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Seed Library

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While supplies last, about 1,000 seed packets are available for checkout!

To borrow seed packets (up to 10 per library card), you must place them on hold and use Curbside Pickup:

  1. Click on the name of the seed you want to borrow from the list below.
  2. Click "Place Hold" next to the seed you want to request. You can request up to 10 packets per library card.
  3. Sign in with your library card number and PIN, if prompted. 
  4. Once your hold is placed, wait to receive a notification by phone call, email, or text that your seeds packets are available for pickup. This notification will take days to receive. 
  5. Once you receive your notification, visit the library to checkout your seed packets using Curbside Pickup (open Mon-Sat 10AM - 6PM

Community Donated Seeds

Community Donated Seeds are also available for curbside pickup! Click the link and follow the steps above to place them on hold. There is no limit on the number of Community Donated Seeds you can request. 

Questions? Click here to contact us by phone, email, chat, or text

What is the Seed Library?

The Seed Library offers free, open-pollinated seeds and resources for planting, growing, harvesting, and seed saving. Grow your own food and return your saved seeds to share with the community if you are able.

Why have a Seed Library?

  • Empower community members to grow their own food by offering free seeds.
  • Support food security and improve access to the freshest, healthiest food possible.
  • Provide a culturally diverse selection of seeds so the multitude of cultures represented in our community can grow foods that reflect their palate and preferences.
  • Keep open pollinated seed varieties thriving and in use.
  • Connect people e to community resources for planting, growing, harvesting, and seed saving.
  • Learn how to save seeds for the next growing season, share with friends and family, and return seeds to the Seed Library.

How does the Seed Library work?

  • Choose up to 10 seed packets per library card from the seed rack.
  • Check out your seeds (no due dates, no fines!)
  • Choose necessary resource sheets to help you grow.
  • Plant your seeds in some soil with lots of sun and add water.
  • Save seeds from your harvest and consider returning some to the Seed Library.

Seed Library Collection

(click on heading for planting & saving instructions, click on seed name to reserve seeds)

The list is available in other languages here: Arabic | Chinese | English | Khmer | Somali | Spanish

seed-library-image-2

Bean

  • Bush variety- “Painted Pony” (Phaseolus vulgaris- out of stock
  • Edamame - "Fiskeby" (Glycine max- out of stock
  • Pole variety - “Ideal Market” (Phaseolus vulgaris) - out of stock

Beet

  • “Detroit Dark Red” (Beta vulgaris) - out of stock

Bitter Melon

Carrot

  • “Danvers” (Daucus carota) - out of stock

Cucumber

  • “Russian Pickling” (Cucumis sativus) - out of stock
  • Suyo Long” (Cucumis sativus)

Eggplant

Greens

seed-library-image-3

Kale

Lettuce/Spinach

  • Lettuce Butterhead variety - "Grandma Hadley's" (Lactuca sativa - out of stock
  • Lettuce Looseleaf variety - "Gold Rush" (Lactuca sativa)
  • Spinach - "Bloomsdale" (Spinacia oleracea- out of stock

Onion

  • Bunching Onion - “Evergreen Hardy White” (Allium fistulosum- out of stock
  • Red Onion - “Long Red Florence” (Allium cepa- out of stock

Pea

  • “Amish Snap” (Pisum sativum- out of stock

Pepper

  • Bell Pepper - “Wisconsin Lakes” (Capsicum annuum) - out of stock
  • “Jalapeño” (Capsicum annuum- out of stock
  • “Habanero” (Capsicum chinense - out of stock

Radish

  • “French Breakfast” (Raphanus sativus- out of stockseed-library-image-4
  • “Miyashige Daikon” (Raphanus sativus var. longipinnatus)  - out of stock

Squash

  • Opo/Bottle Gourd (Lagenaria siceraria)
  • Pumpkin - "Winter Luxury" (Cucurbita pepo) - out of stock
  • Summer Squash “Costata Romanesco” (Cucurbita pepo - out of stock
  • Winter Squash “Waltham Butternut” (Cucurbita moschata- out of stock

Tomatillo

  • "Green" (Physalis ixocarpa)

Tomato

  • “Brandywine (Sudduth’s Strain)” (Solanum lycopersicumout of stock
  • “Sam Marzano” (Solanum lycopersicum) - out of stock
  • “Cherry Roma” (Solanum lycopersicum) - out of stock

Watermelon

  • "Blacktail Mountain" (Citrullus lanatus- out of stock

Herbs

  • Basil “Genovese” (Ocimum basilicum- out of stock
  • Cilantro (Coriander sativum- out of stock
  • Dill "Bouquet" (Anethum graveolens)
  • Epazote (Dysphania ambrosiodes)
  • Mint - Common (Mentha spp.) - out of stock
  • Nasturtium - "Empress of India" (Tropaeolum minus) - out of stock
  • Parsley “Giant Italian” (Petroselinum crispum) - out of stock

Community Donated Seeds

The Seed Library also contains vegetable, fruit, and flower seeds donated by community members. The types of seeds and amounts available will vary throughout the growing season. Check back often to see if new seeds have been added to the collection. You do not need to check out these seeds. Please take what you can use.

How do I donate seeds?

  • The Seed Library accepts open-pollinated or heirloom seeds; donated GMO or Hybrid seeds will be distributed outside the Seed Library.
    • Seeds must be cleaned and ready to be packaged.
    • Please fill out a donation form or provide information on what seeds you are donating so we know what we’ll be growing from that seed.
  • Why no GMO or Hybrid seeds? – These seeds many not produce plants exactly like the parent plant. They may produce something somewhat close or very different. They can be grown for food, but not for saving for the Seed Library.
  • Open-pollinated or heirloom seeds will be “true-to-type” if saved and grown again.

Seed Starting

Watch this video for more information about starting seeds!

"UMN Extension Educator Julie Weisenhorn demonstrates and outlines the easy steps that will help you grow some of your favorite plants without spending a lot."

 

"Starting Seeds at Home/Como cultivar semillas en casa" from Milena Nunez Garcia

Click here for more seed starting information from the University of Minnesota Extension. 

Seed Saving Workshop

Printable List of Resources (PDF)

Community Garden Plots 

Community garden plots are available in various locations around Rochester. Click on the following links for more information:

In addition, RNeighbors has more information on community food garden resources. Check with your neighborhood association to see if additional garden plot options are available right in your neighborhood.

 

Sponsors

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