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November 8, 2012

This November 17 at 1 p.m., the El Cajon Branch Library, 201 E. Douglas Ave, will debut a "seed library" that will allow local gardeners to swap saved and unused seeds. Master Gardener Joyce Gemmell will provide a talk on growing flowers and vegetables from seeds, and attendees will have the chance to ask questions, meet other gardeners, and trade seeds with each other. Refreshments will be provided.

The library is partnering with Hawaii organization Eating In Public, which has pioneered the idea of seed-sharing stations throughout their state. Inspired to continue the ancient practice of seed-sharing and reduce dependence on commercial seed companies, they are "seeking prospective organizations to adopt seed-sharing stations, particularly locations with lots of traffic and used by people of diverse populations - e.g. community centers, libraries, churches, coffee shops, senior service centers, etc." They provide a starter kit for the hosting location, and people in the community are welcome to take or leave seeds as needed.

El Cajon librarian Jenne Bergstrom worked with Eating In Public to extend the program to California. "Gardening is one of the most commonly researched subjects at our library, so this seemed like a perfect fit for our community," said Bergstrom. "We invite all our local gardeners to contribute seeds, either in person or by mail at 201 E. Douglas Ave, El Cajon, CA 92020."

The San Diego County Master Gardener Association is a group of volunteers trained and certified by the University of California Cooperative Extension. Each volunteer has successfully completed a 50-hour program of instruction in basic horticulture and pest management. Master Gardeners assist the Cooperative Extension by extending information on gardening and pest management to the public. The SDCMGA often provides speakers for library programs, and Master Gardener Joyce Gemmell, El Cajon resident and vegetable-growing expert, will give a talk and answer audience questions about growing from seeds at the seed library kickoff, November 17 at 1 p.m.

For more information, call the El Cajon Branch Library at (619) 588-3718.

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The County of San Diego and the San Diego County Library disclaim any responsibility for the accuracy of the translations.
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