Signs of Spring in April's Dakota Life

Posted by Heather Benson on

As spring sprouts in South Dakota, Dakota Life visits the Yankton Seed Library, where seeds are donated, grown and saved in the state’s only seed library of its kind. Assistant Librarian Susie Lippert leads the project that is administered by the Yankton Public Library and a supporting board. State prison workers tend the seeds. To access the library, interested gardeners must attend a class that explores one of a variety of gardening topics. Each class attended grants the pupil one packet of seeds. SDPB visits with Kay Swihart, a Yankton gardener who patronizes the library. 

Travel with us to Pine Ridge where Brian Deans of the Oglala Lakota Cultural & Economic Revitalization Initiative (OLCERI) leads multiple food production projects rooted in permaculture, holistic land management, and Lakota culture. Centered around community building and repurposing, OLCERI works to conserve water, build soil, and nurture wildlife to restore self-sufficiency and cultural revitalization among Lakota on the Pine Ridge Reservation. 

We’ll go to rural Brandon to visit Stephanie Peterson and her business Fruit of the Coop. Peterson works with small family producers in Eastern South Dakota to provide free-range eggs to Sioux Falls restaurants. We ride along and meet the small farmers who are working together to build a sustainable business model, one egg at a time. 

And we venture to White Lake and Sioux Falls where farmers Reid Suelflow and Jeff Zimprich discuss the ag practices they incorporate to improve health for the soil, pollinators, and wildlife. 

The latest Dakota Life premieres Thursday, April 4, at 8pm (7 MT) and rebroadcasts Saturday, April 6, 1pm (noon MT) on SDPB1. 

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