wanted: ft worth autumn 2009 swap rules / *new* location / other
Brenda says our old location has been reserved already, so she has generously reserved a pavilion SOUTH of I-30 by the zoo.
From I-30 on the western edge of downtown Ft Worth, go
SOUTH on UNIVERSITY approximately 9/10ths of a mile & turn
LEFT on COLONIAL.
I forgot to take an odometer reading once I turned, but just follow the road through some curves, & just a breath past the ballfields & bleachers on the right, you'll see a big nice pavilion with a *lot* of tables.
We'll also have a huge grill & 2 smaller ones, &.....
Since we want everyone to have a happy & harmonious experience, we're posting rules for clarification this year:
Swap starts at 9 AM or whenever the first bunch arrives, & we "swap til we drop"...which usually happens about 2 PM!
Bring your surplus plants, cuttings, seeds, garden supplies & tools, art, garden clogs...anything that another gardener could possibly use, & be realistic & respectful about what you expect to "trade" these items for.
(I sometimes bring a cat litter bucket full of rose cuttings, but I don't expect to get a brand new Ace Hardware wheelbarrow in return!)
Be sure your plants are well-hydrated, as travel & wind are hard on them, & we want to give our adopted plants the best start possible in their new homes.
Sturdy, permanent, not-easily-dislodged labels are most helpful, & info sheets are absolutely priceless.
When arranging pre-trades, be sure that you & your trade partner are on the same page;
if you offer a "plant" for a "plant", describe its size, size of the pot it's in, age of the plant, when you took the cutting from the mother plant, etc.
It's perfectly fine to trade cuttings, but be sure that your trade partner knows what he/she is getting, & bear in mind that, while some cuttings will root, not all of them will, so bring a bunch..
When I bring that bucket of rose cuttings, I always have as many as possible of each variety;
they "cost" me literally nothing, & I want to be sure my trade partner ends up with *roses*.
Helpful accessories include hats, sunglasses, drinking water, water for hydrating/watering plants, Sharpies, notebooks, chairs, tables, little red wagons or some such, newspaper, extra boxes, cards with your name/email/phone # to hand to kindred spirits.
A good way to keep your "inventory" in order is to box your pre-trades & label each box with the trade partner's name;
I my own self use a whole sheet of letter-sized paper & write the person's name in enormous letters;
on one side of the page, I list what is in the box;
on the other side, I list what that person is bringing me.
Complete one trade before you begin the next one:
It's too easy to hand off your box to a trader only to find that they get lost in the shuffle while you try to answer questions from someone else...
& someone else gets your plants from the trader, who has gotten carried away with swap fever.
If you bring a table, or if you snag one of the tables in the pavilion, put your "availables" on top, your "already promised" pre-trades behind or beneath, & the things that you're taking home beneath.
(It wouldn't hurt to put your own name on some boxes or at least to bring paper & a Sharpie to label what you're taking home.)
We've always kept rules to a minimum, but here are 2 that should be self-explanatory:
1. Do not stick a cutting in a pot & call it a plant.
If someone discovers this at the swap, the person who did it will be asked to leave.
2. Do *not* remove a plant from *anywhere* unless the owner/trader is looking you right in the eye when you take it.
In fact, rather than "taking" the item, it would be better to have the trader pick it up & hand it to you.
Remember, if there's a conflict over this, the trader/offerer/*owner* of the plant will prevail, so be sure that person wants you to have the plant.
Here's an idea I got from another plant forum, & it comes in handy this year, when my poor old garden is overgrown & needs thinning & I have an emotional problem with pulling up healthy plants & throwing them away.
This autumn we're going to have an "orphans" table, where you can put things that are "free to good home".
I my own self will be bringing tall purple Mexican petunias, 4 o'clocks, & English Ivy.
"Rules", or etiquette, for the orphans table are that each person takes what he/she can use & leaves the rest until the end of the swap.
When people start leaving, everything on the orphans table is available to anyone.
There are 3 additional very helpful, informative threads about the Ft Worth swap.
You should see them on the first page of the Exchanges page, but you can find them by typing key phrases into the search box:
'Door Prizes' (include the quote marks) &
let the mania begin!