Hudson Valley Seed Library

Have a look at a beautiful and creative endeavor: The Hudson Valley Seed Library.

In their own words, The Hudson Valley Seed Library strives to do two things:

  1. to create an accessible and affordable source of regionally-adapted seeds that is maintained by a community of caring farmers and gardeners; and,
  2. to create gift-quality seed packs featuring works designed by New York artists in order to celebrate the beauty of heirloom gardening.

Farmers Doug Muller and Ken Greene dreamed of creating an “accessible and affordable source of regionally-adapted seeds that is maintained by a community of caring gardeners.” Hence they formed a company that sells seeds from its own farm as well as those grown by other local farmers. Gardeners are encouraged to save and share their own seeds too.

If you’re a member of the seed library, you get discounts on seed packs and events, plus ten seed packs. Members also can return seeds to the seed library in exchange for a discount on next year’s membership. The seed library offers information on seed saving, classes and workshops.

In 2011, they expect to offer over 60 varieties of locally grown seed and around 100 varieties sourced from responsible seed houses. The company contracts with organic and certified naturally grown farmers in the Hudson Valley and upstate New York to grow new varieties. Most of their varieties are rooted in the history and soils of New York or are chosen because they do well in that zone, but of course they can be used in other zones as well.

They offer a  membership program to backyard gardeners who are interested in joining the cause.

The art on the seed packets is chosen from the submissions of over 70 artists. They’re from the Hudson Valley and New York City. As the website explains, artists range from “up-and-coming to world renowned. The diversity of the artwork reflects the many stories behind each variety and the genetic wonder that makes each plant unique.”

When the packets are folded, the main art piece ends up on the front, and the back is sealed with a sticker.

Viewing some of the packets is like a mini tour through an art gallery! Enjoy. (artist listed under the piece)

Art by Ayumi Horie.

Art by Lisa Perrin.

Art by Sarah Snow.

Paper silhouette by Diana Bryan.

Art by Barbara Bash.

Illustration by Arik Roper.

Painting and collage by Jacinta Bunnell.

Watercolor by Robert Morris.

Art by Christy Rupp.

Oil painting by Joan Lesikin.

Art by Sheryl Humphrey.

Photo/illustration by Michael Asbill.

Art by Allyson Levy.

Tuck one of these packages into a gift, or make a gift of an assortment.

A bonus with these fun seed packets is that when they’re empty, you can recycle them for wrapping small gifts like jewelry.

Please let us know about any seed libraries or seed saver groups in your area.

3 thoughts on “Hudson Valley Seed Library

  1. I agree! HVSL packets make amazing gifts or even to use as cards attached to a presents. The packaging is unique, local, AND supports art and agriculture – what could be better? Thanks for a great story!

  2. Please come visit SLOLA: Seed Library of Los Angeles, a nascent all volunteer group that formed in Dec. 2010 and strives to do very much what Hudson Valley is doing in its region. and on facebook at We have been beautifully supported by the seed saving community with donations of seeds that will do well in SoCal. Our meeting on Oct 15 featured a presentation by Linda Preuss, our database chair, and Albert Chang, co-chair of Best Practices committee, about their experiences at the Heirloom Expo.

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