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Posted on Fri, Feb 8, 2013 : 7:03 a.m.

Get ready for two seed swaps on Feb. 16

By Monica Milla


Trade seeds and chat about gardening at two upcoming seed swaps on Feb. 16 at Downtown Home and Garden and the Growing Hope Center.

Photo courtesy of the Ecology Center

Get a jump on the growing season by attending seed swaps hosted by two local community gardening organizations on Saturday, Feb. 16. Project Grow, in partnership with Ann Arbor 350, is hosting a swap from 10 to 11:30 a.m. at Downtown Home and Garden, and Growing Hope is hosting a swap from noon to 2 p.m. at the Growing Hope Center.

Do you have more seeds than you'll sow yourself, yet you still feel like you want more? What to do, what to do? Attend an upcoming seed swap or two! A seed swap is a great way to get rid of some of your extra seeds and get something new to grow — all for free! It's also fun to chat with other gardeners and get some growing tips.

Seed swap details

Project Grow Seed Swap
Feb. 16, 10 to 11:30 a.m.
Downtown Home and Garden
210 S. Ashley, Ann Arbor
Please find street parking and leave the DH&G lot for customers

Growing Hope Seed Swap Soiree
Feb. 16, noon to 2 p.m.
Growing Hope Center
922 Michigan Ave., Ypsilanti
Light snacks and refreshments provided

What to bring

You can bring any kind of seeds to trade: flowers, vegetables, herbs, annuals, perennials, shrubs, trees. You can bring seeds you collected yourself or leftover seeds from packets you bought.

You can bring the seeds in whatever packaging is easiest for you. If you happen to have paper coin envelopes or mini plastic baggies on hand, you can make individual seed packets for people to take. If you just want to bring your opened seed packet with leftover seeds in it, that's fine, too. If you have large amounts of seeds, you can bring them in large envelopes, Mason jars, plastic tubs — whatever works for you.

Please clearly label the seeds with the plant name plus any special instructions or notes (such as "These seeds need to be soaked before planting").

How it works

Everyone brings seeds to the swap and puts them on tables by category (vegetables, herbs, flowers, etc.) for everyone else to peruse. You then decide what seeds look appealing to you, and take some of these seeds. If someone has rare or expensive seeds, they may hold them back from the main table and be more specific in what they will accept in trade, arranging swaps one on one. The swap organizers bring little envelopes and pens so you can take smaller amounts of seeds from larger packets and label them.

Everyone is welcome

The swap is open to the public. You don't need to be affiliated with Project Grow, Growing Hope, or Ann Arbor 350 to attend. You also do not need to be a seed starting expert — people will gladly share growing tips!

If you don't have any seeds to trade but are really interested in growing from seed, do stop by as there are usually extra seeds available toward the end of the swap.

Monica Milla, the Garden Faerie, is a master gardener volunteer, instructor, and author of "Fun with Winter Seed Sowing."