MWSS 2019 Schedule – Saturday 2/23

Saturday, February 23map


9:00 – 9:40 a.m.

Opening and Welcome

Library & Technology Center, Auditorium


9:40 – 10:15 a.m.

KEYNOTE: Healing Homecomings: Indigenous Seed Rematriation

Rowen White    Library & Technology Center, Auditorium

A seed matriation movement is underway with indigenous people carrying their ancestral seeds from seed vaults, institutions, and universities back to the lands of their birth. Rowen will share with us hopeful stories from this intergenerational movement and how it is empowering cross-cultural reconciliation work that is restoring food sovereignty and seed sovereignty within native communities.


10:30 – 11:15 a.m.

The Cultural Significance of Saving Seeds

Moderator:  Rowen White

Panel: Emigdio Ballón, Clayton Brascoupe, Dr. Joseph Mushonga •  Library & Technology Center, Auditorium

Saving seeds is an ancient agricultural practice that spans global cultures. In this panel, indigenous seedkeepers and elders will dialogue about the deep significance of seed saving for ecological, physical, and spiritual wellbeing, exploring how traditional seed knowledge can address the challenges and opportunities of our modern world.


11:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

KEYNOTE: In the Absence of the Sacred: Seed Engineering and Patenting (and What We Can Do About It!)

Andrew Kimbrell  •  Library & Technology Center, Auditorium

Through the bioengineering and patenting of seed varieties, three agrichemical companies control an industrial agriculture system that steals the cultural wealth of indigenous and traditional farmers while destroying the natural world. But in the face of these challenges, a resistance movement is on the rise. Executive Director of the Center for Food Safety Andrew Kimbrell will discuss the latest developments on genetic engineering of seeds (such as CRISPR gene-editing technology which offers new means of patenting seed genomes) and share what we can do to protect our sacred seeds and planet.


12:00 – 12:15 p.m.

Honoring Our Local Food Connection

Nina Yozell-Epstein  •  Library & Technology Center, Auditorium


12:15 – 1:15 p.m.

LUNCH BREAK with Breakout Sessions and Grain Literacy

Laurie Lange, Gregg Batt  •  Center for Lifelong Education, Cafeteria, Lobby, and Commons

Laurie and Gregg will lead discussions during lunch in the Commons room. "Health and Seed Production" with Laurie Lange: How can herbs and medicinal plants be used in first aid and for treating Lyme disease and other ailments? Download discussion notes from Laurie here.

"Making Time for Seed Saving" with Gregg Batt: Who's got time for saving seeds—or for organizing a radical seed saving project? You do! Bring your best ideas for a creative brainstorming session on how to get started, or improve what you're already doing.


1:00 – 1:20 p.m.

Wild Walk

Sylvia Rains Dennis  •  Haouzous Garden (outside)

Sylvia Rains will lead a fascinating nature walk exploring the wild flora of the area.


1:15* – 2:15 p.m.

Seed Cuisine Workshop

Dr. Lois Ellen Frank, Chef Walter Whitewater  •  Hogan

Separate registration required in advance ($20). *Note early start time!

Join celebrated chefs Lois Ellen Frank, Ph.D. and Walter Whitewater for an experiential journey through Native American foods of the region. Frank will talk about seeds as a cuisine and Whitewater will serve two food tastings featuring a Three Sisters Stew and a Sunflower Seed Cake with a hand-harvested Choke Cherry Sauce. Chefs will set up a table for participants to explore the ingredients used and learn about indigenous foods.


1:30 – 2:15 p.m.

On-Farm Breeding for Climate Resilience

Don Tipping  •  Library & Technology Center, Auditorium

Plants adaptation to climate is vital for agriculture, yet modern farming increasingly relies on greenhouses and pesticides to change environments to suit the crop. Don will share from experiences on his Siskiyou Seeds farm how traditional agricultural knowledge can be applied to breed hardy crops that thrive amid the stresses of a changing climate.


Seed Saving on the Global Landscape: Restoring Traditions and Sowing Resistance

Sherry Manning, Indra Shekhar Singh  •  Library & Technology Center, Commons

India and the Philippines face stark challenges and declining local seed production due to the encroachment of GMOs and industrial agriculture. Sherry and Indra will discuss their work in these countries to help smallholder farmers return to traditional seed saving practices through activism, organizing, and inspiring projects for seed sovereignty.


Radical Urban Seed Saving

Jillian Bishop, Benjamin Fahrer  •  Center for Lifelong Education, Classroom 1

Seeds are not just grown on picturesque farms but in a variety of spaces, including our urban communities. So why not grow seed adapted to these unique conditions? Jillian and Benja will share stories of growing seeds in diverse and inspirational spaces—and about the partnerships they have grown along the way!


Bank On It: Seed Banks and Community Exchanges

Philip Kauth  •  Center for Lifelong Education, Classroom 2

Since its inception, Seed Savers Exchange (SSE) has provided a platform for passionate seed stewards to share their bounty. Director of Preservation at Seed Savers Exchange Philip Kauth will share lessons learned from managing the SSE seeed bank. He will also discuss how a new collaboration between SSE and USC Canada—the Community Seed Network and Exchange—is helping connect more people with seed diversity.


2:30 – 3:15 p.m

Community Seed Banks and Participatory Plant Breeding in Zimbabwe

Moderator: Carol Thompson

Panel: Andrew Mushita, Joseph Mushonga  •  Center for Lifelong Education, Auditorium

Two Zimbabwean seed-breeders, engaged for decades in local community seed banks and participatory plant breeding projects, will share their experience presenting Participatory Plant Breeding Farmer Field Schools that empower people to keep control over their seeds. Andrew Mushita and Dr. Joseph Mushonga will discuss their work with community seed banks, crop diversification, and climate resilient crop varieties that strengthen and improve farmer seed systems. They will also discuss the co-opting of African crop genetics by large agribusinesses.


The Future of Seeds and Water in the Arid Southwest: The Challenges of Climate Change, Population, and Policy

Miguel Santistevan  •  Center for Lifelong Education, Commons

Water in the arid west and globally is often regarded as a commodity rather than as a sacred resource to be shared by all, and yet it could be inextricably linked to the future of seeds and seed sovereignty. Join Miguel Santistevan for an important discussion about the impacts of climate change to our water supplies that not only feed our communities but also feed our seeds. Miguel will discuss his experience with acequia agriculture, dryland farming and seed stewarding in Northern New Mexico, and the cultural significance of honoring water in our agricultural practices historically and for the future.


Maximizing Seed Crop Diversity: Traditional Southwest Planting and Selection

Brett Bakker  •  Center for Lifelong Education, Classroom 1

Too often, limited space prevents us from seeding the appropriate plant population to maintain maximum diversity—and discourages beginners from growing seed crops at all. Brett will discuss how diversity in the Southwest can be sustained through traditional methods of planting and selection.


Seven Tenets for Seed and Civilization

Greg Schoen  •  Center for Lifelong Education, Classroom 2

Greg will discuss heritage seed stewardship through a lens of decolonizing seed and how we can heal our relationship to seeds, food, and ourselves by understanding past and present events.


3:30 – 4:15 p.m.

International Seed Policy

Moderator: Andrew Kimbrell 

Panel: Andrew Mushita, Panagiotis Sainatoudis, Carol Thompson  •  Library & Technology Center, Auditorium

The corporate takeover of seed ownership by large chemical agribusinesses creates an uneven playing field for small shareholder seed farmers and indigenous communities worldwide. Learn how other countries are dealing with the wholesale co-opting of their seed genetics and continuing to practice the ancient art of seed saving in spite of the efforts of multinational corporations to upend them.


Seed Stories with SeedBroadcast

Jeanette Hart-Mann, Ruben Olguin, Chrissie Orr, Rick Ferchaud •  Center for Lifelong Learning, Commons

SeedBroadcast will lead an experiential workshop to explore Seed Stories, acknowledging and giving thanks to seeds in our lives with a focus on climate resiliency. Participants are asked to bring a handful of seeds to engage with through creative writing and conversation.


Seed is the Future of Humanity

Bevan Williams  •  Center for Lifelong Learning, Classroom 1

Bevan will share his thoughts on the future of seed based on his deep experiences and explorations of the heart, mind and field, and drawing insight from visionary thinkers. This inquisitive presentation will explore questions such as "Why do you grow or save seeds? What message is the water bringing to seed, and what message are you bringing it? What role does intention play in the qualities of seed?" Questions and discussions are encouraged throughout this interactive presentation.


Starting a Seed Library

Rebecca Newburn  •  Center for Lifelong Learning, Classroom 2

Interested in starting a seed library? Learn the basics of how to get started. Identify the goals and purpose of your library in order to tailor it to your community’s needs. Discover some pitfalls to avoid and some strategies to make it a successful program.


4:30 – 5:00 p.m.

The Elder Indigenous Voice: Our Sacred Relationship with Plants

Beverly and Emerson Gorman  •  Library & Technology Center, Auditorium

Beverly and Emerson Gorman will share the sacred relationship between humans and plants from a Navajo perspective.


5:00 – 5:30 p.m.

Closing Ceremony

Benjamin Fahrer, Grandmother Flordemayo  •  Library & Technology Center, Auditorium




gftowlpeak     NM

HCN.Logo.300px.NewWest copykalliopeia





Who We Are

We are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening seed and food security in our region.

Our mission is to assure a diverse and abundant supply of seeds for the Rocky Mountain West through networking, education and helping establish community-based models of seed stewardship.



Take Action


More About Us



  belle (@)
  PO Box 4736 • Ketchum, ID 83340