Monday, September 27, 2010

saving some seeds

I felt really lucky earlier this month because I'd managed to get some of the seeds I'd been saving in the garden harvested and into the dry before the unexpected early soaker rains of this month arrived.
Ideally, I'd like to be saving so many more seeds, but for now, there's so much stuff to do so I try to keep it simple and save just the super-easy ones that almost look after themselves.

I think seed pods are one of the most fascinating things in a garden. They're beautiful and kind of captivating, really. An awe-inspiring example of nature's genius design abilities. When I look at them I can understand why artists, especially sculptors and jewellers are often inspired to recreate them in metals, clay, wood, papier mache, felt.....
check out these images...some are inspiring and fun to look at.

Here are some dried pea seeds in their pods, on the vines, waiting for me to gather them....

Kale is one of the easier seeds to save. It's amazing how many seeds are on just one plant. This is a black tuscan kale plant that I've saved to go to was planted 1 1/2 years ago! Last winter, we ate delicious flower buds from these plants. I was careful tho' to leave enough buds to form into flowers and then seeds...especially from the plants that looked the hardiest.....and now look at all these seed pods, waiting to be harvested!

I cut the stalks off near the top and drop them into paper bags (the bag helps to catch all the seeds that come out of their pods on their own) where they'll sit for a while in my garden storage area and then later in the winter, I'll sort through and separate the seeds from the pods.

These are a couple lettuce plants I left to go to seed. They're an heirloom variety called "Goldrush" and have frilly yellowy-green leaves when young...beautiful in salads.
I'm glad to be saving these seeds since I can't get this variety from my usual supplier anymore.
For folks who don't have a garden plot, this is an easy cut-and-come-again style salad plant to grow in a container on the deck and easy to let go to seed there too. You could thin the plants in the container to one or two when you're finished harvesting and let it flower and go to seed. It's a good idea to stick a bamboo pole into the pot and tie the lettuce stalk to the pole as it grows taller...this'll help it stand tall even while it gets top-heavy with all those wonderful flowers turning to seed.

The flowers blooming, close-up.

The flowers gone to seed, close-up.

Thousands and thousands of tiny seeds on one plant. So many salads. Food security. One day, I hope to be able to save many more seeds of my favourite garden plants and package them up for sale in my garden shop. Can't wait!

No comments:

Post a Comment