Citizen Science Corps

The Citizen Science Corps presents an exciting way to get involved in the work of Seed Savers Exchange. Since 2011, our members from around the country have helped us evaluate and share the varieties in our seed collection. As a result, we have a deeper understanding of our collection and have made more varieties available through the Exchange. We are proud to offer two programs within the Citizen Science Corps that will continue this important work. We hope you will join us.


A crop of ‘Red Baron’ beets being evaluated by 2011 ADAPT participant Candace Simpson of Palo Alto, California.

ADAPT Program

One challenge we face in having a geographically diverse seed collection is accurately evaluating each variety from our location in northeast Iowa. Through the ADAPT program, we gather feedback on how varieties perform in different regions. As a participant in the ADAPT program, you grow a variety and then complete a brief survey asking you to rate qualities such vigor, yield, and taste. We encourage all levels of gardeners to participate in this program. The more data, the more complete the story!

Details for 2019 coming soon!
woman in okra patch

2017 RENEW participant Bobbie Ann Hutchins standing in front of ‘Whidley White’ okra in her garden in Mooringsport, Louisiana.

RENEW Program

While most seed is regenerated here at Heritage Farm, certain crops present unique challenges for us. Help us regenerate these crops through the RENEW program. Cowpeas and lima beans, for example, sometimes require a longer growing season than we have in northeast Iowa. In the case of other crops such as tomatoes, beans, peas, and peppers, we have more varieties in our collection than we alone can maintain on site. Participants in the RENEW program must have experience saving seed and follow the same methods we use at Heritage Farm.

RENEW Program Details

To participate in or inquire about either of these programs, please contact Steffen Mirsky at or (563) 382-5990 ext 165. Together we can make a bigger impact in preserving our diverse food heritage.

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