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$1,156 pledged of $6,000 goal
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All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

$1,156 pledged of $6,000 goal
backers

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

About this project

Meet the LIRSC crew -

"The act of consumption is the same act that preserves; this is the essence and irony of preserving food varieties."

Meet the LIRSC team!
Meet the LIRSC team!

Since starting in 2012, the Long Island Regional Seed Consortium has been working closely with breeders, farmers, chefs, gardeners and other organizations to spread the word about the importance of biodiversity, regional varieties, and seed saving. Through various projects like The Long Island Cheese Pumpkin Project, the annual seed swap, and the seed library initiative, we strive to bring the importance of a sustainable and local food culture to the forefront.

We also provide historical data and information about regional varieties. While some of these varieties have been lost forever or on the verge of extinction, it is important to retain a record of them. The compilation of historical ephemera and information is available to everyone; from scholars to school gardens. It is absolutely critical that a tangible written history be maintained so celebrated food culture can be passed on to future generations rather than being lost to time.

 

We like to talk about seeds...and enjoy a good beer while we do it! Our founders, Ken Ettlinger and Steph Gaylor get together and talk "Seeds and Suds".

 

Why is seed saving & storage important? -

According to the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN), we have lost 90% of our agro-biodiversity. Choices for crops are rapidly shrinking.   The act of saving a seed is not only independently empowering, this small, simple act helps preserve and foster our food culture, the past, present, and future.  This means preserving not just the fruits of that plant, but the actual genetics as well.  With a rapidly changing climate, growing population, falling water tables and an advancing monoculture, that one seed's genetics could hold the answer to unforeseen disasters.

Let's be clear. The LIRSC is very optimistic about the future. Our project is not about preparing for doomsday. We are realistic about the dangers and threats to our food supply but at the same time...we love food! We want to try ALL the heirloom varieties we save. We want YOU to try them! Food culture has never been static and we like it that way! People care about their food, and we care about where the food comes from. The seed. It's the beginning and end of every food culture.

 

onions starting to bloom
onions starting to bloom

 

 

Protecting our seed bank for future generations -

We are proposing a modest seed storage facility that will house 1000’s of heirloom varieties, many of which are “orphaned” varieties facing extinction. Much of the seed we have in our bank is the last of its kind.

We understand that incredible importance in just one seed and we want nothing more than to protect that potential. Our seeds need a safe place to lie in wait. To build our seed MOTHERSHIP, we will need:

  • 2 Insulated Storage Units, (we are hoping for two 40' shipping containers) one for seed storage and one for seed processing.
  • A stable temperature controlled system for the shipping container to maintain the optimal temperature for seed storage.
  • Enough hermetically sealed containers to hold the thousands of varieties.  This means lots of heavy foil heat seal bags and various jars.
  • Shelving and an accurate labeling system.

The MOTHERSHIP will be located at the Long Island Regional Seed Consortium's farm on the North Fork of Long Island.

 

The farm (and osprey nest) at sunset
The farm (and osprey nest) at sunset

 

There are over 8000 heirloom varieties of tomatoes.  The LIRSC houses over 2500 varieties.
There are over 8000 heirloom varieties of tomatoes. The LIRSC houses over 2500 varieties.

 

A sneak peek at our rewards -

A special THANK YOU! on our website
A special THANK YOU! on our website

 

Limited edition LIRSC Seed Swap poster
Limited edition LIRSC Seed Swap poster

 

Seed Packets / Garden of Diversity Membership
Seed Packets / Garden of Diversity Membership

 

Name a newly bred heirloom variety
Name a newly bred heirloom variety

 

 Our community is your community! -

Shinnecock Currant
Shinnecock Currant

 

Members of the local 4H club helping out at a seed swap
Members of the local 4H club helping out at a seed swap

 

Sunset on the farm
Sunset on the farm

 

Our volunteers are the BEST!
Our volunteers are the BEST!

 

Many tomatoes ready for seeding
Many tomatoes ready for seeding

 

An amazing panel of professionals discussing the Long Island Cheese Pumpkin
An amazing panel of professionals discussing the Long Island Cheese Pumpkin

 

Risks and challenges

The Long Island Regional Seed Consortium is very confident that the project will be completed by the end of Fall 2017 once fully funded. As for most farmers and those who work in agriculture, the weather is our biggest ally and our biggest foe. We will keep everyone updated as the project comes together and progresses.

Our seed bank is carefully documented currently, but we would like to update our records with accuracy. Once the storage units are up and running, the real work begins!

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Seed Sponsor

    Thank you so much for your support! Every dollar helps! Your name will be included on our website with a special thanks.

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    Seed Starter

    LIMITED EDITION LIRSC POSTER

    A limited edition 11x17" commemorative poster from the 2017 LIRSC Seed Swap. "They tried to bury us. They did not know that we were seeds."

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    Seed Supporter

    2 SURPRISE PACKETS OF LIRSC SEEDS

    Enjoy an array of heirloom, open pollinated and organically grown seeds from our very own seed bank!

    PLUS

    the LIMITED EDITION LIRSC POSTER

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    Seed Advocate

    6 SURPRISE PACKETS OF LIRSC SEEDS

    Enjoy an array of heirloom, open pollinated and organically grown seeds from our very own seed bank!

    PLUS

    the LIMITED EDITION LIRSC POSTER

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    Pledge $80 or more About $80

    EARLY BIRD SPECIAL Garden of Diversity

    This year grow a garden of diversity and become a member of the LIRSC!

    Membership Includes:

    LIRSC Garden of Diversity - 12 seed packets (choose from over 70!)

    Visit the LIRSC fields, farmers, breeders and staff in Southold, NY

    Access to our email hotline for questions and tips

    For a limited time only!

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Seed Lover

    BEGINNER'S SEED SAVER CLASS

    - a 3 hour class given on the LIRSC farm plot on the North Fork of Long Island.
    Learn the differences between wet and dry processing, isolation distances, how to isolate mechanically, the merits of trialing and keeping records.
    A hands on experience in seed saving! We will be using the education and trialing plot as a teaching reference and special attention will be paid to those seed crops coming in. Class includes a tour of the fields.

    PLUS-

    6 SURPRISE PACKETS OF LIRSC SEEDS

    Enjoy an array of heirloom, open pollinated and organically grown seeds from our very own seed bank!

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Garden of Diversity Membership

    This year grow a garden of diversity and become a member of the LIRSC!

    Membership Includes:

    LIRSC Garden of Diversity - 12 seed packets (choose from over 70!)

    Visit the LIRSC fields, farmers, breeders and staff in Southold, NY

    Access to our email hotline for questions and tips

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    Seed Fanatic

    2 TICKETS to the LIRSC SUMMER SPREAD DINNER
    August 5, 2017 @Hallockville Museum Farm, Riverhead, NY

    Celebrate the summer season with the LIRSC and the delectable summer bounty of local food producers! Prepared by true farm to table chefs. Doors open at 3pm for cocktails and hors d'oeuvres. Dinner service at 6pm.

    PLUS
    3 hour Beginner's Seed Saving Class

    PLUS
    Full Membership to LIRSC - which includes a farm tour and 12 packets of LIRSC seeds.

    PLUS
    An invitation to tour the seed storage center once completed.

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    Seed Sustainer

    NAME YOUR OWN NEW HEIRLOOM VARIETY

    Your name can go down in history with the likes of Brandywine, Amana Orange and Willing’s Barbados' Pepper. The LIRSC actively breeds new vegetable varieties and would like to give you the honor of naming one! Kind of like naming a star, name a variety that you can share with your friends and family for many generations to come!

    PLUS
    2 TICKETS to the LIRSC SUMMER SPREAD DINNER
    August 5, 2017 @Hallockville Museum Farm, Riverhead, NY

    Celebrate the summer season with the LIRSC and the delectable summer bounty of local food producers! Prepared by true farm to table chefs. Doors open at 3pm for cocktails and hors d'oeuvres. Dinner service at 6pm.

    PLUS
    3 hour Beginner's Seed Saving Class

    PLUS
    Full Membership to LIRSC - which includes a farm tour and 12 packets of LIRSC seeds.

    PLUS
    An invitation to tour the seed storage center once completed.

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