Where is Basswood today?

That is the question I have been asking myself. He said that he was staying in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Mexico until after Christmas. I like it when he stays in one place for a while because he writes me every day. Well... he hasn't written today. My guess is the weather is great and he decided to go exploring.

The other day he sent some pictures of squash that he found. He likes to collect seeds from different plants so that he can plant them in our gardens to increase the biodiversity of our landrace crops we want to develop. Last fall we went to several locations near where we live and gathered tree seeds. We tried to get seeds from as many different locations as possible, hoping that the genetics would be different. (We planted over 1000 wild plumb seeds. The Canadian and American wild plumbs grow where we live.)
We also went out of our way to find as many apple trees as we could.  We found apples that had red flesh, ones with purple skins, and an apple tree that was twice as tall as any others we found. One tree we were excited about had several small apple trees growing under it. (It can take work to get some apple seeds to sprout.) 

Now I know you all have heard that you shouldn't start your fruit trees from seed...  You are right.  Trees grown from seed do not grow up to be like their parent and you might wait 7-10 years to find out that the fruit from your tree is not good and you have to cut the tree down.  Well, if all the plants of one type are grafted or clones then a disease can come through and wipe them all out, because they have the same immunity.  (Check out GardenSeeds Tree Seeds webpage about growing trees from seed.)  Tree Seeds

 

I am so excited... He wrote me.  Unfortunately, he said he was feeling kind of sick, but it did finally stop raining.  He wrote, "I went to a self governing Tzotzel village yesterday. They have a council of elders that wear white and black robes with headdresses. It was Sunday so they were sacrificing chickens in the church."  Then his next message said, "I found 1 fava bean and 3 varieties of beans only grown in that town."  That's my boy.  Looking for seeds.

Squash

Squash opened for seeds

Squash

Squash