Sunday, May 27, 2012

Food Stamps Grow Gardens

Approximately 1 in 4 households in our area receive SNAP benefits (former known as "food stamps").

SNAP benefits can be used to purchase seeds and edible plants from any SNAP retailer including farmers’ markets. This benefit allows families to buy seeds and plants which produce nutritional food for the entire household. For every $1 spent on seeds and fertilizer, home gardeners can grow an average of $25 worth of produce. Growing food from seeds and plants makes SNAP benefits last longer, allowing recipients to double the value of their benefits over time. Supplementing SNAP with homegrown food makes it possible for families to buy food products that they wouldn't normally be able to afford.

Being producers as well as consumers is an empowering experience for SNAP participants. It allows them to feel self-reliant. It's also another great way to promote nutrition, enabling people to take pride in eating their own homegrown fruits and vegetables.

Which local retailers accept SNAP and sell seeds and edible plants?

Your best bet is to look for retailers which sell groceries AND have a garden section.
  • Walmart 
  • Kmart
  • Target  
Some grocery stores which accept SNAP also have seed carousels, so ask at the customer service desk whether your grocery store sells seeds.
If you know of other retailers in Northeast Florida which accept SNAP and have a nursery department or sell seeds, please let us know and we will happily update our list!

If you have difficulty using your SNAP benefits to purchase seeds and edible plants, please contact us at and let us know which retailer refused you and we'll follow up.

How can I help spread the word?

You can request that send you posters to display on bulletin boards, etc. in community gardens, community centers, at public housing locations, and at SNAP offices.

Where can I apply for SNAP?

You can apply for public assistance from anywhere using a computer with internet access at It will take about 30 minutes to complete the on-line application.

If you can’t afford seeds, but are not eligible to receive SNAP benefits, please visit The Dinner Garden.