Free plants on offer at seed swap

Buzzing ... Oamaru Public Library librarian Eileen Armstrong is "super excited" for the Spring Seed Swap to return to the library.

Gardeners throughout Oamaru will have the opportunity to score some free new plants this weekend.

The Spring Seed Swap at Oamaru Public Library got under way yesterday afternoon.

This is the third time the annual event has been held, but the first time it will be held across multiple days.

People are invited to bring in their unwanted seeds or seedlings and swap them for something new.

Oamaru Public Library librarian Eileen Armstrong said this year’s event was especially important given the current cost of living.

‘‘It’s a great way that we can bring the community together in these hard times and get people, hopefully, growing some food to help with their daily budget.’’

Last year’s Covid-affected event was ‘‘really tough’’, Ms Armstrong said.

 ‘‘People were still very cautious about being out and about. It went ahead and it was OK, but nothing like we had seen before.’’

The event was a collaborative effort. The Waitaki Men’s Shed made a bird feeder to give away to someone who correctly guessed the use of an old piece of gardening equipment, which is on display at the library, loaned from the Waitaki Museum and Archive. The Waitaki branch of Forest and Bird was also involved.

Building off the success of the last two events, Palmerston Public Library was holding a similar event in a few weeks’ time.

Ms Armstrong said it was hoping to expand and hold a produce event in autumn, once all the seeds had been harvested.

‘‘We’re hoping that once we get this rolling really well and people growing things that in the autumn time, when they come to harvest all their goodies, you know pumpkins and carrots and potatoes, we can have a little table and people can bring in their excess and take away something that they haven’t perhaps tried before.’’

The seed swap runs from 3pm to 5pm today and from 10am to noon tomorrow.