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Old 03-22-2011, 08:04 AM   #81
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If you don't get the key soon I'd pass on the peas. They take about 60 - 75 days to mature and produce after they germinate (7-10 days). As you know spring here can switch to summer heat very fast and peas don't like the heat. If you don't get them in this spring, buy the seeds, put them in a jar with a tight lid, drop in one of those silicone packs to stop moisture, seal the jar and put it in the back of your refrigerator on the bottom shelf. Then plant them in early August for a Fall harvest. I think our first-frost date is October 15th, but I have to check. I find I get better results with the cool weather veg as fall plantings, at least down here.
Dave, I'm down here in S. Fla so our seasons are different, but I wanted to ask you a question about saving tomato seeds until next season. Last year I let tomato seeds dry on a paper towel, sealed them in a plastic bag and put them in the freezer. I did get a couple of them to grow this season but am wondering if your silicone/jar/refrigerator method or maybe another way would be better. I have a nice candidate ripening on the vine right now so this is very timely. Thanks.
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Old 03-22-2011, 11:40 AM   #82
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I have never saved tomato seeds from a tomato. I think one of my gardening books has instructions on seed saving. I'll check it out tonight and let you know what I find out. FYI - depending on what variety the tomato was, you might not get the same plant/tomato as the parent/original.
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Old 03-22-2011, 11:52 AM   #83
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:24 PM   #84
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I have never saved tomato seeds from a tomato. I think one of my gardening books has instructions on seed saving. I'll check it out tonight and let you know what I find out. FYI - depending on what variety the tomato was, you might not get the same plant/tomato as the parent/original.
Thanks a lot, Dave. And the variety of my seed-saver candidate is "Lowe's has got tomatoes already" -- I lost the plastic stick with the name on it in the frenzy to get it planted last winter, but they're a nice, sweet salad tomato.

I also have the plant from saved, frozen Brandywine heirloom seeds from the farm stand crop last year that's putting out quite a few small tomatoes, stripedy, still all green. So they just may be Franken-maters, huh?
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:37 PM   #85
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Thanks a lot, Dave. And the variety of my seed-saver candidate is "Lowe's has got tomatoes already" -- I lost the plastic stick with the name on it in the frenzy to get it planted last winter, but they're a nice, sweet salad tomato.

I also have the plant from saved, frozen Brandywine heirloom seeds from the farm stand crop last year that's putting out quite a few small tomatoes, stripedy, still all green. So they just may be Franken-maters, huh?
I would expect heirloom seeds to be less franken-likely. Well, maybe there were another variety of tomatoes within pollination distance and they are cross breed. Maybe that's what brandywine tomatoes look like as babies?
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:45 PM   #86
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We save seeds from everything except squash because squash cross polinates if the squash are planted too close to another variety. The pepper seeds sometimes work, sometimes don't. We've dried pepper seeds from peppers we've bought in the store and they've produced.

But to save the tomato seeds, we just seed them, wash the seeds (rinse them), dry them on a paper towel (near the wood stove), and store them in envelopes. Given that we plant about 300-350 tomato plants each year and harvest about 3000 lb of tomatoes, I'm guessing how we save the seeds works. We plant Brandywines, Purple prince, a yellow heirloom one I can't remember, and Romas, yellow pear, grape, and one I call "MN heirloom" (saved the seeds from tomatoes I bought at the organic farmers market when I was there and it was an heirloom--but I can't remember the variety--nice tomatoes). Brandywines aer ugly, have thin skins, but oh, the flavor...maybe we could all do a seed exchange next fall?
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Old 03-23-2011, 06:49 PM   #87
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I'm still looking. It wasn't in the book I thought it was in. I guess that is one of the drawbacks of having lots of books and a not-so-great memory.
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Old 03-24-2011, 08:34 AM   #88
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I'm still looking. It wasn't in the book I thought it was in. I guess that is one of the drawbacks of having lots of books and a not-so-great memory.
Hey, Dave - call off the dogs if you like. CWS says it's possible to use the paper towel method (I never rinsed off the seeds before saving - interesting), and sounds like the voice of experience here. Thanks for looking, but unless it's keeping you awake....
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:24 AM   #89
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The only seeds we have a problem with germinating are pepper seeds (seeded, washed, and dried). We get some to germinate, but definitely not the same percentage that the tomato seeds germinate. I'll have to ask the DH if he's ever counted the number of seeds vs. the number of seedlings re: tomatoes vs. number of pepper seeds vs. germination rate. There are other ways to save seeds, but we've been saving seeds this way for over 10 years...and, we don't have to go to the nursery to buy tomato plants <g>.
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Old 03-24-2011, 12:49 PM   #90
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CWS, when you say you put them in an envelope -- do they go in the freezer or fridge then?
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