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Seed Lending Libraries

Creating food security and providing alternatives to genetically modified crops.

Sowing seeds is an act of hope and a test of patience. You sow a seed in the hopes it will grow a plant and provide food. Generations of people have been selecting seeds, sowing seeds, and trading seeds, and in return empowering these seeds with cultural significance and most importantly a story. 


In 2016, the Orange Home Grown Foundation formed a partnership with the Orange Public Library Foundation to help nurture a community of backyard farmers and seed savers in and around the City of Orange, creating The Orange Seed Lending Library; the first of its kind in the community.


The seed library is available as a self-serve system located at all public libraries in the City of Orange and every third Saturday at the Orange Home Grown Farmers and Artisans Market.

How does the Seed Lending Library work?

The Seed Lending Library is a depository of seeds held in trust for the community at large. Community members come to the library and “borrow seeds” for their gardens. They grow the plants in their gardens and at the end of the season, they let a few plants “go to seed.” From those plants, they collect the remaining seeds and return the same number of seeds, or more, as they borrowed, if they so choose. Seeds are free to the community.


Since seeds are a living thing, they must be renewed each year by someone, or unique varietals can become extinct. Growing just one seed and returning it to the library is a valuable contribution to the future.

Where are the Seed Libraries located?

Orange Public Library

Orange Public Library & History Center 2nd Floor

407 East Chapman Ave. Orange, CA 92866

*Available during regular library business hours.

El Modena Branch Library

380 S Hewes St, Orange, CA 92869

*Available during regular library business hours.

Taft Branch Library

740 E Taft Ave, Orange, CA 92865

*Available during regular library business hours.

Orange Home Grown Farmers & Artisans Market

303 West Palm Avenue Orange CA 92866

*The portable seed lending library can be found every third Saturday of the month at the farmers market.


Donate Seeds

Help keep the seed lending libraries alive by dropping off seeds to donate back to the seed libraries. Donations are taken every Saturday at the Orange Home Grown Farmers and Artisans Market information booth, or they can be dropped off at one of the library locations.

Resource Guide for Planting & Saving Seeds


Thank You

Thank you to our friends at the National Charity League Orange/Villa Park Chapter for supporting the monthly efforts of the portable Orange Seed Lending Library that visits the farmers market on the 3rd Saturday of every month. 


Help enrich your community

Every donation is used to support the branches of the Orange Home Grown Foundation directly benefiting the Orange community and its surrounding cities.

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