Seed swap rules - Useful tips for seed swap preparation

We collected the most important rules to be followed by seed swap participants, in order to take part in an exciting and smooth seed exchange event.

  1.   What can I bring to the event?

You can bring:

  • seeds of vegetables, herbs and cereals, tubers, bulbs, stems, sprouts, grafts and seedlings from your own garden
  • open-pollinated varieties which you have grown and maintained for at least 2-3 years

Not allowed:

  • industrially packaged seeds
  • protected varieties (that is varieties included in the national list of varieties) due to variety protection issues
  • hybrid plants
  • coated seeds 
  • GMO plants


  1.   How many seeds can I bring?
  • If you have a lot of seeds, tubers and grafts which you would like to share, or if you would like to bring crops and photos for demonstration, you can ask for a table from the organizers.
  • If you are a beginner in gardening, and you do not have own seeds, you can ask for smaller quantities of seeds (up to 4-5 bags) from the others.

We encourage everyone to sow the received seeds, reproduce them, and bring your own seeds to the next seed swap!


  1.   How many seeds can I take home?

Only as much as you are sure you will plant. In case you collect a lot of seeds without planting them in the near future, much of the work of the person saving them will be wasted.


  1.   How many seeds should I put in a bag for "big" seeds?

In the case of melons, tomatoes, peppers, pumpkins, etc. each bag should contain at least 6 seeds.


  1.   How many seeds should I put in a bag for "small" seeds?

In the case of lettuce, cabbage, carrot, beetroot, onion, radish, turnip, chard, etc. at least 20 seeds should be in each bag.


  1.   Can I sell seeds at the seed swap?

No sales are allowed. Remember, the point of seed swaps is to get seed samples (which you can reproduce) for free in exchange for other seeds, but not for money.


  1.   Should I pre-package the seeds?

It is a good idea to pre-package the seed samples at home, because this way you can pay attention to the many interesting people and the new information during seed exchange.

It is the easiest and most environmentally friendly way to pack the seeds into strong paper bags which can be closed or folded well, and can be easily labelled with the required data (name of the species and the variety, year of sowing, possible cultivation advice, name and contact data). It is a good idea to pack your seeds at home, since this allows for quick and smooth exchanges and more time for discussion.


  1.       If you have photos of the plants and their fruits or you have the fruits themselves, bring them to the sees swap. A delicious bread baked from your own cereal is also welcome!


  1.   Label your bags!

The best is to have pre-labeled or printed bags, because this case all the necessary information will be at hand. 

The labels of the seeds should contain the name of the species and the variety besides the year and the place of production:

  • Your name and the place where the plant was grown
  • The Hungarian name of the plant and the variety: e.g Green Zebra tomato
  • If the plant is annual, biennial or perennial
  • The origin of the seeds and the year of collection
  • The latin name of the species (if known) and some contact information (e-mail, phone number)


  1.   Ask questions and take notes!

You can get a lot of useful information and experience from the person giving the seeds to you.

You can find out when to sow, what conditions are preferred by the plant, or how to care for it. You can also get information on how to use it freshly or how to process it in various ways. In addition, you can learn how to save, handle and store the seeds in practice.

Take notes in order to be prepared for sowing the newly obtained seeds.


  1.   Sow the seeds, save new seeds from the plants, and share them during the next seed swap. :-)


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