[email protected] #1 - The BeginningsteemCreated with Sketch.

in gridcoin •  2 years ago  (edited)

 Dear Steemians,

welcome to the official first post of the [email protected] project! As I announced, this is a project to enable everyone willing to participate in the creation of a new plant variety, using a big network of people to achieve this goal together. As the last announcement served already as an introduction (if you have missed it: [email protected]) , or just look in the categorie/tag #plantbreedingathome) this will give you an overview of the structure of the project. First things first, there are a two important things we need to decide upon:

Most importantly – who would like to participate? :) 

Concerning the requirements: You do not need any gardening/plant knowledge at all, as I will provide this part! You do not need a garden or a balcony, approximately 60cms on a windowsill (the bigger the window the better) should be sufficient. If you live somewhere without windows (hopefully you are not) or just have very small windows with not much light coming in, we may be able to find a solution as well, this I would like to discuss personally via email. You should be able to provide at least 3 pots, soil, water and a bit of care. How many plants you will grow is your decision, but 3 is the minimal requirement to do the experiment. We will need to collect data 3-5 times during the season, but this will be announced and explained in detail. You see, there are very few requirements, so everyone who wants is able to join! :) 

Second point - Which plant should we use? I am still open for suggestions but to be honest, I am leaning strongly towards peppers, as I found a lot of scientific background that can help us. There is a lot of stuff on tomatoes too, but tomatoes tend to be very susceptible to pests and fungi. What do you think? If we choose peppers, we still can decide on what traits we want to work, and if we want to take a spicy or a sweet variety. Let me know what you think! 


Picture 1: An impression from my kitchen :)

To proceed, I would suggest that we wait until the 1st of September (upcoming Friday) to collect ideas and discuss. If you want to participate, please send me an email to:

[email protected]

This email should contain a name (a nickname is sufficiant for the time being), the country you are living in and your choice of plant. September 3rd I will announce the chosen plant and the number of people participating.
This email is secure, and every piece of data you will give me will only be used for the project! 

Furthermore, I wanted to inform you about what is bound to happen next:
1. Start project, decide on a plant, find participants
2. I will look into resources for plant of choice and propose traits to breed, the community decides
3. I will start creating the first crosses and to produce seeds for the community; this will be documented and shared with everybody
4. Distribute seeds to everybody!
As the expected time to distribute seeds is probably somewhere in the beginning of next year, I will use the meantime to give you a introduction into genetics and breeding, step by step, parted into a few posts. As I need quite some time to prepare the posts you can expect a timeframe of around 2-3 weeks from post to post, with some updates on the project inbetween. I am excited, let's make this happen!
One last thing: I would usually not ask you for resteeming, but I am a bit anxious to get enough participants. The aim is to have 50 to a maximum of 100 people. Sorry to bother you, but I would be really thankful!


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I teach jr. high science, and this sounds like a really cool ongoing project for my classes to participate in. About how much can we expect to pay for upfront startup costs. Pots and soil is not a problem. I am mostly concerned about shipping costs.


Hey sustainablyyours,

in general,this should not be a problem. Depending on where you live, shipping is not more than what you pay for the smallest package/letter available times 2. I am checking regulations for seed import/export into different countries at the moment, and probably I will need to find 1 participant to send the seeds of all participants of the country to, who can subsequently distribute them. So it should in no case be more than ca. 10$-15$, but I still have to figure out the details. This will be announced as soon as I have a list of participants and their respective country of origin.

But anyway, I would offer to cover the costs as this for educational purposes. If I can help to inspire young people to discouver their passion for science I am more than willing to do it!


I am very interested! I am in Arkansas in the United States. I'll definitely follow along to get more information!


Please! ;) Glad to see a teacher involved who is looking out for his students. Unfortunately I experienced a few teachers in my time who had already mentally resigned, but those who didn't really made a difference! Many of my passions were originally ignited by a great teacher, the effects of it I experience daily. Keep up the good work!

I wish you good luck with this very nice project! :)

I'm in

I'm really looking forward to this project. Although I'm a plant biologist I hope to get new insights into breeding science.
I was wondering whether we will try a complete natural planting without artificial fertilizer and pesticides?
Where will you get the first seed generation? Will there be problems with companies? Maybe I'm to fast and you will answer this in a future post.


Hey Maleja,

welcome, nice to have you onboard! I will do my very best to explain the process in detail. And thank you for your questions, those are important things to consider.

First of all: You can grow your plants however you like! If you want to use pest control or the fertilizer of your choice that is up to you. We will have a broad variety of growing conditions, so the effect of the environment will be quite strong. I have already planned for this and it should not pose a problem. On the contrary, it will be interesting to see the plants grow in different environments with different treatments!

Furthermore, we will only use varieties that are not copyrighted in any way. Therefore we will have no issues with companies.

Again, nice to have you onboard!

Do you have enough people yet? :) We have plenty of plants at our home and not sure how my wife would react to this, but I'd be happy to participate if you still need more people. I'll talk to my wife before sending email..


Hey apsu,

there is still plenty of space, I would be glad if you wanted to participate! I am sure you can convince your wife, just tell her about the project and how awesome it will be! :)

Edit: I just checked your blog about your farming patch. Lovely! As the seeds I will send out will not be ready before January, you could grow the plants also next season outdoors. Then there is no space restriction! ;)


Hi, I'll send you an email now when my wife said it's ok :)

And thank you! We have a farming patch and a big balcony and I'm growing chili peppers in a hyrdoponic system, so I'm fan of growing plants almost anywhere.

I am in!

Hey I would like to participate...
But I'm worried that it consumes too much time. What do you think how many hours a week?


Not much time at all! For most of the time, you will just have to water your plant, so that would be about 5 min every 2 or 3 days. On some occasions, when you give the plant a bigger pot or collect data for the project, it will be around 1h, but this will only be necessary 5-7 times in ca. 6 months. No worries! Most of the project ist done by letting your plant grow by itself. I will also give detailed instructions on this, so even if you have not touched a plant in your life , it is no problem! So, as a rough estimation:

Plant grow time, for one season ca. 6 months = 26 weeks. Watering every 2,5 days for 5 min means watering roughly 73 times, which equals to just about 6 hours. If you repot twice (2h) and collect data 5 times (5h), we have 6h+2h+5h= 13h of work in total! So as a weekly average, that would mean roughly 30 min per week, or just about 4,28 min a day! :)

But as I said, the watering will feel like no work at all and the plant care and data collection occurs only 7 times (2x plant care, 5 times data collection).

I hope I could answer your question!


Cool thank you for your answer :)

Hi @dysprosium ;) sounds like a small science project directly on my windowsill ;) I for sure can not resist the urge to participate. But i must admit that iam much better in fitting CPUs in a socket than in gardening or growing plants. I will give my best tough!
And Iam going to resteem as well ! Hooray for science !


Thanks a lot! You surely know the feeling when you get a newly built PC to post after taking the time to build it and figure out what the problem was (There always is something that one misses)? That is the feeling when you see the first flower open and the first fruit begin to grow. Especially in the beginning, you will have this feeling everytime when you look after your plant. And unlike with PCs, where it is clear how a setup will behave as you had the specs beforehand, you'll never know with crossed plants in the breeding process, thus having even a greater time watching them develop!

Can't participate but resteemed :)

Hello everyone,

please do not forget to send me a mail, if you have not done this yet. There is still room for participants!