Date   

Re: Recommended Storage Space for Library-based Cabinet #NewSeedLibrary

Margaret Lear
 

Hi Lauren, greetings from Scotland.
We (Perthshire Seed Library) began our collaboration with the local library service this year and storing seeds is an issue still to be perfected. But so far we are using cool boxes (to avoid rapid temperature changes), with each branch library having its own box and the central library has, I think, 3. The boxes are then used to transport seeds handed in and seeds going out to members to the nearest branch. We're also now thinking of inserts to keep the seeds in the boxes in alphabetical or variety order.
Hope this helps
Margaret


Recommended Storage Space for Library-based Cabinet #NewSeedLibrary

Lauren Muscatine
 

Hi everyone,

Great news! Our local library wants to include a seed library annex within the Napa Main library branch. This will be the first to be included in our network of seed library annexes that is part of the Napa County Library system. I'm really pleased. :-)

The staff person I am working with has access a huge library card catalog cabinet, but it may not be available. We are looking for an alternate storage cabinet.  I was thinking about using the model that Rebecca at Richmond Grows Seed Lending Library uses with three main seed types (Vegetables, Ornamentals, and Herbs) and further separating them by optimal growing conditions. Also labeling with seed saving level (easy - medium - difficult). But I would I like more input or comment on what is working for you all in the library space.

--What alternate types of storage cabinets/drawers work well in a library environment?

--How much storage space (e.g., number of drawers and number of categories of seeds) is useful to get started?

--Does this approach work for most of you? Are there other ways to categorize the seeds that is accessible for the beginner and the experiences gardener/seed saver?

--How much space is required at minimum? How much cabinet space is generally TOO much?

Thanks for your help. It's exciting to be growing into the county level at our third year!

Free the seeds,
Lauren
Napa County Seed Library


#classes #education #FoodAccess #ResilientGardens #FoodPreservation #FoodStorage #education #FoodAccess #ResilientGardens #foodpreservation #foodstorage

Pat
 

Hello and happy spring or fall. 

Our seed library has been busy since the pandemic began, but our library itself just recently got the go ahead to resume indoor programming. In the past, we have held seed swaps and had speakers come in for short classes on beginning gardening and seed saving techniques. With supply chain problems, changes in climate resulting in widespread drought/heatwaves in some areas and floods in others, and political upheaval/wars, I am one of those people who is deeply concerned about my community's food security. I live in a remote, economically impoverished area with next to no ammenities. We are an "end of the road" community with literally one long, winding road in and terrible internet/phone service.  

I am looking for gardening/homesteading information on DVD, along the lines of Marjory Wildcraft's "Grow your Own Food" DVDs. I was hoping to find several that I might get permission to show as part of a gardening series here in the library. DVDs are best because of our on-and-off internet and old projection equipment. 

I regularly show films like "The Need to Grow" and "The Biggest Little Farm" at our Doc Film night. What I am asking for here are "how to" DVDs on gardening and food production/preservation that people who are beginning/intermediate gardeners/food preservers/food storage folks can utilize to make sure their families are food secure. Have you viewed any you can recommend?

Favorite newer book titles are welcome. Websites (that aren't political) that I can refer folks to are good as well.

Please share if you know of resources. Thank you for your suggestions.
Pat


Re: Seed of the Month #community

EMILY ODZA
 


Asian Branch of the Oakland Public Library has produced a splendid brochure and seed kit to help celebrate May -  Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month!
The branches have received seed kits  featuring some asian greens and herbs used in various cuisines. Check it out next time you're in one of the branches!

--
Emily Odza
feel free to direct questions to Jenny Rockwell at Asian Branch 


Re: Ideas wanted for simplifying the seed distribution process #seeds

bbhijosa
 

It's not my procedure, as I only have an online presence and a couple of public meetings, I'm only participating as a volunteer, but maybe the model can be useful for others.

It is more a seed bank than a library, they call it a seed swap day, once a month, for only two hours. (There are other activities funded by the center, such as an autumn gathering with lots of vegetables grown by the participants with the seeds of the bank, and some years, other meetings with talks about food sovereignty, etc. So yes, the center also shares their political background). We meet in a cultural center with a cabinet full of cardboard boxes that contain seeds in envelopes ready to take. Seeds come from other gardeners that are advised to only bring non commercial/heirloom seeds.
The cabinet and boxes were paid for by the cultural center that maintains it as part of their public activities, so you can find the info on their website (although it is not accurate at all). This is a very expensive part of the activity that the center wanted to be done, as the cabinet works also as a self-announcement of the activity. Here it is:

banco-de-intercambio-semillas-01.jpg
People participating take 8 envelopes at most, different seeds, and the organizer takes note of what they take and what they give to the seed bank. They are supposed to bring some seeds back at the end of the season, and they must not be allowed to hybridise, to preserve the varieties they grow. The donor gives the organizer, only one person, information about what the seed is, where it comes from, who growed it,etc. and writes it at the moment on a database. With this information he prints labels for the envelopes. So, the rest of the volunteers help with making envelopes, putting seeds into them, sticking labels and sorting them on the boxes. (The donors are often involved in such work). Also answering questions to the new ones.
The organizer only works these two hours once a month. He doesn't not take work home. There are months with lots of people, and many others with not so many, so in these spare moments we can do all this work. In the last month 120 envelopes were taken, and a total of some 3000 are in the boxes.

A couple of old links for the curious (only in spanish):
https://ecosecha.blogspot.com/2010/10/recordad-banco-de-intercambio-de.html

best,
bonifacio barrio hijosa

El mar, 10 may 2022 a las 20:02, Kay Everts (<kay.everts@...>) escribió:
We only purchase seeds with short shelf lives like onions and corn.  I make labels on my computer that I can cut up and slip into our 4"x5" ziplock bags. All other varieties in our libraries are either grown locally or donated by seed companies and local seed sellers.  

At this time, we don't do any individual packets.  I've tried my hand at it for giving away at events and wow it takes a lot of time as you know!

We just had a special event.  Our library manager took bins of seeds to it along with our stamped coin-sized envelopes and let folks help themselves to as many seeds as they will plant.  Inside each plastic bin are 3 hand-made cardboard trays that hold the 4"x5" ziplock seed bags.  We made blue dividers showing the seed types.

We re-use the ziplock bags.  Also, because they are 4-mil, we can freeze the seeds in them, once the planting season has past, to prolong the seed life. 


Re: Ideas wanted for simplifying the seed distribution process #seeds

Kay Everts
 

We only purchase seeds with short shelf lives like onions and corn.  I make labels on my computer that I can cut up and slip into our 4"x5" ziplock bags. All other varieties in our libraries are either grown locally or donated by seed companies and local seed sellers.  

At this time, we don't do any individual packets.  I've tried my hand at it for giving away at events and wow it takes a lot of time as you know!

We just had a special event.  Our library manager took bins of seeds to it along with our stamped coin-sized envelopes and let folks help themselves to as many seeds as they will plant.  Inside each plastic bin are 3 hand-made cardboard trays that hold the 4"x5" ziplock seed bags.  We made blue dividers showing the seed types.

We re-use the ziplock bags.  Also, because they are 4-mil, we can freeze the seeds in them, once the planting season has past, to prolong the seed life. 


Re: Seed of the Month #community

Dave Maxwell
 

I market seed stewardship out often and have a signup form on our site at https://bloomseedlibrary.org/seed-stewards. I also have partnered with some other organizations locally who are now growing specific seeds for the library, including an organic farm that was interested in seed stewardship, a gardening club, and more. I'm finding that social media posting and talking with people directly have so far been the best for me specifically. I also started a Gardener's Spotlight program (https://bloomseedlibrary.org/gardeners-spotlight) where I highlight a specific seed donor/gardener locally, give her or him their own section of the library where it's just their seeds and push out website and social media posts about that person(s) seeds. That has made some people more excited to donate and be in the spotlight, engaging them more, and causing folks to want to grow more with us. These two programs now have seed stewards growing literally hundreds of square feet of plants for seed for the library. I'm so excited!

I hope you all are having a wonderful day!

-Dave


Seed of the Month #community

Rebecca Newburn
 

Hi Seedfolks,

It would be great to see what people are doing around engaging folks in stewarding special varieties or at least getting folks gardening. We are doing a Seed of the Month and then walking people who sign up through the process - well, at least for the May variety which is a local heirloom. 



Please share what you are doing.

Peas and justice,

Rebecca


Re: Ideas wanted for simplifying the seed distribution process #seeds

EBo
 

Sorry I am coming late to the party ;-)

Basically, before the pandemic I started working on a similar problem, but in my case I needed something to track wild seed collections so that I can keep the ecovars separate and identified. What I started working on was a simple form that followed the minimal collection standards used by the Seeds of Success program, so that they could be printed on small labels to go into the jars and envelopes. In addition, I was working on a program to convert a subset of that information into QR-Codes, so that I can print them on the back of the human readable plant tag and/or envelope/jar label as well, and point a QR-Code reader on your phone to read all the pertinent data and maybe even give links to the USDA database and other resources. Packing a lot of info into QR-Codes is trick, and that is where I kinda left it. Anyway, the idea was to be able to use it as keys into a simple database so that I can track germination success and other note.

As for processing bulk seeds, there is a trick used in Pick-n-Place in electronics production -- the PnP machine has a little silicon tip on the end of a blunt needle which uses a weak vacuum to grab and lift the part. A similar thing should be able to be made to pick up a known number of seeds so that you can easily place them in an envelope, or a funnel that drops into a small packet. The reason I bring this up is that there has been some discussion about giving just a few (5 or 10 seeds) per packet, because that is what most people will plant in their yards/gardens (as opposed to 100's or 1,000's). Along the same lines, I have seen folks use a seed patterning board which has an internal sliding part that drops a known number of seeds into precise location (so you can quickly plant entire trays). Something like this could also be developed to in essence "count" seeds for a packet.

Hope this helps.

EBo --

The trick is that whatever you do it needs to be automatible as much as possible. You mention that you process 11,000 packets of seeds, and

On Apr 22 2022 3:37 PM, Penne Wilson wrote:
Hi,
I am the co-founder of the Door County Seed Library, which launched in
2019. The program has expanded very quickly and this year we opened
seed libraries in all eight Door County Library branches and are
distributing ~11,000 packets of seeds. We offer donated seeds from
seed companies and we also buy bulk seeds and repackage them. This
program has turned into a LOT of work, and I'm looking for ideas on
how other seed libraries procure and distribute their seeds. The seed
procurement/management/distribution process is a 40+ hour/week, 7
day/week job for me from January to mid-March each year and I am
totally burned out! And that's only my time - it doesn't include all
of the hours that our volunteers spend packing the seeds. Plus, the
seeds and supplies have totally take over my house. I just can't
figure out how we can simplify the process.
I'd love to hear ideas on how other seed libraries handle the seed
procurement and distribution process. Do you offer bulk seeds only? Do
you only offer donated seeds? Where do you store your seed inventory?
How many seeds to you distribute each year? What do you do with your
leftover seeds at the end of the year? How much time does it take you
to manage the seed procurement and distribution process?
Thanks so much!
Penne Wilson


Re: Ideas wanted for simplifying the seed distribution process #seeds

Rebecca Newburn
 

Penne,

We have 3 cabinets and offer over 200 varieties, but only the smallest one (for herbs) is a card catalog. We use baby food jars in that cabinet. I recommend that you create a document that has the labels of the seeds that you regularly use so if you lose a jar or multiple seed libraries use the same variety, it's easy to print out.

Include a recommended amount of seeds on the jar. We put labels on the top and the sides. You may want to have the recommended amount as one generic label that is on half the jar and the varietal information on the other half.

Peas and justice,
Rebecca


Re: Ideas wanted for simplifying the seed distribution process #seeds

Penne Wilson
 

Thanks for your reply, Kay. We have just been offering the commercial seed packets as-is for people to take. I love your idea of cutting off the top of the packet and slipping it into a zip bag (it appeals to my sense of frugality), but our main seed cabinet is an old card catalog, so the packets would need to be on their side, and I worry that the seeds would spill out. Plus, it would add an extra step and cost to our process and, at this point, we are focused on trying to simplify things. It's definitely something that we will consider in the future though, after we get things under control.

I'd like to hear more about your bulk seed purchases. How many different varieties do you purchase? Approximately how many seed packets did you package from the bulk seeds? How did you handle the seed repacking process? I've been asking for volunteers, then printing the labels, counting out the envelopes needed, then arranging for a time for the volunteer to pick up the seeds and packaging supplies at my house. It's a ton of coordination since we packaged about 6,000 packets this year. Before COVID, we had seed packaging parties, but that involved hauling the seeds and supplies to the library, then hauling the packaged seeds back home afterwards. That was a totally different type of problem (plus, I still had to create and print all of the labels).

We've found that once the seed packets are in the libraries, it takes almost no time to manage because the libraries simply allow people to take what they want. The library doesn't keep track of who checks out what seeds. We suggest a maximum of 6-8 packets of seeds, but we've had people take up to 80 packets (!). The part that takes so much time is procuring the seeds and packaging them. We purchased about 35 different varieties of seeds this year, which is way to much, but my team has a hard problem saying 'no' to anything.  :)   We definitely need to reduce the number of varieties that we are offering.


Re: Ideas wanted for simplifying the seed distribution process #seeds

Penne Wilson
 

Thanks so much for the reply. I really think that offering seeds in jars is the way to go (except for the seed packets that we receive as donations from seed companies). Approximately how many different jars of seeds do you offer? Do you just have the jars sitting on a cabinet? At our largest location, we are using an old card catalog, so the jars wouldn't fit in there, but we could put some on the top of the cabinet. We currently purchase about 35 different varieties of seeds in bulk that we then repackage, which is WAAAY too many. We need to greatly reduce the varieties that we offer, so I'd love to know what you are offering. I am dealing with the same concerns regarding making this a sustainable program for our volunteers and for the community. I think there will be several elements that we need to change, perhaps including reducing the number of seed library locations that we have.

Thanks again for your input!

Penne


Re: Ideas wanted for simplifying the seed distribution process #seeds

Kay Everts
 

We put our seeds in a cabinet and our library patrons take the coin envelopes we provide and package up the number of seeds they want to plant.  We let them check out 6 varieties per visit.  To get the seeds into the cabinet, we cut off the top of the commercial seed packet and slip it into a 4" x 5" 4 mil plastic zip bag (from Uline).  For home grown seeds, we provide folks with a pre-printed form that fits into the 4x5 bag that they can complete so we can just put their seed and their form into a bag and add it to the collection. We use this form for bulk seed purchases too. We had 7,400 checkouts last year and it took very little time to manage.  
FB: Seeds for Sharing Library & Garden
Oak Grove, OR


Re: Ideas wanted for simplifying the seed distribution process #seeds

SeedLibraries.net
 

Hi Penne,

During the pandemic, we packed up individual seeds and opened lots of little seed libraries in the community. It was a monumental task to pack and distribute with a 100% volunteer base. Even with paid staff, it is still a lot. Prior to that, we had everything in jars. The library was self-serve and people put things into envelopes that were stamped with some basic information. For special seeds, we sometimes will put pre-printed information inside the jars so we know people leave with the important information. If people self-serve, put the quantities you want them to take. We have "Take 1-2 (or 2-3) seeds for every plant you intend to grow." or "Take a small pinch. 1 seed = 1 plant." BASIL, the first seed library, managed to survive for many years often with little input and being that I work full-time I wanted to design a system that would be sustainable for me and the community. In other words, it would allow me to have a busy full-time job (I'm a middle school science teacher) and still have a functioning seed library. Hence the jars and self-serve method. We are still going to have a few seed libraries in the community, which will be prepacked, but we are scaling back from 13 that we had in the last two years to 3-4 and one of those is at my house. It might even be only two as we don't have much bandwidth at the moment and whatever we do, we want it to be sustainable for us and the community.  

Here is a video with some tips

Peas and justice,
Rebecca


Ideas wanted for simplifying the seed distribution process #seeds

Penne Wilson
 

Hi,

I am the co-founder of the Door County Seed Library, which launched in 2019. The program has expanded very quickly and this year we opened seed libraries in all eight Door County Library branches and are distributing ~11,000 packets of seeds. We offer donated seeds from seed companies and we also buy bulk seeds and repackage them. This program has turned into a LOT of work, and I'm looking for ideas on how other seed libraries procure and distribute their seeds. The seed procurement/management/distribution process is a 40+ hour/week, 7 day/week job for me from January to mid-March each year and I am totally burned out! And that's only my time - it doesn't include all of the hours that our volunteers spend packing the seeds. Plus, the seeds and supplies have totally take over my house. I just can't figure out how we can simplify the process.

I'd love to hear ideas on how other seed libraries handle the seed procurement and distribution process. Do you offer bulk seeds only? Do you only offer donated seeds? Where do you store your seed inventory? How many seeds to you distribute each year? What do you do with your leftover seeds at the end of the year? How much time does it take you to manage the seed procurement and distribution process?

Thanks so much!

Penne Wilson


Re: Kids Ideas for Garden Event #community #education

Rebecca Newburn
 

Another activity that doesn't require dirt is having paper towels and getting seeds on them and then the kids can plant the strips. I've never done it, but I imagine there are lots of resources on it. Obviously, you need smaller seeds for something like this.

Rebecca

On Thu, Apr 14, 2022 at 2:40 PM Susie Jenkins via groups.io <sjenkins=ci.sandy.or.us@groups.io> wrote:
At our seed library grand opening we had a simple question printed on a large piece of paper for people (any age) to answer: Why does a seed grow?  

We also had a volunteer helping children fill dixie cups with planting mix and plant marigolds for the upcoming mother's day. 

You can see the photos attached. 

--

Susie Jenkins
Adult Programming
Sandy Public Library
38980 Proctor Blvd., Sandy OR 97055
503-668-5537

This e-mail is a public record of the City of Sandy and is subject to the State of Oregon Retention Schedule and may be subject to public disclosure under the Oregon Public Records Law. This e-mail, including any attachments, is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and may contain confidential and privileged information. Any unauthorized review, use, disclosure, or distribution is prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient, please send a reply e-mail to let the sender know of the error and destroy all copies of the original message.



--
Rebecca Newburn
Pronouns: she/her/ella                  
Richmond Grows Seed Lending Library
Planting seeds for a just and sustainable future.


I humbly acknowledge that my home sits within the Chochenyo land in the unceded traditional ancestral homelands of the Chochenyo, an Ohlone people.

Contact Me Facebook Flickr


Re: Kids Ideas for Garden Event #community #education

Susie Jenkins
 

At our seed library grand opening we had a simple question printed on a large piece of paper for people (any age) to answer: Why does a seed grow?  

We also had a volunteer helping children fill dixie cups with planting mix and plant marigolds for the upcoming mother's day. 

You can see the photos attached. 

--

Susie Jenkins
Adult Programming
Sandy Public Library
38980 Proctor Blvd., Sandy OR 97055
503-668-5537

This e-mail is a public record of the City of Sandy and is subject to the State of Oregon Retention Schedule and may be subject to public disclosure under the Oregon Public Records Law. This e-mail, including any attachments, is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and may contain confidential and privileged information. Any unauthorized review, use, disclosure, or distribution is prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient, please send a reply e-mail to let the sender know of the error and destroy all copies of the original message.


Kids Ideas for Garden Event #community #education

Jennifer Shirley
 

Hi Everyone!

I am new here, a google search brought me to you all. I am on the planning committee for a local Flower & Garden Expo next month. I am in charge of kids activities and I am in need of some ideas. We have a non existent budget, but I will purchase items out of my own money to provide some good activities for kids. Can anyone recommend some cheap project ideas? I am hoping to be able to get see donations to do a Grown Your Plate activity and a Butterfly/Hummingbird Garden. I have reached out to a few seed companies requesting donations, but we are not a 501(c)3 so I do not think that will be too beneficial. I was thinking of maybe doing a build a bug hotel project and wildflower seed bombs. I would love to provide owl pellets for dissection, but that's high hopes. Any good ideas? 

Thanks!
Jen


SeedBroadcast agri-Culture Journal #18 #climate #community #environment #resilience

seedbroadcast@...
 


The 18th edition of the SeedBroadcast agri Cultural Journal has been published as the spring winds arrive and the seeds are being blessed and placed in the earth.  It has been a rugged year dealing with the fluctuations of  the climate  crisis and the divisions that seem to be getting wider between us human beings and our mother earth. However the resurgence of local traditional farming, gardening and food sovereignty is a glint of beauty and hope in these times of dramatic change. 

 

This edition is dedicated to all the indigenous farmers around the world that are striving to keep the seeds of their cultures alive and thriving.

We take a deep bow of gratitude as this ancestral wisdom is vital for our seeds and for mother earth.

 

The printed versions of this edition can be found at your local Co ops, farmers markets and you might even find a surprise in your CSA!  Do look out for them and let us know what you think. 

A digital version is also available to read or download from our journal archive.

Our 19th edition will be published in the Autumn of 2022, 

the deadline is September 26th 2022. 

There is information on how to submit in the Journal.

A huge shout out and thank you to all who contributed to this edition: Margaret LeJeune, Liz Mueller, Meredith Taylor, Iren Schio, Anita Vasquez (Gracious Raven), Guy Veale, Lorna Tychostup, Susan Hoenig, Seth Hamilton, Sara Wright and the Nomad MFA students: Roberta Trentin, Katie grove, Alyesha Ghani, Mauricio Vargas, Arnethia Douglass, Julie Chen, Kathryn Cooke, Monica Kapoor, teal Gardner, Sarah C. Rutherford, Rebecca Schultz, Justin Moore, Morgan Kulas, Natalie Stopka,

In solidarity and health

SeedBroadcast


Latest Cool Beans! Seed Library #newsletter

Rebecca Newburn
 

Dear Seedfolks,

Hopefully, you received the latest Cool Beans! Seed Library newsletter last week. If not, here is the link. The focus of this issue is on learning how to develop resilient and delicious food for our communities in a time of climate change and global weirding through the process of developing modern landraces, or varieties that are allowed to promiscuously pollinate and then putting few external inputs (ex. no fertilizer or pesticides) and then saving from the survivors to create super hardy plants. Then starting to select for flavor and other desirable qualities. 

If you are interested in joining our Landrace Conversation, please send me a private email at seedlibraries@....

Peas and justice,
Rebecca

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