BWG Seed Library

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The BWG Seed Library shares seeds.  Gardeners borrow seeds, grow them and then hopefully return some of the harvested seeds back to the library. Community seed libraries are an effective way to collect and distribute heirloom, unique and culturally important seeds. They help protect genetic diversity, promote food security and aid in the development of locally adapted varieties of plants. Many plants from seed libraries attract beneficial insects and pollinators, while gardeners who use seed libraries can save money and learn new skills. Seed libraries can include vegetables, flowers and native species. They help disseminate seed varieties not typically available from seed companies and promote public access to seeds.

How to use the Seed Library

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The Seed Librayr is now self serve! Visit the BWG Library and browse through the available seeds in the cupboards behind self-checkout. Please fill in your name and the packages that you have borrowed.

 

green@BWGPL newsletter

To receive green@BWGPL, our newsletter about seed-related initiatives, sign up at http://www.libraryaware.com/518/Subscribers/Subscribe

Share your Gardening Experience with us!

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Please share photos of your gardening experience with us!  You can send them to the BWG Library through Facebook at www.facebook.com/bwglibrary or email them to seeds@bradford.library.on.ca.  We are looking forward to sharing this gardening journey with you and will be posting photos and videos of the BWG Library Community Garden, as well as photos and videos submitted by staff and community members, on Facebook and Instagram. 

Saving Seeds

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The BWG Seed Library is already preparing for next year - as our gardens grow, and flowers and vegetables ripen - our volunteers are saving seeds for you for next year. All of our seeds are open pollinated and suitable for saving - we encourage you to save seeds and if you have enough, to donate some back to the BWG Seed Library to share with other gardeners next year.

 

 There are plenty of sources of information on how to save seeds from different types of plants.  We have included a list Library books below. You can also find information on-line, two of our favourite sources are seed saving organizations. Check out Seeds of Diversity and Seed Savers Exchange for great information and tips on gardening and saving seeds.

 

 To donate seeds, bring them to the Library, fill out the information form and place them in the donation box. Please provide as much detail as possible - colour, variety and type is important. No need for packing them in envelopes - we will package and label them for the Seed Library. Open pollinated varieties are preferred.

Contact

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For more information, please contact seeds@bradford.library.on.ca

Planting and Growing Information by Seed Variety

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Basil

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Variety:

Sweet basil: Common large leaf basil with mild flavour used for tomato sauce, pesto, salads.

 

Planting: Can start and grow indoors anytime. Can direct seed after all danger of frost and soil has warmed up. Sow .5 cm deep in warm soil (15 - 20 degrees C) in full sun.  Germinates in 7 – 14 days. Thin to 15-20 cm apart.

 

Harvest: 60 – 90 days.

 

Other: Pinch tops to encourage bushiness. Pinch flowers to prolong harvest.

 

Bachelor Buttons

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Variety:

Blue Boy: Easy to grow blue flowers on long stems. (Out of Stock)

 

Planting: Start outdoors in spring sow into well drained warm soil. 

 

Beans

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Varieties: 

Black turtle: Small black kidney with excellent flavour, extremely prolific half runner with purple stems and flowers.

Cranberry: Old-time favourite for dry beans, excellent in soups and stews, large crops of plump burgundy mottled beans.

Dragon’s Tongue: Dutch butter bean, wax variety, with creamy pods striped with purple; makes a good shell bean when stripes turn red.

Hyacinth: Tropical vine produces blue-green leaves and fragrant purple pea-like flowers followed by lovely purple pods.

Roma: Bush romano bean with good flavour and high yields.

Scarlet Runner: Good as small snap bean, sliced pods or green shell; used in place of limas. Large plants: 12–15' tall, highly ornamental with numerous scarlet flowers and attractive foliage.

Thibodeau: Heirloom bush bean from Beauce County, Quebec. Delicious straight green pods with purple-red stripes.
Record: green bush bean, excellent for freezing or canning


Planting: Plant 2 cm deep, spaced 5-10 cm apart for bush beans or 5-6 beans around each pole for pole beans. Plant in warm soil (18-26C). Germinates in 7-10 days.

 

Other: Pole beans require support.


 

 

Beets

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Variety:
Early Wonder: An heirloom variety with flat, semi-globed blood red beets. The tops are tall and flavourful and can be used as greens. Harvest 55 days.

 

Planting: Plant seeds 1 cm deep, 2cm apart. Thin to 8 cm between plants. Germinates in 7 – 15 days. Full sun.

 

Other: Planting mid-season for late summer  or fall harvest can result in a sweeter more tender beet.

 

Rudbeckia (Black-eyed Susan)

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Variety:
Black-eyed Susan: Familiar flower with medium sized golden blooms. 60 cm tall.


Planting: Start outdoors in mid-spring. Blooms after wintering over the first year. Perennial.


Other: Official Flower of Bradford West Gwillimbury.
 

 

Bok Choy (Pak Choy)

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Variety:
Canton White Stem: Fast growing, non-heading variety. Cool season variety for spring and fall.

 

Planting: 6 mm deep in rows 30 cm apart. Thin to 8 cm. Grow in partial shade.

 

Broccoli

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Variety:
De Cicco: Long stocks and open-head habit.Great for dips and stir fries.


Planting: Start indoors 4-6 weeks before planting outside.

 

Brussels Sprouts

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Variety:
Catskill: Introduced in 1941, Catskill produces large yields of extra-large, deep green flavourful sprouts Still the best garden variety for sustained production, frost improves flavor.

 

Planting: Sow seeds from spring to early summer .5 cm deep, 10 – 15 cm apart. Thin to 45 -60 cm apart. Sunny location. Seeds germinate in 10 – 21 days.

 

Cabbage

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Variety:
Red Cabbage: Old variety of head cabbage with crimson leaves. (Out of Stock)


Planting: Plant seed in the garden between 4-6 weeks before the last expected frost and 2 to 3 weeks after the last frost. Sow seeds 1 cm deep and 2.5 cm apart. Thin seedlings to 45 cm apart.

Calendula

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Old fashioned annual with a delicate scent can be used in herbal creams or as a cutflower.

 

Carrots

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Variety:
Berlicummer II: Late season, 25 cm, with exception with exceptional flavor. (Out of Stock)


Planting: Sow 1cm apart, 1 cm deep. Germinates in 7- 15 days. Thin to 2 cm between plants.

 

Celosia

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Variety:
Cockscomb: Large red cockscombs.


Planting: Can be direct seeded after frost or started indoors 4-8 weeks earlier.

 

Chamomile

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Small white flowers can be steeped to make a soothing tea.

 

Chives

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Variety:
Garlic: Flat leaves with mild garlic taste. Perennial. 


Planting: Direct sow once the soil has warmed up in spring, or start earlier indoors.

 

Columbine

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Variety: 
Coral: Perennial flower with coral flowers.


Planting: Seeds need to be refrigerated for several weeks before sowing or direct sow in autumn.

 

Corn

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Variety:
Glass Gem: The 3- to 8-inch ears are decorative and also edible and delicious.


Planting: Sow seeds 2-5 cm deep 7 cm apart in warm soil. Should germinate in 7-10 days.

 

Cosmos

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Variety:
Bright Lights: Mix of gold and orange shades. Cutflower, attracts pollinators.

 

Planting: Easy to grow. Sow outdoors when the soil is warm, after frost date in full sun. Sow .5 cm deep. Seedlings will emerge in 7- 10 days.

 

Cucumber

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Variety:
National Pickling: Heirloom variety that produces and abundance of 15 cm pickling cucumbers. (Out of Stock)

 

Planting: Direct seed in warm soil (22-27 degrees C). Plant 4 seeds 1 cm deep in hills 60 cm apart.

 

Dill

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Planting: Dill seeds need some light to germinate. Sow seeds no more than 5mm  deep in rows 45cm apart.


Essential pickling herb.

 

Fennel

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Sweet anise flavour, can be used for cooking or salads

 

Gourd

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Variety:
Bird House: Suitable for painting, carving, bird houses and flower arranging.


Planting: Gourds are best grown from seed planted directly in the garden. You can start seed indoors 4-6 weeks before last frost in areas with shorter seasons.

 

Hibiscus Trionum

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(Out of Stock)
Planting: Start the flower seeds indoors 6 - 8 weeks before the last frost is predicted.


Commonly called flower-of-an-hour because its white flowers will bloom for only a few hours before wilting.

 

Kale

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Variety:
Nero di Toscana: Also known as dinosaur kale, heirloom variety from Italy.
Westlandse: Old Dutch variety, fine curled, medium green leaves.

 

 

Planting: Sow .5 – 1 cm deep, plant 3-4 seeds every 30-45 cm and thin to one plant per bunch. Sow from Early May to end of June, in partial shade. Germinates in 5-14 days, soil temperature 10-21 degrees C.

 

Kiss me over the garden gate

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Planting: Sow them by pressing the seeds lightly into the soil in a place that receives full sun. Once the seedlings have sprouted, thin them to one every 40 cm.


Persicaria orientalis. Old-fashioned cottage garden plant with impressive, abundant clusters of flowers that dangle from the tips of its tall stems. (Out of Stock)

 

Lettuce

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Variety:
Black seeded Simpson: Old favourite variety. Leaf lettuce with large light green crumpled leaves. (Out of Stock)
Bath: Extremely rare variety of heirloom cos lettuce that was grown in England from the 1700's on (Out of Stock)

 

Planting:  Sow .5 cm deep, 2.5 cm apart in rows 30 apart in early spring. Germination 7 – 14 days, soil temperature 5 – 18 degrees C. Likes cool weather and lots of moisture.

 

Marigold

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Variety:Yellow French: Fast growing annual with bright yellow flowers. (Out of Stock)


Planting: Sow indoors 6-8 weeks before last frost. Transplant outdoors after last frost.

 

Morning glory

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Variety:

Purple: Vigorous climbing purple flowers that bloom in the morning. (Out of Stock)
Mixed: Vigorous climbing  flowers that bloom in the morning in a mix of colours. (Out of Stock)


Planting: To aid germination, nick or cut the seed coat with a nail file and soak the seed overnight. Direct sow seeds in average soil in full sun two weeks after danger of frost has passed. Provide support for vines.

 

Nicotiana

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Variety:

Tall white: Nicotiana sylvestris.White long trumpet flowers with pleasant fragrance. (Out of Stock)

Planting: Sow on the surface of the soil, and do not cover. Thin to 45-60cm apart. Sow indoors 6-8 weeks before last frost, or direct sow outdoors after last frost.

 

Onion

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Variety:

Early Yellow Globe: Early variety that can be direct seeded.

Planting: direct to sow your onion seeds directly into the garden soil. 5 mm deep and sow the onion seeds with about 7 cm spacing.

Parsley

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Varieties:
Darki: Dark green moss curled variety.
Plain dark green: Smooth leaf variety with good flavour.

Planting: Can be started indoors or sow parsley seeds directly in garden 4-6 weeks before  frost date.

 

Peas

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Variety:
Sugar Ann: Early dwarf variety of sugar snaps with good taste.

 

Planting: Plant 2.5 cm deep, 3 to 5 cm apart in full sun.  Sow from early spring to last frost date, optimal soil temperatures 8 to 15 degrees C. Germinates in 5 to 7 days.

 

 

Pepper

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Varieties:

Early Chocolate: Early chocolate brown colour pepper. (Out of Stock)

Sweet Banana: Firm sweet peppers that turn from waxy yellow to red. (Out of Stock)

Tequila Sunrise: Similar to the size and shape of a baby carrot. They are approximately 15 centimeters in length and somewhat fleshy with a crunchy texture and minimal seeds. (Out of Stock)

Planting: Start indoors 8 weeks before frost date.

 

Poppy

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Variety:

Breadseed: Enchanting purple-blue flowers are followed by attractive seed pods. (Out of Stock)


Planting: Start poppies outdoors in early spring. They germinate best in cold soil.

Pumpkin

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Variety:
Small Sugar: Heirloom variety of cooking pumpkin. Average size 18 to 24 cm. Rich orange flesh.

 

Planting: Direct seeds in hills of 3-4 seeds in warm soil 90 cm apart.

 

 

Radish

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Variety:
Cherry Belle: Round, smooth, scarlet radish, 2 cm diameter with white flesh. Fast maturing early season radish.

 

Planting: 1 cm deep, 2 to 4 cm apart in rows 15 cm apart. Germinates in 5 to 7 days at soil temperatures 10 to 18 degrees C. Prefers cool soil.

 

 

Rose Campion

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(Out of Stock)
Planting: Seeds germinate easily and can be direct sown in fall or spring, or started in flats in the spring and then transplanted.

 

An old-fashioned favorite that adds brilliant color to the flower garden in shades of magenta, bright pink and white.

 

Rutabaga

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Variety

Nadmorska: Large, green-topped rutabaga with golden flesh. Uniform, large, round, vigorous and early maturing with very little neck.


Planting: Sow seeds 5mm-1cm deep in rows 60-75cm apart. Thin seedlings to 15-20cm apart in each row.

 

Spinach

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Variety:
Bloomsdale Dark Green: Great tasting heirloom variety with heavy yields of dark savoyed or crumpled leaves. Easy to grow. Can overwinter if planted in the fall.

 

Planting: Spinach does best in cool weather. Sow seeds 1 cm deep, 2.5 cm apart. Thin to 8 to 15 cm apart. Germinates in 5 to 7 days at soil temperature of 15 degrees C.

 

 

Squash (Winter)

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Varieties:

Acorn: Dark green fruits with bright orange flesh.

Butternut: Dark orange flesh in tan cylindrical fruit.

Galeux D'eysines: A lovely French heirloom pumpkin with salmon pink coloured skin covered in peanut-like warts caused by sugar swelling in the skins.

Spaghetti: Heirloom squash produces plenty of medium-sized, 3–4 lb. oblong fruits.

Planting: Sow in hills of 3-4 seeds, 90 cm apart in warm soil.

 

Sunflower

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Varieties:

Russian: Tall annual boasting huge flowers, up to 8-14 in. Borne atop sturdy stalks, the impressive flower heads are attractive to bees, butterflies and birds
 

Planting: Direct seed in warm soil after danger of frost.

 

Swiss Chard

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Varieties:
Lucullus: Prolific variety which produces wonderful, heavily crumpled light green leaves. Old variety noted as best tasting.
Red Ruby: Sweet and tender. Attractive, bright red stalks with red-veined dark green, crinkly leaves. Cook the stalks like asparagus and the leaves like spinach.

 

Planting: Swiss chard plants are somewhat frost hardy, so the seeds can be sown outside directly in the soil about two weeks before the average last frost date of spring.

 

Tithonia

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Variety:
Orange: Mexican sunflower. Easy to grow flower that loves heat and butterflies. 

 

Planting: Direct seed after last frost.

 

Tomato

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Varieties:

Bared boar: Flattened beefsteak fruit is pink-brown with metallic green stripes and weighs 8-12 ounces. Very meaty pink flesh is very flavorful.

Bonny Best: Mid-season. An old-timer with wonderful old-fashioned flavour.

Emerald Evergreen: Mid-season. One of the best-tasting green tomato in the beefsteak size (8–10 oz.). Rich olive-green fruits ripen to a brighter shade of green with a golden yellow tint.

Mortgage Lifter: Early. Large (many over 1 lb.), meaty and vigorous red beefsteak (Out of Stock).

Red Cherry: Tasty red cherry tomatoes.

Roma: Mid-season. A quality paste variety with very thick flesh and few seeds in a 2–3" plum-shape. Prolific and durable.

Sweet 100: Extremely high yields of red sweet mid sized cherry tomatoes.

White wonder beefsteak: Creamy-white beefsteak tomatoes. (Out of Stock)

Yellow Pear:  Very sweet, 1½-inch yellow, pear-shaped fruit has a mild flavor.

Planting: Start indoors 6-8 weeks before last frost date.

 

Zinnias

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Variety:

Mixed: Drought & heat resistant easy to grow flower in a mix of colours. (Out of Stock)

Planting: Sow indoors 4-6 weeks before last frost ou outdoors when soil is warm.

 

Zucchini

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Variety:
Black Beauty: Open pollinated variety (from 1920s) producing dark green fruits with white flesh on large bush plants.

 

Planting: Sow outdoors after frost date, four seeds per hill spaced 60 cm apart.