New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
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Forest Shomer – Seedman Since 1972

In 1982, Forest Shomer Came to Vancouver and Spoke at City Farmer’s ‘Urban Agriculture Lecture Series’

Interview by Greg Peterson
Nov, 2016

Forest started urban farming in 1969 in Berkeley, California. Through the People’s Park Movement, he was launched into gardening and got the basic training and motivation for becoming a seedman.

He has been a full time, independent, professions seed provider since 1972 and has owned, led, or helped launch at least four seed companies, and founded the nonprofit Abundant Life Seed Foundation which produced and distributed up to 600 types of open-pollinated vegetable, herb and flower seeds.

Interview Podcast with Forest Shomer by Greg Peterson.

Since 1974 Forest has been giving workshops on seed saving and the importance of genetic diversity, and was the keynote speaker for the 2012 Northwest Permaculture Convergence and, also the Regenerations Seed and Plant Exchange in Hawaii. Forest had a radio show for a couple of years with 30 minute interviews featuring a variety of people including many permaculturists.


Greg is enthralled by the story telling of Forest who brings us along on the adventures of a seedman. Forest felt the pull of his calling in the late 1960’s and has been actively gardening and harvesting seeds ever since. Moving through a few seed company projects over the years, he has also harvested skills, friends, experiences, and an appreciation for the importance of native seeds. With so much experience focused on the tiny seeds that are essential to all gardeners and farmers, Forest’s story connects with everyone in one way or another.

Also see:

Inside Passage: Seeds and Native Plant Services.

Seed Integrity Now.

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