Cottage Gardening forum: #11 Almost Piggy Seed Swap Time Chat Thread!!

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Oct 19, 2014 5:21 AM CST
Name: Judy
Simpsonville , SC
I just found this chat thread! I've been saving seeds gradually all year and following the "don't list it til you pack it" a few more things to package and lit really looking forward to this years swap!
Oct 19, 2014 5:51 AM CST
Name: Alana
Good morning Teresa,
I'll try to help and someone else can smooth out the rough spots if I miss the mark.
It is not a matter of trading directly with each individual who has something you want. You establish a database of what you have available and participants can request seeds from your list, but it will not necessarily be the same people you request seeds from. I won't try to improve on Ella's step by step instructions, which are here:

Here is a link showing all of the lists posted so far. You can click on each link to see what each person has available. People are just working on their lists now so some of them are empty or incomplete. Some people put all of their seeds on their list at the very beginning, some add as the swap goes along. You need to have a list, but it does not have to be big. If you decide to join you can go to the bottom of that page and select "add a new entry" to start your own. Make sure to put your name in the first field so your database shows up correctly in the list. Don't forget to hit "save" at the bottom so that everything you put in remains there. You can go back there anytime by going to your list and clicking edit to make changes or additions.

When the swap opens you will have a chance to request the seeds you want as described in the instructions. You can request up to 8 packs a day unless Ella authorizes an especially hoggish day, for the duration of the swap. The number of packs you request is not tied to the number you have listed. You can request more or fewer than you offer over the course of the swap, which is about a month long, as long as you don't request more than the daily limit and up to a hundred total. (Often this limit gets raised to 150 or so)

If I have confused you and you have questions about the instructions at the link above, please ask for clarification and someone more eloquent may explain next time. Smiling
[Last edited Oct 19, 2014 6:06 AM CST]
Quote | Post #1092875 (2)
Oct 19, 2014 7:50 AM CST
Name: Christine
Northeast Texas, Zone 7b
Hi bluegrassmom (Teresa), I won't go over Alana's fine instructions above but just thought I would direct you to find the database at any time on your own:

Look to the right at the top of the page and you will see some links:
» Forums
» Articles
» Database

Click on Database where you will find this year's "2014 Piggy Swap". Click on it and scroll down just a little and you will see: (Where you can add your list under "Add a new entry to this database" or if you chose "Browse all the entries" view all the members lists.

» Add a new entry to this database

» Bulk upload images to the database

» Browse all the entries

» Advanced Search

FAITH over fear!

Oct 19, 2014 12:02 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
SCButtercup... Good job Judy. As you get them packaged, to save you time later, you can post the ones you have ready and I place mine that I have ready and posted in alphabetical order in one box til somebody Oinks and than I pull it to add to their baggie. Than I have another box of prepared seed and keep them in alphabetical order and than when I get ready to post them and have posted them, than I move them to the Oink box.

Basically I have two boxes. The Haves Listed and the Haves to be listed. Saves alot of time. Got the idea from more of the organized piggies, that way I can be a piggy and not a chicken without a head going crazy. Rolling on the floor laughing

Joseph... I see you found some good things to try to grow. Lots of experienced folks here that grow herbal and medicinal plants if you get stuck. They may even have other suggestions for you.

The only thing I seen on your Wish List so far is that you may not want to try and grow Ginkgo biloba. The reason being, you need to have a male and a female tree for fruit production. Been about 7 or 8 years since I grew any seedlings of this tree. I would have to hunt to see if I remember which way is correct, but the only way to tell the males from the females is in the way the branching goes. One has branches that are more pointed upward and more pointed downward. Even then it is very hard to tell for sure which is which.

Most landscape growers will not even guarantee 100% you have a male it is that hard to tell. When the seedlings get about 4 foot tall and have some branching that you can tell the difference, myself and others will go through and rip up and compost any seedlings that we think are a female.

Why you may be asking? I'll tell you why. The fruit from the female Ginkgo when the fruit is crushed is very malodorous. When they are fruiting you need a gas mask just to walk past them.
Think of the most rankest smell you have ever smelt in your life and multiply it by a thousand. It's worst than nasty. Heck you could get sprayed all over by one of them skunks you have around your place and you would smell heavenly, that's how bad the Ginkgo is.

Another bad thing is they do fruit and fruit alot, but you won't see even any insects good or bad trying to get to the fruit. It's that bad and trying to get the smell off or even working outside you is rough. The smell gets into everything around you and it seems like any plants nearby smell and taste of the nasty Ginkgo smell. The one year I had the pleasure of having to gather the seed and clean them. Never. ever again I swore. I think I spent more time running behind a bush to be from the smell than I did at spending time cleaning seeds. I turned greener than the green leaves on the trees it so bad.
Oh the thought-mares I am having just thinking about that time. (shiver--shiver---shiver)

I have never seen or known of anybody who has even attempted to try it. Never seen any of the many critters eat it either and I always look around when thinking about a foraging plant or tree to eat by if I see a bird or some sort of other natural critter eating it. It also takes about 20 years before the trees will even start to fruit.

Now the males do make beautiful foliage trees.

Major city around here landscaped whole areas with the Ginkgos and later had a big expensive mess when they had to uproot the trees and replant. They learned the hard way, just what kind of mess and smell these trees will produce. Just wanted to give you fair warning.

Poison.... Thank you so much! You said it perfectly. Gonna copy and paste it to a word doc , so I don't lose it in case somebody else asks the same thing on another thread. Thumbs up

Wild.... Thanks for lending a hand too. Much appreciated.

Bluegrassmom... Hi Teresa ! Poison probably said it better than me. Only thing I might add is this is a swap where you bring to the feed trough what you have. Some folks are new to gardening and just learning to grow and save seeds. Some folks just go out every year and buy seeds, keep what they need or want for their season and share the rest. Some folks do both.

There has been times when folks may have listed the seed they have to offer and nobody oinks for it or only a few folks due. That doesn't stop you from oinking from seed from other people. It happens occasionally as maybe folks already have plenty of that seed.

Those folks that come into this swap give from the heart and from the joy of giving. Some of the joy they get back is in seeing folks come and posts pics of the seed they got and have managed to grow. Folks come, they pick their seed, at some point hopefully they will try and grow that seed and than come back and share those seeds with others that come. Paying it forward. There has even been cases of long standing piggies with huge gardens and lists that have lost plants for one reason or another and come back hoping somebody may have that seed again to share with them.

All types of seed are welcome. You never know what somebody wants or feels they just have to have to grow. The only thing I ask is that folks don't list a bunch of tree seeds unless they are specifically listing them for somebody who has them on their wish list. Very few folks want shrub or tree seeds. The few who do will generally ask if anybody has them. Flowers that are common to rare, strange to unusual, veggies, wildflowers, herbs, medicinal plants are especially welcome. Thumbs up

You really should consider joining. It's not a hard swap at all. The big thing is have fun, make new friends, share knowledge, give what you can, get a bunch of seed from the troughs, get covered in mud, a tail pulled now and then. Biggest thing is always treat your fellow piggies and new or old gardening friends with consideration and respect. Thumbs up

Oct 19, 2014 12:33 PM CST
Name: Sandy B.
Michigan UP (Zone 4b or 5a)
Teresa, I hope you'll go ahead and join the swap -- although this is my first year to do so, I've "known" many of the swappers for a long time, from the Dave's Garden, Cubits, and All Things Plants sites; this is a great bunch of people and a good chance to try growing some different things and having more fun getting the seeds than just ordering from a catalog or buying at a store! Smiling
"I am still learning"~~ Michelangelo
National Gardening Association
Oct 19, 2014 1:00 PM CST
Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana
poisondartfrog wrote:

Chelle, are you sharing your garden with Finches, Gold or House? They beat me to Centaurea seeds among others if I don't get there first.

Yes. Lots of them. Now that you mention it, I have seen them in that area more than almost any other...even the sunflower areas get a bit less finch traffic. I hadn't put two and two together before this...thanks!

Oct 19, 2014 4:06 PM CST
Name: greene
Savannah, Georgia, USA
Hi there, I remember you from another site where I had a different user-name. (I'll send you a C-mail)
You will love it here. Everyone is very nice and very helpful. You do not need a lot of different seeds to join. You can buy some interesting seeds at the store, break the packs into smaller packs, and add those. You can ask all kinds of questions and someone will jump in to help you run to the piggy trough. I will admit, it is a little difficult to learn to 'oink' for seeds, but you will get the hang of it. We have FUN. Hurray! Hurray! Jump in. Rolling on the floor laughing
Oct 19, 2014 4:11 PM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
Anyone have any tips for saving seed from Tiny Tim tomato? I harvest ripe ones but when I cut them open I don't really see any seed.
Oct 19, 2014 5:07 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Misti.... I don't know how anybody else does it, but for tiny tomatoes to get the seed out of even if it just a couple. I scoop out the inside as best as I can , or just squish it into a small glass. I eat the outside part.

I cover with just a little bit of water, about double the water of tomato mush you have and gently stir it up with a spoon, and mash the innards against the side of the glass.

Than I put a piece of plastic or wax paper or a plastic lid eve if it bigger. Anything to cover it and let it sit for about 5 days.

At the end of the five days, uncover, add enough water to almost fill the rest of the glass. Stir it up. Will look gross with all the mold, but that ok. I generally use a straw to mix and than toss it.
After stirring, let it sit again for a bit and you will see the good fermented seed on the bottom.

Carefully tip the glass and dump the mold and gunk on the top off. Just watch you don't pour out your good seeds.

Add more fresh water, swish around, let sit for a bit, and dump off like above any icky parts that had floated to the top.

Now all you should have is your good seed in the bottom of the glass. For them teeny tiny tomato seeds, I strain through a coffee filter or sieve with very tiny screen. Than transfer to a plate , let dry good and you ready to go.

I used a paper towel before and that was a pain. All the seed stuck to it and took forever to get each of them tiny seeds off of it and onto the plate.

I do the above even if I only have one tiny tomato to save seed from.

Speaking of tomatoes. Yippeee!!!!!!!!!!! I happy as can be. Texas Star is now in the blush stage, finally, and boy does she look pretty. Will try tomorrow and take a pick. Now just to wait for the red stage. Oh ya. Oh ya. Not gonna do a real happy dance yet til I have them vine ripened, picked tomatoes all done in my hands.

And I had to water and while I was at it I started trying to check some of the Salvias to see if any are making seed. I need my hummers back. All these blooms and no hummers to pollinate them. While I see where some seed is starting, but not mature, I looked over at the Echies and also at the Veronica .. First Glory. The one I offered seed from last year as a free oink because I didn't think it would do anything. Well I realized what I did wrong. I finally found the seed. You can't let the stems dry all the way as the tiny balls of seed hide along the raceme stem. If the stem all dry, the seed done been dropped.

I gathered some of the seed that I seen that was ready, won't be a lot as I just discovered my mistake , but should be enough for a few oinks. Always something new to learn in the garden. Thumbs up

Joseph... I was watching one of the food shows and they was at a place called the Olive Press. This farm grows grapes to make wine and olive trees and makes virgin olive oil and other types of oils and products from the olives. Since you can grow grapes there, maybe olives would be a crop for you.

I have no idea if you can grow an olive tree from seed. Don't even know if you can get a seed from an olive to germinate or where you could buy a fresh olive, but maybe small rooted cuttings or seedlings somebody sells.
Oct 19, 2014 7:46 PM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
Thank you Star, wasn't sure if there were even seed in them to save lol yup I think the issue I was having with my tomatoes were the ones I was trying to grow. I planted those San Marzano and they are actually starting to produce already.
Oct 20, 2014 7:45 AM CST
Name: Joseph
Cache Valley Great Basin
Landrace: locally-adapted diversity
I'm done with farmer's markets for the year. I donated all the excess food to friends, family, or the food pantry. I'm working on getting the garden ready for fall tilling. Still a few crops to harvest: popcorn, dry beans that were too long season, carrots for next year's seed crop. The tomatoes are dead. FINALLY!!!!

I weeded the greenhouse yesterday. The wild lettuce and amaranth lambsquarters were 5 feet tall. The grass wasn't far behind. Maybe next year I'll put in something like sweet potatoes or watermelon that could benefit from the extra heat during the summer.
Author of Mother Earth News Blog about Landrace Gardening: Lofthouse
[Last edited Oct 20, 2014 9:59 PM CST]
Quote | Post #1093085 (11)
Oct 20, 2014 11:02 AM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Most all our markets here our too. Was a very sad and lean year for most folks. Just too much bad growing conditions all year for folks to produce much.

I know several folks that went up into the Carolina's and other northern states to bring back cases of tomatoes and other produce so they would have something to can this year. I think the worst tasting veggie this year was corn. What little bit of it that came to market had no flavor, was tough and dry.

I saw lots of field of melons just all being composted under as the fruits didn't get enough water with the heat and humidity and they weren't sweet and juicy. Folks may buy a blemished fruit or produce, but if it tastes bad, they won't buy it again.

Joseph... The Amaranth you grew, did you grow it for flowers or are you eating it. Do you know what variety it was? Never tried to eat the flowering plants of it I've grown.

Sorellina... Glad you had such a good luck with the Glass Gem corn. Did you happen to save any seed that you can offer into the swap? Think it was one very much wanted and out last year. Sticking tongue out
Oct 20, 2014 11:45 AM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
I will have some Glass Gem seed to offer this year as well Star, but not a lot.
Oct 20, 2014 12:52 PM CST
Name: Patti
Eagle Point, OR
Mistirose wrote:Anyone have any tips for saving seed from Tiny Tim tomato? I harvest ripe ones but when I cut them open I don't really see any seed.

I ferment my tomatoes very similar to what Ella does. I don't leave them for 5 days any more because I had some start to germinate once. I think it was way to warm here and now I just ferment for 3 days sometimes 4 if it is cooler.

Some of the smaller tomatoes don't produce many seeds so you need a lot of fruit to get enough seed.
Oct 20, 2014 1:32 PM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
Thank you Patti, I will start fermenting as many as I can.
Oct 20, 2014 1:39 PM CST
Name: Julianna
Victoria, BC USDA Zone 8
Ciao Ella -

I should have a small amount of Glass Gem Corn to offer. I didn't get many large cobs. I'll take a photo of what I'm entering into the Royal Agricultural Fair before we take the crops over and also when I have everything set up so you can see how it looks. I still need to get a few yards of harvest-themed fabric for the table. I also re-grew Miniature Blue Popcorn here at home in a half whisky barrel and it did pretty well next to the wall of the house getting extra heat from the walkway and mostly protected from the wind, but we still got far too much rain for corn to be at its best.

Our cat, Michael (the fierce hunter) is determined to be outside despite the rain. I'm not feeling great today, still in my jammis, so he'd better come back in without much fuss. I don't have the energy to go searching for him. Rolling my eyes.
Grazie a tutti,
Oct 20, 2014 2:45 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Patti.... Glad you told us. Didn't think about the weather conditions, nor did I know they would sprout in water like Daylily seeds and such. Cool! A new learned thing.

Great news about the Glass Gem. : )

Sorellina... Good luck at the fair. I hope you win a blue ribbon or some sort of award. I always enjoy the agriculture and 4-H and those types of presentations at the fair. I often wonder when I see some of the canning entries how many jars they had to make to make such a perfect one for the show. Big Grin

PIGGIES!!!!!!!! Good news... My friends just left and they came and brought two buckets of the Surprise Liliy Bulbs. The red Lycoris. Sorry no yellow yet found. I have about 4 trays of the bulbs drying. It will take them about two -3 weeks to dry. Just in time for the swap. Those wanting them, put it on your wish list. I'll also list on my database. For however many folks ask, I'll stuff what bulbs I can in your package. A few bulbs should fit no problem. A bunch and I'll have to use a bigger box if you want to pay the extra postage.

I also have removed the seed pods that came in on these too, so folks who can't take bulbs they can have seed to try if they want.
Oct 20, 2014 4:23 PM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
OMG OMG Star thats awesome!
Oct 20, 2014 5:27 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Here's a pic of what the bulbs look like Misti.

Thumb of 2014-10-20/starlight1153/892c63

I told my friends I am looking for the yellow ones too and they have said they have seen some, they just have to remember where. I told them when they do just dig..dig..dig.. 'em up for me.

One thing for those that get these guys, one of the ways my friends keep track of where the patches are, cuz they're hard to find once the bloom is gone, is they put pennies on the ground in the areas. Than when they want to dig a patch up, they use their metal detector, find the pennies and know right where to start digging.
Oct 20, 2014 5:52 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Oh and Joseph... My friends said if you really want some of the Ginkgo seeds, they'd pick some up if they saw any. They don't call them Ginkgo, they call them "hazardous waste" seeds. Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing

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