Here are resources for the small farm and home scale seed grower to get started, make the process easier and more fun. When you are ready, you can sell your seeds online here.
John Navazio's new book by The Organic Seed Grower A Farmer's Guide to Vegetable Seed Production is a comprehensive manual for the serious vegetable grower who is interested in growing high-quality seeds using organic farming practices. It is written for both serious home seed savers and diversified small-scale farmers who want to learn the necessary steps involved in successfully producing a commercial seed crop organically.
Suzanne Ashworth's book by Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable Gardeners is an indispensable guide for any seed saver. It covers each plant family's botanical classification, pollination crossing and isolation, seed production harvest and processing, seed statistics, growing the plant from seed and regional recommendations.
The Organic Seed Alliance has several good publications too: Seed Saving Guide for Gardeners and Farmers plus Field Guides to Seed Production for beans, beets carrots, lettuce, radish and spinach seed. Also search youtube.com for videos on growing and saving your favorite seeds.
A gram scale is useful to weigh the amount of seed you plan to sell in a packet. We weigh 100 seeds of a variety are and then do the math for various quantities of seeds. The model USBKCRDR by Salter is more affordable than other more scientific scales. We bought ours from Curtis Restaurant Supply in Medford, OR, 541 779-8335.
Once you know how much the seeds weigh that you wish to sell in each packet weigh, you can use simple kitchen measuring spoons to fill your packets. Here is an affordable set with many sizes from Lee Power Measures. You can find them at amazon.com.
Any coin envelope will do for your packets. We use a self-sealing number 7 seed packet from Safety Seed Packaging in Lafayette, NJ, 973 383-6362. They can print the packets as you get more established. Blank packets are generally sold in quantities of 1,000. Creative Envelope in Putnam, CT, 860 963-1231 sells lick-to-seal envelopes for slightly less. Also, we buy our 2 x 3.5", #111910 glassine bags for tiny seeds from Paper Mart in Orange, CA, 323 726-8200. Others prefer 2x3" or 3x4" clear plastic bags for seeds from Uline.
To ship your seeds any padded or rigid envelope will do. We use a 9x6" self-seal bubble mailer #00 from Uline. Some online prepaid shipping systems include usps.com, shippingeasy.com, paypal.com and stamps.com. Some of these systems require a monthly fee, others are pay as you go. PayPal seems to be easiest to use for us and has the best shipping rate without paying a monthly fee. Tt the time of this writing, Shipping Easy offered first class international shipping and PayPal did not. We print on two-up mailing labels 8x5" item OL369 from onlinelabels.com.
One item to help process your seeds is a set of hand cleaning screens. We use a set of 8 graduated screens from our friends at Horizon Herbs in Williams, OR. Hoffman Manufacturing sells a wide selection screens of various sizes. Other useful tools to clean seed are tarps, a box fan or two, plastic tubs and five gallon buckets.
Promote your seeds, create a link from your site or Facebook page to your listings in the Restoration Seeds store. Here are a couple of buttons you can use to create a link. Drag and drop them to your desktop or copy and paste them.
Let us know of other seed resources and tips and tricks you may have.
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