How can the class make the system more sustainable and improve community biodiversity? Harvesting and saving seed from the best performing crops will help them do just that. The Students will learn how to select for specific attributes and build stronger plants. They will also explore the methods for collecting, preparing and storing seed. Once the library is established, the class can work with the community to help preserve the local agricultural heritage through a Community Seed Bank and Library. This sets up the Lab and the larger community to build local biodiversity and continue to grow successful crops season after season, year after year.
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7.1 What’s Inside?
The Anatomy of a Seed (Beginner)
Seed saving goes back thousands of years. In this lesson, students will learn the various parts of the seeds, the role of each, and how seeds develop through the germination and early development process.
Germinate, Dissect, Repeat (Intermediate)
The five primary parts of the seed work together to germinate and develop into a viable seedling. This lesson explores these seed parts and the process of initial development.
It’s All or Nothing (Advanced)
A seed is a perfectly orchestrated packet, capable of producing life all on it owns. Removing any one element of the seed will affect its viability. This lesson asks students to prove this through experimentation.
7.2 The Many Faces of Seeds
Recognizing Different Types of Seeds (Beginner)
People everywhere are collecting seeds from their best performing plants and saving them for the next year. This lesson will help students learn to identify different seed and categorize in their library.
A Closer Look at Seeds (Intermediate)
A seed library can be organized in a number of ways. In this lesson, students will practice categorizing seeds and documented their inventory for the Lab.
Identification By Sight (Advanced)
It takes experience to be able to identify plant varieties just from a quick look at the seed. In this lesson, students will create a visual library to help with seed identification.
7.3 Picking Winners
How Do We Choose Which Seeds to Save? (Beginner)
Good seeds come from good stock. This lesson develops the essential skill of plant selection for seed saving. Traits and characteristics are used to select the winners for next year’s garden.
A Design of Your Own (Intermediate)
Organization is the key to a good seed library. In this lesson, students will design and use a custom seed packet to store and organize the harvested seeds for their seed library.
Become a Seed Library for Your Community (Advanced)
Seed libraries are a wonderful source of inspiration. Find a new variety and give it a try. This lesson focuses on the creation of your seed library as a community resource.
7.4 Doing It Right
Seed Harvesting and Processing Techniques (Beginner)
Saving seeds is a multi-step process. In this lesson, students will learn the various techniques required to harvest and save different varieties of seed effectively.
Separating the Good From the Bad (Intermediate)
Harvesting seed is simple, right? It can actually be challenging without the proper equipment but this lesson will guide students through the screen building process, a tool required to harvest seeds for storage.
Seed Screens for Everyone! (Advanced)
Seed screens are invaluable tools for the garden and the seed saving process. This lesson provides students with the opportunity to take their seed screen designs to market.
Seed Harvesting and Processing Techniques
7.5 Crazy Cool!
Unique Heirlooms and Unusual Seeds (Beginner)
Plants present their seeds in a variety of ways. In this lesson, students explore the numerous ways that plants present and disperse their seeds to produce the next generation.
Geeking Out on Seeds (Intermediate)
Sometimes you just need to watch nature unfold to truly understand it. In this lesson, students will discover just how plants present and disperse their seeds by observing the process up close.
The Edible Learning Lab Seed Catalog (Advanced)
Seed catalogs are one of the greatest literary works of all time. Ok, that may be a bit of a stretch. But in this lesson, students will tap their creative juices to create a photo catalog of seeds from their library.
Modern Steader’s Crazy Cool Seeds Pinterest Board
7.6 Seed Knowledge
The A, B, Cs of Reading Seed Packets (Beginner)
Seed packets offer a wealth of information about the variety and how to cultivate the seeds successfully. In this lesson, students learn to read seed packets to get the needed information.
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words (Intermediate)
Art is a powerful media and seed packets often use artistic expression to tell the story of the variety. This lesson gives students the opportunity to use their artistic abilities to convey the history of their favorite fruit or vegetable.
Time for a bigger, better seed packet (Advanced)
Though humans strive for perfection, it is an elusive goal. What is more important than perfection is the pursuit of it. This lesson asks students to design a better seed packet.
DIY Seed Packet Design
7.7 Seed Stories
Designing a Seed Packet That Informs (Beginner)
Seed packets range from the boring to the inspired. They tell a story and convey important information. This lesson gives students an opportunity to design a custom seed packet of their very own.
Back to the Future (Intermediate)
Our plant history clearly shows the path we’ve taken. Less plant diversity is the outcome of our industrialized agriculture system. This lesson tasks students with the role of historian for their favorite plant variety.
Take on the Role of Leader (Advanced)
It has taken a mere 100 years for humans to destroy as much as 96% of the plant diversity on earth. In this lesson, students are tasked with taking ownership of the issue and asked to work for a solution in their community.
DIY Seed Packet Design