Over 5 years of practice and knowledge in curating a native seed collection for the Madrean Archipelago, BRN Seed Lab staff have developed effective systems for seed collection, cleaning, and storage that promote the maximum long-term viability of seed lots.
The Seed Lab currently houses over 550 collections in a storage space converted into a walk-in cooler kept at an optimal temperature and humidity level for short to medium-term storage (1-7 years).
A 500 sq. ft. converted elementary school cafeteria provides ample space for seed cleaning and processing accomplished using professional seed cleaning equipment.
The BRN Seed Lab is an innovative vision of a “regional seed center” that maintains a working collection of native seed for restoration, research, commercial sale, and nursery/seed production. The main components of the seed program include:
Development of techniques and protocols (e.g. germination testing, seed cleaning)
Management of seed collection and storage infrastructure
Strategic development of a genetically diverse seed bank for the Madrean Archipelago
Training professionals and citizens in native plant identification, seed collection & ethical wild-harvesting
Coordinating with multiple public and private partners who seek restoration services in order to “get out in front” of restoration needs and accelerate coordinated habitat improvements
SEED LAB SERVICES
Seed Collection and Cleaning
Our seed collection team is available for contract hire. Collection services include a crew of collectors, a crew lead, and a lead botanist, plus project management services. Seed cleaning and processing is conducted by a crew of seed lab technicians with oversight by the Seed Lab Manager at our facility in Patagonia. Please inquire directly to the Seed Lab Manager about pricing, availability, and options.
We offer short-term (1-7 years) seed storage at our Seed Lab facility in a converted walk-in cooler that is kept at optimal temperature and humidity levels. Storage costs are $1.50 per accession per month or $0.50/lb per month for bulk-only accessions.
Coating seed in a mixture of clay, compost, and diatomaceous earth then binding it together as a pellet is a low-tech method to improve seeding success in drylands. We currently offer seed pelletization as a service for our partners that have contracted for seed collections or bulk seed orders through our seeding project management and curation service.
Seeding Project Management and Curation
We offer project management for small and large-scale revegetation and habitat restoration projects that use native seed. This service includes the creation of a customized species palette for the goals of your project and seed curation and sourcing.
Germination and Viability Testing
Our seed lab is not a certified testing facility, but our staff has been trained and follows the protocols of the USFS National Seed Laboratory for germination testing and viability testing using Tetrazolium.