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  #1  
Old 10-09-2006, 01:52 PM
Acorn
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: 7B, Flowery Branch, Georgia
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Hi! from Georgia!


I am a hummingbird lover and want to hold a swap this spring for hummingbird plants, seeds and/or cuttings. I found this group in a search on Google and an excited to be a part of it. Any tips (yes, I have read everything on this site!) that anyone can add would be greatly appreciated. Any problems you have encountered would be great to hear also. We learn from each others mistakes!

Debby
Flowery Branch, GA
USDA Zone 7b
Sunset Zone 32
Latitude 34.1500
Longitude 83.9000
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  #2  
Old 10-09-2006, 02:37 PM
Bernard's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Zone 9b, Friendswood, TX
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Hi Debbie, welcome to the forum.

Plant swaps are a whole lot of fun. Kudos to you for starting one in your area. I think I covered the basics on the organizing a plant swap page.

Hopefully you can get Mary Ellen or Sunny to divulge some of their secrets. The recent Galveston County swap was the biggest and best organized swap I've ever attended. It's really grown over the last few years in their hands.
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  #3  
Old 10-09-2006, 03:15 PM
Acorn
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: 7B, Flowery Branch, Georgia
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Plant Swap


Thanks for the welcome

I am looking forward to organizing this plant swap. How far in advance should the notices be placed in newspapers, etc.?
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  #4  
Old 10-09-2006, 04:12 PM
Bernard's Avatar
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You should check with your local papers for their recommendations (for free notices in local event calendars). I think it was at least a month or two for papers around here the last time I checked.

Are there any talk radio shows on gardening in your area? You might try calling them and see if you can get a PSA on the air too.
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  #5  
Old 10-11-2006, 10:08 AM
Galveston County, TX Swap Organizer
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Zone 9B
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Hi. Swaps are so much fun. The first thing I would like to say is it will be hard to limit it to only certain types of plants. Gardeners will bring what they have to share so a large variety of plants will show up. Some gardeners may just be starting and may not have any plants for hummers.

Advertising is the key to bring in all of the gardeners. Put ads in the event section, should be free, of all local papers 3 weeks before the swap. Check out radio stations, sites on the internet, and advertise everywhere you can think of. Make up flyers and post or leave some in local grocery stores, feed stores, post on windows of businesses and Please don't forget to leave some at your County Extension in your area. Try to find out if there are any garden clubs in your area where you can leave flyers. We even leave them at the libraries. If you can make up a web page. This will bring the people in.

At your first swap you won't have much money so I would forgo door prizes. I would put in the flyer to please bring a finger food to share with others. You will need to register each person who arrives and give them a name tag. You can make up name tags if you want or purchase a pack of them. Have a sheet of paper so you can have them sign in. Make sure they print their name and email clearly. Building up a data list of emails will help when it comes to the next swap. You will be able to send emails to those gardeners hyping them up for the next swap you will be having.

Be sure and try to get volunteers to help you. At the swap ask if anyone would like to sign up as a volunteer to help.

Growing from a handful of swappers to nearly 75 or more in a couple of years, the one main problem we had was people taking plants off the table that don't belong to them. We finally put signs up all over telling them not to do this. I will be putting up new pictures in the next week on our web site and you will be able to see the signs.

Be sure and put out a donation jar. You will need money to put on a swap. We have found swappers are VERY generous in their donations. We have added other ways to raise money as well as a silent auction. Gift certificates donated from local businesses have really helped. Our committee makes most of our stuff now. They are told not to spend over $5.00 for each item. Most of us just donate it to the cause. See pictures of this years auction when I get them posted.

You will need signs to direct how to get to the swap.

Really as you grow you can add door prizes, a better type of meal where everyone brings a pot luck dish, and whatever you want to add. Each year we try to add something new. We also try and have something small besides door prizes to give away. Bookmarks we make or something along that line. Keep in mind when you start buying door prizes to buy them in the clearance section. The end of the summer is a great time to buy garden items for 75 to 90% off. If you have a fall swap then after Christmas or Halloween stock up on seasonal decorations. You can pick up some wonderful items for only a couple of dollars each. See if you can get swappers to donate to the door prizes.

Have an area for swappers to put plants they don't want to take back home with them. Other swappers will hit this area hard and very few plants will be left over. We always find a place to donate these plants to.

I know this is long and there is so much to cover but this should get you started. I can't think of a better way to meet gardeners in your area. We have people coming from over 50 miles away so don't forget to let surrounding towns know about your swap. The more volunteers you have the easier it will be for you.

Good luck and let me know if you have anymore questions.

margie
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  #6  
Old 10-11-2006, 10:13 AM
Galveston County, TX Swap Organizer
 
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Location: Zone 9B
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Hi Debbie. I am sorry but I forgot to add our url so you can see how we have set up our Galveston County Swap web page. As I said I will try and get pictures of the fall swap posted in the next week. You can see pictures of our spring swap on this site.
Good luck with your swap.
margie

http://home.houston.rr.com/galveston05swap/
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  #7  
Old 10-11-2006, 01:45 PM
Acorn
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: 7B, Flowery Branch, Georgia
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Thanks! From Georgia


Thanks for the information! I want to compliment you on your website! I have been 'surfing' the web looking for ideas and your site really caught my eye.

I understand what you mean about limiting the swap to hummingbird plants. I need to think of a way to advertise this but not put off people coming to the swap because they do not have hummer plants. Need to put the thinking cap on.

What do you think about having speakers at the swap?
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  #8  
Old 10-11-2006, 01:58 PM
Bernard's Avatar
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Originally Posted by Sunny View Post:
... I will try and get pictures of the fall swap posted in the next week.
I posted some pictures of the Fall '06 swap in the photo gallery.
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  #9  
Old 10-11-2006, 03:31 PM
Galveston County, TX Swap Organizer
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Zone 9B
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Hi Debby. I don't even think I would worry about it. So many plants are for hummers and butterflies. If you are looking for certain plants for your gardens then do a have/want list with your web site or on the garden forums. This garden forum would be great place and you can list this web site address in all of your advertisements and flyers. To get an idea of a have/want list check out our web site. A lot of pre-trades are made this way. I see a plant someone has listed that I would love to have and I will notify the swappers and see if they want to make a trade. They will put my name on the plant and bring it to the swap. You will end up with a lot of plants you are looking for this way. A swap is a place to share all types of plants with other gardeners. There will be native plants to tropicals and everything in between. If you make your swap for hummers only you will be defeating your purpose. The key to getting a lot of plants for hummers and butterflies is to get a lot of gardeners to attend the swap. The more gardeners the more varieties of plants. It may take several swaps to get it to where you want it but it is well worth the effort. Only a small portion of our swappers will turn in a have/ want list so it is exciting to see what the others are bringing. A plant swap is for gardeners of all interest. Word of mouth will really increase your attendance. You don't want anyone to say your swap isn't worth going to because they only want hummer plants. Make it positive and maybe that women/man who loves tropicals can get some of his/her friends to come who will have hummer plants.

We plan on have speakers in the future at our swap. You will probably want to wait after you get your swap built up some. Do you know of any Master Gardeners in your area? If so they can let the other MG's know about the swap.

If you want to use anything from our site feel free to do so. We are getting ready to change up our flyer a little. We don't want to mention free in the flyer. We found people just showing up for free food and plants and not bringing or swapping anything. You know how it is, there is always some free loader trying to take an advantage.
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  #10  
Old 10-12-2006, 07:55 AM
Acorn
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: 7B, Flowery Branch, Georgia
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Again, thanks! for the info. Yes, I do have a Master Gardener about a mile away. She has a small nursery that she runs. Definately will see if I can get her involved.

Free loaders: it always amazes me what people will do. Geez, the rules are for everyone but them.

Again, I love your website. Who does the hosting? I would like to fashion my site after yours. Thanks!

Have you ever had any luck with larger nurseries donating items to be used in the swap?

Sorry, I have a million questions.
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  #11  
Old 10-12-2006, 11:13 AM
Galveston County, TX Swap Organizer
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Zone 9B
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Please feel free to ask questions, I'm here to help in anyway I can.
Mary Ellen does the web site using her free space provided by her cable company RoadRunner. Most internet providers will provide you with some free web space. The have/want page and the picnic list are from my web site. Mary Ellen linked my sites to her web page. That way I can keep up with them. As for the pictures I found a free site to upload them to and then Mary Ellen provided the link.
Last year I went to about 7 different place for gift certificates and each of the places provided me with one. Real easy. Several were from large nurseries that were owned by what you would call mom and pop owners. Forget about any franchises because that won't happen. Don't forget to hit the feed stores, and the large yards that carry bulk mulch, soil, sand, and etc. I tell the owners how large our swap is, (most of the places have already heard about our swap) and let them know there will be a nice write up on the internet about their business. I also let them know we will have a nice write up at the swap to about their business. Lots of free advertisement. Now this will only work after you get your swap built up. If you only start off with 10 or 15 people like we did then I would not recommend a silent auction. Wait till you build up the number of swappers that show up.
Please let me know if you have anymore questions,
margie
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  #12  
Old 03-10-2007, 05:44 AM
Acorn
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Stockbridge GA
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Plant swap + Georgia


Debby,
I'm also in Georgia. In Alpharetta. I'll help out with the plant swap!!!
I'm not too far from you... Let me know! I have lots of cool plants: hardy fuschia, butterfly bush, confederate rose, angel trumpets, african violets, daylilies, Asian lilies and lots of other things.

Sandra
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  #13  
Old 04-08-2008, 03:38 PM
Pushin-up-Daisies's Avatar
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Thumbs upwell kiss my grits[img]http://smilies.sofrayt.com/1/950/friendship.gif[/img]


I'm From Ga. also Blairsville Ga.. I'll help swap too.I have devils trumpet,marigolds, gerber daisies any takers?
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  #14  
Old 04-18-2008, 10:20 AM
Acorn
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: jesup, georgia
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Smilehello to all


Hi, my name is Barbara. Just wanted to say hello from Jesup, georgia. Here i am wanting to do alot with my yard this year. I am hoping my work will pick up sothat i can do it. My goal is to get more established in my housecleaning buisness, and work more gettign my yard pretty with bird feeders. I am living cheap now, due to a dead beat hubby, but we want go there. I s ee there is swap talk. I would love to be able to join, but right now only have afew marigold seeds, and a few african violet leaves. that will not be fair to u all. but all friends ship and tips are wonderful. Right now trying to do things for the birds that is not so costly. They are lovign the peanutbutter and seeds on the pinecones for now. Anyother ideas. I don't always that access to interenet so itry and check emails 2 times a month. Hope to hear from u all. Have a blessed day.

I know this is not the site to list on, i love to crochet things and looking to try and sell that along with avon. wish me the best.
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  #15  
Old 04-18-2008, 08:17 PM
zuzu's petals's Avatar
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Location: Coastal N. Carolina ~ Zone 8-ish
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Hi Barbara, it's so nice to meet you.
It sure sounds like you are a very busy lady, just visit with us whenever you can.
I think you'll really enjoy Plant Swap and all of the friendly members here.
Springtime is such an exciting time for us gardeners, isn't it?
I'm like you, I can't wait to get some new things growing in my garden!
I also love to feed the birds and squirrels, it's great to see lots of wildlife in the garden!
Trading plants and seeds with friends is a great way to add to your collection.

Originally Posted by Pushin-up-Daisies View Post:
I'm From Ga. also Blairsville Ga.. I'll help swap too.I have devils trumpet,marigolds, gerber daisies any takers?
I'm not sure if most of the members who posted earlier in this thread are still active at the site .... ???
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Have a safe & happy Halloween!
~zuzu~



Last edited by zuzu's petals; 04-18-2008 at 08:22 PM..
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