Category Archives: Seed Saving

Billions of Seeds Everywhere

The seed catalogs are starting to come in. I just love looking through them. But the last few years have got me thinking “what a racket these guys have going”. They know we’re going to order way more than we need. But I have a better solution. In this video I explain why you should not have to spend lots of money on seeds when there are literally billion, and trillions all around us.

Jalapeno Carelessness

I have been de-hybridizing a jalapeno pepper for about 4 years now. Every year I have saved the seeds and replanted. The first year I was very careful when handling the seeds. I wore gloves and carefully placed the seeds in plastic envelopes. I did however test the seeds for heat the first year and to my surprise, they were not hot at all. In fact, for some reason unknown to me, I could put a handful of the seeds in my mouth and chew on them without burning.

So, for the past 3 years I have been saving the seeds without any skin protection. And every year the seeds were almost heatless.

Until this year

When collecting the seeds this year, I followed the same procedure as before. No gloves, just cut the pepper open and scraped the seeds out.
I laid them on a paper plate to dry for a few days and sat down at the computer to check my email.

You can imagine what happened next. My eyes started burning, and my lips actually became numb. I thought I was going into shock.
Then I remembered. I just cut open the jalapenos.

I quickly went out to the kitchen where my seeds had been cut and picked up a piece of the flesh and ate it.

Wholly Moley, that sucker was scorching.
I swiftly ran into the bathroom and scrubbed down. It was however a little too late at this point. The damage had been done.

The moral of the story

Never assume that your hybrid plants are going to produce consistent results year after year. One year no heat.. then HEAT.

Of course it’s my fault for being careless.

So until this plant stabilizes, I’m not going to take it for granted.
Even if it may be another 5 years or so.

As one reader said to me GLOVE UP!

FREE Seed Inventory Spreadsheet

Keep track of your seed inventory with this spreadsheet. Don’t let your seeds get past their viability ever again. Download it to your mobile devices and take it with you wherever you go.
Storing seeds, particularly heirlooms, is a great way to save money and preserve our food heritage.

Download the spreadsheet here

How To Store And Organize Your Seed Collection

It may not be as sophisticated as the svalbard seed vault, but it is certainly adequate for my needs. I finally broke down and built storage boxes for my seed collection.
Storing seeds, particularly heirlooms, is a great way to save money and preserve our food heritage.

I built these storage boxes inexpensively from 1×4 pine boards.

How To Save Cherry Tomato Seeds

Saving cherry tomato seeds is easy. Every grower should learn. I’m saving seeds from a hybrid I’m trying to stabilize. This will be the second year saving them

Saving Tomato Seeds

Start with a healthy tomato from a healthy plant. Free of disease with characteristics you desire.

01

 

Cut around the circumference splitting the tomato into two halves.

02

Squeeze the seeds and pulp out, either directly into a jar or onto a plate.

03

Put all the pulp into a jar. I use Mason jars. Add clean tap water, about 1/2 again the amount of pulp you have. If you add too much water, the mold will not form as well.

04

Cover with plastic like a glad bag. Secure with a rubber band.
Poke a few holes in the plastic for air circulation.
Set on a window sill out of direct sunlight.

05

After a few days, mold should start to grow. Within about a week, your juice should look something like the picture below.

06

Pour the liquid into a sieve. Rinse them thoroughly.

07

Pour the seeds back into the jar. Fill the jar about half full with fresh clean water.
All of the viable seeds will fall to the bottom. The bad seeds will float to the top (as shown in the photo).

08

Scoop off the bad seeds and throw away. Dump the good ones back into the sieve for another rinse.

Spread the seeds out on a paper towel on a window out of direct sunlight to dry.

09

Leave for about a week. Then gather the seeds up, put them into an envelope, mark them and store in a cool dark place for planting next year.

Make Your Own Seed Envelopes For Cheap

In this video, I will show you how I make quick and easy seed envelopes to use if you’re out and about and need to store your seeds. They are also good for giving to others.

How To Save Pepper Seeds

Saving pepper seeds is not only economical, but just about the easiest of all seeds to save.
In this video I will show you how to save your pepper seeds.

One word of caution:  If you are saving HOT pepper seeds, make sure you wear protective gloves and dispose of them when done.

FREE Seed Starting Containers: Where To Find Them

In this video I will explain how and where to get lots of FREE seed starting containers

Seed Saving, The Most Important Skill To Know For Survival

My 12 minute rant about the importance of saving your own seeds for survival. Seed saving is one of the single most important skills you will ever learn. It is vitally important to know how to do it.