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East Brunswick Library offers free seeds, encouraging more plants

The EB Grow seed library provides free seeds that residents can use to plant.

EAST BRUNSWICK – In an effort to motivate residents to develop their “green thumbs,” the East Brunswick Public Library has launched EB Grow.

“EB Grow is a seed library [where] members of the community, not just East Brunswick [Library] cardholders, can peruse our catalog of seeds, and ‘check out’ the ones they would like to grow this season,” said Melissa Hozik, the adult programming librarian.

Hozik said access to the seed library is open when the library is open. People can ask to access the library at any service desk.

EB Grow has seeds for herbs, flowers, fruits and vegetables that will grow in New Jersey’s climate. The seed library also provides local and online resources to receive gardening assistance, including contact information for the Master Gardeners of Middlesex County and the East Brunswick Community Garden, according to Hozik.

Hozik is a member of the Adult Services Department who curated the collection. She is also the liaison for the Option Green Lecture series with the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission.

“Many libraries across the country hope to encourage their communities to learn about gardening and to encourage sustainability by growing their own produces, flowers, etc.,” Hozik said. “With the East Brunswick Community Garden just across the pond, and the interest in our gardening programs, this collection seemed like the perfect fit for [the library] and the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission.”

Hozik said library administrators had been considering the idea of creating a seed library for several years. It finally launched last month.

“David Moskowitz, the chair of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission and president of the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission, approached us and offered a partnership to help create the collection,” Hozik said.

The Friends “applied for and received seed grants from Herman’s Garden Seed Donation Program and the Seed Savers Exchange.” The Friends “also purchases seeds to strengthen the collection,” she said.

Hozik said the program has been well received by residents who are excited to grow plants on their own, even if they have never done so before.

“We currently have over 20 members and have received over 50 inquiries since our media push in the past week,” Hozik said.

For more information about EB Grow seed library visit www.ebpl.org/main/ebgrow.cfm.

Contact Vashti Harris at vharris@newspapermediagroup.com.

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