Local Seed SwapsIf you're in a relatively large city there may be seed swaps that happen right in front of your nose. We attended our first Snoqualmie Valley Seed Exchange this year. This particular exchange was free and open to the public. You could join whether you had seeds to trade or not. There were many tables set up with seeds organized by type. They received seed donations from nearly a dozen seed companies for the event including: Ed Hume Seeds, Pinetree Garden Seeds, High Mowing Seeds, Johnny's Seeds, Peaceful Valley Farm Supply, Baker Creek Seeds, Bountiful Gardens, Adaptive Seeds, Territorial Seeds, Wild Garden Seed and the Organic Seed Alliance. In addition to all of these seeds, people were encouraged to add their saved seeds or extra packets of seeds to the tables as well but it was not required. I donated some of my bean and mustard seeds and picked out several varieties of tomatoes, greens, radishes and herbs. This is an annual event here that I'm sure we will go to again in the future.
Another local group we participate in is called the Green Elephant Plant Swap group. They meet a four times a year and exchange everything from seeds, hardwood cuttings and plants. We've gone to several of those events and always bring home something exciting.
Seed Swap Websites and ForumsEarthineer is my favorite seed swap site. You can search for exactly what you're looking for as well as post what you have for trade. You can then contact the person that has what you want and offer up a trade. I've done a few trades through this site by searching for some particular seed I was looking for. They also have an annual "pay it forward" event in February where you can list seeds or receive seeds for nothing in return and the recipient of the seeds is encouraged to plant and save seeds from whatever they get and pass them on to others next year.
There are a few other sites which I have not yet tried like HeirloomSeedSwap and GardenWeb Forum.
YoutubeI also follow several gardeners on youtube and there are a few that do seed giveaways every year or several times a year. One of those channels that does several seed giveaways by you simply mailing a self addressed envelope to them is Love Your Land. She posts lots of gardening how to videos and has done several seed giveaways on her channel.
Group SwapsBig Family Homestead is a youtuber that hosts a group seed swap with groups of 20 people. I've participated in a couple of group seed swaps like this and the way those work is you send in 20 (or however many participants there are) packets of seeds to the seed swap host, as does all the other participants and then he re-distributes all those packets to everyone so you will get back 20 different packets of seeds and you don't know what you're gonna get till it comes in the mail. Those are always fun to do. I've also participated in a group swap via Instagram that fdclinton hosted which had 14 participants. Below was my submission to that swap.
Last year's seeds from the Big Family Homestead swap:
If you know of other sites or ways to swap seeds, feel free to leave your links and suggestions in the comments.