Label, Label, Label: Very good tip

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Label, Label, Label

By Shelly
November 4, 2011

Be sure to label your seeds as soon as you harvest them.

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Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Nov 3, 2011 6:42 PM CST
I have some seed right now that I don't know what they are, because I didn't label them right away. : (
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Nov 3, 2011 7:14 PM CST
>> Be sure to label your seeds as soon as you harvest them.
>> I don't know what they are, because I didn't label them right away.

Amen and "me too" to both of the above!

I learned that the only way I'm sure I'll "get around to it" is to write a label BEFORE I go outside to collect seeds. I like to have one big bowl or big paper bag for each variety that I PLAN to collect from.

When I'm clever (not often) I'll have coffee filter with the name written on the filter, before I go outside.

But I had better have a few extra bowls or cups or baggies with me
AND more slips of paper
AND a pencil.

Otherwise I'll find seedheads ready to pop, that I really want to save
... get back inside
... and have "something" tucked away here and there.

"Memory" ... what is that? I forget.

Ever notice how many seed packets get traded around with a very general name plus "NO ID"? I think that I may have figured out why.

Name: Renée
Northern KY
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Kentucky Sempervivums Cat Lover Dog Lover
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KyWoods
Nov 3, 2011 7:46 PM CST
LOL I've been guilty of that before! Excellent tip!
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Nov 4, 2011 1:59 AM CST
Rick, that coffee filter with name written on it is a great idea. You should send that one to Trish for another Tip. Thumbs up
Name: Anthony Gloriosoides[ sure!]
Rosetta,Tasmania,Australia (Zone 7b)
idont havemuch-but ihave everything
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gwhizz
Nov 4, 2011 2:54 AM CST
I cannot agree more...A couple of beers later on in the day, can blur the memory of ''what is what'', the next day Shrug! Confused Grumbling
lily freaks are not geeks!
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
Dances with Dirt
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gardengus
Nov 4, 2011 4:49 AM CST
Another good tip
Be sure you take your seeds out of your pocket BEFORE you do laundry Big Grin
(been there done that)
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
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flaflwrgrl
Nov 4, 2011 6:21 AM CST
Cinda- Rolling on the floor laughing

Write labels right away ---- yep. otherwise No Idy.
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Renée
Northern KY
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Kentucky Sempervivums Cat Lover Dog Lover
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
KyWoods
Nov 4, 2011 8:11 AM CST
LOL, Cinda! I hate it when that happens!
Name: Sheila F
Fort Worth TX (Zone 8a)
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Sheila_FW
Nov 4, 2011 8:29 AM CST
It is kinda like my "I will put this here so I can find it next time" Whistling ......never works! I have seeds, seed pods, and plants too without names; I just knew I would remember what they were later. Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Glad to know I am not alone! Group hug
Name: Angie
Concord, NC (zone 7)
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Hemophobic
Nov 4, 2011 10:23 AM CST
If I know I'm going seed hunting, I tuck a few plastic envelopes and my paint pen in my pocket for that very purpose. I usually wind up going back in for more or for large baggies for big seed heads, though Hilarious!
I think that if ever a mortal heard the voice of God it would be in a garden at the cool of the day. ~F. Frankfort Moore, A Garden of Peace


naj
Nov 7, 2011 8:38 AM CST
I use a leather carpenter apron which has lots of pockets, and stuff them full of empty pill bottles. When I harvest a daylily seed pod, I stick the tag from the cross inside the pill bottle along with the seed pod. It works great. As soon as I've finished, I go inside, empty the seeds pods along with the tags into little Dixie cups so they can dry. I write the date of the harvest on the cups. In summer, I have little cups of seeds all over the house drying. Only then do I put them in their little write-on baggies with the names of the crosses.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Nov 7, 2011 1:29 PM CST
>> When I harvest a daylily seed pod, I stick the tag from the cross inside the pill bottle along with the seed pod.

Very smart!

When I start seeds in a tray, usually I only have one plant marker per row or section of seeds. When planting them out or potting them up, I try to make enough markers AHEAD OF TIME that I can label everything before it gets confused with everything else.

I also learned this year that I need a map as well as markers. Those little markers get lost when things get bushy, and I have to bend over until my nose reaches the gorund to see the markers ... and I'm not flexible enoguh to do that!!
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
Image
RickCorey
Nov 21, 2011 1:35 PM CST
I was just reminded of these seed collecting principles:


After collecting seed-bearing stalks, they dry faster if you strip the pods off the stalk, so you don;t have to dry stems and leaves as well as pods and seeds.

If you have soggy seedheads or pods, "press" them between sheets of paper towel or coffee filters to remove water.

If they are really soggy, fold a big bathtowel so there are 2 layers on the tale. Lay a coffee filter on top of that. Add wet seed heads. lay another coffee filter on top of that. Fold 2 more layers of bath towel over that. Now lay a heavy book on top of the stack to press it all together. The towel will wick water away from the seed heads and coffee filters. (Don;t skip the coffee filters or you may be picking seeds out of the bathtowel for weeks!)


--
When stripping pods or seed heads off stems, try to leave as much chaff behind as possible. Cleaning the seeds will be easier if you don't have to remove a lot of crumbled chaff and petals.

Experiment by holding your fingertips apart by different distances. Try stripping the stem from top-to-bottom, and bottom-to-top. Try using your fingernails, or pinching, or rubbing. Find the gentlest move that opens most of the mature seed pods and releases the seeds while leaving behind stem, leaves and some of the pod.


---
If you have plenty of mature seeds - more than you need for saving & trading - don't worry about getting every last seed out of every pod. Ideally: well-pollinated, well-dried on the stem, lots of seeds per head and lots of heads.

Drop lots of stems into a paper bag, way more than you need. Let them dry well, which makes the pods more fragile and tend to open.

Put them into a paper bag, fold the top over, and shake hard. or rub the stems against each other so the pods are rubbed open gently.

If you find enough seeds at the bottom of the bag, you;re all done! And you have gotten the most-mature, most-ready seeds by collecting only those easily released from the pods.

If you didn't get enough seeds by just shaking, rub the stems and pods gently with your palms and shake again. The idea is to release the seeds without breakin g the pods down into chaff and dust. If you don;t create any chaff, you won't have to remove it from the seeds.

Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
Image
RickCorey
Aug 20, 2014 3:51 PM CST
Lately I've been saving paper envelopes from bills. Even slit-open envelopes work well.

I can dry and even store seeds while air-dying in paper envelopes. If I fold and paper-clip the tops, they won't spill even if the cat knocks them over. And they take up less room than paper plates or paper bags.

By labeling the envelopes before you go outside to collect seeds, the seeds are only unlabelled while they're still on the plants.

If you collect big stalks or LOTS of flowerheads, you can drop the labelled envelope into a big paper bag or cardboard box before going outside so that the label is always with the seeds as soon as you harvest the stalks. Then, as seeds fall out of pods or you strip pods from stalks, you can store the reduced bulk in the envelopes so they are less likely to get stuck in flaps at the bottom of the paper bags or boxes.

You can cut a cereal box or box of crackers in half lengthwise if you tape the open flaps closed first, with packing tape. Then you get two trays that will each hold 3-9 paper envelopes upright. Then they take up so little room that you can store as many varieties of seed as you want to, in a small space, even while they are still drying.

http://garden.org/ideas/view/RickCorey/1568/Dry-Saved-Seeds-...
[Last edited by RickCorey - Aug 20, 2014 5:43 PM (+)]
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