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The Mesa County Libraries Discovery Garden project is a series of interactive and demonstrative gardens that provides education, food, respite, and community engagement. Our goal is to promote nutrition literacy, keep up with the needs of the community, and uphold pesticide-free, permaculture-focused methods that help conserve water and build healthy soil. A variety of gardening techniques are modeled, including xeric, raised bed, in-ground farming, pollinator, seed-saving, and permaculture design. The Discovery Garden is by the community and for the community!
About the Discovery Garden
The Discovery Garden, occupying library-owned ground at 5th Street and Chipeta Avenue in Grand Junction, is a place where volunteers and partnering organizations have created and maintained a beautiful space for learning and growing. The space can be used for people to gather for educational programs, events, and workshops. Features include a children’s garden, pollinator beds, compost demonstration, food plots, hoop house, xeric landscaping, native plant area, shade structures, a shed that uses solar panels to power irrigation, and artists’ benches. The Discovery Garden does not offer gardening plots to individuals. Instead, the garden is a designated space for quiet relaxation and general enjoyment where people of the community can pick their own food and experience educational programs.
Once a CSU community garden, then a vacant lot, now a quality outdoor resource. Since 2018, this plot of land has seen some fantastic progress. Listed below are just a few of the many developments the Discovery Garden has undergone in past years with the help of amazing volunteers and community partners.
- Built micro basins along 5th and Chipeta
- Planted permanent trees and shrubs
- Rebuilt and reinforced hoop house cover
- Expanded pathways through Wilderness Area and along perimeter
- Installed a little free library and musical instruments
- Added a wheelchair accessible picnic table
- Installed several interpretive signs highlighting demonstration beds
- Installed shade structures in Wilderness Area for programs
The Discovery Garden is honored to have received grants and donations from organizations and individuals since its inception. The following community partners graciously helped us achieve our goals in 2021:
- Friends of the Library – Grant used to purchase permanent trees and shrubs, tools, and irrigation supplies. The 2023 grant was used to partially fund the first Gardener in Residence and launch the Seed Library.
- Walmart Community Grant: Rimrock Location – Grant used to purchase trees and irrigation supplies
- Kiwanis Club of Grand Junction – Grant used for programming supplies and child-sized gloves and tools
- City of Grand Junction – Grant used for shade structure
- Lowe’s 100 Hometowns Grant – Grant used for microbasins on 5th Street, two shade structures, wheelchair accessible picnic tables, expanded pathwork, tools, and irrigation supplies
- Green Junction Farmstead – Donated labor and supplies to renovate the hoop house and build in-ground worm bins
- AARP – Grant used to install crushed granite pathways
- Colorado Garden Foundation – Grant used to improve compost demonstration functionality and add permanent signage
We need your help to maintain the Discovery Garden! Please visit our volunteer page to learn how you can join us at the next Discovery Garden workday! Tools and equipment donations welcome and appreciated – call to inquire what’s needed.
- What is Permaculture?
Recommended Reading Lists for Adults:
|84 Lumber Company
|Hilltop Resource Center
|Kiwanis Club of Grand Junction
|Many devoted individual community volunteers!
|Boy Scouts of America – Eagle Scout Noah TerLouw
|Mesa Conservation District
|Nyssa Capps – local artist
|City of Grand Junction
|Nvision Design Studio
|Colorado Garden Foundation
|CSU Western Colorado Research Center
|Pavia Justinian Fine Art
|Dark Matter Organics
|Rocky Mountain Seed Alliance
|Desert Vista Garden Club
|Rotary Club of Grand Junction
|East Middle School
|Walmart – Rimrock Location
|Friends of Mesa County Libraries
|WCCC Agricultural Department
|Girl Scout Daisy Troop #16208
|Western Colorado Community Foundation
|Grand Junction Parks and Rec Forestry Department
|Western Colorado Conservation Corps (Partners)
|Green Junction Farmstead
Mesa County Libraries Seed Library
The Mesa County Libraries Seed Library aims to promote food security, encourage gardening knowledge, and create awareness around seed saving for our community to successfully support a diverse landscape.
What is a Seed Library?
A seed library is a seed-sharing project that houses seeds for the public to enjoy and provides educational resources. Seed libraries allow gardeners of all skill levels to take seeds from the library at planting time. At the end of the growing season, gardeners are encouraged to save seeds from the plants and return a portion of the seeds to the library.
When is the Seed Library open?
The Seed Library reopened on Monday, February 26th, 2024.
The Seed Library is open during the Central Library’s business hours. As many of the seeds have been donated, we cannot guarantee specific varieties or stock levels. When we run out of something it will be gone. If we run low on seeds due to high interest, we will suspend the Seed Library service and announce future availability when it occurs.
How it Works
- Choose your seeds. Please take no more than 5 seed packets per person, per month to guarantee others will have an opportunity to enjoy the seed library.
- Sign out your seeds on the form attached to the clipboard on the side of the Seed Library shelf.
- Take home, plant, and enjoy!*
- Collect, clean dry and label seeds, then bring them to the library. (This is optional; Your donations are what keep this seed library flourishing with local varieties. Please do not save and return seeds produced from hybrid seed packets).
- Take a seed donation slip to fill out and return it with your saved seeds.
- Drop off seed donations at the Information Desk at the Central Library.
*Mesa County Libraries cannot guarantee viability or high germination rates from the Seed Library supply.
The seed library will be kept alive by the kindness of our community’s donations. Please consider educating yourself on seed saving, and giving seed saving a try this season! View the Seed Saving Instructional brochure for more information on how to save seeds, or visit any of the educational resources listed below. Also, stay tuned to the Mesa County Libraries event calendar for upcoming Seed Saving and gardening programs.
To donate seeds, please visit the Information Desk at the Central Library location. Heirloom or open-pollinated seeds are preferred, but we will accept all donations.
- Seed Savers Exchange
- Native Seeds
- Seeds Trust
- Community Seed Network
- CSU Tri-River Area Extension: 970-244-2834
- Visit the online catalog for seed saving and gardening books.
- Mesa County Libraries Seed Saving Instructional Brochure (printable PDF).
The Seed Library wouldn’t be possible without the kindness and generosity of the following individuals and organizations:
If you want to donate your time to the Seed Library, please sign up to volunteer for more opportunities.