Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Save the Seeds!

Let your vision get a little blurry and you will see the picture the mural forms.

Alerted by the vigilant blogger who has been running from the man since 2007, we urge you to support the Pavlovsk Experimental Station. The seed bank is in deep trouble after a Russian court ruled yesterday that the Russian Housing Development Foundation can take the land the seed bank is on and sell it to private home developers. (See all totalitarian countries have eminent domain policies, not just America.) It is home to 5,500 varieties of edible plants, mostly fruit. And like the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, it attempts to perform a crucial service helping to (literally) insure Earth's biodiversity.

According to Boing Boing, the Pavlovsk Experimental Station's collection made it through World War II and many of its varieties can be found nowhere else on Earth. They note that seed banks like this can be used as breeding stock, to impart useful traits like drought tolerance or weed resistance to more common varieties. These efforts are ever more important as Monsanto and their ilk attempt to patent, horde and neuter seeds. Moreover, as the effects of development increase the pace of the sixth species extinction, such breeding could become crucial to human survival.

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