Farmers’ markets are now open in several parts of Wichita, including one in the Delano neighborhood that has a library that isn’t meant for books.
For the second year in a row, a seed library will be available at the Delano Farmers’ Market on Wednesday evenings.
The library was established to let gardeners share and try out new seeds.
Many of them were donated from El Dorado Heirloom Seeds and include a large variety of non-genetically modified seeds including beans like the Eye of the Goat and tomato varieties such as Rutgers and Arkansas Travelers.
Delano Neighborhood Association President Karen Cravens said novice gardeners shouldn’t be intimidated.
“We have been very big on encouraging people to plant things,” said Craven. “Almost everybody, even if they have a sunny windowsill, can plant something that they can eat.”
The library contains mostly heirloom seeds, but Cravens said that while hybrids are not always of the best quality, they are better suited to local conditions.
“There are some things that we really could not preserve within Delano because in order to breed true you want to have the only one of whatever in a one-mile radius,” said Craven. “That’s all of Delano, so we’d all have to plant the same variety to really guarantee that they breed true.”
While the idea of the library is for gardeners to bring back seeds from their successful harvest, the program is ultimately more about getting the seeds out into the community than getting them back.
The Delano Farmers’ Market runs every Wednesday evening, 5 to 7, through the end of October.