Gardening Project to Host Seed Swap

Feb 26, 2014

Gardeners will be swapping seeds next week in Eagle River.  The Seed to Seed Edible Garden Project and Vilas County Master Gardeners are hosting the fourth annual exchange of vegetable and flower seeds.

Gardeners save seeds to reduce cost and encourage genetic diversity.
Credit Alex Bayley

Debbie Jircik is founder of Seed to Seed.  She says seed saving is the process of letting plants flower and go to seed at the end of the season, and saving those seeds for next year’s planting. 

“By growing and saving your seeds, they adapt to the area they’re grown in.  So over a period of time, you’re going to wind up having varieties that are able to withstand the climate that they’re grown in.” 

Gardeners can also trade leftover packets of store-bought seeds.  The emphasis is on vegetable seeds but other plant varieties are also welcome. 

Jircik says seed saving and swapping is a way to save money, and get more types of plants in your garden.    

“You get a lot more genetic diversity.  Plus it’s very fun to share that experience with other people and learn the stories, because the stories of the different seed varieties and where they’ve come from and how they’ve traveled over generations are just fascinating.”

Seeds shouldn’t be more than a few years old, and the emphasis is on edible plants. 

New gardeners or those who don’t have seeds to offer are still welcome.   

The swap is happening Tuesday at Many Ways of Peace in Eagle River at 7pm.  There will be a half-hour presentation on seed saving and planting before the swap begins.