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Seed Library: Home

Seed Library locations, purpose, history, and supplementary information.
Slightly top-down view of the seed library in Irwin Library, with a few of the drawers pulled open to show the seed packets inside.
Front view of the seed library in Irwin Library. It is a card catalog that has been painted blue and yellow, and has small drawers labeled with seed types.
View of the top surface of the seed library in Irwin Library. It is a card catalogue whose top has been painted to show a flower spray-painting
Photo of the seed library in the Science Library in Holcomb. On a small table there is a wooden bin with seed packets and labels in it, and behind it stands a booklet with information on the seeds.
Close up of the seed library located in the Science Library in Holcomb. The tray of seeds and the information booklet are both visible.

Lose the Lawn Project

Irwin Seed Library infographic describing its purpose and how to use

Irwin Seed Library

Time and Place - When: Anytime; Where: First floor of Irwin Library by the back window

Why seeds? Planting native plants, growing a garden, and starting a flower bed are all great way stop help the environment. Doing these things help eliminate inefficient grassy areas that can be harmful to the climate.

How to help. Grab some seeds and a pot and get growin'! Scan the QR code located by the seed library for detailed instructions for each plant type. Once your seedling has grown take it home for the summer and start a garden or flower bed in your yard.

Follow us. [Instagram QR code]

Lose the Lawn infographic

Lose the lawn - is grass really that green?

The problem... climate change. Annual lawns consume: about 3 trillion gallons of water, 70 million pounds of pesticides, 200 million gallons of gas (for upkeep), less than 1,800 lbs of CO2 per acre.

Our solution: repurpose grassy areas around campus by introducing native plants and trees. Reduces the amount of water usage, fertilizer contamination and maintenance. Trees have a higher CO2 capture capability of about 5,000 lbs per acre.

Want to help? Scan the QR code on the right and fill out the petition. Together we can make a difference.

Seed Library Info

There are two seed library locations: Irwin Library and Science Library.

Map of the first floor of Irwin Library, with a sprout icon indicating the location of the seed library near the Information Commons desk.

Section of a map of the Science Library in Holcomb, with a sprout icon indicating the location of the seed library, next to the information Commons desk in the main lobby.


Both seed libraries are located next to the Information Commons desks.

Using the seed library is simple! Just walk up and take a seed packet. There's no need to return or replace the seeds. And if you notice we're out of stock, email the seed library manager listed on the right, or simply alert someone at the Information Commons desk.

For most plants, all you'll need is:

  • a seed packet, which contains multiple seeds to help ensure chances of germination
  • a pot, preferably with drainage holes at the bottom
  • some soil, which you can purchase from local stores in Indianapolis or get for free at seed library promotional events
  • water
  • sunlight

You can find out more about each plant and how to take care of it in our "About the Seeds" tab at the top of this page!

The seed library was made possible through collective efforts and funds from:

  • Center for Urban Ecology and Sustainability (CUES) at Butler University
  • Butler University Libraries
  • American Library Association (ALA)
  • Resilient Communities: Libraries Respond to Climate Change (check out the Resilient Communities LibGuide!)

Established in 2021, the Seed Libraries at Butler University hold various seeds for community members to take and plant. In 2023, as part of a First Year Seminar class project, students selected new native plants to be added to the seed bank and updated the growing information (see the "About the Seeds" tab in this LibGuide) to promote conscious use of green spaces.

Seed Library Manager

Profile Photo
Julian Cabiya
Irwin Library 119A


Email Butler University Libraries
Irwin Library: 317-940-9227
Science Library: 317-940-9937

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