This spring more people than ever are itching to get their hands in the ground and start tending a garden, — because they know what good medicine that is for both body and spirit. At the same time, Covid-19 disruptions to common supply chains means that seeds are not as easily available from usual sources. To help address this situation, we decided to facilitate the sharing of seeds among Charlotte home gardeners.
Want to participate?
Here’s how it works: Once you have planned out your own garden and organized the seeds you need, you are invited to share extra seeds you may have with fellow gardeners in the community. This is an easy way to help others start/expand/improve their gardens. The emphasis is on vegetables, –but herbs, and edible or pollinator-friendly flower seeds are also welcome. To offer seeds, please use the 2020 Seed Share form to provide your contact information and basic information that will be useful to a future grower of your seeds. This will be entered into a secure 2020 Seed Share database. Then, starting in mid May, you (and other Charlotters seeking seeds) will be able to request access from us to view the database. To receive seeds they select, seekers will contact providers directly and make a mutually-convenient and safe arrangement to transfer them. We hope this will be an easy and fun way to share not only seeds, but also strengthen the personal network among local gardeners.
Thank you for participating in the Seed Library’s programs for seed and seedling sharing in the community. Out of consideration for fellow gardeners, please use the following guidelines when handling material.
COVID-19 SAFETY GUIDELINES WHEN SHARING SEEDS AND SEEDLINGS
Treat packets of seed the same way the Library is treating books: Wearing a mask, wash hands thoroughly before touching seeds or seed containers. If necessary, divide seeds into smaller paper or other containers for giving away. Label with information helpful to the recipient. Place packets of seeds for each recipient in a loose paper bag or other container they can easily be shaken out of. Label with recipient’s name and leave untouched in a cool dry place for 72 hours before taking to agreed location for pick-up by the lucky recipient. Using gloves (or tongs or other indirect means), the recipient can shake the seed packets out into their own container to take home.
Label seedlings and/or attach written information helpful to the recipient. Do not handle the seedling containers/pots (or paper) for 72 hours before adoption by a fellow gardener. Wearing a mask and after thoroughly washing hands, handle seedling containers with tongs or other indirect means to transfer them to an open tray or cardboard flat labeled with the recipient’s name. Leave the tray for the lucky recipient in the agreed upon location where he/she can pick them out of your tray onto their own and take them home.
Thank you for taking these precautions.
Linda Hamilton and Karen Tuininga, Seed Library Coordinators
Margaret Woodruff, Charlotte Library Director