Seed Library



Welcome to the Grimsby Grows Seed Library 



Our Mission

The Grimsby Grows Seed Library is a free community seed project that is committed to increasing the people’s ability to grow their own fresh food. This educational project is designed to foster community resilience and healthy eating. Grimsby Grows promotes a culture of sharing as well as Grimsby’s rich agricultural heritage.


To follow along with our vegetable adventures, take a look at our Facebook page.

Find us on Twitter here:


Our Goals

1. To encourage members of our community to grow their own fresh and delicious food while sharing knowledge
    and resources with each other.

2. To create a self-sustaining resource for good quality, heirloom vegetable seeds that is always free and
    accessible to use for everyone in our community.


 Thank you to the Niagara Community Foundation for their generous support of this project.  

 NiagaraCommunityF Logo


Why Save Seeds?

Humans have been saving seeds for over 12,000 years. However, in our culture much of that knowledge has been lost over the last hundred years, along with significant biodiversity. When you grow and save your own seeds, you:

• develop seed stock that is well suited to our climate

• save money

• mitigate our dependence on agro-business

When you participate in the Grimsby Grows Seed Library, you help create a culture of sharing and abundance within the community.Please take some extra steps to save seeds for others. We ask that a portion of the seeds you save be returned to the seed lending library to keep the library self-sustaining. The more seeds in the library, the more members of our community can experience the pleasures of growing their own food.







Seed Library 101:


Where is the Grimsby Grows Seed Library located?

The Grimsby Grows Seed Library is located at the Grimsby Public Library in the fireplace lounge area at the end of the magazine shelving. We have devised a seed check-out station there for your convenience.


When is the Grimsby Grows Seed Library open?

The Grimsby Grows Seed Library is open during the year from the beginning of spring to the end of fall. You can access our collection any time the Grimsby Public Library is open. 


What kind of seeds does the Grimsby Grows Seed Library have?

Our collection is mainly made up of vegetable seeds. Everything from root grown vegetables, to plant grown vegetables, to vine grown vegetables - Our only rule is that they MUST be heirloom varieties. We also carry some varieties of fruit and sunflower seeds, but DO NOT carry any other flower seeds. 

Types of seeds we usually always have (With many different varieties of each):
    • Tomatoes     • Herbs
    • Peppers        • Squash
    • Beans           • Peas

to Borrow Seeds:

It's as easy as 1, 2, 3...

1. Find the Grimsby Grows Seed Library station in the Fireplace Lounge area of the library.

2. We store our collection of seeds in small, pre-filled envelopes which are clearly labelled and then organized alphabetically in boxes. Once you choose the varieties you would like to check out, locate the appropriate envelopes and remove them from their box.

3. Using the provided checkout form fill out your name, library card number, and the varieties of seeds you have selected. Bring the checkout form to the library service counter on your way out. This helps us keep track of what varieties we need to replenish. 

Enjoy! It's that easy. Now you just take them home to plant in your yard or container garden.


How to Return or Donate Seeds:

First, read the How to Save Seeds brochures in the section below, then follow these steps:

1. Harvest seeds from your crops, setting some aside for both yourself and the library.

2. Place seeds you are going to return to the library into an envelope or container, and clearly label with the seed variety and year of harvest. (*You can pick up pre-labelled envelopes at the Grimsby Grows Seed Library station)

3. Bring your labelled seeds to the Library and drop them off at the service counter. They will be added to the collection so that other people will be able to borrow them.






New to Seed Saving?

We are here to help! One of the main goals of the Grimsby Grows Seed Library is for it to one day become a self-replenishing service. This means that, if possible, we would like to see seeds returning to the library in the fall after borrowers have harvested their vegetables. Getting nice, healthy, growable seeds from your vegetables isn't always easy, but there are definitely some that are easier then others!



Easy Seeds:

If you are new to seed saving we suggest you select seeds that have labels we have marked with "easy." These are seeds that are easy to grow, and easy to collect seeds from. This 'pdf How to Save Seeds: EASY' printable hand-out provides some great tips on how to get seeds from these varieties.

Here are some of the seeds that are great for beginners:

lettuce -  beans

beets -  peas

spinach - sunflowers

amaranth -  arugula


Difficult Seeds:

The seeds that are labelled "difficult" may require special planning or handling to preserve varietal purity and/or growable seeds. If certain precautions are not taken with them, then the next grower may not get the same plant through cross-pollination. We want to ensure that the seeds that you return to the library are indeed what they claim to be. So please borrow "difficult" seeds only after you have learned about isolating plants to prevent cross-pollination. Here's a pdf 'How to Save Seeds: DIFFICULT' printable handout on how to save "difficult" seeds. 

Here are some seeds that require a little more effort in the growing and/or seed saving periods:

tomatoes* - carrots

cucumbers - squash

melons - zucchini




soy 1004851 640
  Learn more about seed saving

  • Borrow some of our great books

  • take seed saving classes

  • join the forum

  • talk to experienced seed-saving gardeners

  • keep good garden records

  If you think in terms of a year, plant a seed; if in terms of ten years, plant trees; if in terms of 100 years, teach the people. -Confucius












    Visit us on:

facebook f logo 1024x1024   Twitter logo  Pinterest Logo Round

gpl newsletterbutton1
                                    or download pdf here.  

Library Hours

Monday to Thursday
9:00 a.m - 9:00 p.m.
Friday & Saturday
9:00 a.m - 5:00 p.m.
Monday, May 23
CLOSED -Victoria Day


Grimsby Public Library
18 Carnegie Ln  Grimsby, ON, L3M 1Y1
Ph: 905.945.5142 

facebook logosmall  Twitter logosmall pinterest badge redsmall