SDSU Extension seeks vegetable seed donations for school gardens

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Farm Forum

BROOKINGS — SDSU Extension seeks seed donations to assist school and other teaching garden. Twenty-nine school and youth garden programs across the state each received 20 seed packets from this effort in 2015.

The donated seeds are intended only for newly starting and established gardens that offer an educational program.

Eligible projects include gardens for schools, learning centers, daycares, 4-H clubs or other non-profit group in South Dakota, where the produce will be used as part of the program or freely shared with those of need. Qualified projects must include an educational component.

Unopened seed packets with varieties that are appropriate to South Dakota are requested. Vegetable seeds are highest priority, but flower seeds will also be accepted. Certified seed potatoes and onion sets or transplants would also be welcomed in the spring.

Ideally, seeds would have been stored in cool, dark conditions where they were not exposed to moisture or temperature extremes or are purchased new for the 2016 growing season. Please consider the age of the seeds when donating. Older seeds have reduced germination rates so please only donate seeds packaged for 2015 or 2016.

Please consider donating to educational garden programs across the state. Deliver or mail seed donations to SDSU Extension Regional Center in Sioux Falls, 2001 E. 8th St., Sioux Falls, SD 57103. Attn: Chris Zdorovtsov.

Applications for donated seed open January 2016. If you are interested in receiving donated seeds, please call the SDSU Extension Regional Center in Sioux Falls in January for an application. An application notice will also be sent on the SDSU Youth Gardening LISTSERV in January.

To join the LISTSERV or for additional information on this project, please contact Chris Zdorovtsov, SDSU Extension Community Development Field Specialist, at 605-782-3290 or at Christina.Zdorovtsov@sdstate.edu.