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Bennington College Seed Library: How & Why to Save Seeds

The Bennington College Seed Library is a free community seed library in Crossett Library- Bennington, Vermont.

Saving Seeds

 

Seed saving is the process of saving seeds from plants and crops you are currently growing for the next season. It is often fairly straightforward and gives the seed saver the opportunity to select seeds for qualities such as yield, flavor, nutrition, color, resilience to local environment and pests.


The goal of Bennington College’s
seed library is to empower community members through education and promotion of food sovereignty and serve as an exchange among the farmers and gardeners of the area. Seed libraries preserve local diversity and also local stories and relationships, and are a great exchange of knowledge. Bennington College wants to open this hub for exchange, connection, and education with our greater community.

 

Saving and Sharing Seeds is a practice as old as agriculture itself that is important to restore in order to have food sovereignty and develop local resilient varieties. Here are some hints for beginning your seed saving adventures!

Method

To save these seeds let them dry in pods/husks and then simply crumble them. Separate the seeds from the chaff and store in a cool dry dark place.

Types of Seeds to Dry Save

  • Artichoke
  • Basil
  • Beans
  • Peas
  • Peppers
  • Okra

Method

To wet save seeds let the vegetables get very ripe, separate seeds from surrounding pulp. Afterwards dry them completely on a tray and store them. Some of these seeds should be fermented to kill growth inhibiting coatings that surround the seeds as well as certain diseases. To ferment: put seeds and pulp in water in a jar covered with cheesecloth for 2-4 days, shaking daily. Afterwards wash, dry and store.

Types of Seeds to Wet Save

  • Cucumbers
  • Eggplants
  • Melons
  • Squash
  • Tomatoes
  • Saving seeds from species you have more plants of will provide greater genetic variety.
  • Select seeds with characteristics you find desirable- flavor, low maintenance, resistance to pests, etc.
  • Remember to label saved seeds.

Books About Seeds and Seed Saving

Members of the local community are welcome to check out books from the Bennington College Library! To set up a free library account please visit Crossett Library Mon - Fri 8:30 am - 4:00 pm or email us