Seeds to be distributed


Published: Wednesday, August 28, 2013 at 3:04 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, August 28, 2013 at 3:04 p.m.

Do you grow your own food or are you considering starting your own garden? If so, you're in luck because you can get all of the seeds you may need, as well as instruction, for a small fee, or even free, if you receive SNAP, or food stamp, benefits.

Facts

GARDEN SEEDS

* What: The distribution of seeds for your home garden.

* When: 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Sept. 7 and 5:30-8 p.m. Sept. 24; 4-7 p.m. Sept. 11.

* Where: Sept. 7 and Sept. 24, Highlands Presbyterian Church, 1001 NE 16th Ave.; Sept. 11, Union Street Farmers Market, downtown Gainesville.

* Miscellaneous: There will be a seed-starting workshop, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Sept. 14, Porters Community Farm, 518 SW 3rd St.

* Information: Email: anna@foragefarm.org.

The Seed Library, which is housed at Highlands Presbyterian Church at 1001 NE 16th Ave., will host a seed distribution from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Sept. 7 and also 5:30-8 p.m. Sept. 24. Seeds also will be distributed from 4-7 p.m. Sept. 11 at the Union Street Farmer's Market in downtown Gainesville. A seed starting workshop will be held from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Sept. 14 at the Porters Community Farm at 518 SW 3rd St.

Travis Mitchell, community project coordinator at Florida Organic Growers, or FOG, said residents can receive seeds at the Seed Library by becoming a Friend of Grow Gainesville, which promotes local food production and provides a network for gardeners. Grow Gainesville is under the umbrella of Forage, a nonprofit outreach and education organization. The Forage Farm is located at the Alachua Conservation Trust Prairie Creek Preserve of SE County Road 234 in Gainesville.

Anna Prizzia, co-founder of Forage Farm, said to participate all you need is to become a Friend of Grow Gainesville and pay an annual fee of $20. Membership also includes a subscription to a quarterly newsletter, seeds appropriate for this region and invitations to Grow Gainesville events. Free seeds will be available to SNAP recipients and recipients of the Gainesville Initiative for Tasty Gardens, which builds raised bed vegetable gardens and edible landscaping for low-income families and the institutions that support them.

Applications for Friend of Grow will be available at any of the seed distribution sites or downloaded at www.growgainesville.com, click on Seed Library, then click on Grow Gainesville Application. Mail the application with a check or money order payable to Forage with Friend of Grow Gainesville in the memo field and mail to Forage, P.O. Box 358256, Gainesville, 32635.

Seeds that are now available include broccoli, collards, mustard greens, turnip greens, radishes, carrots, beets and many more vegetables.

Prizzia said workshops will be offered in partnership with the IFAS/Alachua County Extension Office. "We're trying to focus on developing a seeds savings technique and protecting seed resources for generations," Prizzia said.

"This is a great program that connects gardeners with the community," Mitchell said. "They get to know each other and share information and resources."

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