Welcome to the 6th Annual NFTSRSS→To answer a question from a new member

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Name: Alana H
SE Kentucky (Zone 7a)
Dog Lover Butterflies Keeper of Poultry Rabbit Keeper Frogs and Toads Plant and/or Seed Trader
Seed Starter Greenhouse Annuals Morning Glories I helped beta test the first seed swap Garden Ideas: Level 1
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poisondartfrog
Dec 22, 2020 4:38 PM CST
@browneyedsusan, I saw your question on the wish list thread. I am assuming your question has to do with how you get the seeds you want.
I copied this from my post in the 2nd NFTSRSS, omitting some of the information that does not pertain to this swap. If this does not address your questions, ask again here.
I was as wordy then as I am now.

Important information about how the swap begins.
The opening few minutes of these automated swaps is a feeding frenzy. Imagine we are a school of smiling green-thumbed piranha. Or maybe not, but it is fun and exhilarating.

The swap begins at 7:00 pm eastern on January second. At the moment the clock strikes 7:00 pm eastern, you can spend the 4 tickets you receive for the first night. If 7 people want the same packet of seeds and only one is offered, the one with the quickest trigger finger will emerge the winner. For this reason it is a really great idea to assign stars to the seeds you are interested in so that you can start the swap in your wish list view from the swap dashboard with all of your favorites ready for you to select. In addition to the 4 tickets you receive at the opening of the swap, you will earn 1 extra ticket for every 2 items that are claimed from your list. Those can be used as you earn them.
When the swap opens if you have your wish list ready you can go directly to it for selecting your seeds instead of wading through the big list. Just don't forget to check the big list or the 'view recent events' link now and then as the swap goes on to see if there is anything new you want to add to your wish list. Your wish list will appear in descending order with your 5 star picks at the top of the list. Alongside and just to the right of the stars for each seed there will be a treasure chest icon that only shows up when official trading begins. You click on that icon to request seeds. If those seeds are still available you will be asked to confirm your choice. Once you confirm it the seeds are yours and will appear in your 'bought' list on the main swap page. If the seeds have already been claimed you will know immediately so that you can move on to your next favorite choice. The system keeps track of what is left in real time so you will never leave wondering if you were successful. Nor will the system allow you to choose seeds if you have exhausted your tickets for that day. Tickets earned because you have had seeds chosen from your list will show up in your main page for this swap and you can use them as soon as they appear.
Although there is no minimum for this swap, the more seeds you enter the more opportunities that your seeds will be chosen and that you will have extra tickets. From a practical standpoint the most ticket earning potential is on day one when you will receive an extra ticket for every two packs you sell. After that the reward diminishes, so if multiplying your buying power is your number one goal, better to list more sooner rather than later. There are a lot of seeds and there will be a lot of tickets, so even people with small lists will have a chance to get great seeds and sometimes more than they offer.

Day 2, and going forward
On day 2, you receive 8 dibs at 7:00 pm eastern and can use them as soon as you receive them. Each day of the swap you will receive an increasing number of automatic dibs. As of 7:00 pm each day the number of earned dibs you receive will diminish. You will find yourself with fractions of dibs. Those portions of dibs cannot be used until you "sell" enough packets to make them "whole."
Don't expect to claim everything you want, but most will get some of what they have on their wish lists and some other great seeds they had not thought about. The idea is to have fun.
Name: Lisa
Boston, MA. (Zone 6a)
Winter Sowing Birds Foliage Fan Seed Starter Dog Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer
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ishareflowers
Dec 22, 2020 5:28 PM CST
@poisondartfrog, you're good.

I sent Susan to watch the tutorial.
Name: Alana H
SE Kentucky (Zone 7a)
Dog Lover Butterflies Keeper of Poultry Rabbit Keeper Frogs and Toads Plant and/or Seed Trader
Seed Starter Greenhouse Annuals Morning Glories I helped beta test the first seed swap Garden Ideas: Level 1
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poisondartfrog
Dec 22, 2020 5:37 PM CST
Ask me anything. I can ramble on for minutes. Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Shawn S.
Hampton, Virginia (Zone 8b)
Butterflies Morning Glories Annuals Irises Dahlias Zinnias
Orchids Region: United States of America Peonies
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ShawnSteve
Dec 22, 2020 8:33 PM CST
I think I'm just starting to understand just a little better, how this all works.
I asked Lisa, about the tutorial to view.
Though from where, do I go, to view this "dashboard" to see it ?

I'm also uncertain where I add my user name, to possibly list seeds, to have "tickets", to use, for any seeds, I may potentially add the stars.
Is it based in any way, to my own " plant list " ? If so, that would be of greatest help in accomplishing the task.
Thanks Alana.
Name: Michelle
Cheyenne, WY (Zone 5a)
Salvias
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MrsBinWY
Dec 22, 2020 10:13 PM CST
Hi Shawn,

Nice to see you here. 'Hope you join us. Once you do, when you go to the main page for this swap: https://garden.org/apps/swap/v... you will see the "dashboard" in the screenshot below:
Thumb of 2020-12-23/MrsBinWY/864a64

If I recall correctly, the dashboard changes slightly when the swap is active (to show available dibs, for example).

Click the "Manage your own swap list" link to begin adding items you have to offer. It's separate from your plant list. (I made that same mistake in my first swap, too.)

Click "Access the full tradelist for this swap" to review everyone's offers and begin building your wish list by starring the items you think you might like.

As Alana explained above, when you click "Access your wishlist for this swap," the items you've starred will appear, in descending order (five stars first, four stars next, etc.). This is also the page you want to be in when the "dibbing" opens on January 2, 7 p.m. Eastern.

Watching the video a couple times will help. It's a fantastic swapping system. I suspect everyone feels a bit intimidated at first. Five minutes after the first night's starting bell, they're hooked!
Name: Shawn S.
Hampton, Virginia (Zone 8b)
Butterflies Morning Glories Annuals Irises Dahlias Zinnias
Orchids Region: United States of America Peonies
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ShawnSteve
Dec 22, 2020 11:42 PM CST
Thank you for that, Michelle.
As it takes me a little while to familiarize myself, to more easily navigate the system,
.
Thank you so much, for kindly taking the time, to direct me to the areas I need to look at.
I may try to seriously make an effort at participating.

My main concern I've noticed recently, & that seems to be an ongoing shortage of padded envelopes, & I sure hope that hasn't created a problem at my first attempt at joining in, with the other NGA members.

Lacking any new padded envelopes, I'm not risking DOA seeds & ruining a reasonable expectation... I will attempt to try & locate some.

If not far enough in advance, I may delay, until there is another trade, & I also have more, of other fresh seed varieties available.
Name: Morgan
IL (Zone 5b)
Winter Sowing Native Plants and Wildflowers Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Photography Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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molanic
Dec 23, 2020 12:39 AM CST
ShawnSteve said:
Is it based in any way, to my own " plant list " ? If so, that would be of greatest help in accomplishing the task.
Thanks Alana.

You can use your existing main "plant list" to help create your swap list. I can see from your profile that you already have a plant list created. There should be a symbol by each entry in the plant list that looks like the recycling symbol (a triangle of arrows). When you click on that it creates a new entry in your swap list with that plant's name, so you don't have to retype in the names. Then you just have to fill in the other information for the swap list like the number of packets.

Regarding the packaging, for this swap you only mail one package to the host. Seeds are pretty light and a small light box won't add much more weight than a bubble envelope. I reuse old bubble envelopes all the time too, just slap some extra packing tape on them to seal them up well. Unless you were referring to a shortage of the usps flat rate bubble envelopes? I don't know if there is a shortage of them or not this year. I don't use them normally since the only advantage to them is not having to weigh the package yourself if you're using online postage for a pickup/drop-off. A cheap postal scale pays for itself after mailing just a few packages. If you're waiting in line for a clerk or using the self-serve postal kiosk then the package gets weighed anyways. You'd be hard pressed to find a case when using flat-rate is cheaper than weighing it.

I'm hoping there aren't too many extreme delays with the postal service in January. I haven't had any issues recently, but I know others have been complaining about it recently. It's to be expected I guess. It's normally a busy time of year and then adding on covid and all the cutbacks doesn't help any.


Name: Lisa
Boston, MA. (Zone 6a)
Winter Sowing Birds Foliage Fan Seed Starter Dog Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer
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ishareflowers
Dec 23, 2020 2:34 AM CST
Looks like I'm late to the party Rolling on the floor laughing

Shawn Steve, I answered your tree mail but it looks like the great players have you covered. Smiling

I hope you decide to join in!

Name: Michelle
Cheyenne, WY (Zone 5a)
Salvias
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MrsBinWY
Dec 23, 2020 4:32 AM CST
molanic said:You can use your existing main "plant list" to help create your swap list. I can see from your profile that you already have a plant list created. There should be a symbol by each entry in the plant list that looks like the recycling symbol (a triangle of arrows). When you click on that it creates a new entry in your swap list with that plant's name, so you don't have to retype in the names. Then you just have to fill in the other information for the swap list like the number of packets.


Thank you Morgan for that great tip!

Name: Morgan
IL (Zone 5b)
Winter Sowing Native Plants and Wildflowers Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Photography Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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molanic
Dec 23, 2020 11:47 AM CST
I think the main plant list tool on the site is pretty slick and can keep you organized... if you keep up with it, which I haven't been! My initial idea was to keep it up to date as far as what is marked as "have", "used to have", and "want". Then I made a custom category named "seed" for plants that I can collect seed from. I'd planned to the filter the view to only show plants I currently have AND can collect seed from to remind me to actually go collect the seed. Then if I was in a swap I could just use that import icon on the plant list to add new things to my swap list.

The plant list also serves as a reminder to take some photos of the plants I have to add to the database and earn some acorns for the raffles. I'd also thought it would be cool to be able to use the plant list and plant database to create uniform labels for seed packets and plant markers. Right now I use an Access database to do some of that, but haven't been keeping up with it too well either. I went to use it this year after my two year hiatus from seed swaps and couldn't remember how I'd set it up anymore! Brain farts! Just like looking at that plant you've had in your yard for many years and now you suddenly can't remember the name of it for some reason. D'Oh!
Name: Shawn S.
Hampton, Virginia (Zone 8b)
Butterflies Morning Glories Annuals Irises Dahlias Zinnias
Orchids Region: United States of America Peonies
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ShawnSteve
Dec 23, 2020 12:21 PM CST
I nearly failed, at collecting some seeds, as I hadn't even considered joining into a later trade.
Somebody had even moved a number of potted flowering plants around, right when I wasn't present.
I wasn't amused, to say the least.

I even had labels, that I'd find, around the yard, last summer. Besides cigarette butts, in some pots.
I'd even had pots knocked over, & stepped on. Wasn't exactly one of my best year of collecting seeds, that's for sure.
There was plenty of disorganizing going on, prior to adding to my plant list !

I think I recall a Chemistry Professor had once mentioned about matter tending towards being in a state of entropy ! Sticking tongue out
(Zone 7a)
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okieheart
Dec 23, 2020 5:51 PM CST
Only issue with the flat rate envelopes is getting them delivered. Like everything else, USPS is horribly behind and it's taking several weeks when it should only take days.

If you need an envelope, check your local DollarTree. They have padded envelopes, and I think they have the 8x11 ones.
Name: Shawn S.
Hampton, Virginia (Zone 8b)
Butterflies Morning Glories Annuals Irises Dahlias Zinnias
Orchids Region: United States of America Peonies
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ShawnSteve
Dec 23, 2020 6:44 PM CST
Thanks, okieheart. After seeing the video, that really isn't so much of an "issue".
Though I haven't seen any at the Dollar Tree, located nearest to me, in well over a month.
I may just possibly keep seeds chilled, for now.
I'm expecting seeds to arrive by mail order, & will have to start checking on my calendar, or email confirmations, for any that still may not have arrived, quite yet.
Some matters may not improve much, any time soon, either... Group hug
Name: Jenn
New Hampshire (Zone 4b)
Plant and/or Seed Trader Organic Gardener Winter Sowing Dog Lover Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Hummingbirder
Birds Dragonflies Butterflies
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gngrbluiz
Dec 24, 2020 3:36 PM CST
Welcome! @ShawnSteve!

There isn't a shortage of USPS padded envelopes, per se; it's just that the PO locations no longer keep them on hand. You can easily order a package of the envelopes from the USPS website (USPS.com). They're available in packs of 10 or 15 envelopes, at no charge and zero cost for having them delivered to wherever you get your mail. I ordered a pack of 15 in late November and it took about 10 days for them to arrive.

Just thought I'd mention this for folks who didn't know. I hope I didn't overlook a similar post from someone else earlier in the thread! Group hug
Name: Shawn S.
Hampton, Virginia (Zone 8b)
Butterflies Morning Glories Annuals Irises Dahlias Zinnias
Orchids Region: United States of America Peonies
Image
ShawnSteve
Dec 24, 2020 4:40 PM CST
Thanks Jenn. The thought hadn't even occurred to me, about that. Thanks for the kind, reminder.
I need small seed packets, actually !
One of my problems I have some difficulty with, is when I try to learn how to navigate around a new website, or in this case, the features that Dave is able to so rapidly click, to make it look so easily done.
I'm just not that fast anymore !

I already attempted to familiarize myself, with another website (State) , & found myself going in the wrong direction, really fast, & clicked once, all too soon. Now I hope I haven't created a three month delay, & now may have inadvertantly caused myself to be required at an in person appointment, (which gets done online, too!)
Good grief. I can just barely seem to get caught up. Next, just may well be a snowstorm !

Now, I've really got quite a few things I've got to accomplish, all scheduled for next week...
Have a happy holiday ! Smiling
Name: Michelle
Cheyenne, WY (Zone 5a)
Salvias
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MrsBinWY
Dec 24, 2020 10:17 PM CST
Thank you Jenn! I used (actually reused) my last flat-rate priority envelope a while back and wasn't looking forward to a trip to the post office. Ten envies on order! Thumbs up

Shawn - It may be easier for you to "practice" a bit if you join. You can click/play around and become more familiar. If it doesn't feel like it's going to work out for you, "unjoining" is only a few clicks away.
Name: Lisa
Boston, MA. (Zone 6a)
Winter Sowing Birds Foliage Fan Seed Starter Dog Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer
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ishareflowers
Dec 25, 2020 4:03 AM CST
Merry Christmas 🎄.

We have just over a week to swap day.

Alana has looked at the swap numbers and we agreed that the multiplier will be set at 4.

I still see listings with 0 offerings. Please check your lists and make the necessary adjustments. it would be a shame if someone used opening day bids on a zero quantity seed.


Thank You!
Name: Diana
Southeast Missouri (Zone 6a)
Region: Missouri Enjoys or suffers hot summers Dog Lover Cat Lover Hibiscus Daylilies
Irises Vegetable Grower Canning and food preservation Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Enjoys or suffers cold winters
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DraDiana
Dec 25, 2020 6:38 AM CST
There's an option to set your wishlist so that no zero quantity seeds are showing. I always use it to reduce scrolling time while bidding.
Name: Shawn S.
Hampton, Virginia (Zone 8b)
Butterflies Morning Glories Annuals Irises Dahlias Zinnias
Orchids Region: United States of America Peonies
Image
ShawnSteve
Dec 25, 2020 10:52 AM CST
That's exactly one of those "clicks", I was somewhat concerned about. As in also, how many seeds, typically do make up an "offer" ?

Michelle, speaking of just a few clicks away, I've already been busy clicking, at placing an order, & once again clicked an incorrect option ! (This time, at the "checkout".)

That's probably due to being concerned, about any delay, resulting in the suddenly appearing all "sold out", syndrome, from taking too long, just trying to quickly decide, fast enough !

Seems one has to feel rushed, & we aren't actually going anywhere, to even celebrate.
Least ways, I'm fairly certain just about all, are at home.
Doesn't feel quite right, some how or other. I even forgot any eggnog.
.
Funny, how we can forget some of the rather simpler things in life, including taking time & enjoying it, while we're busy.

Though I was thinking those items wouldn't even be listed until January, & suddenly realized, were available -Now-, & in stock. Good thing I paid attention to that Seed website.
Now wishing I had some See's chocolates...

Merry Christmas to all !
Name: Lisa
Boston, MA. (Zone 6a)
Winter Sowing Birds Foliage Fan Seed Starter Dog Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer
Image
ishareflowers
Dec 25, 2020 1:39 PM CST
@dradiana, I'm aware of that option and I use it a few days into bidding.

I know you have never hosted a swap and wouldn't know that those zero offers also show as an offering in the hostess panel of information. This information helps the hostess in deciding what the multiplier is to be set at by how many listings are offered.

We have several new players this year and the system is intimidating to some off the get go. I don't want newbies to have wasted dibs and be discouraged.

So again, I'll ask that all players either add a quantity or remove the listing.

Thank You!



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