Seed Sources

Seeds, even the local heirlooms, come from all over the world. Seeds travel through centuries, across continents and over oceans, before they eventually pass into our hands to be planted in our gardens.

sse yearbook

When we're looking for new varieties to trial and potentially grow to add to our seed catalog, we draw from many sources. One of those sources is the incredible Seed Savers Exchange Yearbook. We love being members of Seed Savers Exchange and list some of our rare family heirlooms in the yearbook. We pour over the pages of varieties saved by caring gardeners all over the country. As a member, you can write to anyone in the yearbook, send them $3, and request seed from them. This year we requested seed from 40 people (so far!) of varieties we thought sounded unusual, had potential for regional adaptation, had history in our region, filled a needed niche, or just sounded too cool to pass up. Those seeds have started coming in and Erin is busy planning the trials. We want to see how they grow before making space on our seed farm to grow seeds for the catalog.

One of the inspiring things about getting seed from the exchange is the personal connection. We feel like we're meeting like-minded gardeners and connect to them through the seeds they send. Sometimes the seeds come with a personal note, like this one.

cauliflower sse letterDear Fellow Seed Librarians!

We just started one here in Coquille Valley- inspired by you and others. Had 50+ people at our first meeting. Glad to share a bit more than usual of my Garantiya. I will grow it out again this year. Maybe you may want to look up our website

We also appreciate Heike's note on the back of the seed envelope "A nice sturdy variety. Need a bit of work to rogue out leaf inclusions into the curd." We're on it!

Thanks to Heike for being a seed saver, sending the extra seeds, and starting a seed library for her community! We love hearing about new seed libraries and are excited to try out your unique Garantiya Cauliflower variety. Maybe you'll see it in our catalog in a few years!

Stay seedy!

3 thoughts on “Seed Sources”

  • Cary Bradley
    Cary Bradley 04/03/2013 at 1:35 am

    So fun to learn how HVSL acquires their seed. I appreciate that you are gobbling up interesting-sounding finds from SSE, trialing them in the Northeast, and then after helping adapt them for my region, offering them in your catalog. Congratulations too for inspiring other seed libraries to start the important work of saving/sharing regional delights. Cool to see the letter sent by Coquille Valley Seed Library. Like a letter from a friend, with seeds!

  • elaine mc caffrey
    elaine mc caffrey 04/04/2013 at 4:21 am

    I have a group of senior citizens that i help out by showing them how to garden and plant things so that they can have fresh vegetables and flowers I plant many of these by my home so that i can show them how to do it and aslso i let them use some of my land so that they can PlantL on it also I would really appreciate some free seeds as i have beenbuying all the free seeds for this project and i am a widow and on a very fixwed income Sincerely Elaine Mc Caffrey

    • ken

      Elaine, The project sounds wonderful. You can use our Seed Donation Nomination Form to request free seeds:


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