Plus, the hidden world of microscopic fungi found inside the world's biggest seed bank. Listen to episode 15 of The Conversation Weekly podcast.
Seedkeeping can create a sense of home, reconnect communities with ancestral crops and preserve biodiversity and culturally significant crops for future generations.
The idea that seed banks must be full of potentially helpful microfungi inside seeds was not a stretch, and yet no one had ever looked before.
New research shows even brief hot spells can damage seed quality.
Saving seed is a way of protecting the world's vegetable varieties, saving money, and increasingly, a political statement too.
Despite the optimistic name, the showy everlasting only has three wild populations in Australia. But a West Australian public school has stepped up to help grow vital new seeds.
With technology, humans can now control temperature, humidity, water and light, creating new "outdoor" environments, inside.
Diversity, resilience, resistance to disease: seeds must be preserved to ensure we can feed our world in the future.