The Sow & Grow Seed Library is a collaboration between the Lubbock Master Gardeners Association and the Lubbock Public Libraries. It opened June 1, 2019 at the Mahon Library. The idea came from a social media post in the Santa Fe area, highlighting their new seed bank program. After sharing the post on the LMGA Facebook page, a group of volunteers came together and began planning with the help of Christina Reid, our CEA-Horticulture.
The Sow & Grow Seed Library gathered seeds from volunteers, and donations from individuals to support the program. Seeds are packaged in small, labeled envelopes and filed into a card catalog. The seed library exists to spread gardening and garden information throughout the city. It allows gardening access to anyone in the Lubbock area, regardless of status.
The Mahon Library was chosen as our initial location as it is the main branch of the Lubbock Public Library. In working with Library Director Stacy McKenzie, we thought that Mahon would allow us to reach a wide diversity of people who frequent this flagship location.
The Sow & Grow Seed Library is open to all members of the public – anyone who walks in to the Mahon Library is welcome to select up to three packets of seeds and take them home to start a garden. You don’t even need a library card to participate. Any extra seeds can be returned to a small box at Mahon so that they can be shared again.
We are asking for seed donations to support this project, which can be deposited in the same small box at Mahon, or can be given to members of LMGA. Seeds can be donated by individuals – either purchased seeds or as they collect seeds from their gardens. There is a list of rules for donating at Mahon, including that they must be legal seeds, and they should contain the common and scientific names if possible.
We also ask that seeds be open-pollinated or heirloom, however if they are hybrids, they should be marked as such. Because this is a volunteer project, we are accepting donations on the honor system. An LMGA volunteer sorts and organizes the seeds once weekly to ensure that the seeds are as advertised. Categories of donations include herbs, vegetables, trees/shrubs, annuals, perennials, wildflowers, and experimental crops.
There is an assortment of educational flyers at the seed library to help people get started on their garden, as well as contact information for the organization if there are any questions. Anyone interested in making a donation can contact LMGA on our webpage or Texas Agrilife Agent Christina Reid for more information.
Christina Reid CEA- Horticulture, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service
Lubbock County 806.775.1740 Christina.Reid@ag.tamu.edu