The Fox Cities first community seed lending library opened at the Appleton Public Library April 2016, Appleton Seed Library. The Appleton Seed Library is a community seed lending library resource. We house a collection of open-pollinated, organic and heirloom seeds that you are welcome to borrow – grow – share. Our collection depends on donations from small seed companies as well as your returned seed when they come to maturity.
The goal of the Appleton Seed Library is to provide the community the opportunity to borrow seeds to grow food, learn to save seeds, and thus strengthening our local seed diversity. We hope that people will collectively save and trade seeds as we provide the opportunity to educate and grow. A commitment to growing plants from seeds is a gift for you. The seeds you save and return are a gift to your community.
Patrons are able to borrow seeds to grow food, learn to save seeds using the libraries numerous resources or attend a workshop, and thus strengthen our local seed diversity by learning how to save seeds and returning a portion of them to the seed library. The idea is that people save and trade seeds with each other and the library provides the opportunity and education to make it happen.
Why Save Seeds: Today’s gardeners are returning to an age old seed saving tradition, an act that reconnects us to the land. Seed harvesting and preservation is central to the ideals of sustainability and local food security. Seed saving on a local level creates a seed stock well suited to our Midwest climate. Plants become more pest resistant and weather tolerant. Learning to save seed helps create a strong culture of sharing and community connectivity. Historically, seeds were treated as sacred, a living trust passed down to us by our ancestors. Our aim is to revive the diversity of local seed, share skills and motivate new conversations of chance. We believe that the saving and sharing of seeds has become a lost art. By growing a plant from seed, eating its fruit and returning it back to seed, we become fully engaged in the rhythm of nature, grow more attuned to the world around us, and gain a deeper understanding of our own place in the web of life.
The Appleton Seed Library is accessible any time the library is open. Instructions are posted on how to BORROW-Grow-SHARE heirloom seeds. More information, including upcoming events, can be found on their Facebook page.