SeedBroadcast Report in Collaboration with Native Seeds/SEARCH
|Winowing seed at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
IntroductionSeedBroadcast is a collaborative project exploring bioregional agri-Culture and seed action through collective inquiries and hands-on creative practices. SeedBroadcast holds the belief that it is a human right to save seeds and share their gifts, to grow food and share its abundance, and to cultivate grassroots wisdom and share its creativity. These are the roots of agri-Culture to be broadcast.
SeedBroadcast encourages communities to keep local agri-Culture alive and vibrant through working together in creative and inspiring ways. Spending time with people on their farms, in their gardens, at seed exchanges and at community gatherings, SeedBroadcast digs deep into the oft-unheard stories of local agri-Culture. Our work includes community based projects, art installations, dialogues, creative actions, and cross country tours with the Mobile Seed Story Broadcasting Station. Interdisciplinary collaboration is a founding principal of SeedBroadcast activities where cohorts from diverse backgrounds work together as critical partners of inquiry and creative production.
During 2016 and 2017, SeedBroadcast is partnering with Native Seeds/SEARCH (NS/S) and farmers across New Mexico to facilitate Seed Story Workshops and to creatively document bioregional seeds and climate appropriate agri-Culture. Through seasonal photo essays and audio interviews, SeedBroadcast will work with these farmers to share their stories about farming in a changing climate while cultivating seed, food, and community resiliency.
These will be published in:
SeedBroadcast Blog: http://www.seedbroadcast.blogspot.com
SeedBroadcast agri-Culture Journal: http://www.seedbroadcast.org/SeedBroadcast/SeedBroadcast_agriCulture_Journal.html
SeedBroadcast soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/seedbroadcast
The following is a brief multi-media report from the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering and Farmers' Field Day April 16-17 at Tesuque Pueblo and April 23-24 at Acoma Pueblo. We plan to compile all of this for additional publication in the near future. Stay tuned!
|Christopher Honahnie presentation on Traditional Hopi Farming Practices at Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Seed exchange at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Toñita Gonzales, Traditional Food as Medicine. Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
Seed Story WorkshopsSeedBroadcast held two Seed Story workshops in collaboration with Native Seeds/SEARCH Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, the first at Tesuque Pueblo and the second at Acoma Pueblo. Our intent was to evoke an open discussion around seeds: the relevance of saving seeds, its relationship to sharing stories, and the impact of climate change.
We started with a brief introduction about SeedBroadcast and held an open discussion about the question: What is a Seed Story?
We then handed out the following prompts and asked everyone to take some quiet time to reflect and write:
• What was your first memory of your relationship to seeds?
• What is your present relationship with seeds?
• What changes have you experienced from that first memory to now?
• How do you see your relationship to seeds in the future considering what is happening with climate change?
We then broke into small groups and shared stories that arose from these questions.
This action evoked some emotional stories around the loss of traditional ways, dreams for the future of our world and the seeds, the notion that seeds are our children, and much more. It brought everyone into relationship, not only to their stories, but to each other. We finished by posing the question: Now what will happen if these stories are lost?
|SeedBroadcast Seed Story workshop during Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering at Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico (photo: Samantha Martinez)|
The following day we set aside time to record some of these stories. Here is a selection:
Christopher Honahnie from Tuba City, Arizona shares his story of growing up in a Hopi Farming family and his plans to continue his family’s traditional farming practices.
Louisa Ann Genin Jojola Lucero of Isleta Pueblo shares her story about the community garden and her role as a trans-planter.
Jennifer Padilla of Isleta Pueblo talks about her role as a clinical therapist and organizer for the community garden. She talks about seeds, healing ancestral wisdom, and climate change.
Gilbert Yazzie from Shiprock, New Mexico talks about seeds as life, where there is no beginning or end, and the importance of keeping farming and food alive to give thanks and share its goodness with all in harmony.
Michael Willie, Diné, shares his story of his love of bringing elders and kids together to care for each other through growing food.
Rhonda Yazzie Moore shares her dream of planting her families corn field which has been laying dormant for ten years.
|Seed cleaning workshop at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Germination testing at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Hopi Tobacco Seed at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Seed cleaning workshop at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Shelling Corn at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Tesuque Seed Refrigerator at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Farmers' Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Tesuque Pueblo Orchards, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Strawberry Greenhouse, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Espalier Greenhouse, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Rainwater Catchment, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Tim and Elvira Chavez Farm Field, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Robert Salvador’s Farm, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Robert Salvador and Chris Honahnie, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Acequia Gate, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Southwest Conservation Corp, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico|
|Rio San Jose First Diversion Dam, Farmers Field Day at the Seed Sovereignty Growers Gathering, Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico|
We will be conducting on-the-farm interviews with five farmers, three times throughout 2016. Each visit will correspond with an important agri-Cultural time and space viewed through the lens of seasonal weather phenomena and corresponding seasonal farming practices, i.e. spring – transitional weather/planting, summer – monsoon/tending, and fall – transitional weather/harvest. These interviews will be recorded as audio/sound pieces and through photographic essays.
Upcoming 2016 Farmer Interviews
Spring is now upon us and we are scheduling our first visits with these incredible farmers. Here is our plan of action, along with the interview questions that we will be asking. We have also asked each farmer to contribute his/her own questions to this list.
May 8, 2016
Ron Boyd, farming at Mer-Girl Gardens in La Villita, New Mexico. He and his family is cultivating 5 acres of orchards, cane fruit, and annual and perennial herbs and vegetables.
May 15, 2016
Aaron Lowden is Ancestral Lands Program Coordinator at Acoma Pueblo with the Southwest Conservation Corp where he is coordinating traditional farming practices on Tribal lands.
May 25, 2016
Larry Emerson, farming and teaching at Hogback, near Shiprock, New Mexico on the Navajo Nation. He is developing an indigenous permaculture farm and educational space while developing bioremediation processes to cope with Coal Powered Power Plant fall-out and the recent Gold King Mine spill that have contaminated the air, land, and water in his community.
May 27, 2016
Beata Tsosie-Peña is an activist from Santa Clara Pueblo, New Mexico. She is a mother, poet, farmer, musician, and certified in infant massage. She also serves as an educator in permaculture design. She is on the staff of Tewa Women United, a non-profit organization based in New Mexico, where she advocates for justice, a clean environment and health. She believes in the practice and preservation of land-based knowledge, spirituality, language, seeds, family and the Earth.
Late May/Early June
Christopher Hanahnie is a student at the University of Arizona and practices traditional Hopi Farming with his family near Tuba City, AZ.
Spring 2016 Interview Questions:
- Tell us about where we are today and the history of this farm and its mission.
- How long have you been farming?
- Do you farm alone or with others?
- What are you planting this year. Is this different from the past years?
- How do you plan/decide your yearly planting/farming routine?
- Do you have a long-term plan for your farm?
- What do you like to grow and what grows well for you personally and/or for you here?
- Where do your seeds come from? Do you save seeds? Why?
- What seeds do you save? Can you describe how you save seeds? What does this look like?
- How do you save seeds and grow food at the same time?
- Do your saved seeds/crops do better? Or others? Which seem more adaptive/resilient to seasonal/environmental shifts you have noticed?
- How have you prepared the soil?
- How do you water?
- What other things are important for the success of your crops and your farm?
- What seasonal/environmental shifts have you experienced over the years? In this year?
- How have these affected your farm, crops and/or other things you have noticed?
- What are your hopes for this growing season? What are the challenges you face?
- What are your dreams for the future of your farm? What are the challenges you face?
- What wisdom would you like to share about how we can continue to grow our own food here in the bioregion of the southwest?
- Seeds not only nourish us physically but they hold a sense of potential in these changing times, we believe that it is not only important to save our seeds but the stories they hold. Do you have a seed story that you would be willing to share with us?
Many thanks to our collaborative partners, Native Seeds/SEARCH and all the indigenous and local farmers who are keeping seed and local food alive in their communities. This project is made possible through the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Climate Change Solutions Fund.