Alta Vista Gardeners’ Perennial Exchange and Plant Sale

Last year the Alta Vista Perennial Exchange was held at the Billings Estate National Historic Site for the first time, coinciding with the Billings Estate Mother’s Day Tea. This worked out so well that we’re going to do it again—and hopefully for many years to come. This year Mother’s Day falls on Sunday, May 12th, so mark your calendars and start thinking about which perennials need splitting this spring.

The perennial exchange is an opportunity for neighbourhood gardeners to get together, swap plants, and share advice on gardening in Alta Vista. Gardeners should bring their contributions to the Estate between 10:30 and 11:00am (later arrivals are also welcome). The plants available may include split perennials, re-seeded annuals or perennials, and plant seeds. Some people bring extra house plants that they no longer have room for. All plants should be in pots or containers, with labels—Popsicle sticks or a piece of masking tape on the pot both work well, but please use a permanent marker.

The “exchange” part of the event takes place during the first hour when gardeners swap plants informally (11:00am to 12:00 noon). After 12:00, all remaining plants are also available for sale ($3 for small pots, $5 for larger plants), with all proceeds going to the Alta Vista Community Association to support community programs. If you are unable to attend but would like to donate plants, please send an e-mail to

The perennial exchange and sale should finish up by 1:00pm, leaving plenty of time for you to enjoy tea at the Estate! (Note that while there is no charge to participate in the perennial exchange, there is an admission fee for the museum.)

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