their environment, and those changes, in theory, make each generation stronger.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen with man-made intervention. Many of the plants we grow today rely heavily on man to keep them going because we manipulate the diversity to try and control the outcome of the plants.

GMO plants are plants that are manipulated to get the outcome people desire, like a stronger skin on a tomato, corn that is resistant to certain pesticides, or soybeans manipulated to create more oleic acid. This doesn’t mean they are healthy or genetically superior. In fact, some scientists believe that GMO plants might be a very bad option long term. The debate is heated and the verdict still very much up in the air on this subject. We will have to wait and see what happens with GMOs.

Since we like to follow the laws of nature here at The Plant More Project we are going to go with the concept of natural biodiversity. The idea of plants mixing it up and trying to adapt to the environment with a stronger, better version of themselves. That is done through seeds. Organic or heirloom seeds being the best options.

When you plant from seed it can be hit or miss. Some seeds will be stronger than others. That is ok too. You can plant 100 seeds from the same package and maybe 50 will grow into strong healthy plants.

By the way, if you get 50% of your seed package growing healthy and strong you are kicking butt!

A great way to see how viable (or strong) your seeds are is to take a wet paper towel and place 10 of the same type of seeds from the same package on the wet towel and fold it over. Wait a few days, keeping the paper towel moist but not soaked and see how many seeds sprout.

If 1 out of 10 sprout then you have a 10% viability. Two out of the ten then you have a 20% viability. The higher the better. That is what they mean on the seed package when they say germination rate.

So starting with seed is a great option. This goes for anything you plant from tomatoes to landscape plants. We want to plant from seeds as much as possible. We want to increase biodiversity in all forms of planting because it has powerful impacts on the plants and animals living in the ecosystem. That includes us.

Storing seeds is a great way to create a library of plants at your disposal.

2) Seeds are plants on hold

Seeds are plants waiting to happen. They are in a survival state and magically know when the right time to sprout is. That is pretty incredible.

Seeds are able to stay dormant and survive conditions that the actual plant may die in. How freaking cool is Mama Nature! She figured out a storage concept to keep plants going and pop out when the time is right.

There are three parts to a seed. The seed coat or protective outer layer. The embryo (baby plant), and a food supply to feed the embryo while it germinates. All that information is contained in those tiny little packages. Mind-blowing.

Most seeds will begin germination when they get wet. Some need a certain temperature outside to germinate. Some need to be chewed on by an animal. Seeds know when the time is right.

You can follow planting guides for your zone but it is also fun to plant things at random times of the year and see what happens especially as our climate is shifting and changing. I’ve grown a lot of things out of season.

Storing seeds is a great way to secure our food options. There are a lot of heirloom seed swaps online. You can share the seeds you’ve saved from your crops with others and get new seeds to try for yourself. This is a great way to continue biodiversity and store plants to grow at a later date.

Start with seeds from a reputable source and watch them grow.

3) You know what you are working with from the start

Starting with seed allows you to follow the process from start to finish. You know you are getting pesticide-free plants when you start from seed because you are following their life cycle. Big box or nursery plants had a long life before they found you so who knows what was sprayed on them.

You don’t need pesticides with healthy plants and healthy plants start with healthy soil. Starting with a deep rich black or brown soil is a good idea.

Remember as you water your plants all those nutrients are taken up by the plant. You will know this is happening because the soil actually starts to change color and gets lighter. When the soil color gets lighter you want to give it more nutrients in the form of additional organic soil, compost, fish emulsion, or worm castings. It is best to stay away from the chemical fertilizers for you and the plant.

Starting with heirloom, organic, or Non-GMO seeds is the best place to begin. Use a nice compost or organic potting soil for good drainage and nutrients. Stay away from the chemical potting soil and things that say they push the growth of your plants. You don’t want to push or stimulate the growth of your plants. You want them to grow as they would naturally so you get the best end product.

Not only does starting with seed help reduce pesticides in your garden but it also reduces the pesticide runoff that happens. That pesticide runoff lands in our water systems and causes great damage to our health so we want to stop using pesticides and chemical fertilizers asap.

Go natural it has worked for millions of years and will continue to do so. We just need to follow the laws of nature.

Start from seed and watch it grow.

Can you think of other reasons to start from seed? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Plant something from seed today and watch it grow.

Plant Power On,

Stephanie

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5 Life-Changing Benefits that Plants Offer You!

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Affiliate Disclaimer: This post, document, email, or site may contain affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, The Plant More Project may receive a commission (at no additional cost to you). We use this money to help run our organization and continue our mission. Here’s a link to our full disclosures, terms & privacy if you’d like to read more.

Plants can be life-changing. From food to shelter and everything in between. We need them in our lives more than we know.

Here are five ways that plants can benefit you and change your life for the better.

Plants are beautiful and calming.

1) Plants are calming and nurturing

Have you ever had a stressful day and felt like a walk outside would get you back in the swing of things?

There is a good reason for that feeling. On a subconscious level, you know that being outside in nature will soothe your inner savage beast.

Studies show that the colors found in nature can have an effect on our mood. Many color theorists believe that green promotes a sense of calm, harmony, relaxation, security, and peace.

Walking outside and seeing the color green can lower your stress levels and that is benficial to your health. The lower your stress levels the better your body will function.

So think about getting outside for a walk in nature more often.

2) Plants provide oxygen

Plants give off oxygen through the process of photosynthesis.

Photosynthesis is when a plant takes in carbon dioxide in order to make the sugars it needs to survive. During that process, it produces oxygen as the byproduct. Pretty cool for us since we breathe oxygen.

How is it life-changing? The more plants, the more oxygen the better we breathe. I’d say that is pretty life-changing.

Some studies have shown that oxygen can increase your memory capacity, raise energy levels, detox your blood, and boost concentration.

Try this, go for a walk in a park and see if you can feel the difference. Try breathing on a crowded street with lots of cars and trucks and then breathing while in a wooded or plant-filled area. It’s a fun little experiment.

Every time I’ve done this with a group they immediately notice the difference and breathe a little deeper. Deep breathing in fresh clean air is invigorating.

Breath in the cool oxygen filled air in the forest. The perfect break from a crazy day.

3) Plants are cooling

Not only do plants provide shade, which is quite cooling, but they also cool the air through a process called transpiration.

Transpiration is when a plant sucks up water and nutrients from the roots into the plant. When it does this water evaporates from the leaves and sometimes the stems. It is a bit like a plant sweating.

This “sweating” process cools the surrounding area. Without plants and this process it could get so hot we might not survive. This is one of the big reasons for planting more. It helps cool the environment. If the planet gets too hot we are done. That could be really life-changing.

When you are out in nature doing the oxygen experiment see if you can feel the difference between the temperatures as well. It is cooler in the woods because of the shade and the process of transpiration.

Planting more around your home can cool your landscape and save you money on cooling costs too.

The dense Mangrove forests along the coastlines help protect from storms and powerful winds.

4) Plants are protective

There are so many ways plants can protect you. A windbreak is a great example. I wrote a post for Mother Earth News about windbreaks if you’d like to read more.

In a nutshell, think of a windbreak as a wall that helps slow down powerful winds like those in a hurricane. Mama Nature creates windbreaks along the coastlines to protect the area.

When we remove the Mangrove forests along the beaches and the dense trees around lakes we are exposing ourselves to the power of the wind. This isn’t such a good idea and leaves us more exposed to wind and water damage.

Having a natural or man-made windbreak surrounding your property can save you a lot of time, money, and possibly save your home and loved ones.

Layers are the key. Follow the laws of nature and how Mama sets up a windbreak. Read more about it here.

Plants feed us. Yeah food!

5) Plants provide us with food

This is my personal favorite because I LOVE to eat.

Just think about how hard life would be without food and the plants that give us this food. I for one would be very hungry and not survive very long.

Plants give us nuts, fruits, vegetables, herbs, grains, flowers, medicine. Plants clean our water. They clean the air. They clean our soil. Wow, they are busy. I’m so glad they do all that work for us.

Without plants we wouldn’t be and that would definitely be life-changing.

This is why I love plants so much. This list is a small fraction of the benefits plants provide us. The more we plant the more we get back. So plant more today.

What other things can you think of that plants provide. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Plant Power On,

Stephanie

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Welcome to The Plant More Project

Welcome to The Plant More Project, here we grow!

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Affiliate Disclaimer: This post, document, email, or site may contain affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, The Plant More Project may receive a commission (at no additional cost to you). We use this money to help run our organization and continue our mission. Here’s a link to our full disclosures, terms & privacy if you’d like to read more.

If you’re like most people you work hard, are committed to your family and friends, and want to succeed in life.

You also feel there something is missing from your day to day grind and want to do something meaningful that leaves a positive lasting impact on the world.

I get it and feel the same way. Life is challenging these days. I truly believe we are all suffering from a disconnection to the natural world. We are feeling it on a deep, fundamental level.

If you’ve been searching for something that makes you feel empowered, healthier, more connected, and part of something magical then you’ve come to the right place.

If you want to grow some food, start a new hobby, or just want something living and green in your house then this is the place to be. We will grow together and become reconnected to what makes us thrive.

After a car accident, my physical therapist suggested I pull weeds to strengthen the muscles in my neck so I did. I didn’t know much about the plants in the area I was living in at the time and wound up with an itchy, bumpy, painful red rash up and down my arms. Ouch.

I knew nothing. I needed info stat! So I took classes and became a Master Gardener, a Master Naturalist, a Habitat Steward, a Water Ambassador, and went back to school and got a degree.

Not knowing what the hell I was doing was a blessing in disguise. Along my journey, I realized that plants provided information about the world we live in and here we will share that incredible information with you.

The plant world can be a game-changer for your mental, physical, and spiritual health. Plants are powerful healing tools. They clean the air, soil, and water and do so much more for us.

On this site, we explore the benefits plants offer us and then plant more of them to reap those benefits. I believe we can help ourselves feel whole by reconnecting with nature, gardening, and working with the plant kingdom.

The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul.

Alfred Austin

A connection to nature is life-changing and something we all need right now.

Our goal is to help you with your plant journey no matter where you are starting from. Mama Nature is complicated and nobody knows everything. You don’t have to be perfect at gardening, just enjoy the journey. It is a journey of constant discovery. You’ll learn about plants and yourself along the way.

To get started you have a few choices.

I think you will really enjoy growing with this community, and hopefully, you’ll save yourself from a nice little rash along the way.

It’s a pleasure to grow with you.

Plant Power On,

Stephanie

Plant more in your yard, on your balcony, in a container. Plant everywhere! Plants help clean the air, water, and soil. They can ground you and make you feel more connected to nature.