Beyond Books: Libraries Support DIY Home Improvement


New York: Reverse the global trend toward the corporatization and consolidation of seed resources!

The Hudson Valley Seed Library exists to create an accessible and affordable source of locally-adapted seeds featuring over 50 varieties of vegetables, herbs, and flowers; a viable small-scale and regionally-based seed production network. Growing seeds in your home garden and learning how to save seeds from the plants you grow is a way to practice frugality, develop regional food security, and enjoy being active and outside more often!



California: More seeds, do-it-yourself crafts, woodworking, and more!

The Tool Lending Library, of Oakland Public Library, currently offers over 2700 tools available for loan, as well as books and how-to videos. The tools can be used for a variety of purposes, including carpentry, gardening, plumbing, and electrical work. The Tool Lending Library also offers workshops based on the interests and needs of patrons. Past classes have included plumbing repairs, power tool safety, working with the router and basic electrical repairs.

A project of the Richmond Rivets in collaboration with the Richmond Public Library, the ‘Richmond Grows Seed-Lending Library’ opens in May 2010 and allows the public to borrow seeds for free, hoping that borrowers will donate seeds back to the library following harvest. It is believed to be the only seed-lending library currently operating in a public library in the U.S. The Seed-Lending Library is also a fiscally sponsored project of Urban Tith and can accept tax-deductible donations through them.

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