Ashleigh Smith + photo

Ashleigh Smith

Jan 9
3 min read
bubble 5
plant and books on desk

You might have heard about seed banks, exchanges, or conventions. But have you heard of seed libraries? Seed libraries are stations set up for people to collect seeds for the coming growing seasons. Rather than hosting a one-time event for people to gather and swap seeds, consider starting a seed library. Food doesn’t have to be a scarce resource for your local communities. Empower individuals and families to take charge of their access to food from the ground up. Anyone can grow a garden, even if it is just by recycling household containers like newspaper and egg cartons.


Here in Salt Lake City, we have partnered with our local Public library to provide thousands of seeds for those wanting to experience the joy of growing. You don’t have to have a library card to pick up some seeds. Simply pick which seeds you want to try and fill out your check-out form. The Seed Library is refilled with more seeds to provide a broad selection throughout the year. Not only are the seed libraries available at the main city branch but also throughout the various neighborhoods.



Seed Library Cart

Get your seed library started by using pre-packed seed packets, or make your own by dividing bulk seed bags. You can use anything from drawers or shelves to repurposing old catalog carts. We also encourage locations hosting seed libraries to get involved in community gardening efforts. Many cities or schools provide community or student gardens. Find a way to get involved in your local garden efforts, or start one yourself. Regardless of the regular shortages of fruits and vegetables that occur from weather problems or transportation issues, you can secure food for your community.



Youth Gardening Group

Youth Gardening Group



Some of my favorite memories from my high school years include growing fruits, vegetables, and flowers in our school greenhouses and orchards. As students, we became familiar with common growing and maintenance practices like pest control, pruning, staking, and watering. Don’t forget to involve your local extension office for growing advice and resources tailored to your local climate. All you need to get started is soil, seeds, water, and light. Don’t let a lack of land or greenhouses get in the way of supplying your community members with the most basic human needs. Gardening is the perfect activity to get your youth outside and involved in community efforts.

Start a seed library in your community today!


Ideas for Seed Library Locations:

  • libraries
  • City Offices
  • Schools
  • Cafe's
  • Boys and Girls Club

Please share any other ideas you have in the comments section below.

seeds planted in soil

Become a True Leaf Market Brand Ambassador! You’ll enjoy awesome perks, free products and exclusive swag & offers! Help us create a gardening revolution and help others experience the joy of growing!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

5 comments

Test

This is a test


Meg

I love the seed library idea, this is something that would make a great senior project for a student to get going locally!


Jodi Lemaster

I have never heard of a seed library! What a great idea. I am going to see if any of my surrounding communities have one and if not look into forming one.


Wendy Chapman

In Michigan there are several seed libraries across the state. I am starting one at our local library in Buchanan in March. Great read!


Jamie Sheckler

I’ve never heard of seed libraries before. This is a great idea. It reminded me of the clever way I store my seeds (in a binder).


  1. Norman Borlaug: A Research PioneerWheat field and blue sky background

    Norman Borlaug: A Research Pioneer

    Written By Lara Wadsworth How It Began Norman Borlaug was just a man who was born in 1914 in the American Midwest. He witnessed the aftermath of World War One and The American Dust Bowl, which led to widespread disease and starvation. These hardships, ...


    Ashleigh Smith + photo

    Ashleigh Smith

    2024-06-18
    6 min read
    bubble 0
  2. Masanobu Fukuoka - Sustainability and SimplicityJapanese man tending to a rice field

    Masanobu Fukuoka - Sustainability and Simplicity

    Written By Lara Wadsworth Picture yourself in the serene Japanese countryside. The sun is warm but not too hot, the birds are chirping happily in a nearby forest and it rained last night so everything is lively and green. You’re standing on a hillside ...


    Ashleigh Smith + photo

    Ashleigh Smith

    2024-06-08
    6 min read
    bubble 0
  3. Joy Larkom - Gardening Wisdom and Inspirationwoman holding a basket of freshly harvested vegetables

    Joy Larkom - Gardening Wisdom and Inspiration

    Written By Lara Wadsworth Early Inspiration Have you ever wondered what it takes to revolutionize gardening? Me neither… until I learned about Joy Larkcom. I had no idea that vegetable gardening had been revolutionized in such recent history. Isn't thi...


    Ashleigh Smith + photo

    Ashleigh Smith

    2024-06-04
    6 min read
    bubble 0
  4. The Top 5 Anti-Aging Microgreens5 Anti-aging microgreens

    The Top 5 Anti-Aging Microgreens

    Written By Lara Wadsworth The health and beauty marketing teams of today want us to fear aging and play off of our natural fears to make us buy various serums, creams, etc. To be fair, it is scary to notice new wrinkles, fall asleep on the couch at 10p...


    Ashleigh Smith + photo

    Ashleigh Smith

    2024-06-04
    6 min read
    bubble 1