29. Peter Jordan | Seed Haven | Ontario, Canada
Tell us a little about yourself.
Peter is a retired chemical engineer from the hi-tech software sector. He’s been gardening for about 30 years, until about 3 years ago had only perennials in gardens. He has 10 different gardens now spread out across several acres. Peter developed a custom software irrigation system to manage the diverse eco-climates that accounts for light, wind, soil, temperature. Then he developed some more software to manage plants in the house so they could take a vacation during the winter. Living on the Canadian shield which is solid limestone in Ottawa makes gardening a challenge.
Created Seed Haven to reduce pests in his garden, deal with the short season and reduce water usage. Seed Haven works in your own garden soil providing a naturally safe barrier for your vegetables and herbs to thrive from seeds or transplants to harvest. It protects your investment in time and money so you can provide those fresh natural organic vegetables and herbs for your family. If you’ve experienced the frustration of losing many or even all of your vegetables and herbs to pests, Seed Haven is right for you.
Tell me about your first gardening experience?
Were playing darts at local pub and joined by a couple who were horticulturalists back in 1988.
What does organic gardening/earth friendly mean to you?
Cutting down on artificial tools used to grow just about everything these days, quality, taste, safety and environmental impact.
Who or what inspired you to start using organic techniques?
Has 2 vegetarian granddaughters and getting to see them pick veggies and just eat them is lots of fun!
How did you learn how to garden organically?
Started organically, don’t use pesticides anywhere on property. Peter is a ground water specialist as well and understands this is not good for well.
Tell us about something that grew well this year.
Cold and lots and lots of rain, but still had a decent harvest of green beans, carrots, and beets.
Is there something you would do different next year or want to try/new?
Experiment with a bigger variety of vegetables. Have little sun because they live on a treed lot.
Tell me about something that didn’t work so well this season.
Something that you find is easy to grow and is generally successful every-time.
Beans, beans, and more beans, usually green and yellow bush beans.
Something you would steer new gardeners away from that you find is typically challenging to grow in your climate.
Squash and melon because they don’t have a long enough season and they have powdery mildew everywhere. Rotation not possible in smaller beds.
Which activity is your least favorite activity to do in the garden.
Really don’t, because gardening is always therapeutic.
What is your favorite activity to do in the garden.
Picking crops with granddaughters. Nice to see which day lily is going to bloom.
A favorite tool that you like to use? If you had to move and could only take one tool with you what would it be.
Chipper shredder to create compost.
Eating or harvesting vegetables or fruit on time?
Share with neighbors
A favorite internet resource?
Googles lots of research papers looking from a technical point of view.
A favorite reading material-book, mag, blog/website etc you can share.
If you have a business to you have any advice for our listeners about how to sell extra produce or get started in the industry?
4 years ago started growing vegetables and seeds would sprout and just disappear overnight from pests in area. Chatting with friend in neighborhood, came up with a solution, made some prototypes out of tin, tested them for 2 years, and results were mind-bloggling, so the next year decided to manufacture devices. Prevent ear wigs, slugs, and millipedes etc from eating sprouts. Other benefits were the white sides reflect light onto the plants and the lips captures the rain and mixes nice oxygen and nitrogen to feed plants. Distributed in Canada right now.
Final question- if there was one change you would like to see to create a greener world what would it be? For example is there a charity or organization your passionate about or a project you would like to see put into action. What do you feel is the most crucial issue facing our planet in regards to the earth either in your local area or on a national or global scale?
Programs that involve gardening in schools.
Elizabeth Leonard talks about the farms to schools network in Episode 19
Do u have an inspiration tip or quote to help motivate our listeners to reach into that dirt and start their own garden?
“Time is the most valuable things we have so get out there and spend it with your family.”
“What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world remains and is immortal.” Albert Pine
“life is ruled by fortune, not wisdom” – Theophrastus c.287 BC Greek Philosopher known for his reflections on plants, what are plants, why are plants, and even why is a stone . . .
Connect with Peter at the Seed Haven Website or on twitter @seedhavenca
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