Ekanlaunee Seed Exchange Roll-out
University of Florida IFAS Extension in Leon County, in partnership with the Ekanlaunee Seed Exchange and supporting community organizations, networks, businesses, farms, CSO's, community gardens and food gardeners
Friday, September 21, 2012 from 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM (EDT)
The roll-out will include a Volunteer Job Fair for those interested in getting involved with one or more of the Seed Exchange functions.
What is the Ekanlaunee Seed Exchange?
We are a local, grassroots initiative inspired by the actions of the global community to address food security, seed sovereignty, nutrition and health in ways that marry science and culture. The initiative continues to grow and mature as new people join us.
In all probability, Ekanlaunee Seed Exchange will become a non-profit as it attracts more partners who see their own passions and aspirations for local food sovereignty mirrored in the initiative. As we work to become the sustainable change we wish to see, we are mindful of the Creek saying, "the expression of power is geographically specific."
A "mustard seed" group of individuals has led the initiative to this "roll-out" juncture of open invitation to the food gardening community at-large. YOU are invited to voluntarily join with us to evolve the vision into a community resource of inestimable value.
What does our name mean?
Ekanlaunee in the Muscogee Creek tongue means Green Earth, and was chosen with the assistance and blessing of tribal elders to pay homage to our germplasm inheritance from First Peoples of this bioregion.
We aspire to emulate their wisdom in improving, saving, sharing and passing-on open-pollinated, open-source heritage and heirloom seeds that represent our Green Earth's blessings for human sustenance. These blessings can be enumerated to include reliability of yield, quality of nutritional value, contaminant-free germplasm, and multi-generational sustainability of food plants adapted to this place of fertile and well-watered soils called Tallahassee.
Exchange speaks to the principal focus of this initiative, which is to distribute rather than to archive seeds. We envision our role as galvanizing the formation of a distributed local seed library (see Wikipedia definition of a "seed library" at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seed_library). We envision this seed library to be less a physical place and more a local network, with some organizational switch-boarding required to knit it together - not unlike the community telephone exchange of the mid-20th Century.
In the role of an organizational exchange, we hope to knit together partners - primarily NGOs, individuals and eco-friendly businesses - into an efficient network for perpetuating open-source heritage seeds of quality germplasm through local grow-out and short-term storage, to serve the needs of present-day and future food gardeners, and our children and grandchildren who will need the security of healthy and nutritious foods.
In the role of a distributional exchange, we hope to facilitate the efficient and timely sharing of these seeds along with cultural tips for growing them successfully, and culinary tips for utilizing the bounty of their production.
How can I get involved?
If you are interested in being an organizational partner in the network (NGO), a supporting partner for this effort (business), or a volunteer contributor to one of the many functional aspects of the Seed Exchange (individual), please attend the roll-out event on September 21st.
And please share this event announcement and invitation with your food gardening and slow-foods friends!
"Seeds are, in a sense, suitcases in which people can transport their culture with them... Many families have brought their favorite seeds on tremendous journeys."
-- Mike Szuberla, organizer of a seed swap in Toledo, Ohio
For more inspiration on the possibilities before us, check out this short news article:
A Seed Library for Heirloom Plants Thrives in the Hudson Valley
By JOY Y. WANG
The New York Times, published: October 6, 2010
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