As I prepare to give a seed saving lecture this afternoon, here are some considerations many of us have not thought about in our seed saving quests. Following this one page, there are several other posts related to seed saving for reference to all. If you get the chance to attend a seed saving course at some time, take it! I was amazed at all a person can learn. This is an area of human endeavor that has been around for more time than we know and it has been a foundation for civilizations for centuries! This simple act of saving a seed, has been intregal to the lives of all who came before us, and let us not fool ourselves, our technology can cause us more harm than good when used in ways that fail to acknowledge what has come before. Seed saving is soul satisfying and fun.
In addition to saving seeds for your own use, for useful seed saving it was better to choose one or two crops that you would focus on entirely for seed saving and swapping. Doing this allows you to develop a seed over time that suits a particular soil and climate, and, accurately observe its characteristics and needs. For that seed or those seeds, keep detailed accounts of as much information about everything observed or known about them. :
- cultivation and harvesting time
- variations in the seed
- where you planted it
- scientific name (as the colloquial name of it may vary)
- popular names
- origin (where it came from)
- date of seed preparation, etc.
As you prepare the seed for saving, you would then make detailed notes about these seeds.
Seeds without accurate information become nearly useless
Receiving seeds without knowing anything about them other than their variety renders the seed almost useless for planting. Although it may be fun, in terms of productivity it is akin to starting from zero.
Tips for saving seeds
- Select and keep the best plant for collecting seeds, don´t eat it.
- Clean the seed as dirt will encourage bacteria or fungus to grow and this will rot the seed.
- Keep them clean and dry.
- Paper bags are better than plastic bags.
- Put the paper bags then in clean, dry jars with lids.
- Maintain in a cool and dark place, if you can.
- Create a place for saving and organizing your seeds.
It is better to have a small quantity of seeds to save and exchange for which you have an abundance of information than to take on too much to manage information.