Farm, Garden and The Land > Gardening and Agriculture

Grow and Share Seed Programs

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DDJ:
My Wife just informed me that our county library has started a seed bank.  They have seeds to give and will accept seeds.  If we get a good production this yesr in the fal we are planning on donating soem to add to thier "collection".

Stark County Library, Canton Ohio

Cedar:
I actually helped a Seed Bank at a library in Wisconsin when a friend who lives there hooked them up with me. If your local library does not have one, educate your library on what a 'seed library is' and get one happening in your community.

Cedar

I.L.W.:
January 31, 2016
For those interested, the last saturday of January is the unofficial "National Seed Swap day".
Information can be found here: http://seedswapday.blogspot.com/

There are several organizations who collaborate to offer seed swapping events on this day, across the US. Some areas will set the date plus or minus a few days depending on facilities availability, so check ahead of time for the schedule in your area.

Not to far from me (in Rochester NY) there is already a listing for one of these events.
http://www.rcgc.org/0131ss-8th-annual-seed-and-houseplant-swap

If you intend to bring seeds to an event, this is likely the time you'll be collecting most of them. The favorites seem to be medicinal herbs, perennial flowers, and house plants.  Personally, I would like to see a better showing of fruit trees and bushes, and may break out the cloner this weekend to begin rooting a few hundred cuttings.

How to get involved in Seed Swap Events

• Bring a friend or two.

• While it's not required that you bring anything to share (there is often an extreme excess), the events are more successful with a wide variety of of plants. If you have something uncommon, please share.

• Etiquette dictates that you not clean out a vendor of their entire stock. As homesteaders, we can use 800 garlic plants, especially when they're free. But save some for the other visitors. Take a reasonable sample size. If you need more, talk to the person swapping. Odds are they have a lot more and you can work something out with them.

• Some of the booths are often used for fund raising. They'll swap seeds freely, but started plants may cost $1-$2 to support some cause. I'd recommend bringing $20-$30 cash. There are frequently food vendors as well, so have some money on you.

• Different groups have different expectations for how you bring your seeds in. Generally, no patented or GMO seeds. They should be labeled with the full botanical name. Ziploc sandwich bags and a sharpie make for good cheap seed packets.

• Some traders will print out business card sized info sheets. How to plant the seed, where it grows best, what the plant is used for etc. Sometimes just a card with a link or QR code to a blog page with descriptions or a youtube channel. This is not a necessity, but people appreciate it.

• Some events host lectures on seed saving, or related topics. If yours doesn't, you may want to volunteer to give one. FOr small hobby farms and homestead businesses, this is a great opportunity to increase your business's exposure to the local public.

• Retailers often make a showing with last years commercial seed packets. Seed dealers don't take them back at the end of the season (they're not worth shipping), but want them discarded before they ship the new packets. In my local feed store, they often have a full shopping cart full of seed packets for free around November. Lots of small businesses will bring these seeds to the swap.

• Bring some small bags with you. Many traders will simply have bulk seed in quart or gallon jars. You'll need something to transport the seeds in without getting them all mixed up. Since you may take moist cuttings, I recommend plastic, sealable bags. A cheap canvas grocery bag may also be helpful to carry around started plants.

Resources for seed packaging:

Printable Seed packet Templates
http://tipnut.com/seed-packets/

Royalty-free plant images:
http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/Vegetables_g63.html

Make a QR Code:
http://goqr.me/


Started plants in rock-wool and/or 2" net pots can have the roots wrapped in plastic wrap.

Scion wood and grape cuttings can be stored in 2-gallon freezer bags, wrapped  in moist paper towel either individually, or in small bundles .

Bulbs and tubers transport well in a box filled with shredded newspaper.

Prepper456:
how do you find a local one?

__33w__:

--- Quote from: Prepper456 on December 20, 2019, 05:15:39 PM ---how do you find a local one?

--- End quote ---

I've found ones through local/statewide gardening groups on Facebook. 

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