May 9th, 2016

Plant Swap

PlantsIf you’re an avid gardener like me then this is your busiest time of year. It’s time to clean out your vegetable and flower beds, plan this year’s garden, and get your seeds started. When planning my garden I think about which plants worked well last year, which ones didn’t, what perennials need dividing, and where I need new plants.

One of the easiest ways to get free plants is to divide the ones you already have. One of the wonderful things about perennials is that as long as they are happy where they are they will come back year after year with very little maintenance on your part. But eventually they will get too big or start looking unkempt, and then it’s time to divide them. This will not only improve the health of the plant but give you extras you can use in your garden and share with other gardeners. I know I’d rather pass on an extra plant and give it a good home than, heaven forbid, throw it away!

But what if you’re looking for something new? One of the best, and cheapest, ways of adding diversity to your garden and trying new plants is to go to a plant swap. At a plant and seed swap gardeners bring their extra seeds, seedlings or plant divisions and trade them with other gardeners. It’s a great way to share plants and gardening experiences, and it’s free!
Whether you’re an experienced or beginner gardener you want to make the most of your garden. At CCPL we have an extensive collection of gardening books and magazines, but if you’re looking for the latest, most up-to-date information you might want to check out our collection of on-line magazines available through Zinio where you can download home and garden magazines like Birds and Blooms, Country Gardens and Organic Life. In addition, our Gardening, Landscape and Horticulture database contains magazine and journal articles for everyone from the novice gardener to the professional.

For more hands-on instruction you can find home and garden programs throughout the Cecil County Public Library system. Check online through our calendar or look in The Link, our library newsletter; available in branches, online or have it emailed to you for a first look at upcoming events.

On Thursday, May 12 from 6-8 pm the Elkton Library will hold its 4th Annual Plant Swap. And if you can’t make it to Elkton, the Perryville Library will be holding their 2nd Annual Plant and Seed Swap on Wednesday, May 25 from 6-8. We hope you can make it! This will be a wonderful opportunity to swap plants, seeds and experiences with other gardeners. Don’t miss the chance to try something new in your garden!

What’s your favorite perennial to share?


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April 11th, 2016

Why Read?

Read a book           Read an ebook!

It’s National Library Week, April 10-16! To celebrate, I challenged a friend and her family to read more. When asked why, I pulled together a quick list of the many benefits of reading for adults and children:

1. Exercise your mind by reading – your brain is a muscle and it needs exercise.

2. Discover new things; educate yourself; expose yourself to other people’s opinions and travel anywhere in this or another world.

3. Develop imagination and creativity by thinking about what you read and seeing perspectives and lives different from yours.

4. Improve spelling and verbal proficiency by reading higher level vocabulary used in different contexts.

5. Prevent Summer Learning Loss – continued reading over summer months helps prevent learning loss when students are out of school.

6. Research: interpretation of ideas can create collaboration and change.

7. Find and keep a well-paying job. Reading and writing are vital to effective communication, which is so critical in business and relationships.

8. Enjoy the arts and volunteer. A study by the National Education Association revealed people who read for pleasure are more likely to visit museums and attend concerts, they are three times more likely to volunteer and perform charity work than non-readers.

9. Read for your health. Reading for just six minutes slows down your heart rate and eases tension in your muscles according to a study by Mindlab International at the University of Sussex.

10. Socialize – “what are you reading” is a great conversation starter!

For reading recommendations and suggestions, visit the staff recommendations section or favorites lists of our website or join one of our book discussions. Not sure what to read next? fill out a Book Mate survey and we’ll give you personalized recommendations.

What’s your favorite thing to read?


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