The Downers Grove Legacy Seed Library can be found on the second floor along the green wall by the reference books. Inquire at the Adult & Teen Services Desk for assistance utilizing this special collection.

What is a Seed Library?

Learn how to borrow seeds, grow them, save seeds from those plants, and then return the number of seeds originally borrowed.

seed borrowing PROCEDURES

Our library accepts open-pollinated or heirloom seeds, but no GMO or hybrid seeds. If this is your first time borrowing seeds from the seed library, complete a Membership Record Form and return it to the second floor Adult & Teen Services Desk. If you are a beginner to seed saving, we recommend starting with the following first-tier seed types:


green beans in a pile


leefy greens


cherry tomatoes


closeup of peas
step 1
Choose the seeds. Feel free to take seeds from any category, even if you are a beginner seed-saver, but please only take as many seeds as you have space for in your garden.
step 2
Record the seeds taken on a Member Seed Record sheet. These sheets are in a binder on the seed desk.
step 3
Mentors are available. If you have questions on seed starting, planting, or harvesting seeds, visit Or, send an email to Harvest your seeds. Be sure to dry them thoroughly, and store them in a cool, dry place until you return them to the library.
step 4
Save the seed packets from borrowed seeds so all of the required information is available when you return your seeds. Blank seed packets can be found on the seed library desk, along with a poster showing the number of seeds per packet.
step 5
Record returned seeds on your Member Seed Record sheet to document returned or donated seeds. Once completed, return the Member Seed Record sheet to the binder. We hope you have a bountiful harvest and you return the seeds you borrowed, along with any extras you may have. We acknowledge that not all seeds will germinate, and not all plants will survive. Sometimes it is not possible to return seeds borrowed.
step 6
Place your returned seeds in the bottom-right-hand drawer of the seed library desk. Once they are logged into the inventory, they will be placed into the seed library for more borrowing!