Thursday, November 6, 2014

Seed Saving

For months now, I have been saving seeds from all of the flowers and vegetables that I grew this year.  I am always blown away about how generous Mother Nature is!  For instance, one tiny grape tomato will provide all the seeds I will need for the following season(but of course, I'll save more than that)!

Last year, the rabbits ate all of my beans.  I had five seeds (black beans) left in a packet, so I put them in a container and those five seeds generated about 50-60 seeds!  I saved and planted those seeds this year, which yielded enough black beans to eat over the winter!

Some seeds have generously reseeded themselves, like the yellow pear tomatoes, the arugula, and the parsley. Although I saved as many foxglove seeds as I could, they are finally popping up in different parts of my garden, thanks to self-sowing.

I learned a lot about saving seeds from the book Seed Sowing and Saving, by Carole B. Turner.  The most important lesson I learned is that often, only one variety of a vegetable or flower can be grown at a time,due to insects and cross-pollination. So, unless you have the space to grow plants in isolation, it is better to grow only one variety of certain plants if you intend to save the seeds. I decided to grow just one variety of pepper this year, one variety of cucumber, melon, squash, etc.  I did read that you can grow different varieties of tomatoes and still collect good seed.

I will be sharing my sunflower seeds with all the cardinals and chickadees this winter (and the squirrels...)and probably sharing my seeds with my friends.  My list of seeds can be found here:

How about you?  Are you saving any favorites?

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