Darien Payne discusses various seeds with a participant in the seventh annual Snoqualmie Valley Seed Exchange. Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo

Valley seed exchange continues to grow; annual event draws greater numbers each year

Turnout for the seventh annual seed exchange, held Saturday at Cedarcrest High School, was better than expected as word of this community event continues to grow. Several hundred people filled the commons, and some of the classrooms for the opportunity to pick up some firsthand knowledge from gardening experts at the scheduled workshops, and a wide assortment of saved seeds.

The large crowd seemed to be in search of a variety of things, said volunteer and new resident of the Valley, Talinna Appling, but calendula was popular this year.

Appling said she found out about the event because of her work in horticulture, plus “I’ve been an aficionado about saving seed for a long time.”

Despite the close quarters around the seed tables, an atmosphere of sharing prevailed, even down to the youngest participants. Mabel Stout, at 18 months, offered me a seed envelope as we both waited in line at one of the tables.

The all-volunteer seed exchange annually features gardening workshops, a hot lunch by donation, and several vendors offering gardening information and products, although the main event is the seed, free for the planting, available to all who participate.

Learn more at www.snoqualmievalleyseedexchange.org.

Cedarcrest high School FFA members Megan Reid and Madison Bean volunteer at the seed exchange. Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo

Talina Appling answers questions as seed gatherers fill their packets and jot down notes. Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo

Mary Nichol and George Krasle of Woodinville take a break from the crowd to tally their seed collection. Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo

Mabel Stout offers a seed packet. Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo

Cassidy Stallings adds to her floral arrangement at the children’s crafts table at the Snoqualmie Valley Seed Exchange. Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo

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