In 2020, Melanie Ouelette began the Ottawa Wildflower Seed Library (OWSL) to encourage others to grow native plants. Since then, the OWSL has distributed thousands of seed envelopes of 150 different native plant species to local gardeners.

In a CBC radio interview, “Seed swap group urges Ottawans to plant those local wildflowers now,” Ouellette explains why she created the OWSL, and why native plants are so important and enjoyable to include in your garden. Now is the perfect time to plant native seeds, because many need the freezing and thawing of winter weather to break down their seed coating, allowing them to sprout in the spring.

Packets of native plant seeds. Photo from the OWSL website.

Now is the perfect time to sow native seeds. Join us to learn about native plant gardening and receive free native seeds for winter sowing. No gardening experience required!

  • Saturday, October 28: 1:00-2:30 at Springhurst Park
  • Saturday, November 11: 1:00-2:30 at Riverside Hunt Club Community Centre, 3320 Paul Anka Dr.
  • Saturday, November 18: 1:00-2:30 at Ray Friel Recreation Complex, 1585 Tenth Line Rd.
  • Saturday, December 2: 1:00-3:00 at Elmvale Acres Library, 1910 Saint Laurent Blvd.
  • Saturday, December 9: 1:00-3:00 at Manor Park Community Centre, 100 Thornwood Rd.
  • Saturday, December 16: 1:00-3:00 at Kanata Beaverbrook Community Centre, 1002 Beaverbrook Rd.
  • Wednesday, December 27: 1:00-3:00 at Trend Arlington Community Centre, 50 Bellman Dr.

Visit the Ottawa Wildflower Seed Library website for more information about events, to see the seed catalogue, and to shop for garden signs and magnets.

For current news about the OWSL, visit their Facebook page.

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