Seed Swaps

My first seed sale!

28 Feb 2012
Cloudy 6°C / 43°F

Pictured are proceeds from my first official seed sale. If people are going to pay me in dark chocolate, this is definitely the business for me!

Really, this is a small landmark in my life. I’ve been saying for years that I will hold a seed and plant sale. Each year I start getting everything ready and I never follow through. The plant sale has been challenging as I’ve built up my little greenhouse system over the past few seasons. (I swear this year the plant labels will NOT get mixed up).

I’ve had no such excuses for the seed sales. I’ve got a good organizing system in place, I have a good storage system and I’ve got at least a few contacts interested in buying seed from me. That’s the problem, I know these folks. It’s really hard for me to ask for money from my friends. It seems so silly to ask for a dollar or two in exchange for these little packets of life. I’d just as soon share. That gets to the heart of why I’ve never put together a successful business, whether it’s childcare, editing, seeds and plant, graphic design, research assistance, community organizing, fundraising, the list goes on. I’d rather give myself away than ask for pay. I don’t like feeling commodified.

It was really hard to resist the temptation, when my friends asked how much they should send for their seeds, to say, “Don’t worry about it. They are my gift to you, because I love you and value your friendship.” I told myself if I don’t do this, if I don’t start now I will never start. Somebody has to pay the first dollar and they aren’t going to think you are an asshole for asking for it.

Lo and behold, I got $5 and a chocolate bar! Now that is a fine tip and inspiration to carry on. With any luck, I will gross $8 and some candy by seasons end.




There is nothing wrong with being remunerated for the energy and passion you put into your craft. You’re allowed to value the work of your hands. When you are able to value it in tangible ways, more people will also value it. So start small … ask for trade or in-kind. Or simply say it’s $2 or $5 or whatever you think is fair. Sometimes, with my own handiwork, I just ask people to return what they feel is a fair offering. Generally they give me more than I would have ever asked for.

You and your beautiful, life-filled seeds are totally worth it, Creme.

And congratulations!! That is completely cool! Mmmm. Chocolate!

Posted on 28 Feb 12 (over 7 years ago)

When I read this, I thought that if they are local friends, let them come over for an hour or so and work off their debt in the greenhouse, etc. That would get something done, would show them your facility and your ongoing activities, and probably would be some fun for both of you.

If they live in another state or another country, it’s probably not such a good idea!

Posted on 01 Mar 12 (over 7 years ago)

Rule #1 in a business is never ever do anything for free. As KathN said barter something…anything.

Great line from the movie Moneyball…..“Don’t do it for the money. Do it for what the money SAYS. It says you are worth it.”

Worth your time, energy, know how, etc.
People will have to pay for it elsewhere. So run your business righteously, but run it like a business.

Posted on 02 Mar 12 (over 7 years ago)

Congratulations,Creme that is an excellent idea and inspiring! Especially in large cities there is a huge demand for home grown plants and seeds.

Posted on 03 Mar 12 (over 7 years ago)


Folia Helper

United States6b

Wonderful, Creme! I totally understand what you are saying. I am about to embark on a small sideline of selling African Violets and AV leaves this spring. I hope, if all goes according to plan. Fingers crossed X. I am having the same kind of feelings, but I have been telling myself exactly what These other folks have said. Our time is of value when it is used to create new life in the form of plant material or the means to do the same. I wish you the best of luck. Let us know if you have a place where your seeds and prices are posted.

Posted on 04 Mar 12 (over 7 years ago)

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