Sow True Seed of Asheville is an open-pollinated/non-hybrid seed company specializing in heirloom, certified organic, and traditional Southern Appalachia varieties. Their mission is to promote and foster community sustainability by helping preserve our botanical heritage and carry sustainable culture and ecological wisdom into the future.
Business partners Carol Koury (Owner) and Peter Waskiewicz (Co-Founder) founded Sow True Seed in 2009 to serve home gardeners, market growers and the seed saving community at large. “I grew up eating food that had been grown for me by my grandma, who saved her seeds so she could plant next year,” says Carol. “We want sustainable regional agriculture, and every sustainable regional agriculture needs a seed company to hold it together.” The company has a warehouse and retail store in downtown Asheville.
Open-pollinated seed reproduces true to the parent plant’s characteristics. When properly saved and replanted, they’ll continue to produce reliably. Conversely, seed saved from hybrid and genetically modified seeds’ plants produces unreliable characteristics; growers are dependent on the corporations that hold the seed patents. Open-pollinated varieties are in the public domain as the common property of everyone.
Sow True seeds are also untreated, meaning they are not coated with fungicides or chemicals of any kind. They are heirloom, meaning they were in circulation in 1940, prior to the introduction of F1 hybrids, and are certified organic in addition to holding other certifications. Sow True performs germination tests with in-house standards that exceed the USDA’s minimum percentages for germination, and they have signed the Safe Seed Pledge. The seed varieties they carry have survived the test of time based on their dependability, usefulness, and distinctive characteristics.
Sow True Seed donates seeds to local community gardens and other projects across the country, as well as to Haiti. Just Economics has recognized them as a Living Wage Certified business. In 2011, they partnered with the Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project (ASAP) as the exclusive seed donor for their Growing Minds Farm to School Program, which provides primary schools in Western North Carolina with seeds for school gardens to teach children to grow their own food. Their SEED MONEY program uses seeds for school fundraisers; this takes the candy sales out of schools and gives kids awareness about where their food comes from.
Learn more at their website: http://sowtrueseed.com/