WHAT’S GOING ON HERE?: Greater than books in Guelph little library

Meghan Lewis’ take on the popular “little free library” concept is a “Little Garden Library,” located on Cardiff Way in Guelph’s west end, where she shares seeds saved from her own gardens and gardening resources to help and inspire other gardeners.

  • This past spring, Meghan Lewis began the work of transforming a grassy section of boulevard in front of her Cardiff Way home into a pollinator-friendly garden. The seeds from these flowers as well as from her vegetable gardens will be shared through her Little Garden Library.

It’s a slight twist on the little free libraries that can be found in front yards in neighbourhoods all over the city. Meghan Lewis has called hers a “Little Garden Library,” and in it, passersby can find some of the makings of a garden of their own.

“It has seeds in it in the spring and in the fall,” said Lewis, explaining that she removes them in the summer when the little cabinet heats up to temperatures the seeds can’t tolerate. But the seeds are still available to people who knock on her front door.

“It’s not just seeds. I’ve also got some information,” Lewis said.

JUST THE FACTS:

The Little Garden Library is located on her front lawn on Cardiff Way in the city’s west end.

Lewis lets people know when it’s stocked up with seeds by posting the news on the Guelph Gardeners Facebook group.

Inside the cabinet, there are also books not all related to gardening — like any other little library — and there are gardening resources, such as pamphlets on how to create a bird garden or butterfly garden.

There is also information posted to the outside of the cabinet.

“I kind of change up what I post on it,” said Lewis, noting that currently she has featured infographics from Pollination Guelph describing how to create pollinator habitat.

“I’m really into planting native plants to help with our native pollinators,” she said.

Lewis recently removed the grass from the boulevard at the corner of her property to turn it into a haven for pollinators. The area, now filled with beebalm, asters, blanket flowers, cone flowers and many more, buzzes with insect life.

It is from these and the many other flowers all around her home that Lewis gathers the seeds that she shares in her library. She also collects seeds from her vegetable gardens, and plans to stock the library with these in the spring.

The library, Lewis says, was a gift from her carpenter husband, and she hopes its contents will inspire others to start gardening.

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