On Seeds and Libraries: Choosing Seeds

seedLibrary_20130731-624x832This is post number two in our series on the start of the Seed Lending Library! Today is a reflection on what seeds I decided to start with, and a little of the reasoning why. Originally, I thought I would include lettuce, tomatoes, chives, beans, and peas – but later found out that chives cross-pollinate from local varieties fairly easily, and need special care to ensure true-to-type offspring. So instead of chives, I’ve included a yummy eggplant variety.

…I’ve decided to start with a handful of seeds. I’ve selected seeds that are easy to grow, easy to harvest, the seeds are easy to save, and they’re self-pollinating.

I’m also going to try circulating these as individual plants. Meaning, users can check out a ‘plant’ – each packet will include 3 seeds 5 – 10 seeds – and they’re to return enough for another plant – so another 3 seeds 5 – 10 seeds. If they return more, great! If they return just what they checked out, great! If they’re not able to harvest anything, that’s okay, too – we’ll have some protocols set up so that we can deal with seeds that don’t grow. I want to make this as low-risk as possible – I recognize checking out a seed is a little more risky than checking out a book. You don’t have to worry if your book doesn’t grow!

Thursday I’ve got an appointment to talk to our cataloger about how to best integrate these into the catalog. Since I’m not adding the entirety of the collection right away, I imagine this process won’t be too daunting or time consuming, but I’ll know more on Thursday.

Originally posted August 5, 2013. You can read the original post here.

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