House Plant Swap: What You Need to Know

Hopefully you've heard we are hosting our 2nd House Plant Swap on February 8th. But unless you've been to one before, you may not know exactly what a Plant Swap is, or how it works.

House plant swaps are a relatively new "in-person" development of the house plant mania sweeping social media. It's basically a modern take on a traditional seed swap.

Since house plant swaps are pretty new on the scene, most attendees are first timers. There is no need to be shy about signing up, we are going fill you in on what happens before, during and after a house plant swap.

House Plant Swap (3)

We hosted our first House Plant Swap in November of 2019 and it was a ton of fun and a huge success. Over 70 plant lovers attended and most had WAY MORE than just a couple plants to swap. A good time was had by all, we raffled off two amazing, unique house plants and every recipient left with new plants, including a free mini-succulent from us.

The People & The Vibe

Plant people are super excited about plants and there's nothing they love more than talking about their collections. They are also very supportive and often highly educated about plants. You are always going to learn something new at a House Plant Swap. It's the perfect opportunity for newbies and experienced plant people to meet, learn something new about plants and become plant friends in real life. And most importantly, you'll walk away with NEW, FREE, HOUSE PLANTS! 

And the vibe? It's casual, chill and fun!! Join in with a smile and enjoy the experience.

Propagating Plants

In your plant collection, you may see a momma plant that has babies ready to go or looks like she needs some space to breathe in her pot. This is your chance to re-pot those new babies or divide plants that are growing very close together. We can help walk you through how to do this on our YouTube channel or feel free to give us a call!

House Plant Swap Barn Nursery

The Plants

What kind of plants do you bring to a House Plant Swap?


Seriously, the more the merrier. Do we and other attendees want to see lots of cool unusual varieties? Of Course. But any plant will do. There is always someone willing to take on a new baby plant. 

RULE NUMBER ONE: The more unusual the plant, the better the swap. (So bring your good ones!)

And your plants don't have to be young. Many attendees bring any plants they are willing to give up. Sometimes they just have too many of a certain variety, other times, a plant has outgrown the space they have available. Bring whatever you have.

House Plant Swap Illinois

The Timeline of a Plant Swap

In general, most plant swaps follow a similar timeline.

First, people arrive with their plants.  We will have long tables set up, so you can grab a spot on the table and set up your plants. We will provide small cards to label your plants.

Next, comes the mix and mingle portion of the day. Wander around, see what's available and get to know some other plant lovers. 

RULE NUMBER TWO:  There is no swapping during this portion of the event. Save the trades for the official start time of the swap.

TIP: Only touch plants with permission from the owner. We want to reassure each owner, as they walk around, that their plants will be safe to swap soon and not be swiped. 

Once everyone has settled in and had a chance to look around, our team will announce the start of the swap. At this point, everyone can start discussing trades and swaps.

We typically give attendees about 30 minutes to complete the actual swap.

House Plant Swap The Barn Nursery

Once swapping is done, most of our attendees linger. We will be giving away a free succulent to attendees and raffling off two unique house plants at this time, which also marks the end of the official swap.

And then? Stay and talk plants! See what's left and maybe grab a few more plants. Enjoy some refreshments and hang out with other attendees and our experts. During this time, there is a lot of fun "plant talk", so don't be shy and leave too soon.

You can learn more about Plant Swaps by watching this YouTube video by Summer Raines, a popular house plant guru.

Please join us this February for our next plant swap, which we hope will be even BIGGER and BETTER. Start propagating baby plants now to prepare. OR visit us with your house plants and we will propagate them for you. 

Once again, we are asking you to RSVP for this free event so we can accurately prepare for all of you. You can register via this link on Event Brite.

Remember our garden center is open year-round. In January, our hours are Monday - Saturday 9am-4pm. Stop in for indoor gardening information, house plants and our final clearance on home and garden decor. 



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