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Flower seeds can be obtained from almost any single-flower or perennial, this procedure is especially interesting for short-lived varieties that thrive only one or two years old. Among the advantages of semen collection is especially the cost factor, also knows the gardener that this variety has grown well in their own garden or in planters. The result is young plants perfectly adapted to the soil, the climate and the location. When harvesting seeds, their maturity plays an important role.
The most important point in harvesting seeds is their degree of ripeness, this is the case when the seeds are about to fall off. Another decisive factor for the harvest is the weather, rainy and windy days are not suitable, especially with very fine seeds. After harvesting, the seeds should initially be stored in an air-permeable container so that the drying process can begin immediately. In plastic bags or other airtight storage options, these can quickly start to mold. Most seeds are easy to harvest and can easily be shaken out.
- For most varieties, autumn is the right harvest time
- Only harvest fully matured seeds
- Ideal for the harvest are dry, warm and calm days
- First store in envelopes or small paper bags
- Carefully fold the paper bag or envelope over the seed stand, turn it over and shake it out
- Cut off blooming and mature seeds with a sharp knife or secateurs
- Then collect in paper bags
- Always remove remaining flower parts to prevent mold growth
- If possible, leave seeds on the stalk
The seed should always be stored dry, the drier the better the germination capacity. In this way, the germination ability is retained much longer. Moist seed molds quickly and is then no longer useful for planting. Bright rooms with a lot of sunshine are not suitable for the dry process, as this reduces the germination capacity of the harvested seeds. Even the gentle autumn sun is sometimes too intense and should therefore be avoided. It is recommended to note the harvest time, even harvested flower seeds are stored for about 3 years when stored properly.
- Spread on towels, paper, newspaper or kitchen paper after harvesting
- For drying, choose a warm and airy place without direct sunlight
- After a few days, the drying is complete
- Ideal storage containers: preserving jars with rubber seals and clip closure
- Alternatively, larger glasses with screw cap or old film cans are to use
- In the containers, several seed bags can be stored to save space
- Airtight vessels protect the seeds from fluctuations in humidity
- Use of food grade silica gel speeds up the drying process
Storage location & temperature
The seeds should always be kept cool, and short-term and extreme variations in temperatures should be avoided. The germination capacity suffers from excessive exposure to light, therefore the seed should be stored in a dark place.
- Be sure to store paper bags with seeds in a dark, dry and cool place
- Storage temperatures between 0° -10° C are optimal
- Store seeds in dark cupboards in unheated corridors or in dry cellars
- Long-term storage in the freezer possible, at -18° C for more than ten years
- Weld the whole dried seeds into a vacuum bag before refrigerating
Seeds are the diaspore of seed plants. The seed consists of a seed coat, which is also called Testa and the embryo. Many seeds also have a so-called nutrient tissue. The seed, for example a flower, thus contains all the plants to grow into a new plant under favorable germination conditions.
Seeds arise when an egg cell in the ovules has been fertilized by a generative cell of a pollen grain. Due to the so-called mitotic cell division, the fertilized egg cell, which is called a zygote, produces a plant embryo. This does not grow further. Rather, it is kept in some kind of temporary waiting position by partial dehydration. Finally, planting flower seeds in soil and feeding water to the seed will cause it to germinate.
You can either buy flower seeds or make them yourself. Using the example of the summer azaleas, which are also called Godetia or Atlasblume, the production of flower seeds is explained below.
In September the seeds are ripe at the summer azaleas. Although summer azalea flowers still follow the plants, seeds have been on the market for some time now. After the flowers have blossomed, the leaves fall off and the summer azalea seed capsules turn brown and open from above. At this point you can start picking the seed pods.
The flower seeds must then be dried well. Then you can pack them well for the winter. It is best to ripen and dry in a dry airy place on absorbent paper. One should not expose it to the still partly bursting autumn sun. This weakens the germination force considerably. Then you should fill the flower seeds thus obtained in small bags or in matchboxes. For subsequent storage in a cool dry and dark place to sow the seed, are also empty film cans of 35mm film or empty 1-portion sundaes with a lid.