A gardener’s paradise on Freecycle ?

9 Mar

free-hosta-plants-columbia-md.jpgI think it would be just grand if there was a Gardeners’ Paradise on Freecycle. A site just for perennial plants wanted and given. A site where people could find homes for (as opposed to The Dump, aka Alpha Ridge Landfill) their unwanted hardscape. A place where neighbors could help neighbors beautify their yards and gardens … for free.

Freecycle is great, but there’s just tooooo much stuff there. There’s no sorting or tagging of information. So, a person in Steven’s Forest who is hoping to find some free perennials has to sort through baby coupon offers, kids books, a cat carrier, ostrich cowboy boots in size 12.5 and all sorts of other items. Even if they find free perennials, they might have to drive out to Dayton to get them.

I have some further ideas for how this could be implemented. I’m talking about a hyper-local service here. Post a note in the comments section if you want to take this concept up a notch.

In the meantime, this weekend, in that brief period of time when it was actually sunny and warm, I dug up several dozen medium-sized, green-leafed hostas and some yellow heirloom irises. Free on the Columbia, Md., Freecycle group.


I’ve blogged about using Freecycle in our community here and here.


The hostas look like the plants pictured here.


7 Responses to “A gardener’s paradise on Freecycle ?”

  1. bob moon March 9, 2008 at 4:25 pm #

    all of this, and a million times more, will be the posibilities of creativity thinking that will go into the planning of Thunder Hill Nature Park on a 300 acre farm in the center of Columbia.

  2. Illysa Izenberg March 9, 2008 at 4:34 pm #

    I would definitely join this site. Each year I did up dozens of orange and yellow daylilies — I like them but they multiply too fast — as well as other perennials. I’d love to be able to have a specific place to list them. Also, i’d love to have a place to go to request or respond to offers of perennials.

    Count me in if you start such a group,

  3. Mary Kate Murray March 9, 2008 at 9:44 pm #

    Gotta be honest, from the standpoint of being a poster of plants on freecycle, I’ve always gotten an abundant number of responses within hours. Too many to go through. So from the giving away standpoint it’s no problem. However if I wanted to find plants to pick up I imagine it would be harder. (Illysa, if you go to freecycle.org you can join a Columbia group and your daylilies will go in no time flat.)

    Freecycle is an awesome idea that is probably ready to evolve further.

  4. Iconic Xer March 9, 2008 at 11:11 pm #

    MKM, I might have edited my original blog post too heavily and lost some of the data in my post. I’ve certainly had the same experiences as you as a poster: stuff goes in a flash on Freecycle. The problem is on the wanting side. If I want something, I have to wade through a lot of clutter. I was thinking a site specific to plant exchanges would be great. Something with tagging functions, user profiles and such.

    You might like this, Mary Kate, but what got me thinking was an earlier post where I was offering some irises. They went in less than an hour. I gave them to the first person who responded. But then, as I read the emails, I noticed that the next two responders were from Thunder Hill, where I also live. “Dang!” I thought. “I’d much rather have given them to a neighbor in Thunder Hill.” Hence, my post and call for a gardeners’ paradise site. Noting location would be a meaningful component of the exchange.

  5. JessieX June 16, 2008 at 10:58 pm #

    I’ve had some email conversations with the good people at Freecycle. They simply don’t allow niche Freecycle groups, only geographic groups. So, no go on the idea, at least it’s a no-go via Freecycle.

  6. andyswarbs June 17, 2008 at 12:40 am #

    If you want to do this in your existing freecycling group then check out http://www.grouply.com, which helps you to set filter for freecycling emails on say words like garden, flower, plant.

    Otherwise if you want a specialist group create one yourself. Don’t wait for freecycle to create one for you – just do it! If you want help just ask. There are a lot of specialist groups out there already, in fact I belonged to one gardening group, but only as a support.

  7. Lena Boucher June 18, 2008 at 5:54 pm #

    You should check out LocalDataPlace (http://free.LocalDataPlace.com ) which was built specifically for local recycling.

    Unlike Freecycle, there are categories, including one for “Lawn & Garden”. You can bookmark just that page or even get an RSS feed of just those items.

    I hope you’ll check out the site and please get in touch if you have any questions or comments. You can email me directly at lena@localdataplace.com or IM on yahoo for ‘localdataplace’.


    Lena Boucher

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