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The Pima County Public Library has been praised for its innovative 'seed library' program, which is now expanding to its eighth location.

Seed library emerged in 2012. The program is a partnership between Tucsonans and the library, with help from local nonprofit Native Seeds/SEARCH, the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona, and the UA Cooperative Extension Master Gardener. It focuses coaching people on gardening and food preservation.

The program has made its way to the Oro Valley Branch Library. Oro Valley residents will now be able to check out a variety of seeds with their library card.

"We've had a lot of interest from the (Oro Valley) community," said Christina Buckles, a librarian at the Oro Valley library.

Buckles said the seed library is fully stocked, and the mission is to help nurture a thriving community of gardeners.

"We want people to start growing (their own things)," she said. "...they can come in and check out six packets of seeds a month."

The seeds are free, and people are not required to save and return seeds from the plants they have grown.

"...we have had many people saving seeds...from their gardens, and bringing them back to us," Buckles said. "I think about half of the seeds we had this year...at the main library, were (from) people bringing them back to us. So, that's really exciting, and something we would like to see even more in the future."

The Oro Valley library will have a grand opening for their new seed library on Thursday at 3 p.m.

For more information call the library, 594-5580.