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"THINK SPRING!" Seed Swap Feb 11 in Frederick MD

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

It's that time of year again! Eating lunch with old friends and new, swapping seeds, and talking plants. I can't think of a better way to spend an afternoon!

Date: Saturday, February 11, 2012

TIME: noon to about 4 pm, we'll start the seed swapping around 2

WHERE: Frederick, MD, Chef Lin Buffet (scroll down for directions)

WHAT: Eating Lunch and Swapping Seeds

WHO: DG subscribers and their guests
(see list at bottom of post)

If you've never been to a DG Mid-Atlantic event, don't worry... we are a fun and casual group. Everybody brings their extra seeds to swap & share (it's very useful to make up little labeled packets ahead of time), everybody visits and talks, and everybody goes home with a nice selection of seeds to try! I wrote an article that may give you an idea about how this event goes: This will be our fourth year for a midwinter seed swap here!

You may want to plan to come early so you can drop by Dutch Plant Farm, my favorite local nursery for winter visits! I wrote an article that has a lot of photos taken there, if you'd like an idea of what they are likely to have. If we're lucky, the truck will be back from FL by then with new plants.

At NOON we'll meet for lunch at Chef Lin, a local Chinese buffet that's one of my favorite Frederick restaurants. I'm hoping we'll have 20+ people, as we did last year, so we can use their back room, which gives us room to set up tables for name tags, door prizes, and seed swapping. The manager has been very accommodating, and she's happy to hear we're planning to return. Chef Lin Buffet, 417-A South Jefferson St., Frederick. 301-620-0664.

At 2 pm, we'll do a little thing and give away some door prizes. If you have something you'd like to donate to the "gift table," please Dmail me or post that you're bringing something (so I know around how many items we'll have). Purchased items for the table should be under $5.

We'll concentrate on seed swapping from 2 to 3:30 pm or so. Of course, seeds can be swapped outside of that time, and of course anybody who doesn't want to swap seeds can just keep chatting and visiting. It's usually at least 4 pm by the time we all leave, so plan to make a day of it if you can.

Check out the "Seed Swapping" thread, It's not necessary to make any arrangements ahead of time, but it can be useful to see what people have and what everybody's looking for.

The cost for lunch will be $12 per person, including tax/tip, water, and hot tea. If you want a soft drink, please add $2.50. With the other seafood on the buffet (sushi, steamed shrimp & mussels, clams/oysters on the half shell, fried fish/shrimp/scallops, and various hot dishes), I've never felt the need for the snow crab, but it's an available option for several dollars more. The buffet has everything from soups and stir-fries to fried chicken and mozzarella sticks... there's salad, fruit, and an array of desserts, including soft-serve ice cream and hot little fried doughnuts. The selection is remarkable, and even if you don't like Chinese food you'll find plenty of possibilities.

We will all be on one tab, so please bring $12 (or $14.50, with soft drink) in cash to pay for your lunch. Give your money to SallyG when you arrive.

I know some folks might be on tight budgets. If the cost of the meal might keep you from coming, please Dmail me, and we'll get you covered. I don't want anybody to miss out.

Swapping of plants (with potting soil or dirt) that we can't bring inside can be done in the parking lot... the best time seems to be between 1:30 and 2. I know it's not an ideal arrangement, but bear in mind this was meant to be a seed swap. :-)

Please post on this thread if you're interested in coming. It's useful for the restaurant (and for me!) to have an approximate head count.

If you can't come but still want to swap seeds, please post here or on the seed swapping thread to ask somebody to volunteer to be your "seed fairy." You can post have/want lists, send your seeds and return postage to your person, and they'll send your seeds to you after the swap.

I had a blast at our previous seed swaps, and I'm so excited about this year's gathering!



~ Critter (Jill)

People planning to party!`
Buttoneer (Judy) & Bob
Critterologist (Jill, with Jim & Joyanna joining us for lunch)
NicnCarol (Critter's parents)
egnalg & Greenthumb99
Foxnfirefly (needs a ride from Falls Church area!)
Gitagal & Aina (her daughter!)
Haighr (Candee) & Steve
Holly & Ric
Marlene4 + 1
Ruby & John
Theresa (critter's friend), possibly also her parents/brother (family of "avid gardeners!")

This message was edited Feb 2, 2012 11:30 PM

This message was edited Feb 9, 2012 3:59 PM

This message was edited Feb 10, 2012 1:36 PM

Thumbnail by critterologist
Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)


The restaurant is in Prospect Plaza, at 417 S. Jefferson St,near a nest of interchanges where 15, 340, 40, and 270 all come together. This makes it both easy to get to from different directions, and hard to describe, but these directions worked well last year, LOL. McDonalds is at the front of the Plaza, easy to spot. Chef Lin is toward the center of this strip mall.

Combine these directions with a look at the map!

From the north, coming down 15 South. Get off at the Jefferson Street exit, turning LEFT (going east). Cross over the highway, and Prospect Plaza will be immediately on your LEFT (turn LEFT at the light).

From the south, along 15-340 North (the two highways merge together just south of Frederick): Stay on 340. (Don't get off onto 15 North when it diverges.) 340 more or less becomes Jefferson Street. Keep left. You'll cross the bridge over the highway, and then turn LEFT at the light into Prospect Plaza.

From the south, along 270N (coming up from the DC beltway): Get off at the Jefferson Street exit and turn RIGHT at the end of the ramp (east onto Jefferson). Make an immediate LEFT at the next light to turn into Prospect Plaza.

From the east (Baltimore), you'll be on 70 West. Take exit 53b, 15 North. Take the first exit onto Jefferson Street. Turn RIGHT at the end of the ramp (east onto Jefferson). Make an immediate LEFT at the next light to turn into Prospect Plaza.

From the west: you'll be on 70 East. Take the exit for 15 North. You're now on 15-340. Stay on 340. (Don't get off onto 15 North when it diverges.) 340 more or less becomes Jefferson Street. Stay to the left. You'll cross the bridge over the highway, and then turn left at the light into Prospect Plaza.

From Dutch Plant Farm, at 151 Baughmans Lane. Turn LEFT onto 40 East. Take the first RIGHT onto 15 South. Take the first exit, Jefferson Street. Turn LEFT onto Jefferson Street, cross over the highway, and then turn LEFT at the light into Prospect Plaza.

Dutch Plant Farm is off "the Golden Mile," highway 40, W Patrick St. At the corner of 40 and Baughman's Lane, there's a shopping center with a JoAnn's. DPF is just behind the shopping center. Coming from 15 onto 40W, you'd turn RIGHT at the first light onto Baughmans Lane and then take the 2nd entrance on the LEFT into DPF. (The 1st left is the side entrance into the shopping plaza.)

This message was edited Feb 8, 2012 11:50 PM

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

OK, I need some feedback here... In the past, we've had a thread for seed swap discussion (a place to talk about seeds you could bring or to say, "yes please, I could really use some purple fringed thistleberry seed!"), and we've had a separate thread for posting have/want lists (with 1 post per person, edited as needed, to make it easy to find everybody's list). We could do the same thing this year, or I could set up a database for all our seed lists and trades. (Each person has an entry in the database where they can keep track of their seeds.) We did the database thing in a recent by-mail swap, and it worked really well... It might be simpler to keep everything in this forum, or it might be easier to organize things on another link. (We'd still have a thread here for seed chat, requests, etc.)

Please let me know where you want to do seed lists, thread here or database. One way or another, I'll get us set up soon. Thanks!

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

Oh, and be sure to click on the thumbnail for this thread, because I think the bee is really cute!

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Count me in, Jill. I would not want to miss it. Of course--that would mean that sallyg has to come too.
We know she will--and be the $$$$ lady.

I have no idea how a database works--so my vote is for the old way--on a Thread.
I am trying to re-interest "Donner" (Sally) to get back to us.
I recently D-mailed her with an AV question--and she said she has really been busy and has not
been in touch with anything on the MAF in the last year.

I will send her the link you posted for the Swap.

The Swap's date is also my daughter's B-day.....Aina will turn 47....Aggghhhh! I have a child THAT old????/


Silver Spring, MD(Zone 7a)

Thanks for organizing this, Jill! I'm afraid I can only stay for an hour, but I'd still like to come! I'm looking for common herb seeds, such as parsley, cilantro, and basil. I think I'm going to have plenty of seeds leftover from wintersowing. As far as having a separate database, I'm not experienced enough to know which way would be more convenient for everyone.

Pippi told me the food was great at this restaurant. I'm looking forward to seeing you all again!

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)


Years ago--well, a few--I got seeds from Jill for 3 different Basils. I have been growing them--
and have been patient enough to collect seeds.....believe me--most of them need toothpicks to get the seeds out!
If no one else has them--I will.

--Italian (Genovese) Basil (from Italy)
--Lemon Lime basil citrusy flavor...
--Thai basil--has an Anise flavor--used in Oriental dishes.

Sweet basil can be had at any garden center...mucho seedlings per pot.

Honestly, ss, it is better to buy the common herbs (Parsley--Cilantro--regular Basil) at a HD
already growing than to mess with growing anything from seed. Just NOT worth the time!

BTW--Parsley and Oregano, as well as Rosemary-- can overwinter outside and continue growing next year.


Silver Spring, MD(Zone 7a)

Thanks, Gita! I'm actually going to grow the "food" herbs separately (near the kitchen) and grow annual herbs all around the garden for non-cooking purposes.

I'm interested in growing a bunch of parsley in a partly shady area to see if it attracts butterflies! I heard it was good butterfly/caterpillar food. :-)

I got what was labeled Thai basil last year and even saved the seeds, but it looks nothing like the pictures of Thai basil I see on line! The one I got bolted right away, but the flowers were so beautiful I just let it flower. I'm interested in growing it around the roses, because I heard basil deterred certain unwanted insects, and it would be such a lovely companion plant.

I already have all the winter-hardy herbs I need (thyme, oregano, rosemary, lavender, mint, sage). But I'd love to grow dozens and dozens of basil varieties!

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

SSG, you're a kindred spirit! Joyanna and I are going to grow out bunches of different basils this year. I'll take a run through my stash for you. It might be easier for you to try to pre-arrange some trades if you won't be able to stay until after 2... I'll have bags set up on a table again with everybody's name on a bag, which makes it easy to set seeds aside for a particular person and just drop them into their bag when you arrive.

Gita, I'm glad you're saving basil seeds too! I did get a lot of the Italian basil and Hot & Spicy basil seeds this year, but I didn't grow Lemon or Lime (I think you're growing the mix I shared one year when my Lemon & Lime seeds got mixed up together). I've found if you let the little seed "pods" get nice and dry, you can rub them to crush the pods and then use a sieve to separate chaff & seeds (seeds and chaff-dust fall through the sieve, then I blow away the chaff-dust). Joyanna helped me rub the basil for the seeds this year!

I need to order hybrid pepper seeds and a few other things, probably from HPS, so I'll post a thread for anybody wanting to split packets or share shipping charges and put a link here or on the seed swapping thread.

Here's the seed swapping discussion thread:

and here's the thread for have/want lists (if it ain't broke, don't fix it, seems to be the consensus!):

(basils in a railing planter)

Thumbnail by critterologist
Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

Yes that bee is very cute!

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Jill--Yes! I got all my original Basil seeds from you.

Now--just rubbing the dried "pods" will not get you all the seeds that can be had.
I, literally, took each little bloom-pod in hand and, using a wood toothpick, dug out 4-5 more
seeds from each of the "pods". They ARE in there!!!
Very tedious--but can be done while watching TV or something.

I will have plenty of L&L seeds...Thai basil also.

Hey! Did you know there is now a BLACK red pepper???
A woman at work (last summer) was eating one. I took out all the seeds.
The Pepper was store-bought--so not sure how the seeds will grow out. Just found this interesting....

I DID grow out a couple of your "Ornamental Black Peppers". They grew more upright and bigger
than the Purple ornamental peppers...


Thumbnail by Gitagal
Damascus, MD(Zone 7a)

Jill, thank you for organizing the swap. Please count me in. I will have no seeds to contribute, but will bring a table prize.

Gita, thank you for giving me the "kick". Sorry about "falling off the horizon" for such a long time. I have been thinking of you guys/gals although I didn't come to the forum very much :-). Now I have a lot to catch up.

I am looking forward to seeing everybody.


Odenton, MD(Zone 7b)

I will be coming too!! Wouldn't miss it for the world.

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

Yippee! I'll try to send out a couple of Dmail "blasts" over the weekend, but please do help me spread the word... thanks!

Lucketts, VA(Zone 7a)

Jill, Pat (ecnalg) will attend for sure. I have a prior commitment that may or may not occur that day. I will let you know my disposition as soon as I know for sure one way or the other. Thanks once again for your never-ending organizational efforts!

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

Catbird, and Gita, you know you are riding with me. I can take more too, if anyone wants a ride share from Baltimore, or Ellicot City/ along Rt. 70.

annapolis, MD(Zone 7b)

Sally, tentatively save a spot for me. Thanks.

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

Sure thing!

Crozet, VA

Oh yeah......can't say for sure yea or nay...need to speak with the chauffer first and see what he has planned for that day. We haven't attempted to attend any of the seed swaps in the past due to believing the drive is too much in one day. We were proven wrong when attending the plant swap at Jill's last fall. We can do a day trip and be no worse for the wear.

Coleup.....please think seriously about already know the online closeness of this group, I hope that you will join us for the in person won't be sorry.

Since Jill's fall swap I have had the good fortune to do some behind the scenes, through dmails, to get to know a few of you a bit better on a personal level and I have not been disappointed in the least. This group serves as one of my connections with the outside world....above and beyond the hillside I live on.

I thank my lucky stars when seven or so years ago while I was researching vacuum cleaners I found a link to a conversation on Dyson's cleaners on Dave's Garden.... little did I know how important these message boards would become to me. I have never regretted the day.

Hope to see everyone on February 11.


Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

Ruby, I know you may not be able to leave the critters on their own, but you and John would be welcome to stay with us either before or after the seed swap. I'll extend the same offer to Stormy & her SO (if she's back online soon) and to anybody who might be coming from some distance away... We have a queen bed in the guest room, 2 twin beds in Joyanna's room (she'll move out for the night), and a sleeper sofa in the living room. Just sayin'... :-)

Dover, PA(Zone 6b)

Ric and I will be there not sure how much seed swapping we will do but lots of visiting.

Crozet, VA

Jill, you are so kind to offer for us to stay over. The trip to your place in the fall was in no way too taxing on neither John or myself, so if we make it, we will head home in the afternoon. I still haven't had an opportunity to ask him about coming, but he will be here most of the day tomorrow and I will talk to him about it then and let you know if you will need to add two more to the restaurant list.

Ric and Holly, your being there certainly sweetens the package. It is always really great to see and chat with both of you.


Falls Church, VA(Zone 7b)

Jill, you know I want to be there again this year. Only thing is a way. The date is open as far as I can see. So, if anyone from my area is going, please D-mail me if you've got room in your ar for extra cargo I'll keep a watch out and if anything breaks, I'll let you know.

Laurel, DE(Zone 7a)

Hi Jill,
I'll be there and Steve would like to come along so count on 2 of us. I only have a few seeds and don't need any for myself, but will be bringing a gift for the prize table.
See you there on the 11th!

This message was edited Jan 26, 2012 7:42 AM

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)


Laurel, DE(Zone 7a)

Thanks Sallyg, I'll see you there!

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

I posted about a couple of "group buy" opportunities over on the seed swapping discussion thread for this swap. Basically, I'm ordering seeds from HPS and Atlas gloves from Palmfit, and anybody who wants "in" on the good prices can order with me. :-)

details on this post for gloves:
and this post for HPS:

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)


My daughter, Aina, a budding gardener, will be coming with me. She will just be "My Guest"
She will NOT have any sees to trade--nor expect any seeds for just being there.

I am just excited that she will come with me. It is my treat to her--as it is her Birthday on Feb. 11th.
She will turn 47.....AAAGHHH!!!

Please add her to the count. She LOVES Chinese food. I told her she can go nuts over all the stuff
at "Chef Lins"....

I am a Happy Mom!!! Gita

Dover, PA(Zone 6b)

That's great Gita. Jill will just have to share being a Happy Mom this year. :-} LOL Ric

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

Mine is cuter. ;-) Kidding, Gita, you know I'm kidding! I'm really excited about finally getting to meet one of your girls. I think I'm turning 47 this year also... what does it mean when you have to think through the arithmetic to figure out your age? LOL, in my case I think it means I'm just too distracted and busy and happy to keep such "trivial" details at the front of my mind. Or it's just that I'm blond. And, by golly, I don't care how dark my hair grew out after chemo -- by the power vested in me by Clairol #98, I'm still a blond!

I hope everybody will help spread word of this swap! When you notice somebody posting on another forum who's from the area, please take a minute to write a post or an email inviting them to the swap (either post a link to this thread or just direct them to the MAG forum). That's the sort of "personal connection" that can encourage somebody (whether a new or long-time DGer) to jump into one of our gatherings... our community grows because it's friendly & welcoming!

I'm getting ready to place my HPS order, although I'll likely still be able to add to it tomorrow morning... So far, I've got Gypsy, Carmen, and Flamingo sweet peppers (non-bell hybrids), Holy Mole hybrid pepper for Ric, either pink cosmos or purple-veined petunia for Joyanna, Hypoestrum (polka dot plants), and thinking about something to share in LadyG's memory, maybe their combo pellet with pink petunias and white bacopa.

Hopefully I haven't left the APS order until too late, but they usually ship out pretty promptly. *fingers crossed* although I can always mail out a few seeds post-haste (so to speak) after the swap.

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Just wanted to say I will be bringing a gift--or two. Gita

Huntsville, AL(Zone 7b)

I don't believe I'm going to miss it this year, I'll be on my way to Norway the following Monday and doing some last minute mad packing on the weekend! I hope y'all have a great time, eat some SUSHI for me!!!! Tweedle Dee!

Silver Spring, MD(Zone 7a)

Ruby, I'd love some houseplants! Umbrella plant and spider plant, please!

annapolis, MD(Zone 7b)

Quote from Foxnfirefly :
Jill, you know I want to be there again this year. Only thing is a way. The date is open as far as I can see. So, if anyone from my area is going, please D-mail me if you've got room in your ar for extra cargo I'll keep a watch out and if anything breaks, I'll let you know.

Have you been able to arrange a ride yet? Inquiring minds want to know!

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

Oh, no! Becky, can't you just stay up all night Sunday packing instead? LOL

Fleming Island, FL(Zone 9a)

I'd like to attempt to get to this. Will be in the area ~this time.
Can let you know definately next week.

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

BECKY - boo. Take your hugs tho!! (((Becky))) and pass along these ((Chantell))) and have a BLAST in Norway!!!

Qwilter- Yay- LMK if you want to ride or follow, I am not far from Severn. Gita may be following me which leaves me another seat open.

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

Woohooo! Road trip caravan from Baltimore!

Odenton, MD(Zone 7b)

Qwilter, I sure hope you can make it.

Fleming Island, FL(Zone 9a)

The quilt group won't appreciate me not staying longer, but...............

Hopefully I'll get up there ~1PM.

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