Tuesday, January 21, 2014


As a child, I was gifted many little envelopes and preciously folded pieces of paper filled with seeds from my grandmother Isabelle who was a botanist. 
It was not until I read Seedtime by Scott Chaskey and heard his interview with Stefanie Sacks on Stirring the Pot that I had a full appreciation of the many gifts that my grandmother had given to me. 

It was as if a light bulb went on in my head and my heart. I saw my grandmother's legacy in a completely new light and my appreciation for her presence in my life deepened. 
Seedtime is a similar gift, but it is for all of us. This is an important book that we must share with our friends, families and communities. It is deeply meaningful and masterfully written by a luminary in the fields of organic farming, poetry and botany. 

Last year, Scott asked if I would be interested in submitting some of my work to Rodale Press for his book on seeds, and as I recall, I said "yes!" in the blink of an eye.
I am deeply honored that my photograph of a milkweed seed is on the cover of Seedtime. The seed came from a pod that was collected at a nature preserve along Accabonac  harbor in the Springs, East Hampton, N.Y. It was photographed in natural light on a precious piece of black velvet in the Winter sunlight. 
This book is a beautiful and poetic exploration of the history, husbandry and promise of seeds. It is a celebration of the very essence of the cycles of nature. As I read each page of this book, I felt that I was going on a journey through time, from the ancient tombs of the world to the current accounts of GMOs and how they are impacting our agricultural industry.

The very first sentence of the first chapter reads…

"Encapsulated in each seed is a story, a story held in a state of rest until released. Only with significant patience and effort can we interpret this language, which gradually is revealed as the cotyledons, or first leaves, unfold from a seed's invisible center."

In this book, there are many gorgeous and poetic sentences that ask for us to put the book down, if only for a moment, to relish in the cadence of the words and take in the magic of Scott's vision and lyrical expressions.

There are many curious and amazing historical details about ancient seeds, Native American traditions and the evolution of seeds through time. Scott masterfully weaves personal stories, personalities of plants, along side important information about botanical history. 
I have been deeply moved by the sincerity and the depth with which this book was crafted and published.
Rodale Press did a lovely job in the design and printing of this book. It is a book that you want to hold and read with time so as to savor the depth and richness of the words.
Thank you Scott for sharing your magic with us!
This book may be purchased locally at Canio's book store in Sag Harbor, N.Y.

It is also available through Amazon books.


  1. What a wonderful piece of writing that expresses so much about this book!
    Thank you, Mia! And thank you for the beautiful cover photo of the winged seeds on the precious piece of black velvet in the winter light!

  2. Oh my.. I believe I MUST have this book.. and I think I'll send one to my daughter too.. She would appreciate it I think.. thanks so much for sharing it & love the cover photo too.. awesome!

  3. Gorgeous photo-congrats! Seedtime sounds just my cup of tea, it's now on my list :-)