The Utopian Seed Project

Celebrating diversity in food and farming through crop and variety trials in the Southeast.

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The Utopian Seed Project is a hands in the earth non-profit committed to trialing crops and varieties in the Southeast to support diversity in food and farming. Our utopian vision is to create an engaged network of growers, gardeners, farmers, foodies, cooks and chefs to help educate and celebrate this diversity. We are based in Asheville, NC and are working towards an overarching vision to create food sovereignty in the face of climate change through diverse and regenerative agriculture. 

Crop Trial Focus Areas

Exploring Varietal Diveristy in Southern Crops

We are conducting crop variety trials for traditional southern crops to explore the diversity on offer. It’s exciting to realize that the genetic diversity within many crops can give us culinary and climate resilient opportunities.

Tropical Perennials Grown As Temperate Annuals

We are experimenting with growing crops that are native to the tropics, but with some additional care can thrive and provide diverse food in our region. This is an exciting area of crop research with some incredible culinary and potential.

Promoting Underutilized Edibles as Food Crops

We are growing and assessing some of the many wild, native and underutlized food crops yet to be explored or fully appreciated. With some simple selection or breeding work, many of these crops could offer great culinary promise.

The Peoples Seed Logo

 In 2020, The People’s Seed joined forces with The Utopian Seed Project. The People’s Seed is the legacy organization of a legendary seed and farming advocate, Tony Kleese. Tony recognized the need to develop a new system for a fair and open seed industry to ensure a sustainable, climate adapted food system for the future. Learn more about our ongoing work HERE.

So many colors of collards 💜 💚 💜

#collards #tuspcollards #heirloomcollardsproject
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I guess we can't really call it a hoop house any more!

We've had some awesome volunteers and some generous donations to make this project a reality!

Thank you to all

Almost half way there. Excited to begin reconstruction!

#communitysupported #hoophouse
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Pretty excited that at least some of my chaya stem cuttings have rooted out! By the looks of my flat, I have about 16 viable chaya cuttings.

#chaya #plantpropagation #tropicalperennials
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We didn't get all the hoops moved, but we made a great start. Thanks to the rockstar volunteers @robophonics @maia_sur Sean Randal and @frannytacy ...

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The Experimental Farm Notebook

We’ll be publishing  updates throughout the growing season so you can stay up to date with what we’re up to and how the experiments are going. This will be an informal narrative of our highs and lows, successes and failures, with photos and fun facts!

Follow Along With Our Weekly Farm Notes

Thanks to our Sustaining Sponsors

Two Seeds in a Pod - Sustaining Sponsor
Southern Exposure Seed Exchange Sustaining Sponsor