Hello #GettingSeeds


Hello All, I am wondering how you go about getting seeds for your Libraries? 


We have a Seed Selection day where patrons come in and go through the various seed catalogs and pick out what they would like to see available for check out at the Seed Library. I then look at what they want, order what I  am short on. All of our ordered seeds are heirloom or organic, so I use seed companies that have those items.Patrons returning seeds makes up about 30% of our seeds.

Mary Walsh

Our seed library is in an academic library in a small, rural community with a unique growing climate (high alpine desert). We hold an annual "Community Seed Exchange" on National Seed Swap Day (last Saturday in January). In the five years we've been doing this, attendance is continually increasing. During the exchange, I network with the gardeners and ask for seed donations. So, this is how we get our seeds. It helps that there are a couple of community orgs that help support this work... a community greenhouse and a local foods coalition that has a gardening initiative. Hope this helps!
- Mary

On Wed, Jun 17, 2020 at 10:57 AM <jandjhomesteadcottage@...> wrote:
Hello All, I am wondering how you go about getting seeds for your Libraries? 

Mary Walsh, MLS
Nielsen Library, Adams State University
Currently working from home.
Alamosa, CO 81101
Pronouns: she, her, hers


We just got our library up this past February. I mailed letters to seed companies telling them about our community and what we were starting and asked for donations. I received more than enough seeds to get started and then some!!

Rebecca Newburn

Congratulations on the opening! Next year it may be harder for seed libraries to get donations as many seed companies were selling out and there will continue to be a huge demand for buying seeds.

I think it is worthwhile for seed libraries to ensure that we will have enough seed for next year. Here are a few ideas put out calls to community members through listservs (ex. Nextdoor, garden clubs, permaculture guilds, sustainability groups), newsletters, and social media asking people to:
1. commit to growing something out to seed that they are currently growing, ex. cilantro, lettuce, nasturtiums, beans - include instructions on seed saving in the email. I created a Google Form so that people fill that in and I have it all in one place and have a sense of what seed we'll be getting at the end of the season.
2. Grow a Row Seed Steward Program - Ask for people to grow some things that you have in your collection. Check out resources on SeedLibraries.net for more specifics.
3. One Seed, One Community Program - get a bunch of people to sign up to grow one type of seed and build community and a large supply of a particular seed - beans tend to be the best for this program. Check out resources on SeedLibraries.net for more specifics. 

Peas and justice,

Richmond Grows Seed Lending Library
Planting seeds for the just and sustainable future.

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