Category Archives: urban agriculture

Seed exchange reopens in new location!

After a long summer of negotiation, the South Side Seed Exchange is reopening just in time for last minute fall seed swapping. The exchange will be housed in S.H.o.P. at 5638 S. Woodlawn Ave. in Hyde Park through next summer. S.H.o.P., short for the Southside Hub of Production, is a collective of like-minded visual artists, educators, gardeners, musicians, writers, and lots of other folks who are trying to create a “whole culture” environment in a turn-of-the-century mini-mansion that has been leased to us by the Unitarian Church for one year.

The exchange has many fall planting seeds available, including almost all of those mentioned by Illinois Extension service educator James Theuri in the article that follows this post (we are out of mustard green seed for now).

To learn more about S.H.o.P., visit the website or just stop by this Saturday, Oct. 1, any time after 4 p.m. for an open house featuring the work of many of the visual artists who will be exhibiting at S.H.o.P. over the course of the year.

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Stop by the South Side Seed Exchange

Chicago gardeners! Getting ready for the growing season? Thinking about what to do with all of those extra seeds in the packets you’ll be buying for this year? Or what to do with all those extra seeds from last year? Then check out the seed exchange at the Op Shop in Hyde Park at 1001 E. 53rd St. We started developing the exchange in March and so far have more than 7,000 seeds and roughly 65 varieties of vegetables and flowers. Join the community of South Siders swapping seed and build the variety of our exchange.

Romano pole beans from Bountiful Gardens

How does it work? First, check out our list of available seed (which will be updated as needed) and stop by with seed of your own. Fill out a simple slip saying what you’re leaving and what you’re taking – and that’s it! As you add to our inventory, you’ll be building a resource that can benefit the whole city while broadening the diversity of what you can plant this year.

And if you’re planning on stopping by, check out the Op Shop website and be sure and come by when one of many performances, public conversations, workshops and other activities are taking place. Op Shop IV also features a collaboration with Connect-the-Lots, a project by Amber Ginsburg and Lia Rousset.

Sprouts aplenty from Connect-the-Lots at the Op Shop

Be sure to email us with any questions or comments at southsideseeds@gmail.com.