DTES Seed Library
The Downtown Eastside (DTES) Seed Library, in partnership with Carnegie Centre Vancouver Public Library, is a place where DTES community members can share and access local seeds to grow food, flowers and traditional medicinal plants, as well as access information how to grow them. Our library focuses on a mix of easy to grow, hardy, pollinator friendly, traditional, medicinal, vegetable, flower, and herb varieties. Through this seed library, we encourage education and conversation around issues of food security, biodiversity, food autonomy, personal and community connectivity around nature and food.
As part of our 2019 seed library project, we are including easy-to-follow instructions on how to start and plant seeds as well as resources to find out more about gardening and seed saving. As growing season approaches, we will also include seed saving manuals in the hopes that our gardeners will continue to save seeds.
Our seed project is very much a library (rather than a bank) as we encourage seed planting and gardening regardless of community members’ ability to return seeds. As such, we rely on donations for most of our seeds. Please email dtesseed (at) hivesforhumanity (dot) com if you have donations of open-pollinated, easy to grow veggies, fruits, and pollinator friendly flowers.
The library was founded in memory of one of our gardeners at the Hastings Folk Garden, Neil Benson, much loved and missed.
Based at the University of British Columbia, Hives for Humanity is part of the BeeHive ResearchCluster. Created in response to recent shortages and alarming declines of wild and managed bee populations, the BeeHIVE cluster explores the honey bee’s role as pollinator, producer, and biomonitor. Using innovative fingerprinting tools, we seek to understand how these critical functions are impacted by environmental exposures (both natural and human caused), with the common goal of improving the fate of the honey bee.
Research H4H continues to participate in as part of this study includes fingerprinting our honey as an indicator of environmental health, and monitoring nectar sources in our urban apiaries and gardens for impact on wild bee populations.