Farm Radio International offers helpful tips on recording seed information. Their tips will help you to keep information about seeds so you can keep a better record of them for future reference. The most important information to record is:
- The name and variety of the plant from which the seed was taken. Write down all local names of the plant, and also the scientific names. If you don't know the scientific names, ask an extension worker.
- The name and address of the person who collected the seed and the date the seed was collected.
- The place where the seed was collected. Add any helpful information such as the distance from a well known landmark. Note special details of the location. For instance, is this a sloped area, is the soil well drained, are there trees?
- Special characteristics of the plant from which all, or some, of the seed was taken. For example, if some of the seed came from a crop which tolerated drought, direct sunlight, wind or shade, then list these characteristics.
- The date the seed was stored, and the general weather conditions during the season that the seeds were produced. For example, you may write that the seed was collected in July 1994 when the weather was dry, skies were clear, and there were lots of insects.
- Write all this information on a piece of paper and put it in the bag or container with the seed. Also write the information on the outside of the container. It should also be copied onto a separate piece of paper so that the seed bank workers can refer easily to the seed supply. This gives the community extra historical information about local plants and weather conditions. Keep the list up to date. You may want to make extra copies in case the main list is lost.
Information Source: Farm Radio International, "Starting a Community Seed Bank," Package 33, Script 5, July 1994.