Time for Seeds

by Kim Benton Cherokee County AgriLife Extension Horticulturist

For the past 10 years, the first Friday in February at the Annex Building has meant one thing – SEEDS! The annual Cherokee County Seed Swap has grown over the years from a few individuals exchanging seeds from their own bounty, to having seeds donated so that anyone in the county who desires to garden.
It is an honor to have the opportunity to have a hand in sharing varieties that have been sustained for generations by local Cherokee County farmers. Part of each year’s fun is hearing from the gardeners about their favorite flower, why they like these blooms particularly or the flavor of those peas, and things like that. There is a great sense of connectivity within the gardening community as a whole, and within East Texas particularly, and it is my hope that this annual seed swap provides an avenue for that connectivity.
For those who are interested in trying something new, this is your opportunity to find printed educational materials, have your questions answered, and get seeds to help you on your way. You do not have to bring seeds in order to take some. We ask that people take only what they are going to grow themselves, but those seeds are free to enjoy.

We are so happy to be able to offer some seeds from Snake Woman’s Garden at Caddo Mounds State Historic site as well. Seeds from the sunflowers that provide so many smiles for us and for the pollinators, as well as the native hibiscus, the corn, the goosefoot and more. Be sure to look for the Caddo Mounds table at the seed swap.

No one has been more supportive of the seed swap than Lone Star Military Resource Group, and Debbie and John Dyess. These precious folks have, year after year, made heirloom and open-pollinated seeds available to anyone who would like to use them here in Cherokee County. Debbie, John, Julianne Sanford, the Cherokee County Master Gardeners and other dear friends have given time, money, and sweat to make the seed swap happen every year. Thank you so much for all of your tremendous support of Extension, and agriculture!
Although our location has changed this year to accommodate COVID-19 mandates, we will still be looking forward to hearing your gardening stories, answering your questions, and sharing seeds with you this year. Come find us at the Rusk Civic Center – 555 Euclid, Rusk TX – on Friday, Feb. 5, 2021, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.