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RACINE — Plant lovers, horticulturists and those aspiring to have a green thumb are all welcome to attend a community Plant Swap at Sanders Park, 4809 Wood Road, Shelter Area 2.

The swap will start at noon on May 13.

Amy Macemon, the event organizer, is looking forward to connecting with the community through the exchange of greenery, seeds and more, for the third year.

Online group inspires in-person event

The event was originally inspired by an online forum that eventually became an in-person reality. Macemon was a member of the “Plant Swap” group on the NextDoor website for the Racine area.

“The goal of the group is to share/swap unwanted plants,” said Macemon.

Three years ago, Macemon reached out to Jen Bass, another member of the group. Together, they decided to host a plant swap in person.

“We had a great turnout the first time and people requested for us to continue to host them, so we have,” said Macemon. “The second year, we got the Racine Urban Garden Network involved, too. They set up an educational table and encouraged their community gardeners to attend.”

About 60 people come each year to swap plants.

All people and plants welcome

“I’m an avid gardener so I know how expensive it can be. Swapping plants is a great way to diversify your garden on a budget,” explained Macemon.

Not only is it fun to garden, tend to plants, and even explore a variety of seeds that may potentially be added to one’s garden, but incorporating this activity into your life is healthy and beneficial.

“Gardening is a great activity to keep yourself active while enjoying the benefit of delicious, whole foods,” she said.

plant swap
All are welcome at the Plant Swap. – Credit: Amy Macemon

The swaps

Want to see what the event is all about? Details about each swap are below.

Macemon asks that if people are able to bring seeds or plants to the swap, to come for the first half of the event from noon to 1:30 p.m. to swap with others who are also bringing items.

Plant Swap

Before attending:

Credit: Amy Macemon
  • Label plants (Use popsicle sticks, plastic purchased plant labels, or cut-up, old plastic containers to label)
  • Pack bags or boxes to carry your plants in and out.
  • Some plastic bags and boxes will be provided but only in limited quantities.

At the event:

Organizers for the Plant Swap at Sanders Park will hand out tickets for each plant brought. There will be groups for plants that require shade, part shade, sun, or houseplants. People are welcome to take as many plants as were brought.

For example, if you bring five plants, you can take five new plants home with you.

Seed Swap

Before attending:

  • Pre-package smaller portions of seeds you want to trade
  • Label seeds in their own envelopes/bags or swap the whole package
    • Small paper envelopes and Sharpies will be provided for swapping seeds.

Free plants available

From 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., people who are unable to bring plants or swap seeds are able to attend the event as well.

At that time, people can browse free plants and seeds. Please bring your own sealable baggies and a Sharpie for swapping seeds. Some seed packages and Sharpies will be provided but only in limited quantities.

plant swap
Credit: Amy Macemon

Other information to consider

After the swap, people are welcome to hang out, bring food to grill, and talk plants with fellow community members.

To make this event possible, small donations are being collected to cover the event space and other items that help the event to run smoothly.

“Please consider making a $5 donation so we can continue this event each year! Extra proceeds and plants will be donated to Racine Urban Garden Network,” says the event organizer.


To help organizers prepare, click the button below to fill out the Google Form.

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