Monday, March 8, 2010

Plant Swaps!!!!

For the past couple of years, I have participated in the Central Indiana Plant Swap. Recently, I have begun to coordinate this event. This event has been a terrific free source of plants. Every spring, I save my plant divisions and extra seedlings to trade at the plant swap. I post a notice of the event on the 'get togethers' forum at and on Craig's List.

These events occur in other states.  If you can't find a local plant swap, you might want to consider planning a plant swap for your area, too.  They're a lot of fun and a great way to give and receive plant divisions and seedlings.

Here is a copy of what I post:

Central Indiana Plant Swap 2010
PLEASE tell all your friends, family, and colleagues! We’re having the annual Central Indiana Plant Swap on May 16th.
Over the past few years, the numbers have started to grow. I got some terrific plants the last couple of years and got rid of a bunch of extras. I have a ton of stuff this year to share, and I’m sure that many of you do, too. If you don’t have many plants to share, come anyway. The people I have met at this event in the past have had very generous spirits. Most of us would be delighted to help out a new gardener with some of our extras.
Date: Sunday, May 16, 2010 

Time: 2:00 P.M. 

Location: Holliday Park, 6363 Spring Mill Road, Indianapolis, IN 46260 

Directions inside the park: Once you enter the park take an immediate left. Then pull into the first parking lot on the right. We will be under the giant sycamore tree. 
Bring yourself, plants & trades, family, friends, tables, chairs, beverages and snacks to share. I’ll bring some lemonade and cookies. It would be nice, but not necessary, if others would brings some treats.
plants, well rooted cuttings potted up, bulbs, shrubs, happy seedlings, garden ornaments, extra gardening implements, gardening magazines, etc. 

PLEASE MARK ALL PLANT MATERIALS WITH THE PLANT NAME AND CARE REQUIRED!!! Also, mark any plants as invasive or poisonous, if known. I just go to an online nursery that sells the plants that I’m giving away and cut and paste the care instructions into a document. I print out the directions and staple them to the plant, a piece of window blind, or container.
Since it worked fairly well last year, we're trying the Round Robin swap again: 
Round One - pick one plant 
Next Round - pick one plant 
Next Round - pick two plants 
Next Round - pick two plants 
Next Round - pick three plants 
Next Round - pick four plants 
And so on, and so on....
This way everyone gets a chance to get some of the plants they really have on eye on. This works well and other swaps have had great success with it in the past. Everyone should be able to take home as many plants as they bring. 
For folks who only bring a few plants, many of the folks who have LOTS of extra plants can usually be convinced to part with some of their extras AFTER the official Round Robin is finished.

Some tips for the day: 
Bring a box or container labeled with your name to put your new plants in after swapping. 
If you have room in the car...bring an extra table to arrange your plants on. 
Print out pictures of your plants in bloom, so folks will know what they look like in all their glory! 
If it looks like rain, bring those rain coats, umbrellas, etc. We plan to meet even if it rains.
**Post here if you are attending so that we can all see who is coming and can check trade lists. Or email me, so we can get an approximate head count for the swap. 
E-mail me if you wish to be put on the plant-swap e-mail list or if you have any questions. 
I can't wait to see you all there! Hopefully we will have a great crowd with all the new gardening friends you may bring along! 


Feel free to adapt this notice to inform others of a plant swap that you will host.

Every year, I usually take daylilies, hostas, tomatoes, basil, and a variety of perennial flowers.  In return, I get nice perennials and scented geraniums. Last year, I received some moonbeam coreopsis, daisies, marmalade coral bells, lady's mantle, and valerian.

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