Skip to content Ballard boy turns green thumb into green for the Library – The Seattle Public Library Foundation
Atticus Diaz, 7, grows tomato plants from seed to sell to neighbors as a fundraiser for The Seattle Public Library Foundation. Photo by Kiersten Henderson

Atticus Diaz, 7, has enjoyed the Library his entire life.

His mother, Kiersten Henderson, prepared to give birth to him by checking out baby DVDs from The Seattle Public Library. Today, Atticus visits the Library – usually the Ballard Branch – to check out books with his dad and browse magazines like “National Geographic.”

“I like it because you can share books and you get to take out books and I like reading,” Atticus says.

He’s an avid reader who reads about 45 minutes a night with his father.

Now he’s showing his gratitude for all the joy the Library has brought him by turning over the earnings from his vegetable gardening to The Seattle Public Library Foundation.

Atticus sells tomato plants he’s grown from seed for $3 per plant, or two for $5. He’s been gardening since he was 4 years old and also grows flowers, fruits, and other vegetables at home.

For the past two years, he’s sold tomato plants by manning a stand in his neighborhood and offering them to his father’s co-workers.

What started as an entrepreneurial effort for Atticus turned into a philanthropic one, his mother says.

“People really enjoyed the concept of giving to the Library,” Kiersten says of her son’s customers. “He’s definitely learning about philanthropy and giving and the concept that publicly supported institutions need contributions from people who can make them.”

He’s also learning how to count money and develop relationships with people, she adds.

This year, Atticus sold 30 tomato plants. He intends to donate all his proceeds to the Foundation.