Seed Trading forum: The 2014 Piggy Seed Swap .. Rules and Sign-Up

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Sep 16, 2014 7:27 AM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
This is the Official 2014 Piggy Swap Rules and Sign-Up sheet.

Welcome Old Friends and New Friends to this years 2014 Piggy Seed Swap. It is hoped that everyone will have a good time not only sharing and receiving seed, but most important, develop new and lasting friendships.

This is the Official Sign-Up and Rules Thread for all participants.

How time has flown since last years swap. Some folks have had good luck in their gardens and for some it has been rough with weather conditions. For those of you returning from previous swaps. Glad to see you back. It’s time to scrap the mud off your hoofs, spruce up the tail and ears, practice your oinking skills and start finding your stalls in this years Piggy Seed Swap.

For those new coming in, a hardy Welcome to you.

Before I get started on all the what’s where’s and why’s I would like to take a moment and Thank all last years participant’s for their help and for sharing their seed.

So, now it is time to start pushing those dust bunnies out of the way from under the bed, empty the cupboards out, look in the fridge,, drawers and any other place you store seeds and get them ready to swap. Get your unwanted, unloved, didn't have time for, along with any seeds you may have saved, or I finally was able to grow one and save seed (Yippe!), and any new seeds you may collected or purchased together to trade, but don't forget to polish up the hoofs and practice your oinking abilities while your at it.

For those who may be new to this swap, or those considering joining this years seed swap, here is a bit of information. I know it may look like a lot to read, but this is a large swap with thousands of packets of seeds shared and several parts to it. Lots to read, but the actual swapping is quite simple.

It is a seed swap that started back about 8 years ago on DG as the “Second Chance Swap” giving older plus new seed a chance to find a home. About 7 years ago it became the Hog Wild Swap (sometimes also lovingly called the Piggy Swap.)

The name came about because participants were so excited when they opened their box of seeds they said they felt piggy, hence the fond name of this swap.

For those folks that are new to the Piggy Seed Swap, this swap may be a little bit different than other seed swaps you have participated in, but the basic principles are the same.

Instead of just a One-to-One seed trade, the Piggy Seed Swap has three parts to it. You may join as many parts of this swap as you wish. Some folks just join in Part 1, some in 1 and 2 and some go hog wild and join all the parts.

The first part allows you to “Oink” ( a fond term for asking for seed ) for up to 100 packets of seed no matter how many packets of seed you list as having available. New folks, we know you may not have much to start with and that is fine, but those who have been around for several years, please be considerate of your fellow oinkers and list more than the same 4 or 5 seeds you have been doing. They like to receive new and different things to grow too. Now, if all participants are cordial during the swap to one another, the 100 packet limit, generally, gets raised to add another 50-70 or so packets., which means more goodies for everybody.

The second part is called “The One-to-One” swap. In this part, any seed you may no longer desire to grow or have to much of can be sent in from 1 up to 100 packets. For however many packets of seed you send in, you will receive one back from the Piggy Pile. Say you send in 20 packets of seed marked for part 2, you will get back 20 packets of seed from the Piggy Pile. All the seed for this part is spread out and selected for you from the pile as close as can be to match your Wish Lists and About My Garden areas. You have no choice in this section, but surprises are generally included. The more information provided on your Wish List and About My Garden areas only enhances your chances of having something special selected for you.

The third part is called “The Bottom of the Barrel.” Thanks to the generous hearts and giving nature of gardeners there is usually extra packets of seed donated or leftover. After all those participating in Part 2 seed has been selected, the left over packets are split out, picked randomly from the pile, to anybody who wishes to be included in this part. This is also the part where folks involved with community projects such as school and neighborhood gardening projects may ask for “Bottom of the Barrel” seeds for their projects.

This Piggy Swap also has three groups of folks participating. First we have the Regular Piggies. These are folks who have been in the swap before and are returning. The second group is the “Newbies. Those that may have participated in other swaps at other places or just new to trading and are joining us for the first time. The third group we call “Survivors.” These are folks who due to floods, fires, extreme drought, or some other natural disaster have lost their gardens and need to start again. Being able to see a flower growing again after a disaster can bring joy and hope to those who have lost everything.

Survivors are not required to have any seed to join. Seed is donated to you by the generosity of the other gardeners participating. What Survivors are required to do is:

1. Set up your database. In the spot for “Have’s List, type I am a Survivor.
2. Send me a cmail with your home address to where your seeds will be sent. Addy’s are checked to make sure you are in an area that has met with disaster. This is done to make sure those folks requesting Survivor status are really a Survivor .
3. You must follow along and Oink for seed , send cmail requests and confirm cmails you want just like all the other participants.
4. Send in postage for your seeds.

This years Piggy Seed Swap will run from November 10th, 2014 to December 10th, 2014. The barn doors for “Oinking” will start at 10:00 PM EST. That will allow those on West Coast and our Oversea friends ( fondly known as "Long Haulers”) a chance to get home , grab a bite to eat, get the kiddies to bed, or get up, have a cup of coffee before diving into the barnyard of seeds.

In the past we have let folks “Oink” up to 20 packets of seed a day. PLEASE NOTE: That this year the amount of seed packets that can be Oinked in a day is limited to 8 (eight). We have a lot of folks due to time zones, work loads, health issues , ability to get to a computer, ect… that miss out on chances of getting seeds that they really would like and plan to grow, especially when that seed is in limited quality. This hopefully will enable them to get a chance at that seed too.

It will also enable those new to such a large, long and fast paced swap to be able to also not be afraid and relax and enjoy the experience too. There will be times when oinking is fast and furious, especially at the beginning of the swap or when new seed is added to lists and other times the pace will be slower.

Your seed packets need to be mailed to me by December 20th, 2014. If you have an emergency, it happens, or weather is too bad to be out and about and you will be running late of the December 20th deadline, PLEASE cmail me and let me know.

If possible, try and keep up daily with getting your seed packets ready. You’ll find things will not only go smoother for you, but no seed packets are sent out to anybody until they are all in. Everybody starts as a group and ends as a group with all seed going out at once. Delays on your part holds up other folks from getting seed started and also may cause prices increases in postage, especially for the long haulers. Which is not fair to them. Seed, back to you is planned for first or second week in January. This date is not set in stone. It all depends upon how fast seed arrives here to be sorted and repackaged.

IMPORTANT: Now although people are encouraged to be piggies and oink for anything they'd like, that is what we all here for after all, I am reserving the right to cmail and warn anybody I feel is going overboard. It's fine to ask for lots of seeds, but it's not fine to just go down and ask somebody's whole list because you don't feel like looking them up to see if you really want those particular seeds. That is just not fair and deprives somebody who may really have wanted those seeds to lose out on having them. If you receive a warning from me and don't heed it, you may be asked to leave the swap.

ALSO Please don't abuse the piggies good hearts. The seed offered up is for the participants in this swap only. Folks in this swap have worked hard to grow and harvest the seed offered. Please do not be asking for seed for your friends. If they would like to get seed, let them know where to sign up and come ask for what they want. We would be glad to have them join, but they need to do their own oinking same as other folks.

Anybody who would like to join the swap, but has physical limitations, not very good with computers, or language barrier problems. Cmail me, it may be possible for us to hook you up with a buddy to help you.

Folks take your time in going through the seed lists. The lists get long and folks are harvesting and drying seed all through the swap and adding to their lists constantly, to include up to closing date and beyond while they pack, so make sure the seed you oink for is something you really want to grow. It doesn’t take long to use your allotted oinks , so choose wisely. If you use them all at once, you may just miss out on that “ I really..really.. really ..wanted that seed.”

Very Important Let’s all remember our manners towards one another. We have alot of different personalities and folks from other countries, while it is fun shoving at the piggy trough, oinking at the top of your lungs, and wallowing in the mud together is permissible, being disrespectful on the threads or in cmails will not be permitted. Anybody being disrespectful or otherwise misbehaving, will be asked to leave the swap by myself or one of the Admid’s. Anybody having a problem with another participant, please contact me or one of the Piggy Swap Admid's. Keep the disagreements off the threads.

I know we have a great bunch of people in the swap, but with so many folks, just have to make this point.

Those new to the swap, at anytime you get lost, have questions, don’t be afraid to ask. There a lot of fantastic seasoned Piggies here who will be glad to help.

Make sure you always read posts that are in bold print from myself or one of the Admid’s. Our posts in bolding means we are posting notices or other important information during the swap.

I usually forget some item or two, and reserve the right to add or edit the swap as we go , but I think I have everything covered.

Well, I think that about it. Always alot to read, but actually very easy, but with new folks, always like to try and put everything down.

Oh, if you miss the opening of the barn doors for the swap, don’t panic. Folks may join in anytime from Nov. 10th to Dec. 10th. We have folks coming in at different times some joining even on the last day as they get ready all during the swap time. Of course the sooner you join the better chance you have at seed you really want.

Now if you haven’t been scared off….. Let’s get you started.

First, you must be a member here at Cubit’s. Not a member, you can sign up here: It is free.

You will want to become a Cubit’s member as soon as possible so that you will be able to send cmails to ask for seed and for confirmation of your requests.

You must also be a member of Ella’s Garden, EG for short. If your not, just look to right side of the page on any forum. Scroll down and click the “Join This Cubit “ link.

Second…. You will need to set up your database. This is where you will be listing the seed you have available , posting your wishlist of seed, and a few other bits of information. You must have your screen name, cmail addy and wishlist posted before you will be considered in the swap and allowed to ask for seed.

Here is the link to the databases:

To get started, click on "Add a New Entry. " Fill in the information. If you don't type something in all the parts, you will have to click " Edit" to add to them later. To view all the participants seed lists. Click on "View all Entries."

If you need help getting your database set up, you can ask for help here on this thread at any time
or the current Cottage Gardening forum Chat thread. Just click on last thread number, scroll to last post and post your questions or comments.


Folks will be glad to help you out. Everybody was new at one time and usually after you get the first couple of oinks posted, you will wonder what you ever worried about.

The most important thing is to always every time you edit to make sure to scroll down to the bottom of the page and click “SAVE MY CHANGES” so you don’t lose any work. If you do happen to forget to Save your changes, holler out immediately. Sometimes we can pull your corrections back up and sometimes not, so it helps to keep things like your seed lists on a Word Document as you go along and than copy and paste it to your database.

When setting up your database, you will see some folks will list a lot of seed at once and some just a few things at a time. If you are new to swaps or not familiar with the set up here at Cubits, you might just want to list a few things at a time to get started, until you get the hang of things. That way you won’t be overloaded with cmails asking for confirmations and miss out on the oinking part for yourself.

Unless granted permission from me, all seed requests from everybody must be posted on the Oinking threads Before, sending out cmails requesting those seeds. Some folks get flooded with cmails requesting seed. With reading , replies, and checking stock, some folks cmails will jump in front of other folks who may have asked for the seed first. With everybody asking for seed first on the Oinking thread than it is easy to see who asked first, especially if that particular seed is in limited quantity.

An exception most of you know is Tuink. Generally, she opens her whole web site up and with hundreds upon hundreds of requests and limited computer useage she generally just sends out cmails for what she would like. Please fill her requests as best as you can. I think last year alone she sent almost 600 packets of seeds to folks. That’s a lot of work and postage across the seas. We also have a few folks with major health issues in the swap who may only be able to do cmails. Anybody like that I will let you know. As we go a long.

Ok, you now have your database set up. The next step will be to wait for the barn doors to open and the seed swapping to begin. You can find the actual swap page and starting line here:

Once the doors open, you post the name of the person you are requesting seed from. Remember no more than 8 Oinks a day. You may request those 8 Oinks from 1 to 8 people, but please only post 4 names per post and bold the first name. Bolding is done by typing [ b] ( with no spaces) first, than their name and please use screen names as we several folks with same first names to avoid confusion, than type [/ b] (again with no spaces) than type your seed request. Here is a perfect example:

After typing your request on Oinking thread, send a cmail to those folks requesting those seed. If they still have it available they will send you back a confirmation or let you know if something is out. Some folks will confirm your request on the swap thread. Send them a cmail any way. With all the requests flying, sometimes a post might accidentally get missed and the cmail helps prevent this. You’ll get a cmail back from them of confirmation letting you know if they still have those seeds available or if they are out and you need to make another request. Folks that may have several cmails for the same request and limited seed, please check the oinking thread to see who was first and act accordingly.

If you get a request for seed, as soon as possible send that person back a confirmation. That way if your out of something, they can oink for something else. Now some folks have very limited computer time and may only get online once a week, so have patience when waiting for a confirmation. Some folks it may take them a couple of days to get back to you. Do not keep sending them cmails over and over about it. That is just plain rude. They catch up as soon as they can.

For new folks, best advice I can give you is Oink for your seed first, send off your confirmation, than check your cmails for requests, send confirmation back, than put those requested seed from you off to the side. Having a stake of envelopes with folks names or baggies off to the side saves time and makes closing easier.

You have managed to survive the seed request part and the swap is now officially closed. What do you do? You do this:


You can send your seed to me in a bubbler mailer or in a box. Whichever way you chose, I highly recommend you send it PRIORITY. The PRIORITY boxes now come automatically with confirmation tracking.

With cutbacks and such in the postal service it is best to be on the safe side, then to have your seeds lost in the mail. So far we have been lucky every year and all package s have arrived and been received back, but there can always be a first time.

1. Your seeds. Please group your seeds together for the same person. Please include a Scientific Name and a common name if you can. You may use or make whatever type of seed packet that works best for you. If possible though, please do not use newspaper to make seed packets with. Newspaper makes my hands itch like crazy, but if that all you have, I’ll deal with it.

There is no limit to the amount of seed required for each packet. Some seed is harder to harvest than others. Some is considered rare for some folks. If sending less than 10 seeds in a packet, please post that on your database. Even if you may only have 3 seeds of something, it may be what somebody else wants and will use an oink for it.

Please also group and mark your seeds if you are participating in more than one part. Example, bag all your Part 1’s together, than part 2 or Part 3 so I know which way to divide part 2 and part 3 seeds.

2. Your real name and return address on a piece of paper in your bubbler or box. Also cmail it to me too.

3. Postage to return your mailer to you. Postage you will need is $7.00 for US folks. International folks check with me. Everybody's seeds gets shipped back in a priority mail box with a tracking number. Even though some of you new folks will only be sending in a few seeds, you will be getting back 100’s of packets of seeds and in some cases bulbs too.

Bulbs weigh a lot. Before offering up bulbs or tubers, please check with me first. I don't mind shipping them, but folks oinking for them need to realize that they will be paying extra for postage.

This swap is open to all folks whether your from another forum or gardening site. Bring your friends along too. Your welcome. Those wanting to join from other countries are welcome to join, but understand there is no guarantee that your seed will arrive here or once shipped be delivered to you. It is a chance you personally take. So know your countries regulations . So far we have been lucky with all our international folks. Also, know that your shipping cost back to you will be a lot higher. You might want to check out what a small priority box mailed to you from zip code 36875 to you is and whether you want to invest that amount of money first.

If I have missed something, just ask. If you forget a part, don’t worry, we always announce the different parts and go over what you will need to send and how they work again as we go along and also at the close of the swap.

I think I am finally done talking for the moment. I wonder if there is a world record for longest post and if I could win it. LOL

Now this thread is officially open for folks to Sign-UP.

Happy Oinking Folks for 2014!!!!!!!!!

Nope, guess I am not done. New folks or anybody who may have forgotten feel free to practice your bolding on this thread.

Now I think I done. Feel free to start signing up or asking questions.

I knew I would forget something, always do. LOL


Don't forget to pop over there and click the WATCH THIS THREAD, so you'll be ready when the barndoors open for swapping on November 10th 2014.

Thumb of 2014-10-03/starlight1153/ef3966
[Last edited Sep 16, 2014 7:30 AM CST]
Quote | Post #1087030 (1)
Oct 2, 2014 5:35 PM CST
Name: christine
sign me up Hurray!
Oct 2, 2014 6:23 PM CST
Name: Margaret
Delta KY
I'm A Charley's Girl For Sure
I'm back sign me up
Oct 2, 2014 6:38 PM CST
Name: Alana
Fortuitous that I peeked in this evening; sign me up please. Better get my hoofs, or is that hooves, filed and polished.
[Last edited Oct 2, 2014 6:39 PM CST]
Quote | Post #1090070 (4)
Oct 2, 2014 6:53 PM CST
Name: Erica Braun
Benicia, CA
Sign me up, as well, please!
Oct 2, 2014 9:21 PM CST
Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA
Yes, please sign me up as well!
Oct 3, 2014 5:51 AM CST
Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana
Regular Piggy - here to sign up and take a stroll around the barnyard today.

Oct 3, 2014 7:57 AM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Glad to see folks strolling in. Big Grin There's nice newly rebuilt stalls for each of you. Fresh hay to rest in, a new bigger muddle puddle to wallow in and fences repaired.

Of course five minutes after the barn doors open everything will be covered with mud to include all the shined up hooves. Hilarious! Ladies I would not recommend adding pink bows to your tails as you get yourselves spruced up. Two minutes out and they will look like they been through a mud puddle. Rolling on the floor laughing

I went back up and edited the Rules Post. As usual I forgot something. Probably a few other things too, but forgot to give folks the link to the OFFICIAL STARTING LINE.

You might want to click the WATCH THIS THREAD link so you will be ready when we throw open the barndoors.

Don't know if it will be Patti1957, Tcs1366 or myself that will open them, but one of us will be brave the opening stampede for sure.

Oct 3, 2014 8:15 AM CST
Name: greene
Savannah, Georgia, USA
Please sign up both 'greene' and my friend PlantSister (she's a long hauler but has already sent her first batch of interesting swap seeds and they are safe in my house).
Oct 3, 2014 8:37 AM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
I'm in too, I also have a friend here at work that is considering joining as well. Hopefully I can get her in. Lovey dubby
Oct 3, 2014 11:15 AM CST
Thank you for the fresh hay, Ella. Since you've made the barn so inviting, guess I'll come back too and start practising my squeals. Now, what happened to my high C?
My religion is simple. My religion is kindness. Dalai Lama
Oct 3, 2014 12:00 PM CST
Name: Christine
Northeast Texas, Zone 7b
Sign me up! Ahh fresh hay! The new stalls look great too, thanks Star! Hurray!
Shine Your Light

Oct 3, 2014 1:46 PM CST
Name: Jonna
Belgium, Europe
This regular Piggy and long hauler is looking forward to meet all the regular and new Piggies, so please sign me in.
Oct 4, 2014 4:02 AM CST
Name: Judy
Simpsonville , SC
Sign me up again, regular, very excited squealing piggy!
Oct 4, 2014 5:38 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Blue.... Hilarious! You sounding good to me. Now if you get your tail caught in the barn door you'll hit that high C real quick. Rolling on the floor laughing

Glad to everybody! I saw Shirley77 or maybe it Shirley777 and let her know I would be sending links and such to get signed up and the database and the starting line, ect... I also let her know that if I wasn't around just to holler out and you all would help her. I know we got some of the bestest folks around here for helping each other. She may be bringing a couple of friends from other states who may need some help getting started too.

Oct 6, 2014 1:09 PM CST
Name: Rick Corey
Pacific NorthWet Zone 8a
The smell of fresh hay sends me right into a dream ... AHHHH!

I'm back, sign me up, and I WILL get my box in EARLY this year, I promise!

Rick Corey

Thumb of 2014-10-06/RickCorey/1b9b6d
Oct 6, 2014 1:39 PM CST
Name: Jonna
Belgium, Europe
RickCorey wrote:
I WILL get my box in EARLY this year, I promise!

Oct 7, 2014 12:38 AM CST
Name: Tuinkabouter
The Netherlands
This morning -on my way to work - I just thought: "It should be that time of year again soon". Just to find Ella's C-mail in my inbox half an hour later. Spooky!

Of course, you can count me in. Will set up my database soon.......

Thumb of 2014-10-07/Tuinkabouter/c367c8
Oct 7, 2014 8:16 AM CST
Name: Sandy B.
Michigan UP (Zone 4b or 5a)
Every year I've thought about doing this but never have... sign me up, please, Ella -- it sounds like a lot of fun!
"I am still learning"~~ Michelangelo
National Gardening Association
Oct 7, 2014 10:32 AM CST
Name: Julie Ward
Zone 5 Mo
Returning Piggy

Hurray! OINK!!! SQUEAL! I'll be back! Data base to follow soon!

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