@allotmentalice’s quick guide to…saving seeds

Saving seed not only saves you money but it allows you to grow plants that are better adapted to your garden or allotment. Here’s four ways to harvest, store…or share


  1. Drying. Great for beetroot and onions. Collect dry seed heads or whole stems on a sunny day and pop them head down into a paper bag with a short piece of stem sticking out. Seal with an elastic band around the stem and the top of the bag, and leave in a cool place for a few weeks so the seeds drop into the bag. Store in a cool dry room or in the fridge if room allows!
  2. Fermenting. Great for tomatoes and pumpkins. The fermentation process helps kill seed-borne diseases and degrades growth inhibitors. Scoop the seeds into a jar and cover with water. Stir and store in a warm room until white bubbles appear on the surface. Rinse and sieve and dry thoroughly before storing in airtight jars.
  3. Bomb them. Nurture your inner ‘guerilla’ by mixing clay and compost together to form a thick paste and chuck in your seeds. Allow the seed bombs to dry out completely or stuff the paste into old stockings and plant within a few weeks.
  4. Swap them. Seed swaps are a great way to give away surplus seed and get your hands on some gems you might not have in your own garden. Find inspiration and events at seedysunday.org or swapseeds.org.uk


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