Save Your Seeds: Love those seeds

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Save Your Seeds

By Shelly
September 7, 2011

Save seeds. Many seeds grow very easily even when you just sprinkle them where you would like.

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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
Sep 6, 2011 6:03 PM CST
Shelly love that photo. I just harvested some of my native red columbine seeds yesterday. I need to go get more of the little envelops at Walmart. Some I just sprinkled on the ground and the rest are in a big ziplock bag here in the house.
Name: Horseshoe Griffin
Efland, NC (Zone 7a)
And in the end...a happy beginning!
Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Garden Sages I sent a postcard to Randy! I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
For our friend, Shoe. Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Enjoys or suffers cold winters Birds Permaculture Container Gardener
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Horseshoe
Sep 6, 2011 6:32 PM CST
Ditto, what Shelly said...save seeds.

I'm always willing to encourage folks to save seeds. It's one of the best hobbies goin'! And if not a hobby then do it to help out your finances!

Shoe (pic of this years tomato seed varieties, drying on plates)
Thumb of 2011-09-07/Horseshoe/d0bc5d
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
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plantladylin
Sep 6, 2011 6:45 PM CST
I agree Great tip Shelly! I go in spurts collecting seed ... some years I collect lots, other years I just let the plants drop and reseed right there.

Shoe: Wow, look at all those tomato seeds ... you'll have a Tomato Orchard next season for sure!
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
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
Sep 6, 2011 7:48 PM CST
Shoe what varieties of tomatoes do you have?
Name: Shelly
Colorado (Zone 5b)
Charter ATP Member I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Tip Photographer I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant and/or Seed Trader Birds
Garden Ideas: Master Level Region: Colorado The WITWIT Badge Lilies Region: United States of America Dog Lover
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Shelly
Sep 6, 2011 8:12 PM CST
Oh Lynn! I love the red columbine! Drooling They are so pretty!

Wow Shoe!! Looks like you have had a lot of different mater sammiches! What a great tip on how to dry the seeds. I put mine on paper towels, and many times I forget "why in the world would I leave a paper towel there?!?!" and toss them out.

Big Grin Lin, I too go in spurts. I try really hard to save them, because now I have plants I actually love, and want to spread them around, but sometimes I just plain forget, and whack them down.

I have actually had fun learning about seed heads, and the different ways of harvesting. Oh my Mountain Garland, I thought I was too late, the pods had broken open already. I decided to pull them up, and felt a seed hit my arm. Into the house I went, got a brown paper bag, plopped those old worn out plants in there, and shooooook the bag like crazy. Seeds galore. Smiling
"You may not be responsible for getting knocked down, but you're certainly responsible for getting back up."


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
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
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flaflwrgrl
Sep 6, 2011 8:45 PM CST
Hurray! YAY for seeds! Save seeds, harvest seeds, plant seeds, scatter seeds. It's FUN too!
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: 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
Image
valleylynn
Sep 6, 2011 8:46 PM CST
It like finding treasure.
Name: Horseshoe Griffin
Efland, NC (Zone 7a)
And in the end...a happy beginning!
Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Garden Sages I sent a postcard to Randy! I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
For our friend, Shoe. Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Enjoys or suffers cold winters Birds Permaculture Container Gardener
Image
Horseshoe
Sep 6, 2011 9:28 PM CST
Great idea on using paper bags to collect the seeds, Shelly. It works great for Echinacea and other flowers you want to dry for their seeds. Those little lunch bags are the perfect size for sticking a bundle of flower stems in then tying up and hanging up side down. The flower heads dry and the seeds fall into the bags for easy collection.

Regarding the tomato seeds in the previous pic I posted, each plate is a different variety. After they are fermented I dry them on a paper (wax coated ) plate so I can write directly on the plate the harvest info (variety, date, etc). Soon I'll be putting these in their individual coin envelopes. All seeds except a select few of each variety for backup stock will go to Carolyn Male who in turn will list them in Seed Savers Exchange.

I'm good at saving veggie seeds but still learning the best ways to save flower seeds so will have to rely on ya'll for tips and tricks along those lines. So far I find it easy and enjoyable saving Moonvine seeds (not to be confused with "moon flower"), melampodium, Tithonia, Echinacea, various herbs, etc.

Shoe




Thumb of 2011-09-07/Horseshoe/985fdd
Name: Sheila F
Fort Worth TX (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member Tip Photographer I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Texas Butterflies Garden Art
Ponds Dog Lover Hummingbirder Birds The WITWIT Badge Region: United States of America
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Sheila_FW
Sep 6, 2011 10:06 PM CST
Especially important to save seeds this year in TX because of the drought and wildfires. Good tip Shelly.
Name: Vicki
North Carolina
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I sent a postcard to Randy! Region: United States of America
Purslane Garden Art Garden Ideas: Master Level Region: North Carolina Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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vic
Sep 7, 2011 2:59 AM CST
Wonderful tip Shelly! Thumbs up
Name: Linda
SE Houston, Tx. (Hobby) (Zone 9a)
"Godspeed, & Good Harvest!"
Region: Texas Vegetable Grower Seed Starter Garden Ideas: Master Level Canning and food preservation Gardens in Buckets
Tip Photographer Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Ferns
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Gymgirl
Sep 7, 2011 8:39 AM CST
Yep! Saving seeds is "da bomb!" I agree
Tomato Seeds for 2012 Spring Crop
Thumb of 2011-09-07/Gymgirl/194ee1
[Last edited by Gymgirl - Sep 7, 2011 3:40 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #145303 (11)
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
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plantladylin
Sep 7, 2011 8:46 AM CST
Oh my goodness ... you all are great. I'm such a klutz, if I had plates full of seeds sitting around to dry I'd be bumping into them and end up with the domino effect and have seeds all mixed up everywhere!
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Name: Horseshoe Griffin
Efland, NC (Zone 7a)
And in the end...a happy beginning!
Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Garden Sages I sent a postcard to Randy! I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
For our friend, Shoe. Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Enjoys or suffers cold winters Birds Permaculture Container Gardener
Image
Horseshoe
Sep 7, 2011 10:36 AM CST
Yeh, but what a great and interesting garden you'd have, eh Lin!? Smiling

Shoe
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
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
Image
flaflwrgrl
Sep 7, 2011 11:10 AM CST
I agree
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: Shelly
Colorado (Zone 5b)
Charter ATP Member I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Tip Photographer I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant and/or Seed Trader Birds
Garden Ideas: Master Level Region: Colorado The WITWIT Badge Lilies Region: United States of America Dog Lover
Image
Shelly
Sep 7, 2011 12:23 PM CST
Thanks Vic!

Wow! With you "guys" saving your seeds on the plates! Awesome!!!
"You may not be responsible for getting knocked down, but you're certainly responsible for getting back up."


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
Sep 7, 2011 12:33 PM CST
Don't forget to save and trade or give away! You can save dozens of times more seed than you need from just one crop, then trade them for a dozen new things.

For me, the hardest part is waiting long enough for seed heads (or pea pods) to mature fully and dry completely.

Often I'm still waiting for them to finish turning brown when the Fall rains start.

I even try to find some usable seeds in cut flowers after they die indoors in a vase - like zinnias - and imagine that I have gotten a few viable seeds that way.

But really, they should mature and dry "on the vine".

I usually wring out a really wet seed head, then pat it dry, then park it on a coffee filter sitting on top of a towel.

If there are likely to be several days of rain in a row, I balance the risk of rotting on the plant against the risk of imature seeds & rotting indoors.

Like someone else, I write the name on the coffee filter, or else everything will be "NO ID" or the "Sine nomine" flower. In fact, I write labels before collecting seeds, because I might grab a few seed pods from several different kinds of plants, grabbing each pod when ready.

It's convenient to write name and date collected and color on a separate slip of paper that can be moved from collecting tub to drying coffee filter to folded paper packet for ongoing drying to open ziplock to closed ziplock.

Just remember, before sealing the ziplock, that paper can hold a lot of water! If the paper is limp instead of crisp, it is too humid to seal inside a ziplock with seeds.

I also like the idea that we should not bring seed baggies into the garden, then back into the house and store them with other seeds. The bag gets damp and dirty when you set it down, or handle it with dirty fingers. That encourages mold if you put it back into the storage area at all wet or dirty.

Before sowing, I split out the amount of seed that I want to sow, label that bag, then empty it while sowing and DON'T return any soil or moisture to the jar where I store clean seeds.

(That's why I like storing 2-3 duplicate labels inside each seed pkt. It lets me sow some and save some. Or trade some and save some without relying on my terrible handwriting.)
[Last edited by RickCorey - Sep 7, 2011 7:48 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #145408 (16)
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
Image
plantladylin
Sep 7, 2011 3:06 PM CST
I have indeed saved and traded seeds in the past, but the "collecting" part usually depends on my mood, or whether I remember to take the time to go out and do it! When my youngest niece was in her first year of college I went to visit her in S.C. that fall and my sisters laughed at me because everywhere we walked around campus I was collecting seeds from lots of plants. My Echinacea's are all going to seed right now ... the Northern Cardinal's seem to be enjoying them but it's just been so hot I haven't had the urge to take the time to collect any but many seeds drop and I know they will re-sprout next spring.

~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Name: Jamie R
Zone 5b, WI (Zone 5a)
save the rainforest & habitat
Charter ATP Member Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies I sent a postcard to Randy! Herbs Region: Wisconsin
Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Bulbs Irises Roses Lilies
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JaeRae
Sep 14, 2011 7:50 PM CST
HA! I'm much less organized. Hilarious! When Inky and I go walking, I fill my jeans pockets with seeds from plants that I think butterflys will like. When I get back, I pull them out and mark the envelope like: "purple thing, 3' high, small flower cones, bloomed late Aug. in the church yard". Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing I put the envelope in a box with others on the cold porch and spread 'em about in spring. Then I wonder what they are when they come up...never sure what to weed! Hilarious! Shrug! Shrug!
Woman on the eastbound train
...........................................Je Suis Désolé.
(also a mule lovin', Charley huggin' girl)
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
Sep 14, 2011 8:08 PM CST
Every time I watch a "DNA test" on CSI or NCIS, I wonder if those can be used to identify plants!

(Or there's the Plant ID Forum.)

Name: Jamie R
Zone 5b, WI (Zone 5a)
save the rainforest & habitat
Charter ATP Member Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies I sent a postcard to Randy! Herbs Region: Wisconsin
Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Bulbs Irises Roses Lilies
Image
JaeRae
Sep 14, 2011 8:27 PM CST
yep...but I STILL haven't learned the difference between a perennial and a weed. Seem the butterflies feel the same.
Woman on the eastbound train
...........................................Je Suis Désolé.
(also a mule lovin', Charley huggin' girl)

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