The ABCs of Homesteading: 'S' is for Seed, Storage, and Spice


Pea Flower 

Pea flower

On the scale of human history, our evolution from foraging to farming to the global economy of today is incredibly short. In about 14,000 years (+/-), we've gone from having minimally cultivated forest gardens to growing soybeans in the US to feed pigs in China.

Setting aside the absurdity of transporting beans over 7000 miles and the complications of the current trade war, it's quite a monumental leap from our first primitive gardens to our current food supply systems. What's more incredible is that the three S words listed in the title of this article - seeds, storage (as in food storage), and spice – are at the heart of that history.

Seeds, Storage, and Spices

Planting and saving seeds to produce food set humans free from foraging. The ability to store foods such as dried grains, legumes, and other crops and in the form of domesticated livestock allowed formerly nomadic people to build durable homes and stay put even when the weather wasn't ideal for food production.

As people genetically accustomed to living varied, wandering lives, being homebodies probably got a little boring. So, our predecessors innovated, improved production, increased transportation capacity, started exploring, and trading spices for temperate climate crops, furs for silks, raw wood for elaborate artistry, and so on.

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