Seedy Business

last of the annuals

Remains of the Day

It’s seedy business.

If I don’t do it though, the birds, squirrels, wind and rain will.

Gather seeds, that is.

I’m fairly new to seed-saving.  I’ve always been a seed packet junkie, often buying far more seeds than I could ever hope to plant.  When my son was much younger, he regularly talked me into buying every pumpkin variety to be had.  Santa brought additional seeds for his Christmas stocking each year.  Our seeds runneth over!

Last year I started saving my own seeds and now I’m hooked.

Planting:

I planted four o’clock seeds this summer with mixed success, but collected them again for a second try.   I successfully started one plant in a pot, but thanks to ‘self-seeding’ ended up with multiple plants in the side garden.

Growing:

The compost bin produced an entire crop of pumpkins so I had left over seeds to spare.  I started several plants indoors, then gave them away to friends.  Reports were positive, so I definitely plan to do this next year.

Sharing:

This is the best part of my seed-saving adventures.  I saved handfuls of Cosmo seeds at the end of 2012 and gave them as gifts that Christmas.  I made a tri-fold card using digital software and my own Cosmo photos, then added small seed packets inside.  A few of my friends kept the cards and seeds intact, but others planted them.  My friend Stacie sent me a photo last month of her towering Cosmos.  That was pretty cool.

Cosmos Seed Cards - Page 001

Cosmo seed card front panel

Cosmos Seed Cards - Back Panel

Cosmos Seed Cards – Back Panel

Early this spring, I  gave away pumpkin seeds to a pair of adorable three-year-old twins.  I met them walking with their dad one evening while I was working in my garden.  The girls showed genuine interest, so I went inside and got them seeds to take home and plant…and they did!  I saw the family a few months later, and dad told me the plants took root.  Good stuff.

Saving:

The annual garden is going to seed and temps are finally dropping.  I knew time was of the essence.  I collected a healthy sample for next year, at the same time leaving plenty of seeds on the plants for my foraging friends.

seed gathering tray

My system: I used a portable tote and plastic cups from an Easter-egg dying project. I dropped seeds into the cups, then salvaged a bloom for easy identification later.

I’m looking forward to sorting and labeling seeds this weekend, a joyful activity for someone ‘born to organize’ like me.   I’ll share my progress next week.

seed pod

My favorite seed pod. Tiny black seeds tumbled out when I gently tapped the pod

Happy weekend!

18 thoughts on “Seedy Business

  1. I’m afraid that my seed saving technique relies on plants popping up from the compost heap, so I am very impressed. Your idea of keeping the flower with the seed for identification is a really good one.

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      • Yes! In fact, I went out to lunch with a friend yesterday which was kinda tricky because of my temporary teeth (did I say that I had several teeth knocked out?). I’m trying to take outings every day now in preparation for my return to work next Weds. The concussion has taken it’s toll with mildly persistent nausea and headache BUT I feel more energetic and fewer problems each day! It’s so hard to believe that the wreck was 4 weeks ago! Phew!!

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        • Hi LB,

          I wrote a comment here the other night but the computer tossed it out in a fit of random button confusion. Typical! 😉

          I’m glad you’re making it out. The return to ‘normalcy’ no doubt feels good. Your poor mouth though. I know how painful it is to break one tooth. I just can’t imagine what you’ve been through.

          It is good to hear that you are feeling more energetic. I hope you can ease back into work and not jump in full throttle from day one. Any chance of that? Sending you good-healing vibes.

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  2. I really can’t wait to have some dirt to play in. I’m a little addicted to seed package illustrations too, especially if they look vintage and yep, always buy way more than I should. It’s always fun to see what pops up unplanned. I had a giant bleeding heart that was probably 23 years old. It had grown down thru a raised planter and started to pop up in the gravel driveway. I must have gave away dozens of them over the years. Once when I was driving thru a local small town there was a elderly gardener out meandering around the yard. It was all in front of the house where you usually see lawn, a little out of the box. So I stopped and unrolled my window to tell her how great everything was looking….an hour later I’m on a tour of her entire yard and she even gave me poppy seeds to take home. They grew terrifically every year. Gardening is one of those things that can bring total stranglers together, quite amazing.

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    • What an amazing and beautiful story. I love it and I love you.

      You are a gardener at heart like me…it must be so hard being away from that.

      Wow…23 years old. Plants are amazing. My asparagus fern is about that old, too. I bought two of them for seventy-nine cents and had them in my apartment. They moved from bigger and bigger pots and now live in our back yard.

      So good of you to share them around town, your own gardening chain letter!

      xox ♥

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      • I ❤ U 2 😀

        Full disclosure, once Buddy had dug up Karens when he errantly decided to bury a cookie under her fairly new Bleeding Heart…gulp. He sent her a 'I'm Bad to the Bone" card and two to replace her broken and dead one. I think she forgave him but what a way to make you feel terrible….."my dog did WHAT?" Yikes.

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