Thursday, March 31, 2011




MARCH 13, 2011

Executive/Board members in attendance: David King (Chair); Lucinda Zimmerman (Co-Vice Chair); Clara Yoshihara (Co-Vice Chair); Sarah Spitz (Secretary)

Absent: Ledette Gambini (Treasurer)

Committee chairs present: Elizabeth Bowman (Web/Outreach); Linda Preuss (Database); Cheryl Noda (membership); Albert Chang (Best Practices); Lucinda Zimmerman (Organization)

David King called the meeting to order. Mission of SLOLA is to save open pollinated, non-GMO seeds, and to hold them in community, loan them to members, bring back seeds to the library after growing. We need to create the organizational infrastructure to insure their continued viability.


Secretary: Sarah Spitz passed around Minutes of previous meetings.

Treasurer: Ledette unable to attend, in her stead, Julie Mann reported on the accounts. SLOLA at present operates under The Learning Garden’s 501 (c) 3 non-profit status. The treasurer’s report will be submitted as part of these minutes. This is the information contained in that report:


Memberships $ 710.

Seminar fees $ 1575.

Donation $ 100.




David King/Seminar $1250.00

Pam Nears/catering 250.00

Julie Mann/paper supplies 9.41

Paypal fees/seminar 35.36

Transfer to TLG/Seminar costs 30.23

SLOLA Administration:

Paypal fees/members 11.29

Sarah LaVoie/Domain Name 25.34

$ 1611.63

Ending Balance 2/28/11: $ 773.37

Committee reports:

Best Practices: Albert Chang reporting. Each member of this committee will be responsible for a “portfolio” including a specific vegetable family, researching the best way to select, store, which to keep, best way to keep, the standards for keeping the seed pure and viable etc. Nine people on the committee, and with so much to do would be happy to have more.

David King and Albert share responsibility as co-chairs.

Some of the current portfolios are, for example: hot peppers are Dana Morgan; beans, Jesse Hill, etc. Albert will email a google doc to all members of the committee to outline the various “portfolios” available and who is taking responsibility for them.

Database: Linda Preuss, chair, reporting. Committee is soliciting additional members, structure for the database has begun but without seed in place as yet.

Ideas for what to include in database: picture of the seed, picture of how plant goes to seed, description, etc.

Membership: Cheryl Noda was present but asked someone else (NAME NEEDED) to give the report for her.

Verified membership: 62 members recorded. Safe Seed Pledge is part of membership application, must be signed by all members. Now available in English and Spanish, with other translations being worked on. Application will be available on one sheet in English and Spanish as a two-sided printed document. Other translations will be on the website.

Membership committee is charged with creating database of members who’ve paid and signed safe seed pledge, notify members of upcoming meetings, take care of membership needs and questions.


Lucinda Zimmerman notes that there has been little or no feedback from members regarding the proposed bylaws, which are located on the SLOLA Blog and Facebook page for review. Also, we’d like to establish a calendar that can be coordinated with The Learning Garden regarding events and meetings.

Albert has ordered copy of a book on bylaws, the proper structure and legal issues, from the National Association of Parliamentarians.

The immediate short-term goal is to have in place a mechanism to hold legitimate elections, terms of officers, how to add and replace officers, committee chairs, etc. We want to vote on basic bylaws adoption within 3 months; they can be expanded or updated later.


Elizabeth Bowman reporting, that the core group has met and selected Zach Mann as the website designer; he is moving forward on selecting host and the logistics of how SLOLA Web Team will be enabled to update the site, once established. Monthly costs of hosting need to be set up; can range from $6.95 to 8.95 per month. Question is finding the best hosting “deal” that is being offered at the moment that gives us the capabilities we’ll need, maintaining a database, training videos, enabling members to order and check out seed, and for email addresses.

David King suggested a motion to authorize the Best Practices Committee to purchase seeds that will form the basis of SLOLA’s inventory.

Lucinda moved, Albert seconded the motion to authorize $100 purchase of seeds but first to see if the seed can be donated.

Jesse Hill has offered to find donated seeds. (UPDATE AT THE NEXT MEETING: She scored big time!)

Also need to create a list of acceptable seed vendors to share with membership and post to web. Visit to find list of vendors who’ve signed the Safe Seed Pledge.

We can accept seeds from individuals if the source can be identified and when and where the seed was harvested.

A second motion was introduced to offer training by a Best Practices Committee member at each general meeting, a 15-minute introductory session for all members, in which some aspect of seed saving is shared.

Everyone involved in SLOLA is being asked to submit their top 25 (or choose a number) of cultivars that they would like to see SLOLA have available. What seeds do you value; what winter and summer varieties, for ex: cranberry beans, scarlet runner beans, Windsor fava beans.

Albert suggested focusing energy on the seeds that Monsanto may be trying to control, for example, soybeans.

Send list of most-desired cultivars via email to David at:

A mission statement for SLOLA will be something we discuss at a future meeting. Ideas are welcome – but it should be something you can say in “one breath” or “one sentence.” Send all input to David’s address, above. Mission statement should take into account that seed is a sacred trust; should include our mission to educate; and that we are here to insure that seeds will be available to people in our community, regardless of their economic status.

By next meeting, the core values, vision statement and mission statement should be available for consideration. These are text items that can be included on a informational brochure or flyer about SLOLA to be shared with the community at large at related events. If possible, we’d like to vote on this at the next meeting.

Sarah Spitz undertakes to notify members listed in member database about the next meeting of SLOLA, which will take place on April 17th at 2:30 at The Learning Garden.

Friday, March 25, 2011

SLOLA's Burgeoning Inventory

Thanks to the efforts of Jesse Hill, SLOLA has the following seeds to add to our inventory.  

 Best Practices committee, meeting Saturday, the 26th (1:00PM to 2:30, at The Learning Garden), will be settling on policy that will enable us to begin to distribute these seeds equitably.  Seed distribution could start as soon as next meeting, depending on what the committee decides.  We need to make sure we are able to track the seeds and we may not be at that point yet.

Still, this is very exciting - we add these seeds to the ones already donated by members and The Learning Garden, we have the beginning of a respectable inventory to loan!  

Kudos to Jesse for her efforts in gathering in this bounty of seeds and our gratitude to the organizations that made the seeds available to us!! 

Botanical Interests Donation

Bean, Tavera (3)
Bean, Contender (7)
Bean, Royal Burgundy (7)
Bean, (mixed jumbo pack - 60 grams) (Blue Lake 274, Cherokee Wax, Purple Queen) (2)

Bean (Lima), White Dixie Butter (2)

Beet, Early Wonder (2)

Bok Choy Tatsoi, Rosette (2)

Broccoli, Di Cicco (6)

Carrot, Scarlet Nantes (37) (not a typo!)

Corn (se), Luscious (5)

Cucumber, Japanese Soyu Burpless (15)
Cucumber, Marketmore (2)
Cucumber, Lemon

Herb, Parsley, Italian Dark Green Flat (1)
Herb, Wheatgrass (1) (ok, it’s not an herb, but whatever)
Herb, Oregano, Common (2)
Herb, Cilantro, Santo (20-gram jumbo pack) (1)
Herb, Basil, Genovese Italian (6-gram jumbo pack) (3)

Kale, Nero Toscana (3)

Kohlrabi, Purple and White Vienna Blend (9)

Leek, unnamed (3)
Leek, American Flag (5)

Lettuce (butterhead), Speckles (9)
Lettuce (romaine), Parris Island (5)
Lettuce (leaf), Black-Seeded Simpson’s (2)
Lettuce (leaf), Red Sails (6)
Lettuce (leaf), Lolla Rossa (1)
Lettuce (romaine), Little Gem (4)
Lettuce, (mixed heirlooms, mesclun, etc) (21!)
Lettuce, (mixed jumbo pack - 15 grams) (2)
+ other greens:
Arugula (3)
Arugula, Wild (7)
Raddichio, Palla Rossa Ashalim (2)
Mustard Greens, Mizuna (1)
Endive (AKA Frisee), Olesh Tres Fine (2)

Melon (cantaloupe), Hale’s Best Jumbo (14)

Pea (snap), Sugar Snap (2)
Pea (snow), Oregon Sugar Pod (3)

Pepper (hot), Early Jalapeno (3)
Pepper (hot), Habanero (7)
Pepper (hot), Hungarian Yellow Wax (5)
Pepper (sweet), California Wonder (7)
Pepper (sweet), California Wonder Orange (3)

Radish, French Breakfast (8)

Squash, Cocozelle Zucchini (c. pepo) (4)
Squash, Early Prolific Straightneck (c. pepo) (2)
Squash, Delicata Honey Boat (c. pepo) (2)
Squash, Table King Bush Acorn (c. pepo) (1)
Squash, Howden (c. pepo) (3)
Squash, Jack O’Lantern (c. pepo) (7)
Squash, Big Max (c. maxima) (4)
Squash, (mixed jumbo packet - 25 grams) (Caserta, Cocozelle, Black Beauty, Golden Straightneck, Round, Tatume, Crookneck)

Swiss Chard, Fordhook Giant
Swiss Chard, Ruby Red/Rhubarb (3)

Tomato, Italian Roma  (5)
Tomato, Speckled Roman (4)
Tomato, Beefsteak (12)
Tomato, Cherokee Purple (2)
Tomato, Ace (5)
Tomato, Sugar Sweetie (5)
Tomato, Silvery Fir Tree (10)
Tomato, Aunt Ruby’s German Green (8)

Turnip, Purple Top White Globe (1)

Watermelon, Crimson Sweet (3)
Watermelon, Moon & Stars (3)

Seed Saver Exchange “Herman’s Garden” Seed Donation

Arugula  (standard)

Bean, Tiger’s Eye
Bean, Hutterite Soup
Bean, Bumble Bee
Bean, Climbing French
Bean, Sultan’s Green Crescent
Bean, Purple Podded Pole

Broccoli, Romanesco

Cabbage, Mammoth Red Rock

Carrot, St. Valery

Corn, Smoke Signals (2)
Corn, Strawberry Popcorn
Corn, Stowell’s Evergreen
Corn, Reid’s Yellow Dent

Cucumber, Japanese Climbing
Cucumber, Jelly Melon (Cucumis metuliferus, does not cross)
Cucumber, Miniature White
Cucumber, West Indian Gherkin (Cucumis  anguria, does not cross)
Cucumber, Poona Kheera

Eggplant, Listada de Gandia
Eggplant, Goyo Kumba (S. aethiopicum)
Eggplant, Thai Green
Eggplant, Florida High Bush
Eggplant, Pingtung Long

Ground Cherry, Aunt Molly’s

Herb, Hidcote Lavendar
Herb, Greek Oregano
Herb, Sweet Mace
Herb, Black Cumin
Herb, Hyssop

Kale, Lacinto

Leek, Blue Solaize

Melon, Delice de Table
Melon, Amish
Melon, Healy’s Pride
Melon, Bidwell Casaba
Melon, Tigger
Melon, Charantais (2)
Melon, Green Nutmeg
Melon, Crane
Watermelon, Mountain Sweet Yellow

Okra, Clemson Spineless

Pea, Dwarf Gray Sugar
Pea, British Wonder (4)

Pepper, Orange Thai (2)
Pepper, Thai Hot
Pepper, Purple Beauty
Pepper, Nosegay
Pepper, Nepalese Bell (C. baccatum)
Pepper, Rooster Spur
Pepper, Santa Fe Grande
Pepper, Red Cap Mushroom (C. chinense)
Pepper, Wenk’s Yellow Hots
Pepper, Sweet Chocolate
Pepper, Balloon (C. baccatum)
Pepper, Tobago Seasoning (C. chinense)
Pepper, Georgia Flame
Pepper, Jimmy Nardello’s Sweet
Pepper, Tequila Sunrise
Pepper, Feher Ozon Paprika
Pepper, Hinkelhatz
Pepper, Hot Portugal

Spinach, America

Squash, Golden Zucchini (C. pepo)
Squash, Summer Crookneck (C. pepo)
Squash, Table Queen Acorn (C. pepo)
Squash, Black Beauty Zucchini (C. pepo)
Squash, Kikuza (C. moschata)
Squash, Pennsylvania Dutch Crookneck (C. moschata)
Squash, Pink Banana Jumbo (C. maxima)
Squash, Australian Butter (C. maxima)
Squash, Potimarron (C. maxima)
Squash, Buttercup (Burgess Strain) (C. maxima)

Swiss Chard, Fordhook Giant

Tomato, Gold Medal (2)
Tomato, Cream Sausage (2)
Tomato, Black Plum (2)
Tomato, Trophy (2)
Tomato, Tommy Toe (2)
Tomato, Beam’s Yellow Pear (2)
Tomato, Giant Syrian
Tomato, Siberian
Tomato, Italian Heirloom
Tomato, German Pink
Tomato, Kellogg’s Breakfast
Tomato, Kolb
Tomato, Trucker’s Favorite
Tomato, Dr. Wyche’s Yellow
Tomato, Red Zebra

LA County Master Gardeners “Common Ground” Program

Bean, Contender (bush, early) (2)
Bean, Kentucky Wonder (pole) (2)
Bean, Scarlet Emperor (pole) (2)
Bean, Spanish Musica (pole) (2)
Bean, Royal Burgundy (bush, early) (4)
Bean, Trionfo Violetto (pole) (2)
Bean, Rattlesnake (pole) (2)
Bean, Purple (pole) (2)
Bean, Emerite (pole, french filet) (2)
Bean, Tavera (bush, french filet) (2)

Note:  This is the first post originating from SLOLA's very own computer!  We are moving towards LAUNCH! It is very exciting!


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Best Practices Meets This Saturday

The Best Practices Committee from our last meeting, starting from the left; David King, Chair, Clara Yoshihara, Vice-Chair for Outreach, (short little fellow is Tre', who is not a committee member), Araceli Perez, Lucia Burke, Megan Bomba, Albert Chang, Kathryn B (don't have her last name on record) and Dana Morgan.  Absent from this photo is Jesse Hill, one of our hard-hitting, up and at 'em early-in-the-morning members.  At our last committee meeting Albert brought lemonade and Dana brought homemade bread - and we did some important work to boot!  

This committee is the one deciding policy as regards to all phases of seed production for the seed library.  Charged with determining what will be the standards for the organization, this committee is looking at distances for isolation, varieties to select first, who gets seeds to grow when the seed is in short supply, who will we obtain our first varieties from, how should seeds be stored, how long do we expect to have germination from the seeds?  There are a  lot of seeds hanging around, but can we use these stocks as our first seeds - are they genetically pure enough to use? 

In our meeting last month, we began to assign 'portfolios' to each member:  each member will become an expert on a group of seeds - in some cases, this will be a family (Fabaceae - the bean family) or parts of a family (several members are taking on Cucurbitaceae) and others we expect to shift (Poaceae has gone as one assignment to Kathryn, I believe, but as we grow and can begin to think about wheat and other grains in addition to corn, I expect we'll need more than one person with Poaceae in their portfolio.) 

We have elected to have one person from the committee do a 15 minute presentation on some plant in their portfolio at each meeting so everyone can begin to learn the ins and outs of seed saving for all plants.  This meeting, we will charge one person to do a presentation at the April meeting to inaugurate the program.  The membership also voted a $100 'seed' fund and we need to begin to use that fund to make wise purchases for our library.  

Our next meeting will need to answer these and countless other questions - members will need to bring seed requests from their portfolios so we can begin to build the library into the reliable source we believe it can be.

You can be a part of this committee this coming Saturday meeting from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM at The Learning Garden, located on the grounds of Venice High School at the corner of Walgrove and Venice Blvd.

If you need directions, just reply below and we'll point you in the right direction. 

temporary committee chair

Friday, March 18, 2011

Farm, Pack, Ship, Repeat

From the website for the Hudson Valley Seed Library:

Farm, Pack, Ship, Repeat

Thank you all for your seed orders!
More gardeners and farmers than ever before are turning to the Seed Library as their primary seed source. We’ve been doing our best to keep up with this year’s growth and hired some amazing folks to help us out. Kate (Dirty Girls Design), Erin (Second Wind CSA), Robin (Hudson Valley Dog Boarding), and Lucia (home-schooled teen extraordinaire) have been working around the clock to get your orders to you in time for spring planting. We’re happy to say all of the back-orders have been sent out! Everyone should have their back-ordered seeds in hand by Tuesday. Thank you for your orders and your patience! (read the rest at the link above)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


State of Organic Seed (SOS) is an ongoing project to monitor the status of organic seed systems in the United States. The project aims to develop diverse stakeholder involvement in implementing policy, research, education, and market‐driven activities that result in the improved quality, integrity, and use of organic seed. Organic Seed Alliance (OSA), a national non‐profit organization committed to the ethical development and stewardship of the genetic resources of agricultural seed, facilitates the project with the belief that developing and protecting organic seed systems is a top priority for organic food and farming.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Proposed SLOLA MEETING AGENDA, 13 March, 2011


  1. Welcome to members/guests
  2. Secretary has minutes of last meeting
  3. Treasurer's report
  4. Committee Chair's reports
    A. Database
    B. Membership
    C. Organizational/Bylaws
    D. Web/Outreach
    E. Best Practices
  5. Old Business
    A. Web site
    B. Progress of translations
  6. New Business
    A. Approval of committee actions
    B. New members assigned to committees
    C. Best Practices to present seed saving topics at each meeting
    D. T-shirts/canvas bags
    E. Mission Statement Approval  
  7. Adjourn for Committee meetings

    Have seed swap and conviviality! 


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

U R INVITED! 4th Gen'l Mtg SLOLA 3/13 @ 2:30

SLOLA (The Seed Library of Los Angeles) will hold its fourth general meeting on SUNDAY, MARCH 13 at 2:30 pm at the Venice High School Learning Garden. Everyone welcome; $10 lifetime membership. Help us organize this library, create the website, develop best practices, share seeds and education about seed saving. It's your chance to help build the infrastructure of the organization while also building community. Join our Facebook page:!/home.php?sk=group_155964874452079

SLOLA (Seed Library of Los Angeles), based at the Venice High School Learning Garden, is a new startup (Dec. 2010) that aims to protect local plants from genetically engineered and genetically modified seed contamination. (read the many articles on this blog about GE and GMO seeds and plants)

A seed library is a depository of seeds held in trust for the members of that library. Members come to the library and borrow seed for their garden. They grow the plants in their garden and at the end of the season, they leave a plant or two to 'go to seed.' From those plants, they collect seeds and return the same amount of seed (or more) as they borrowed at the beginning of the growing season. No cost for seeds.

Enter the Venice High School Learning Garden on Walgrove Avenue, through the first gate, just south of Venice Blvd.