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All Library locations are closed January 21 in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

Seed Library

Introducing the Seed Library at the Berea Branch!

Kickoff • Sat, Feb 23, 11a-12p
Berea • Sarah Dobey Jones Branch

Grow your world. Learn about the Seed Library, meet local gardeners, and discover the value of heirloom seeds. Giveaways and gardening resources available including the Greenville gardening guide. Light refreshments.

Email or call 864-246-1695 for more information.


Why a Seed Library?
The Greenville County Soil and Water Conservation District and Greenville County Library System have combined their resources to establish a free, accessible, source of flower and food seeds ready for planting. The Seed Library program will:
  • provide education on growing food, flowers, and/or native plants
  • increase local food production and promote healthy diets
  • help to preserve plant diversity with heirloom seeds
What is included in the Seed Library?
The Seed Library includes over fifty varieties of seed provided by generous donations from Seed Savers Exchange and Baker Creek Heirlooms. The seeds have been sorted, separated by type, packaged, and clearly labeled with information and instructions by Greater Greenville Master Gardeners and the Greenville County Soil and Water Conservation District.
How does it work?
  1. Simply open a drawer and select up to ten seed packets. Seeds are sorted by the Greenville County Soil & Water Conservation District.
  2. Help keep the Seed Library stocked by showing your selections to library staff who will note the seeds you’ve chosen. You’ll also be provided with the opportunity to get a library card and receive helpful growing resources for the seeds you've selected.
  3. Take your seeds home to plant and enjoy!
What are heirloom plants?
Heirlooms are plant varieties that have a history of being passed down within a family or community, and are more commonly used by small-scale gardeners and family farms for a variety of reasons—some cultural some pragmatic. Historically, farmers would preserve heirloom varieties that produced high yields and were well adapted to the local climate and soil conditions. Heirloom varieties are open-pollinated, which means that pollination has occurred naturally and was performed by insects, birds, wind, or humans.
Why are heirloom plants important?

Heirlooms are known to produce better flavor and to be more nutritious. While that’s great news for our taste buds, heirloom varieties also play an important role in preserving the genetic diversity of plants. By choosing heirloom varieties, you’re not only preserving biodiversity, you’re also preserving the stories behind the seeds.

According to Seed Savers Exchange, “Choosing open-pollinated heirloom varieties conserves the genetic diversity of garden vegetables and prevents the loss of unique varieties in the face of dwindling agricultural biodiversity. Furthermore, focusing on heirloom varieties creates a historical connection to gardening and food production, building a more sustainable future by carrying on our garden heritage.”

What’s a hybrid?
Hybridization occurs when the pollen of two different species or varieties is crossed. This can happen both naturally or by human intervention. When this is done intentionally by humans, it’s to create a new variety with specific traits. For example, to create a type of lettuce that has an incredibly high yield AND is disease resistant.
Why is the Seed Library not a seed sharing library?
The Seed Library at the Berea Branch is not a seed sharing or seed exchange library, because we want to ensure you’re receiving high quality seeds that have been correctly identified before planting.

Upcoming Events

Getting Ready for Spring
  • Tue, Jan 15, 10a-11a • Fountain Inn
  • Wed, Jan 23, 10a-11a • Mauldin
Success with Seeds
  • Mon, Feb 4, 7p-8p • Travelers Rest
Raised Bed Vegetable Gardening
  • Wed, Feb 20, 7p-8:30p • Taylors
Vegetable Gardening
  • Thu, Feb 28, 7p-8p • Mauldin
Growing Herbs
  • Thu, Mar 7, 7p-8p • Travelers Rest
Grow the Best Tomatoes
  • Thu, Mar 14, 7p-8p • Mauldin
Presented by Greenville County Soil and Water.
  • Mon, Mar 11, 6:30p-7:30p • Berea
STEAM Storytime: Seeds (ages 3-6)
  • Tue, Mar 12, 10:30a-11:30a • Berea
Call the location for more information.