Plant the Seeds - Birmingham Botanical Gardens

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A cherished place of respite for our community and visitors from around the world for more than 55 years, Birmingham Botanical Gardens is open to all, and we look forward to your visit. The Gardens are currently open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day of the week, with access limited to the front entrance gates. Visitors are encouraged to practice social distancing. Face masks are required when interacting with others in the Gardens and for entering the Garden Center. For more information and guidelines for visiting safely, click here. We hope to see you soon at the Gardens!

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Plant the Seeds

Plant the Seeds

With a wide array of offerings—from wildflowers and herbs to vegetables and fruits—the Library at the Gardens' free Seed Exchange opens the door to the time-honored tradition of seed saving.

by Jamie Haas 

Cultivate your home garden by joining the Library at the Gardens’ free Seed Exchange program! Harkening back to a tradition shared by Southern gardeners of years past, the program celebrates the communal act of seed saving. “Our great-grandparents would take cuttings and bring them to their neighbors,” says Friends of Birmingham Botanical Gardens Director of Library Services Hope Long. “They would share seeds from their gardens. It has almost become a lost art, but this exchange encourages us to start again.”

Not only does the practice inspire a culture of sharing, but also it promotes biodiversity through the exchange of locally adapted plant varieties. Seeds are open-pollinated, which means they result from natural pollination of the parent plant. Choose from open-pollinated vegetable, fruit, herb, and flower seeds, including seeds of pollinator-friendly native wildflowers such as golden Alexander (Zizia aurea) harvested from the Kaul Wildflower Garden, then close the loop and bring us back seeds from your own garden!

To learn more and join our free Seed Exchange, visit

Hear Hope delve more deeply into the wonderful resource that is the free Seed Exchange by checking out the video below, and follow along with the Friends' Director of Education and Visitor Experience, Brooke McMinn, and her daughter, Fiona, as they walk through the steps of planting from seed.

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