How does one get started trade with no plants to trade?
We likely all started off that way and made purchases of plants we wanted. From the purchased plants I propagated more plants (seeds, cuttings, divisions etc.) and traded those plants for other plants and repeated the process of propagating more plants with those plants I received in my trade. So, if you take four cuttings from your initial purchased plant and get all four to root you then have four plants to trade for four different plants. You then repeat the process with your new plants and soon you will have more plants than places to plant them LOL........
I can't wait to get started!!
Mikey gave you good advice. Look around for sales or clearance plants and use them to propagate more. Take a look around see what the most popular plants that people are looking for are. See if you can buy some and propagate them like Mikey says and get what you really want.
Find a forum that you really like and jump into convos ask questions and make friends. I've traded a lot behind the scenes with people who I have chatted with on the forums. After a while you build a collection of traders who let you know when they get something you may like, want or 'need'. Most importantly have fun.
Serenity Lane, come and join us on the Georgia GW forum!!
Also, check out the Farmers and Consumers market bulletin. You can find plants and backyard growers, seeds and all kinds of things that would do well in your area. When I began gardening in GA, I went to a woman's house and bought a TRUNKLOAD of plants, trees and shrubs for $75. The advice she gave me alone was worth it. She spent the whole morning with us going over soil, mulch, propigation, types of sun/shade, heat etc. A wonderful lady.
You can get the F&M online or you can order it to be delivered free to your home.
Check out www.freecycle.org and look for a group in your area. It's a group where people give stuff away for free. You can give anything away. And when people post stuff you want, you email them. Since they're in or around your city, you can arrange to pick up the items. The group may even have regular weekly or monthly meetings for giving away items. I gave away a lot of plants last year in our Freecycle group.
Also, you might start with seeds. Some plants will grow and bloom a couple months after sowing the seeds. Check out the seed exchange. Also, look for the SASE offers. (It's against the rules to start a post asking for stuff for SASE or free, but you can responded to offers that are posted.) Respond to offers and then you can send a bubble mailer to the person with a couple of stamps inside and they will send you seeds.
For cheap seeds that are wonderful, check out Thompson and Morgan's sister site: www.valueseeds.com You can buy all kinds of seeds for under $1. They even discount some of them! I recently got lots of Fried Eggs for 9 cents a pack.
Another idea is to check out the Garden Exchange here where we can exchange non-plant items. You might have a book someone wants and they might trade you plants for it. I've traded plants for scrapbooking supplies, books, dvds, cds, ink cartridges for my printer, birdhouses, hummingbird feeders, haircuts, paint supplies, pet supplies, bamboo canes, and tons of other things. Look around and see what you might have to offer. Then create a trade list, if you haven't already. List any non-plant items you could trade.
You might also find that some plant you consider a weed in your area may be something someone in another area would want. Passiflora Incarnata (Passion flower, maypops) grows like a weed here, but I have traded many away for some great plants.
Check for plant swaps near you. Girlgroupgirl may know of an upcoming swap or garden party in your area. Often lots of plants are left over and the owners don't want to carry them back home. So if you're there, you could take some of them.
In time, you'll have a yardfull of plants. And let me advise you now to label everything if you intend to do some serious trading. Many of us look for "named" plants. Instead of a "red" daylily, we might want a "Christmas Is" daylily. So if you get something with a name, look it up when it blooms and verify that it's named accurately, and keep it marked in your garden. It has more "trade value" if it is named. I didn't worry with names when I first began trading so a few of my daylilies are just red or peach or purple.
Good luck with your gardens and trading.