Squamish Seed Library and Seedy Sunday
About the Squamish Seed Library
The Seed Library launched March 12, 2017. We have a collection of donated vegetable, flower, and herb seeds for community members to take. Users will be asked to pay a nominal membership fee ($5) to use the library. You don’t need to return seeds in order to take seeds, but we hope that you grow the seeds you take from the library, let those plants go to seed, and return some seeds to the library for others to plant next year.
Thank you to our initial seed donors:
Salt Spring Seeds
West Coast Seeds
Victoria Seed Library
Why have a Seed Library?
It enables us to collectively adapt seeds to our Squamish climate, so we will have homegrown varieties that grow well where we live. In the event that our global climate changes substantially, we hope that different communities can swap seeds that are adapted to growing well in different climates. Diversity means resilience!
Currently, large seeds producers often only sell seeds from one grower that are adapted to one area. Read more here. Seed saving is economical, fun, and empowering!
At the same time, we hope to foster a community of seed savers and growers, share knowledge, and have fun doing it!
Bringing a Seed Library to Squamish: Linda, Michi and Daniel.
Seed Library Manager
How does the Seed Library work?
Where is the Seed Library located?
The Seed Library is hosted at the Squamish Public Library, just to the right of the entrance.
How do I use the Seed Library?
For an annual fee of $5, anyone can become a member. A membership to the Seed Library grants you unlimited access to any of the seeds we have available. We ask that you only take 2-3 seeds for every plant you intend to grow this season. Example: if you would like to grow 3 tomato plants this year, take 6 to 9 seeds. For super small seeds, take a pinch. Some seeds have been repackaged for you already into smaller baggies or envelopes. Have a look inside the envelope.
We provide envelopes for you to take your seeds home. Label your envelope with as much info as you can about the seed: the seed company or who grew them, year, variety, Latin name, days to maturity, any growing notes, etc., so that if you bring seeds back, you can pass on that info to the next grower.
How is the library organized?
The library is organized by plant family. For example, if you are looking for scarlet runner beans, you would look in the Leguminosae/Fabaceae Family (Bean) box.
The “Super Easy”, “Easy”, and “Difficult” labels on each family indicate how easy it is to get true seed from the plants, not how easy the plant is to grow. Getting true seed means that the parent plant has not crossed with another variety, and the offspring plants will grow into the same plant as the parent. More info on that below.
How do I return seeds I’ve grown?
First, ensure your seeds are “true” and have not crossed with another variety of plant in the same species (e.g. beets and chard are the same species, Beta vulgaris, so will cross if they are flowering at the same time within approx 3 kilometres.)
Start with the Super Easy seeds if you are new to seed saving. These varieties are very unlikely to cross with others. The super-easy seeds include beans, peas, lettuce, and tomatoes. Different varieties of these plants can be grown close together without worrying much about crossing (it’s a good idea to separate different lettuce varieties by 25 ft, and different pea varieties by 50 ft).
Remember to include as much information as possible on your seed return package:
Year, variety, days to maturity, location, grower's name, etc are all important information for future growers of these seeds. Place your returned seed package in the ''Returning Seeds Box'' to help our seed library manager to keep track of the seed stock.
For more info on saving seeds, see the resources below.
How can I learn more?
We are offering orientations in March, April, June, and July each year. Please check out our event calendar for scheduled orientations at the Squamish Public Library. Come learn how the seed library works, become a member, and take out seeds. Also keep an eye out for seed saving workshops, especially in the late summer. Follow us on Facebook or sign up for our newsletter for updates.
UPCOMING SEED LIBRARY ORIENTATION DATES AT THE SQUAMISH PUBLIC LIBRARY:
Dates coming soon.
Additionally, see the educational materials below to learn more about seed saving.
History of the Squamish CAN Seed Library
In the summer of 2016, a group of enthusiastic community members have come together to increase Squamish’s seed sovereignty in two ways: start a Seed Library in Squamish, and host a Seedy Sunday. The first Seedy Sunday was a resounding success, and the Seed Library continues to take new memberships at the Squamish Public Library.
BC's First Collaborative Virtual Seedy Saturday/ Sunday Conference
February 19 - 21, 2021
Save the dates for BC's first-ever virtual Seedy Saturday conference.
This February 19 to 21, 2021 FarmFolk CityFolk and Seedy event organizers from across the province will join us in delivering a pandemic-friendly collaborative opportunity to connect with BC community organizations, seed businesses, non-profit organizations, and learn about seed saving.
There will be opportunities to swap seeds within and between communities and network with seed enthusiasts from all corners of the province. Speakers and sessions will include seed saving and gardening education, movie screening, Master Gardeners Q & A, local community discussions, an exciting keynote speaker, poetry readings, an auction, and more.
Join us in strengthening BC’s Seed Security. Registration and event schedule to be announced at www.bcseeds.org. Some free sessions will be available. Find FarmFolk CityFolk on social media for regular updates.
Seedy Sunday is a fun, inexpensive event where you can swap seeds, get exciting varieties that other seed savers are sharing (as well as the stories that come with them), attend workshops and talks and buy seeds or plants from local and regional vendors.
There are many also amazing seed companies in BC that sell seeds online and ship to you.
For a list of BC seed companies, go to www.bcseeds.org/business-directory/wpbdp_category/bc-seed-companies/
If you have any questions regarding the seed library, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
More resources for Seeds
All of these organizations and speakers would have been present at our cancelled 2020 Seedy Sunday event so we thought we share their information with you this way:
Seeds of Diversity Canada:
Citizen Seed Trial from FarmFolk CityFolk:
(Citizen Seed Trial Public Group) where people are welcome to follow along in.
Seedy Sunday 2020 Vendors & Organizations list
Pacific NorthWest Garden Supplies (Squamish):
Salt Spring Seeds (Salt Spring Island):
Republic Heirlooms (Brackendale):
Dragonfly Seeds (Sunshine Coast):
Stony Mountain Farm (Squamish Valley):
Tender Hearted Holistic Healing (Sunshine Coast):
Elfinshrooms (Sunshine Coast):
Squamish Gardener's Club:
The Sequoia Solutions:
Sea-to-Sky Invasive Species Council (Squamish):
The Blueberry Man (Fraser Valley):
Nick Butler from Good Time Bee Farm (Squamish) and Karin England from Grow Green Design (Vancouver) were going to join us as speakers, you can learn more at:
Squamish Seed Library