Monday, October 20, 2008

seed saving and fermentation

Do you save seeds?  This is the time of year that I take stock of the seed I have saved from this years garden: stiff neck garlic 
                         caribe potato
                         Kennebec potato
                         Onaway potato
                         Carolla potato
                         mercado amaranth
                         oldtimer down the road drybeans 
                         3 varieties of tomato seed all heirloom varieties.

This was my first year saving Tomato seed.  The process was very easy and uses one of my favorite things in the whole entire world...fermentation.  You scoop out the seed from your heirloom variety put in a cup with a little water. Cover the cup with cheese cloth or muslin.  Let the seeds ferment for 2-3 days in a warm spot .  A scum will form on the surface.  The fermentation helps to break down the sack around the seed.  After fermentation is complete, rinse off the seeds and lay them out to dry.  Be sure to keep your labeling consistent through out the process, if you are saving several varieties at a time.  

I consider seed saving  a form of making do.  Why buy the same seeds every year when you can save some from the best produce that you grow? I am still new at it but love that each year the list grows longer. I highly recommend Seed to Seed by Suzanne Ashworth if you are considering saving seed.  It is the bible on the subject.

Speaking of fermentation, a new friend has given me a kombucha mother.  Yesterday was my first time trying kombucha.  It is a yummy drink that has sort of a acidic bite like cider.  It is full of really beneficial microbes.  It is made from sweetened black tea and fermented with a mother.  I made my first batch yesterday so it should be ready next weekend.  Thanks Peggy!

1 comment:

Kathie said...

Saving seed is one of the most important things we can do in regards to security in my opinion. Its the best way to assure that no matter what, next year we will have a garden and food to feed our families.