What Seeds are You Saving?

Zeedman

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Printed germs are as of before they are sold with printed date. It is a “hot” germ usually. What isn’t printed is “cold” germ or even more valuable “vigor”. Seed’s “hot” germ can be good for years and IF stored correctly can germ for decades for most crops.
That doesn't mean that I want slowed sprouting to interfere as yet another variable. When I learn from someone that they have grown plants successfully from 10 year old seed, I wonder how delayed the emergence. Something like peppers take so long anyway with my scheme of doing things!
(added emphasis mine)
A good observation, @digitS' . Because I grow seed crops in a multi-year rotation, I am nearly always using seed several years old. That was seldom an issue, because I used the "hot" germ method (at 80-85 degrees F.) and (usually) had an adequate population emerge. This year, though, I germinated seed at room temperature (about 70 degrees F.)... don't know if that qualifies as "cold" germ, but it is 15 degrees cooler than I have used in the past. Germination was a couple days longer overall, and the difference between seeds of different ages was more pronounced. I track seed germination every year, these were the results:

OK, made a table with seed ages & germination rates, and the entire thing was deleted when I saved the post. :mad:

So this is the data, for seed stored in freezer bags, in a metal cabinet, at room temperature:
Bacskia / 2012 / 18 days / 6%
Bea / 2014 / 13 days / 100%
Beaver Dam / 2012 / 18 days / 2%
Elephant's Ear / 2014 / 13 days / 75%
Greygo / 2012 / 15-19 days / 90%
Italian Cheese / 2015 / 13 days / 87%
Korean Dark Green / 2015 / 13 days / 100%
PI 315008 / 2016 / 14 days / 100%
Parker Heirloom / 2015 / 14 days / 100%
Pizza / 2012 / 15-18 days / 65%
Pizza sport / 2018 / 7 days / 100%
Suptol / 2009 / dead / 0%
Taltos / 2013 / 17 days / 16%
Vinedale / 2019 / 7 days / 87%

To summarize, the days to germination ranged from 7 days for new seed, to staggered germination (up to 19 days) for older seed, to completely dead for the oldest. There were a couple statistical anomalies (such as Bea high, and Vinedale a little low) but germination rates were unreliable after 5 years, and total seed death for peppers appears likely after 7-8 years. Interestingly, hot peppers tended to have much better germination than sweet peppers of the same age (4 of the 5 @ 100%).

I could list the results for tomatoes as well, but all germinated in 7-8 days regardless of age, differing only in their percentages. One of the oldest seeds (Elfin / 2014) had the lowest germination rate, at 45%; but most of the 2014-2016 seed was 90-100%. It appears that tomatoes are less sensitive to seed age than peppers. Tomatoes also seemed indifferent to the lower temperatures, maybe only a day or two slower to germinate, with virtually no differences between varieties.

Diamond eggplant (2016) had very consistent germination in 10 days, at 85%.

One observation of "hot" vs. "cold" germination. When I use "hot" temperatures, germination is faster & at a higher percentage... but I get a lot of "helmets", where the seed coat fails to detach. Those clinging seed coats can be detached by moistening them several times, but this demands more observation & effort on my part. When germinated at room temperature, there were very few "helmets", maybe 5%.... but those transplants need to be started earlier. For peppers (and possibly eggplant) that may be an extra 7-10 days early.

For peppers, the major difference in days to germination for "cold" temperatures caught me by surprise. I'm leaving the lights on for 24 hours for at least the next couple weeks, in hope of making up some time. That strategy was successful one year, when I was about a week late planting.
 
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Zeedman

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On cold germ, they leave planted seed in 50 or less temps for seven days, then bring it up to normal temps. What is up on day 12 is cold germ.
Wow, that's harsh. Thanks for the definition. I can't imagine planting any warm-weather vegetables under those conditions, and expecting much... unless the seed is treated.
 

Niele da Kine

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How are the seeds stored in order for them to be viable years later? We have really high humidity and that's what I'm blaming for doing in a lot of my saved seeds, some of which had been saved for years. Now I stick them in a plastic ziplock in the back of the refrigerator. Since then, I've mostly been replanting immediately, though, since that keeps them from being bollixed up when trying to be stored.

As for what's being saved from planting to planting (or immediately replanted) it's Good Mother Stallard soup bean, Crisp Mint romaine lettuce and Bleak Hall Sea Island White cotton. The nasturtiums and marigolds have cross pollinated into whatever they want to be. The marigolds are planted around the garden, the nasturtiums just kinda do what they want. I've got some OP sweet corn from the U of Hawaii's seed program. That will probably cross pollinate and then I'll be saving those seeds, too. Well, replanting them anyway, although they get saved for a little while at least.
 

heirloomgal

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Seed saving planting lists... one of my favourite parts of pre-gardening :)

Peas: Snaps, Shelling, Snow and Dry
Spanish Skyscraper
Champion of England
Harry Burtons' Shelling
Prince Albert
Harrison's Glory
Hatif D'Annonay
Early Onward
Maestro
Aristagreen
Argenteum
Dwarf Early Frame
Large Manitoba
Pilot Pea
Sapporo Express
Scimitar
Schweizer Reisen
Edna's Sugar Snap
June's Delight
Oregon Giant
SS 141 Snap Pea
Parsley Pea
Rae
Mega
Sugar Bon
Sugar Mel
Sugaree
Little Crunchy
St. Hubert - dry pea
Charlevoix - dry pea
Serpette Guilloteaux - dry pea
Prussian Blue - dry pea
Gold Harvest - dry pea
Swedish Red Biskopens - dry pea
Black Eyed Susan (pea, not bean)- dry pea

and if I can fit it in:
Sugar Lace II
Sugar Ann
Amish Snap
Strike

Soybeans
Gaia
Black Jet
Sayamusume
Chiba
Black Hokkaido
Manitoba Brown
Grand Forks


Tomatoes
Yellow Stuffer
Casino Chips - cherry
Yellow Mortgage Lifter
Gordost Sibiri
Livingstone's Favorite
Carmello
Sea Horse
Green Grape
Green Doctors
Micro Tom
Amarillo Armadillo
Rebel Starfighter
Old German
Cosmic Eclipse
Aunt Ruby's Giant Green
Xiaxongao Cherry
Krokha
Nips
Orange Strawberry
Huge Lemon Oxheart
Korshun Ogromnyi
Chittenango
.........the rest I haven't decided yet....

Bell & Tapered Peppers
Peacework
Nocera
Quadrato d'Asti
Orange Bullhorn
Red Bullhorn
Zolotistyi
Sweet Cubanelle
Marconi Rosso Giant
Chinese Giant
Ta Tong
Chervena Chuska
Cal. Wonder
Odessa Market
Soroksari
Conquistador
Slonovo Uvo
Banana Sweet
Red Belgium
New Mexico #6
Novo Sadska
Jupiter
Keystone Giant
Palanacka Babura
Etuida
Buran
Bullnose
Alba Regia
Marconi Purple
Orange Bell
Aconagua
Lipstick
Iko-Iko
Violet Sparkle
Anaheim
Nomad

Miscellaneous fun

Marvel of Peru flowers
Heirloom Sweet Pea flowers: 'America', 'High Scent' and 'Unwin's Striped'
Blue Picotee Morning Glory
Nigella flowers
Cerinthe flowers
Kiss Me Over the Garden Gate flowers
Queen Of Malinalco Tomatillo
Blue Jade Corn / Pickaninny Corn (haven't decided)
Yellow Zlata Radish
Black Sesame
Chufa Nuts
Rosa Bianca Eggplant
Black Russian Fava

And the beans.....I would get a cramp typing all that out as it's my main focus this year :oops:
 

Phaedra

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Asparagus and eggplants ✌️
P_20230324_092822.jpg

Both were sown yesterday.
P_20230324_111411.jpg
 

Beanmad Nanna

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(added emphasis mine)
A good observation, @digitS' . Because I grow seed crops in a multi-year rotation, I am nearly always using seed several years old. That was seldom an issue, because I used the "hot" germ method (at 80-85 degrees F.) and (usually) had an adequate population emerge. This year, though, I germinated seed at room temperature (about 70 degrees F.)... don't know if that qualifies as "cold" germ, but it is 15 degrees cooler than I have used in the past. Germination was a couple days longer overall, and the difference between seeds of different ages was more pronounced. I track seed germination every year, these were the results:

OK, made a table with seed ages & germination rates, and the entire thing was deleted when I saved the post. :mad:

So this is the data, for seed stored in freezer bags, in a metal cabinet, at room temperature:
Bacskia / 2012 / 18 days / 6%
Bea / 2014 / 13 days / 100%
Beaver Dam / 2012 / 18 days / 2%
Elephant's Ear / 2014 / 13 days / 75%
Greygo / 2012 / 15-19 days / 90%
Italian Cheese / 2015 / 13 days / 87%
Korean Dark Green / 2015 / 13 days / 100%
PI 315008 / 2016 / 14 days / 100%
Parker Heirloom / 2015 / 14 days / 100%
Pizza / 2012 / 15-18 days / 65%
Pizza sport / 2018 / 7 days / 100%
Suptol / 2009 / dead / 0%
Taltos / 2013 / 17 days / 16%
Vinedale / 2019 / 7 days / 87%

To summarize, the days to germination ranged from 7 days for new seed, to staggered germination (up to 19 days) for older seed, to completely dead for the oldest. There were a couple statistical anomalies (such as Bea high, and Vinedale a little low) but germination rates were unreliable after 5 years, and total seed death for peppers appears likely after 7-8 years. Interestingly, hot peppers tended to have much better germination than sweet peppers of the same age (4 of the 5 @ 100%).

I could list the results for tomatoes as well, but all germinated in 7-8 days regardless of age, differing only in their percentages. One of the oldest seeds (Elfin / 2014) had the lowest germination rate, at 45%; but most of the 2014-2016 seed was 90-100%. It appears that tomatoes are less sensitive to seed age than peppers. Tomatoes also seemed indifferent to the lower temperatures, maybe only a day or two slower to germinate, with virtually no differences between varieties.

Diamond eggplant (2016) had very consistent germination in 10 days, at 85%.

One observation of "hot" vs. "cold" germination. When I use "hot" temperatures, germination is faster & at a higher percentage... but I get a lot of "helmets", where the seed coat fails to detach. Those clinging seed coats can be detached by moistening them several times, but this demands more observation & effort on my part. When germinated at room temperature, there were very few "helmets", maybe 5%.... but those transplants need to be started earlier. For peppers (and possibly eggplant) that may be an extra 7-10 days early.

For peppers, the major difference in days to germination for "cold" temperatures caught me by surprise. I'm leaving the lights on for 24 hours for at least the next couple weeks, in hope of making up some time. That strategy was successful one year, when I was about a week late planting.
This makes very interesting reading .
Glad of your recording habits. - I know I have gotten away with long kept tomatoes
And mental note to grow out all peppers next year - see if ANYTHING from old hoarde actually makes it. (might do the 'if it floats in water its likely dead' and try sowing sinking pepper seed only)
 

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