The Seed Farm sits on 3.5 acres of land where we grow rare, culturally-meaningful seed crops with community partners and pursue relevant research questions about the art and science of heirloom plants. Students, scholars, and community partners come together to learn from each other. Though we come together from a wide range of disciplines and life experiences, we share a common focus: our work deals with questions of repair and mutualism including repairing relationships with land, soil, plants, the environment, and each other and thinking about the essential role that mutualisms play in processes of repair.
In our gardens, we grow plants for their seeds, which means tending them through lush green and peak fruit until pods have dried, fruits have browned, and seeds have matured. Each summer, Princeton students plant seeds from community partners and tend many relationships among plants and people that grow from the farm.
During the academic year, students host workdays, harvest and process the seeds, and continue to work with community partners on a variety of research projects. The work and research of the farm is shared at conferences, in print, and through social and multimedia platforms.
A vibrant ecosystem of relationships makes our work possible. We are grateful that our work is supported by many generous people and organizations including our community partners: the Experimental Farm Network, Munsee Three Sisters Medicinal Farm, and the Ujamaa Cooperative Farming Alliance. The main farm is located at the Stony Ford Research Station, a center for local, ecological research that is managed by the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Princeton University. We also maintain “Little Seed Farms” on Princeton’s main campus.
The Seed Farm is supported by the following Princeton University offices:
- Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
- Effron Center for the Study of America
- High Meadows Foundation Sustainability Fund
- Humanities Council
- Program on Community Engaged Scholarship (ProCES)
- Pace Center for Community Engagement
- Office of Sustainability Campus as Lab Program