HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — Typically, you go to your local library to pick up a good book, but several Horry County libraries are offering something different to help community members with a green thumb.

A seed library program, which stems from the Socastee Library, is in bloom across the Horry County Memorial Library system.

“Come to the library and get your seeds,” Surfside Beach library assistant Andrea Bliss said.

The program was started three years ago by Socastee branch librarian Lee Brown. Now, it’s striking interest within the community.

“They will stop and say, ‘what is this? How does it work?” Brown said.

Brown and her staff explain how it works to their patrons and also other librarians who are picking up the concept.

“Basically, we just have little cases and little backs of seeds, and you go through the seed book,” Brown said.

The book contains nearly 60 variations of vegetables, fruits and herb options. Similar to checking out a book, Brown has people log what they take to keep an inventory.  

Bliss said Surfside Beach recently added the program there. 

“We’ve just started letting our patrons know about the seed library,” Bliss said. “So far, we have given out 140 packets of seeds.” 

Bliss, who credits Brown for being an outstanding mentor, said the program is a community-building strategy and a learning experience for herself as well.

“I’ve learned quite a bit,” she said. “I’ve done tomatoes. I’ve done dill. I’ve done lavender, Italian parsley.”

According to Brown, the North Myrtle Beach and Conway libraries are in the process of seed programs. Several libraries in rural areas of the county like Aynor, Bucksport, Green Sea and Loris have also expressed an interest in the program by asking for seed lists.

Brown said she put out 4,000 packs of seeds just before the summer and that half of them are already gone. She is in the process of restocking her supply with the hope of helping the community learn more about growing fall and winter vegetables.

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Adriana Cotero is News13’s weekend evening anchor and a morning reporter. She joined the team in July 2023 after working in the island of Guam. Adriana is from Saline, Michigan, and graduated from Central Michigan University. Follow Adriana on Facebook, X, formerly Twitter, and Instagram and read more of her work here