It's getting harder and harder to find consistent, high-quality seed from commercial seed houses, and the seed that's bred for sale commercially is often bred for growing out on large commercial farms in central California. There are maybe two souls in the seed world breeding or selecting seed for varieties that perform well in the southeast. Organic seed is still difficult to find, with a limited number of varieties available. Even the best older seed houses are being bought up by pharmaceutical and chemical conglomerates that I don't care to support. All a perfect recipe to learn to do it yourself.
I've always tried to save a few seeds from our own crops for planting out in succeeding years, but kind of dabbled with it, and often got poor seed crops outside of easy-to-harvest tomato and melon seeds. I now feel armed with enough information to get out there and try again! One of the first seedy projects we're going to attempt later this spring will be to grow out seed from the few over-wintered greens that have survived our unusually cold winter. If we're successful, we should have a line of some amazingly cold-hardy greens!
Still light in the vegetable department for now, but we have a slew of fresh eggs, and I think we should have more arugula, some spinach, chard, and radishes shortly. We made great progress late last week during our brief warm spell with our spring planting - most of the spring crops are in, and we plan to finish up by putting the potatoes in later this week, as well as more blueberries!! (a story for another week).