Seed Library at Nanaimo library expands access to local agriculture

April 28, 2021

Spring is here and that means it’s time to hit the garden. The Creativity Commons branch — located on the second floor of the downtown Nanaimo Harbourfront library — of Vancouver Island Regional Library (VIRL) is here to help with a seed library of vegetables, herbs, and wildflowers for anyone with a VIRL library card.

“When I saw the popularity of VIRL’s Master Gardner program series, it was obvious that many people are interested in growing their own food,” says Creativity Commons Information Technician and seed library founder, Dalia Levy. “With our new seed library, we’re opening the door for more families and individuals to take part in this healthy, locally-focused activity. Since we’re all being asked to stay close to home for the time being, I don’t know if there’s been a better time to get into gardening. We’re so excited to help promote food security, eco-literacy, and small-scale gardening in the community!”

Pre-packaged seed packets are available for pick up at the Creativity Commons for anyone with a VIRL library card. Customers can take a maximum of three packets per household from a selection that includes tomatoes, zucchini, basil, rosemary, bok choy, peppers, wild flowers, and more.

VIRL partnered with Village Vancouver, an organization focused on building sustainable communities, to build the seed library. Village Vancouver receives annual grants from West Coast Seeds and was able to send nearly 1,000 pre-packaged seed packets to the Creativity Commons, as well as a wooden seed storage box.

In addition to providing seeds, the library is also asking people to donate to the seed library to sustain its operations. Contributors are asked to provide the name and variety of plant, the year it was harvested, and their contact info in case library staff need to follow up. Donations can be dropped off at the Creativity Commons during business hours (Monday: 10am – 4pm: Tuesday: 10am – 7pm, Wednesday: 10am – 4pm, Thursday: 10am – 7pm, Friday: 10am – 4pm, Saturday: 10am – 4pm)

The seed packets are available now while supplies last. Registration is also now open for the next Virtual Gardening Series, titled a Primer on Roses, which will be held on Saturday, June 5 at 1pm.

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For more information

David Carson, Director, Corporate Communications and Strategic Initiatives
Vancouver Island Regional Library
250.327.3651
dcarson@virl.bc.ca