Plant Trading How To: PayPal Backed Trades


Many members of the HPH BST Facebook group set up swaps and mail each other plants and cuttings, and most swaps end with two happy traders who’ve got great new plants. Sometimes it doesn’t go to plan, so we’ve decided to share a brief how-to explaining how to use PayPal to back up your trading agreement.

First, document your plants and/or cuttings! Share the details as well as photos with your trade partner.

Agree on an approximate value for the plants or cuttings being traded. This is how much you’ll be requesting from each other via PayPal.

🚫Do NOT use the family and friends option under any circumstances. You should only use the PayPal Goods and Services option for these payments. PayPal will take a small percentage of the transaction, but this is how you get the buyer protection.🚫

Agree on how and when the items will be sent. Things you should both agree on before you make your trade include:

  • When you will ship (most people prefer to ship plants on a Monday or Tuesday)

  • Which carrier

  • Which shipping method

  • Whether you want any insurance or delivery confirmation

  • Whether you want to swap tracking numbers


Sum it all up: Send a message containing all of details you’ve agreed upon, and make sure everything is correct. This is easier using email than Facebook messenger, and we recommend taking a screen shot of the message and agreement if you’re using messenger.

Send each other a money request for the agreed-upon amount using PayPal, and add a note about what’s being sent and what kind of shipping.

Once you’ve each received this payment via PayPal, it’s time to pack up your plants and ship!

So for example, at this point you and your trade partner have agreed to trade, decided that your trade is worth roughly $45, worked out all of the details, and sent each other $45 for “goods and services” via PayPal. This way no one is “out” $45 and your trade gets PayPal buyer protection. If one person doesn’t follow through, the other can now file a dispute with PayPal to get a refund.