If you have heirloom plants or you are particularly fond of specific flowers in your garden, you can grow them year after year by saving the seed. Saving seeds is a fun activity and it won’t require hours of hard work to get the best upshots, rather you can do it while performing your other jobs at the garden. In this guide, we will help you understand the easiest way to identify the best plants and how to dry them for planting.
But before going further you would require the following things in hand to start the process.
- Viable Plants
- Mature Seeds
- Ventilated Location
- Glass Jar
- Warm Water
- Paper Towel
Step 1: Find The Right Kind Of Seeds You Can Store
Are you going to dry seeds for your next harvest? If yes then you must pick one of the best fruits and flowers so that you may have a tasty and healthy harvest next year. First of all, go online to determine whether you have the kind of seed you can keep. Hybrid plants produce seeds that are often sterile or don’t produce true to their parent plants. Open-pollinated plants have to be isolated from others in their families so that they don’t cross-pollinate. Plants that are open-pollinated include squash, melon, parsley, broccoli, celery, spinach, cauliflower, kale, radishes, beets, onions, and basil.
Step 2: Get Seeds From The Best Plants You Have
As mentioned above you should always pick the best kind of plants and flowers in order to acquire seeds out of them. Choose plants that are diseases free and have the prettiest flower or best-tasting fruit. Hence for this mark those flowers and fruits and let them on branches until they are fully mature enough to be stored for the next harvest.
Step 3: Harvest Only Mature Seeds
Mature plants provide you one of the best seeds that remains all of the properties of your parent plant. Thereby you are recommended to let them active on branches for 10 to 15 days. When the plants are fully dried and the flower has faded away, it indicates that your seed is mature now. If your plant pod is brown & dry you can take them off from branches.
Step 4: Use A Dry Method To Save Seeds
Some types of seeds demand dry methods whereas some demand wet methods. If your plant seeds are included in a gel-type enclosure Always use a dry method to save seeds from beans, peas, onions, carrots, corn, and most flowers and herbs. Allow the seeds to dry as long as possible on the plant, and then remove them to a screen to finish drying in a single layer. For very small or light-weighted seeds, put the seed heads into paper bags to catch the seeds as they fall out.
Step 5: Use The Wet Method For Tomatoes, Cucumber, And Roses
Tomatoes, cucumbers, and roses demand a wet method. Using the wet method scoop out all the seeds along with pulp and put them into a jar filled with water. Keep them inside the jar for 2 to 4 days. Don’t forget to stir the material daily. Stirring will help you remove the pulp from seeds. The viable seeds will sink to the bottom. Pour off the pulp, bad seeds, and mold and spread the good seeds on a paper towel to dry.
Step 6: Make Sure Your Seed Are Thoroughly Dry
Let the paper towel be filled with seeds in a well-ventilated space. Ventilated space will help you soak the entire moisture from your seeds. Make sure that all of your seeds are dry and you don’t need to place them on a towel anymore. Now you can remove them from your towel for the next step.
Step 7: Store And Label Them
Take a separate jar for each type of seed! For instance, if you have tomato, cucumber, parsley, and beans then you would require a separate jar to store them. Put them into their dedicated jar and don’t forget to stick labels on them. Labeling would help you to recognize the type of seed you have stored inside the jar.
Step 8: Keep Them In Freezer For 2 Days
Now all of your jars are filled and ready to be used for the next harvest! But don’t forget to put them into a freezer for 2 days. Putting them into the freezer would help you kill pests.
Step 9: Plant Them Within 3 Years
Most seeds lose viability over time so the best way is to plant them within 3 years. Parsley, sweet corn, and onion must be planted the following year. By fall your garden will be a reminder of your previous successful harvest.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long do seeds need to dry before planting?
Once you have separated the required seeds from pulp or any substance leave them to soak for up to 10 days. After that gently move their side or stir them with fingers. Now let them soak for more than two to three days. At this stage,, they will be dry enough and ready for the storage process.
How do dry seeds for storage?
If you want to dry seeds for storage then spread them on newspaper or any tray for up to 10 days. After that change their position while stirring them with fingers. Leave them to dry for a few days in that position. If they are dried enough then save them into a jar or any container.
Is it essential to wash seeds before planting?
When assembled, the seeds should be cleaned and dried before they can be put away. A few seeds require just insignificant cleaning while others need more consideration. Assuming the seeds are heavier they will slide out first, and if they are lighter the waste will drop out first.
Saving seeds is one of the best techniques that can fetch you a flourishing garden every year. With the right guide and required tool, you can prepare tomato, basil, parsley, beans, and other types of seeds that will not just save your money but will also provide you the desired harvest that you have looked for. Saving seeds allows you to secure healthy fruits that taste well and thereby you can preserve the best type of fruits.