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Frequently Asked Questions: Plant and Seed Trading

General QuestionsPlantScout Vendor Questions

    Do I have to be a subscribed member to use this feature?

    No.  It's readily available for anyone to use, but you need to be logged in (usernames are free) to set up your  tradelist or to email other users about their plants and seeds offered.

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    How can I find someone with the plant or seed I'm looking for?

    There are two ways to find people with the seeds or plants you're wanting (or who want what you're offering.)

    Option 1:  Through the Communities tab is a link to Plant and Seed Trading. From there you can search other members' tradelists for specific tems.  Just type in the name of the plant or seed you're seeking.

    Hint:  Try searching by just the genus OR cultivar OR common name.  For example, if you're looking for 'Mr. Majestic' marigold seeds, you can look for them by searching for "Majestic" or "Marigold" or "Tagetes"

    It's especially helpful to search by one word if your searches aren't turning up many results.

    Option 2:  Browse or search through PlantFiles to find plants you're interested in.  You may find many of them have a blue hyperlink leading to other members plants or seeds for trade.  This is a unique, DG-exclusive feature available only to our members here.

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    Can I make a quick and simple tradelist?

    Sure!  You can quickly create a list of your haves and wants:
    1. Browse or search through PlantFiles to find the entry for a plant you're wanting or offering.
    2. Scroll down until you see an area called "Trading Tools" and click on the appropriate link.
    3. Add any details you wish to the "Special notes" section (be sure to leave the genus, species and cultivar name exactly as they appear.)  Click on submit.
    Repeat these steps for each type of seed (or plants) you're offering or seeking

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    How do I add an image to an entry?

    If you create your Tradelist through the PlantFiles "Add a plant" feature, you'll automatically have the first photo in that entry appear in your tradelist.  But if you have items on your tradelist that aren't in PlantFiles, or you would prefer to substitute your own image, you can easily do that, too.

    The first step is to access your summary tradelist via the My Tools tab and click on "have-list" or "wish-list" to begin.  In the table that appears, the right-hand column has links that let you edit, delete, or disable the item, or add a picture
    1. Click on "Picture"
    2. Click on the "browse" button. This will open up a new window displaying your hard drive.
    3. Locate your image you wish to upload, then press "Preview".  If you're happy with the entry, press "Submit".  It will be automatically uploaded and available for all readers to see when they look at your list..

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    What if I run out of a particular seed or plant?

    The first step is to access your summary tradelist via the My Tools tab and click on "have-list" or "wish-list" to find the item.  In the table that appears, the right-hand column has links that let you edit, delete, or disable the item.
    • If you don't plan to ever offer it again, choose "delete" to permanently remove the item from your list.
    • If you are just temporarily out of seeds or plants, you can choose to "disable" it and it will no longer show up in the search results, even though it's still on your list.  You can then "enable" that item when you have more seed or cuttings available.

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    Can I print out my tradelist?

    Yes.  Once you've created your tradelist, you can choose to click on the have-list or want-list link and print the tradelist.

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    Can I delete my tradelist and start over?

    You can, but it will require deleting each entry one-at-a-time. 

    The first step is to access your summary tradelist via the My Tools tab and click on "have-list" or "wish-list" to begin.  In the table that appears, the right-hand column has links that let you edit, delete, or disable each item.

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    I have a question about how to trade seeds or plants

    We have a very helpful primer for trading plants and seeds. It's recommended reading for ALL traders, whether they've been swapping seeds a long time, or are new to the practice of exchanging seeds and plants.

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    What's tradetracker?

    Tradetracker is a unique tool that lets you track and manage your plant and seed trades from start to finish, and send a  reminder or apology when something goes wrong with the trade.

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    Why should I use tradetracker?

    Many of our members have several trades going on simultaneously; some of them are members of seed exchanges, and send out hundreds of trades each year.  As any of them can attest, it's very important to be organized and make sure your trades are accurate and promptly sent (and to acknowledge when you've received your end of the trade.)

    But even if you do even just a few plant or seed trades, you'll find tradetracker to be a handy tool to keep everything straight (who you're trading with, what you're sending them, and what they're sending you.)  At a glance you can see if you still need to send a trade, or if you need to send a reminder to the person you're trading with.

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    How do I use tradetracker?

    This unique tool is very easy to use.  To add a new trade, click on the "add a new trade" link and fill in the blanks.  (If you're trading with a DG member, you may want to put their username next to their real name so you'll remember who they are when you correspond with them.  When you've filled in the fields, click on th e "submit" button.

    Once you've sent out their trade (or received one from them, you can edit the entry to note what's been sent and/or received.  You'll be prompted to send out an email message for either event.  (You can use the standard message or customize if however you see fit.)

    Once you have your trades listed, you can easily view just the trades you still need to send or those you haven't received, and send a message to the trader to let them know your package is on its way, or ask them for a status update. 

    Once in a while a trade doesn't go as planned.  You can also use tradetracker;'s "special note" section to add a reminder to yourself  if you've decided not to trade with a person again; it's an easy way to jog your memory if they send another trade request later on.

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    What about leaving feedback?

    I see that some people have trading feedback - what's up with that?

    Plant and seed traders are among the most generous people in the world.  Unfortunately, their generosity can make them an easy mark for someone intent on getting seeds and plants without keeping their end of the bargain.   Unfortunately, these "bad apples" can do a lot of damage before they're detected.  To make it easier for traders to alert one another to a pattern of abuse, we provide a feedback system for plant and seed trading.  The feedback is mainly for expressing concerns over a bad trade, although some people leave feedback for every trade, both good and bad.

    IMPORTANT: Lack of feedback shouldn't be interpreted as a bad sign - it may just mean the trader is new to trading OR their trades have gone off  without a hitch and there was no reason for feedback.


    Someone left feedback for me and it doesn't tell the whole story - what can I do?


    You have the ability to post a brief response telling your side of the story.  You'll find the link to post a rebuttal on your feedback page.


    I want to leave feedback, but I don't know where to find their feedback page, (or what to say.)

    You'll find a link to feedback on each member's personal page.  As to what to write, remember - whether the trade was a roaring success or an utter disaster, constructive feedback is most helpful to others.  Also remember you are legally and ethically responsible for your feedback so be honest and objective - stick with the facts.


    Can I change my feedback I left for another trader?

    Yes, you can change the rating and the feedback at any time.



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    I read the FAQ and I still have a question about my trading!

    Use the "Contact Us" link at the bottom and tell us your question.  We'll do our best to answer your question quickly.  Subscribed members can also post their question in any appropriate discussion forum (DG, Garden Talk, any of the Seed or Plant Trading forums, etc.) for peer-to-peer assistance.

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