03 Sep '12, 9am

New Plants Grown from Seeds found in Old Trading Ships

New Plants Grown from Seeds found in Old Trading Ships

These lush green plants contain more history than one would imagine. They came from soil carried as ballast in early shipping boats. The empty trading ships needed weighing down, for balance, and what could be easier, and cheaper than to use soil. Once they arrived in port, they dumped the ballast (earth, sand, rocks, etc) unto the river banks and picked up their cargo. The boats roamed the seas between 1680 and the early 1900's. In this way the seeds were carried from ports and regions all over Europe. Now, hundreds of years later, the seeds in that soil have been planted in an old barge (how appropriate) and floated down a river in Bristol, UK. © Max McClure The project by Brazilian artist Maria Thereza Alvesis, (who just happens to be co-founder of Brazil's Green Party) is called Seeds of Change . She discovered that these ballast seeds can lie dormant for hundreds of y...

Full article: http://www.treehugger.com/culture/ballast-seed-garden.html

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