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HARVESTING SEEDS FOR THE FUTURE

Discussion in 'Gardening On Your Homestead' started by Lazy Gardener, Sep 16, 2019.

  1. Sep 16, 2019
    Lazy Gardener

    Lazy Gardener Super Self-Sufficient

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    This thread is for folks who want to save seeds from their favorite veggies to use in future gardens. Let's hear what kinds of seeds you save, any seed saver's tips, and your results: both the expected, good, unexpected, and bad!

    Here's a good article that explains the wide variation of reproduction methods in your garden!

    https://youshouldgrow.com/self-pollinating-plants/

    Every year, I let some plants self sow: Dill, lettuce, peas, spinach, cilantro will all mature and drop a crop of seeds in a single season.

    I collect seeds at the end of the season:

    *Beans. Have been growing Fortex from my own seed for MANY years.

    *Many of the flowers that are grown in my yard, as well as seed pods that I gather from afar. (Calendula, nasturtium, pansy, petunia.) I will often buy a 6 pack of flowers with the vision of the seeds they will produce. Priced a pack of flower seeds lately? Crazy prices!!! Especially when you look at the seed count and figure out what a single seed costs... Then consider the germination rate, AND the time invested from seed to bloom!

    *Lettuce can be allowed to go to seed. You can allow the seed to spread naturally. You can gather the mature plants and lay them where you want next year's lettuce crop. Or you can gather the seed heads and thresh them. I use an old pillow case for that.

    *Biennuals require one year of growth, then they get busy setting seed the second year. Parsley, Kale, and Swiss chard are super easy.

    Sorrel is a perennial that will set seed starting in the second year.

    *Garlic scapes can be left to mature. The bulbils will self sow, or you can harvest them to plant them where you want them to grow. While it's said, (and I believe it to be true) that a garlic head will grow larger if you do not allow the scapes to mature, those bulbils are valuable. Growing a new variety of garlic, and want to increase your garlic bed? Let those scapes mature. A single head can produce 10 - 50 or more bulbils, depending on variety. Add that to the number of cloves that head produces, and you may realize a 5900% increase in plant material over a single season! HOWEVER... there is a drawback. It takes at least 2 years to produce a head of garlic from a bulbil! And, they are prolific! I also allow some bulbils to mature, then toss them into the chicken run. The girls LOVE those bulbils. I consider them to be a self administered antihelminthic.

    *Many flower bulbs also produce viable seed, which will produce the same fantastic increase of plants from one season to the next.

    *Tomato: I just fermented and saved a batch of Rutgers and Pink Brandywine. I really don't care if these 2 varieties cross. I'm looking forward to seeing what they produce next year.

    *Have been saving my favorite cucumber for years: Suyo Long.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2019
    sumi likes this.

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