Quick Facts About Seed Savers Exchange

Quick facts about seed savers exchange

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quick facts about
Non-Profit Mission and Vision Board of Directors
Keith Crotz, Ph. D
Conserve and promote America’s culturally diverse but endangered (chairman)
garden and food crop heritage for future generations by collecting, Neil Hamilton, J.D

growing, and sharing heirloom seeds and plants. (vice-chair)
Larry Grimstad
Conservation (secretary/treasurer)
Rob Johnston, Jr

Seed Savers Exchange uses a two-pronged method of Seed Savers Exchange maintains a collection of more
George DeVault
conservation known as participatory preservation: than 20,000 heirloom and open-pollinated vegetable,
herb, and plant varieties. David Cavagnaro
Through ex situ preservation seeds are protected in
seed vaults and grown out as needed to protect the Rosalind Creasy
Seed Savers Exchange also maintains over 900
health of the variety. Jovan Sage
varieties of heritage apples

o Seed Savers Exchange keeps the bulk of its
Hope Shand
collection in an underground freezer vault at Heritage

Each year, select varieties of seeds and plant material Rowen White
are grown out in preservation gardens to refresh seed
o Back-up collections are kept at Svalbard Global Seed
supply, and great care is taken to prevent cross-polli- Amy Goldman Fowler, Ph.D
Vault in Norway and the National Center for Genetic
Resources Preservation in Ft. Collins, CO, and remain nation through isolation using distance and phys- & Marty Teitel
the property of Seed Savers Exchange. ical barriers. An Evaluation Team grows out other
(special advisor to the board)
varieties in order to maintain accurate records of each
variety’s traits

Through in situ preservation Seed Savers Exchange Executive Director
members participate by growing out heirloom variet- John Torgrimson
ies in gardens across the country. “Seed Savers Exchange has been a
o When gardeners grow varieties in their agro-ecosys-
tems, the varieties continue to adapt to their growing
powerful force for biodiversity and Founders
conditions. sustainable agriculture.” Diane Ott Whealy
Alice Waters
Distribution (chef, author, restauratuer and food activist) Kent Whealy
Seed Savers Exchange shares seeds with the public through:
• The Exchange: A network of approximately 13,000 members share and save seeds through the Seed Savers Suzanne Ashworth
Exchange Yearbook (print) and Online Seed Exchange (exchange.seedsavers.org). Members from across Dan Beard
the world share their own seeds, and Seed Savers Exchange offers many varieties from its own extensive Clive Blazey
Heritage Farm Collection. In 2014, the exchange featured nearly 20,000 listings. Dave Ellis, Ph.D
• The Catalog: Seed Savers Exchange publishes an annual seed catalog featuring over 600 varieties. Anyone Joel Giardin
can request a free catalog or shop for seeds and other merchandise in the online catalog. Proceeds from cat-
Jim Henry
alog sales enable Seed Savers Exchange to pursue its mission of preserving and distributing heirloom seeds

Lindsay Lee
Craig LeHoullier, Ph.D
Education Beth Lynch, Ph.D
Seed Savers Exchange offers training for both new and expert seed savers. At exchange.seedsavers.org, garden- Deborah Madison
ers can find tutorials, webinars, and seed histories. At blog.seedsavers.org, gardeners can follow the latest seed Laura Merrik, Ph.D
saving news. Members have access to The Heritage Farm Companion, our award-winning quarterly publication, Phillip Sponenberg, DVM Ph.D
which offers in-depth articles, profiles, and tricks of the trade. At Heritage Farm, Seed Savers Exchange hosts John Swenson
numerous events each year, including a Seed Saving School and an annual Conference and Campout. Lee Zieke
Contact Address Website Status
563.382.5990 3094 North Winn Road For more information, visit: 501 (c) (3) non-profit
[email protected] Decorah, IA 52101 seedsavers.org/press-and-media Founded 1975
Seed Savers Exchange partners with Seed Matters on the Community Seed Resource Program (CSRP), which provides the tools and guidance necessary for com-
munity groups to create seed-focused events, exchanges, libraries, and gardens. Through the CSRP, Seed Savers Exchange offers access to its own national seed
exchange, community seed toolkits, and mentorship for seed saving and community organizing. The CSRP helps simplify three key components of community
seed -- swaps, community seed banks, and seed gardens

Through the Herman’s Garden Seed Donation program, Seed Savers Exchange donates seed packets to community and educational groups who share the harvest
and save seeds for others in need. With these donations, groups are able to establish gardens and pass along history and diversity of both culture and flavor

Seed Savers Exchange is made up of 13,000 members, hailing from 30 countries and all 50 states

Cost of membership ranges from $30/year for students and senior citizens to $1,500 for Lifetime Members. For one year, a basic individual membership costs $40

Member Benefits:
• Exchange – Share seeds with one another through the Yearbook and Online Seed Exchange
• Community – Connect with other gardeners to ask questions, share seeds, and offer tips
• Discounts – Save on event registration, seeds, books, and other merchandise from the catalog, website, and visitors center
• Education – Access The Heritage Farm Companion and get priority registration for workshops, conferences, and other events
History & Heritage Farm
Seed Savers Exchange was founded in Missouri in 1975 by Diane Ott Whealy and Kent Whealy. Diane’s grandfather, who was terminally ill, entrusted to them
the seeds of two garden plants, Grandpa Ott’s morning glory and German Pink tomato. These seeds, brought by Grandpa Ott’s parents from Bavaria when they
immigrated to Iowa in the 1870s, became the first two varieties in the collection

In 1987 Seed Savers Exchange moved to Heritage Farm in Decorah, Iowa which comprises over 890 acres

Heritage Farm is home to:
Seed Savers Exchange
• Gardens for preservation, display, scientific evaluation, and children’s play Plant Collections
• The Historic Orchard featuring heritage apple trees
• The Heritage Farm Collection, maintained in an underground freezer vault according to international
genetic preservation standards Tissue Culture
• The Robert J. Becker Memorial Library, which houses more than 3,500 books, media, serial publications, Apple Trees
• The Lillian Goldman Visitors’ Center, with gift shop and visitor information Seed Savers Exchange
• Over 300 native species of plants and more than 100 species of birds
• Heritage poultry, indigenous Brook trout, and Ancient White Park cattle By The Numbers
• Eight miles of hiking trails
over 20,000 accessions
over 700 in-vitro
Partnerships potato varieties
Terra Chips Ogden Press / Mother Earth News Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
American Public Gardens Association Organic Seed Alliance Svalbard Global Seed Bank
over 900 apple tree varieties
The Livestock Conservancy Powell Gardens University of Wisconsin-Madison
Minnesota Landscape Arboretum Seed Matters USDA, National Center for Genetic
over 13,000 members
Native Seeds/SEARCH Slow Food USA Resources Preservation
over 13,000 unique seed
exchange listings from members
Contact Address Website
563.382.5990 3094 North Winn Road For more information, visit: 890-acre farm
[email protected] Decorah, IA 52101 seedsavers.org/press-and-media

• The Catalog: Seed Savers Exchange publishes an annual seed catalog featuring over 600 varieties. Anyone can request a free catalog or shop for seeds and other merchandise in the …

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the seed exchange?

The Exchange is facilitated by Seed Savers Exchange, a nonprofit dedicated to preserving and sharing heirloom seeds. The organization started with the sharing of seeds within a small group of people in 1975 and has continued to expand over the last 40+ years. The Exchange you findhere is a continuation...

What is the best seed swap site?

Seed Savers Exchange (Decorah, Iowa): This is the Granddaddy of seed saving organizations in the US. Their seed swapping catalog has grown to include literally thousands of vegetable and fruit listings. And they have a sister organization, The Flower and Herb Exchange.

Where can i buy seeds for my garden?

Seed Savers' Network (Australia): Similar to the U.S.-based Seed Saver Exchange, above. If there's a horticultural society, arboretum or public garden you particularly love, be sure to check into how you can get on their seed exchange list.

Do you have any seeds left over from the gardening season?

Some people have a wealth of plant seeds left over at the end of the gardening season. Some folks can never find seed particular garden plant they want at the beginning of the season.