Sunday, April 21, 2019

A Look At The History Of The Seed Library of Los Angeles

For the sake of history, here is the initial request for folks to come out and start the Seed Library of Los Angeles. More to come!!
November 29, 2010
From: David King,
To those addressed:
This informal mailer is being sent to folks who have expressed interest in starting a seed library. This is not a mailing list, although we will hope to have one soon. If you are a list keeper, please circulate to anyone on your list you feel would love to be a decision maker in forming a vibrant and viable seed library for the citizens of Los Angeles.
Our first planning meeting will take place at The Learning Garden of Venice High School, December 4th at 2:30 PM (until about 4:00 PM) - dress warmly although we hope to be inside, all of our buildings are poorly heated!
***If you have thoughts about what should be addressed, please send them to me ASAP for consideration.****
This is a foundational meeting to lead us to an ideal seed library. What is your vision of a seed library? Do we charge for membership? We will be a not for profit under the umbrella of The Learning Garden - or do we want to be our own organization just located at The Learning Garden? Or do we have a better place to be? What items need to be a part of our database? What do we do when someone fails to return seed? We can start where we are and change things as we go... But help us get started!
What is a seed library?
A seed library is a depository of seeds 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.
What are some of the benefits of a seed library?
1. Seed can be kept fresh by many people growing it out rather than one person who could not grow out a large variety of seeds every year.
2. Over time the plants will change slightly in response to our local climate and soil and gradually through generations will become better seeds for our area.
3. You cannot collect seeds from hybrids or Genetically Modified Organisms because they won't come true to type thus insuring a food supply that is reproducible and uncontaminated with unproved technology and is independent on non-local inputs.
4. Participants in a seed bank become more attuned to and in tune with the natural cycle of the earth and find relief from the regimentation of an industrial society that has no respect for ebb and flow of a natural life that is cyclical and not linear. We protect our seed supply from intervention from Monsanto and other large corporations who wish to control most of our food supply and we cooperate with nature in carrying on valuable genetic material for future generations. We become engaged in the full-cycle of gardening and life.
Our Seed Library of Los Angeles (SLOLA) wish list includes:
1. a computer capable of running something like Windows XP (we have a keyboard and monitor attached to a W2K computer). Breaking news: We have been donated a Netbook computer that will serve all our needs!
2. license to a viable database program - I have been using the free Open Office Base to create a database prototype, but I'm no database person and I have no idea if this is flexible and powerful enough to handle all our needs. Much gratitude to Sarah Spitz for making this happen!
3. some kind of storage cabinet (actually several) or shelving (The Learning Garden is going to provide us with our first shelves.)
4. coin envelopes
5. some one with some database experience to help set up the database
6. Volunteers to give a Saturday afternoon a month to put all of this in place.
Seeds aren't going to be a problem, The Learning Garden will supply us with many, and we will have access to many more. Our initial collections will include vegetables, California Native plants and healing herbs from several different healing traditions (Chinese, Ayurvedic, Native American and Homeopathic).
This is a very unique and exciting opportunity for our community moving it towards genuine resiliency and durability. We will need volunteers and we would like to have you!
About this website
What is a seed library? A seed library is a depository of seeds held in trust for the members of that library. Members come to the libr...

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