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RSS Feed Growing History Blog
Blog on historic plants of the Philadelphia region and people interested in their history, science and conservation.
Seed Saving and Seed Library Websites
Locally grown Philadelphia area seed sources
Truelove Seeds is a farm-based seed company offering culturally important and open pollinated vegetable, herb, and flower seeds.
Experimental Farm Network
Founded in 2013, EFN is composed of professional and amateur farmers, gardeners, plant breeders, and researchers. The network's main organizing tool — this open-source website — is free to use and open to all.
Seed Savers Exchange
Seed Savers Exchange is a non-profit organization dedicated to saving and sharing heirloom seeds. Since 1975, members have been passing on our garden heritage by collecting and distributing thousands of samples of rare garden seeds to other gardeners.
Bay Area Seed Interchange Library (BASIL)
The Bay Area Seed Interchange Library (BASIL) Project is part of a growing network of concerned farmers and community gardeners dedicated to conserving genetic diversity. The website offers resources on seed saving and links to similar organizations on the web.
Southern Exposure Seed Exchange: Growing Guides and Library
Southern Exposure Seed Exchange offers more than 700 varieties of vegetable, flower, herb, grain and cover crop seeds. They emphasize varieties that perform well in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast, although gardeners and farmers from all over the country grow their seeds.
Richmond Grows Seed Lending Library
The Richmond Grows Seed Lending Library in Richmond, CA, is open to everyone. The website provides education about growing and saving seeds, and starting your own lending library.
Saving Our Seeds
The mission at Saving Our Seeds is to promote sustainable, ecological, organic vegetable seed production in the Mid-Atlantic and South. Saving Our Seeds provides information, resources, and publications for gardeners, farmers, seed savers, and seed growers.
Hudson Valley Seed Company
In operation for over eight years, the Hudson Valley online seed library focuses on the Northeast and provides a full seed catalog for all gardeners. Seeds are also available for sale.
Native Seeds/SEARCH is a non-profit conservation organization based in Tucson, Arizona. Since 1983, they have become a major regional seed bank and a leader in the heirloom seed movement. The seed bank includes 1800 varieties of arid-land adapted agricultural crops, many of them rare or endangered.
Seed Library of Los Angeles (SLOLA)
Founded in December 2010, the Seed Library of Los Angeles (SLOLA) is headquartered at The Learning Garden at Venice High School. The website includes a seed database, instructional videos, and resources on how to maintain a seed library.
Heirloom Plants Websites
National Agriculture Library: Specialty, Heirloom and Ethnic Fruits and Vegetables
Find information about those fruits and vegetables with special character - those passed down through generations, valued by a specific culture or grown for their unique appeal.
Mother Earth News: Heirloom Seeds and Plants
Heirloom vegetables, fruits, flowers and herbs are varieties that have remained popular with home gardeners because they grow well and taste great. Loosely defined as plant varieties that have been grown for at least three generations (and sometimes for three or more centuries!), heirloom food plants are varieties that have been selected for their flavor, resistance to pests and diseases, and other traits important to home gardeners.
National Gardening Association: Hybrid or Open Pollinated
It's a struggle, even for experienced gardeners, to choose the best varieties of vegetables. Every catalog description includes only positive information, so each one sounds wonderful. That's why it's important to read between the lines, and to do that you must be familiar with the seedsman's terminology. One of the most common words in seed catalogs today is "hybrid." Its opposite, usually unnoted, is "open-pollinated"...
National Gardening Association: Articles for Heirlooms
This is a list of links to articles published by the NGA about heirloom varieties and care.
Heirloom Seeds or Flinty Hybrids?
New York Times feature article about heirloom plants and seed libraries.
Renewing America's Food Traditions (RAFT) Alliance
The RAFT Alliance brings local farmers, chefs, fishers, agricultural historians, ranchers, nurserymen and conservation activists together to exchange information, tell the stories of regional foods and food producers, and create publications. See the resources page for downloadable articles on everything from food diversity to traditional regional food preparation.
The Smithsonian Heirloom Garden
The Smithsonian Heirloom Garden highlights many types of plants that have been passed down from generation to generation. The plants chosen for this garden have been cultivated in American gardens prior to 1950.
Slow Food USA: Ark of Taste
The US Ark of Taste is a catalog of over 200 delicious foods in danger of extinction, including grains, nuts, herbs, fruits, and vegetables.
The Heirloom Orchadist
The Heirloom Orchardist is designed to provide information about heirloom fruit and flower varieties, and their methods of culture, as presented by those who cultivated these old heirlooms years ago.
Gardening.about.com: Articles About Heirloom Gardening
Articles include information on top varieties, gardening how-to, book reviews and vendor reviews.
Vegetables and Fruits: A Guide to Heirloom Varieties and Community-Based Stewardship
Compiled for the National Agriculture Library, this detailed publication covers, general background information, heirloom appeal and related issues, preserving alternatives, and an annotated bibliography.
Celebrating America's Unique Apple Diversity
From the USDA's, Alternative Farming Systems Information Center (AFSIC), this resource includes an introduction and bibliography by time-period.
Apples: Forgotten Fruits: Manual & Manifesto
As part of RAFT's 2010 "Forgotten Fruits" initiative, this brochure details the history, decline, nursery practices and local restoration efforts designed to bring back the most endangered heirloom apples to orchards, backyards, farmer's markets, restaurants, and home kitchens across the country. Compiled and edited by Gary Paul Nabhan; introduction by Ben Watson.