Area Communities Carry On Tradition Of Seed Picture Creations

The Richland County Fair and Rodeo has been exhibiting community seed pictures from area communities for nearly 70 years. These seed pictures are designed, constructed, and brought to life with the help of community members from across the MonDak area. 

Participants that help make seed pictures strategically place native seeds, plants, and other natural resources to create an artistic mosaic backdrop.

This year the communities of Fairview, Savage, Sidney/Crane, and Ridgelawn submitted seed pictures. Ridgelawn received 1st place, Fairview 2nd, Sidney/Crane 3rd, and Savage taking 4th. 

The Ridgelawn group consisted of Ruth Iversen, Leann Pelvit, Larry and Marilyn Schmitt, Marlys Dynneson, Margaret Bradley, Alida Dore, Loretta Dowse, Joe and Becky Bradley, Emily Hoff, Renee Troudt and her family, and Paula Bostrom; with the group's oldest participant being 101 years old and the youngest 13 years.

In the past, there have been many more submissions and communities participating in the competition.   

"There used to be several communities that have participated; I think there used to be about 12-15 communities throughout history that made seed pictures," said Margaret Bradley, who helped create the Ridgelawn seed picture. 

Bradley has been helping create seed pictures for 40 years. She said, "It has been a tradition in the county for several years; communities did seed pictures way before I started doing them."

The group starts the project months before the fair and spends several hours working on their unique art pieces. All materials used must be natural and native to that community; the material must be 100% plant and/or natural resources grown or produced locally (rocks, coal, twigs, tree bark, etc.). All materials must retain its own natural color and there can be no artificial dying

Some examples of things used on the pieces are grape seeds, beets, flax, poppy seeds, safflower, popcorn, eggshells, milkweed, lentils, corn, wool, leather, scoria, and flower petals.

After the completion and judging is done, the communities sell or donate the seed pictures to area businesses and/or people in their respective communities. 

Bradley explained that the seed pictures are a great way to bring the community together. She said, "It is really enjoyable for everyone. It encourages community togetherness and is a good fellowship with our neighbors."

She also explained that she wished more communities would get restarted. "There are people in those communities that should get together and make a seed picture."


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