Photo courtesy Cheyenne Frontier Dayschuck-wagon cook-offs, and parades. July 17–26.

Mark your calendars for Saturday, October 17th. That's when the biannual Plant Exchange takes place in the front lawn of the First Presbyterian Church of Oakland, CA from noon to 4pm.

The rules are simple: Bring some and take some. Have good etiquette—take roughly the amount you bring (bring a truck's worth, take a truck's worth). But come 4:01, it's a free for all!


Photo courtesy of The Plant Exchange

The event started 7.5 years ago when founder Odette Pollar was remodeling her yard and didn't want to throw the rejected plants into the green bin. Flyers in neighbors' mailboxes motivated 75 people to show—way more than she was expecting. Six months later, 150 people came. Now, the twice-yearly event boasts at least 500 people every time.

Odette is passionate about the event. "I think this exchange allows people to experiment more freely since they're not having to shell out large amounts of money." Making it even better: Master Gardeners are on hand to give advice.

Elisa Bosely, trying to fix a badly written recipe. Photograph by Elisa Bosely.

Anything remotely garden related is fair game—hardscape materials, books, tools, koi, and plants, plants, plants.

Insider tip: With our big upcoming move to Oakland, we're getting rid of a lot of containers, books, and plants. Expect to see a lot of Sunset heirlooms at this October's event. We'll see you there, because fall is the best time to plant, and while we might be downsizing, who can turn down free plants?


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