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Last week I was able to attend a talk given by Sylvia Davatz also known as the “Radical American Gardener”. Several years go I took a six month long class with her which discussed seeds worth saving and how to go about getting started.Vermont, seed saving,seeds worth saving

 

Sylvia is a renowned gardener and seed saver located in Hartland, Vermont. She is passionate about teaching others how to start saving seeds and why it’s an important practice to engage in. During her talk Sylvia explained terms like open-pollinated and hybrid, as well as isolation methods, spacing, plant populations, harvesting, cleaning and storing seeds. The importance of preserving the irreplaceable heritage of biodiversity contained in seeds was discussed.gardens, seed saving, seeds worth saving

 

Over 200 unique vegetable varieties are preserved in her organic Hartland gardens. She grows everything from beets to amaranth! Sylvia is part of a global community saving seeds to preserve heirloom varieties that have been passed down across generations. By planting heirlooms, gardeners are silently protesting the industrial agricultural system and also ensuring these time-tested, community grown seeds will thrive well into the future.gardening, Vermont

 

Why are there seeds worth saving? Seeds are worth saving because we have lost over 97% of all varieties that used to be available commercially. By saving your seeds you can help to maintain those seeds that have been grown by families for years. The quality of the seed is far superior to the seeds available commercially and you can harvest the seeds at the ideal time.Seeds Worth Saving

 

In order for you to be able to harvest your own seeds you must be growing an open pollinated variety, not a hybrid. The easiest seeds to start saving are those plants which are self-pollinating such as peas and beans. You don’t have to worry about cross-pollination and the seeds are easy to harvest. Just wait until the pod is dry.saving cucumber seeds

 

Saving tomato seeds is also easy, but they do best if the seeds are allowed to go through a fermentation stage. By allowing the seeds to go through the fermentation process the seed borne diseases are killed. The seeds of tomatoes are ready when the fruit is eaten.tomato seeds

 

For other plants like zucchini and cucumber, you must allow the fruit to go beyond the eating stage. Let the fruit ripen well beyond the green stage.saving cucumber seeds

 

What ever seeds you decide to save make sure they have plenty of time to dry before storing, and store them in a cool, dark and dry place. There are many seeds worth saving. Have you started saving seeds in your garden yet?

10 comments on “Seeds Worth Saving

Daisy Debs on May 31, 2017 6:01 pm

Yes ! We should all be doing the good practice of saving seeds .
I,ve been getting lots of advice about pollinating the Gete Okosomin heritage squash you kindly sent me seeds from . Only one has come up and I,m being advised to pollinate it by hand and tie the flower so the bees cant get into it …. to keep it pure ….although I,m miles from anyone who might be growing any other Courgettes ,zucchini,squashes , pumpkins .
Actually I,m wondering if I should pollinate the flowers while it is still in the solar shed ( shed with massive sloping window ) and plant it out later on into the bed I have prepared for it . I,m new to this , but am going to give it my best shot .

Nancy Wolff on June 1, 2017 12:35 am

Daisy,
I would think you could try pollinating the flowers while it is still in the solar shed if it is flowering. I can’t wait to hear how it does!

Susie - secondhandsusie.blogspot.com on May 31, 2017 10:20 pm

How beautiful that garden is! I’ve saved a few seeds (chive, peas, calendula) but I’d like to do a lot more, my garden’s not very big though so I think everything would cross pollinate!

Thanks for the inspiring read, I’m visiting from #wastelesswednesday blog hop 🙂 x

Nancy Wolff on June 1, 2017 12:34 am

Susie,
You’d be surprised, you can save many seeds such as beans and tomatoes without worry of cross pollination.

Andrea on June 1, 2017 12:54 pm

What a beautiful garden! I’m slowly learning to save seeds but started with the really easy ones like beans and peas.

Nancy Wolff on June 1, 2017 1:07 pm

Andrea,
Saving peas and beans is a great place to start. Next try saving tomato seeds! 🙂

Anna on June 1, 2017 12:54 pm

One year I saved butternut squash seeds when I planted a ton of different pumpkin, cucumber, and squash like plants. You should have seen the huge butternut squashes that I got the following year. I am still wondering what they cross pollinated with.

Nancy Wolff on June 1, 2017 1:06 pm

Anna,
We had some great zucchini pumpkin crosses one year!

Daisy Debs on June 1, 2017 5:12 pm

Lol ! 🙂

Katy SkipTheBag on June 4, 2017 3:52 pm

I am so envious of that garden! Swoon! We saved some spaghetti squash seeds, but haven’t seen how they do this year. We’re still figuring this gardening/homesteading thing out! Ha! Thanks for sharing on the #WasteLessWednesday blog hop!

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