NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Seeds  (Read 3017 times)

Bex

  • Joined Aug 2014
  • Wales
Seeds
« on: January 03, 2015, 03:13:08 pm »
Does anyone grow their own seeds? Can anyone reccomend a good heirloom seed growing book?

I'm becoming a bit of a prepper and although I'll certainly start out just buying in my seeds, I would eventually like to harvest my own.
Little bugs have lesser bugs upon their backs to bite 'em. And lesser bugs have lesser bugs and so ad infinitum!
Voss Electric Fence

Greenerlife

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Leafy Surrey
Re: Seeds
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2015, 03:23:08 pm »
Have a look at the real seeds web site - it has a great section on seed saving!

Bex

  • Joined Aug 2014
  • Wales
Re: Seeds
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2015, 03:53:50 pm »
Thanks Greenerlife!
Great site and just what I was looking for! Just downloaded a very useful leaflet to start with.

 :thumbsup:
Little bugs have lesser bugs upon their backs to bite 'em. And lesser bugs have lesser bugs and so ad infinitum!

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Seeds
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2015, 04:27:55 pm »
The other thing about Real Seeds is that their varieties are not hybrids, so seed saving works fine.  They also avoid all the 'one day wonder' specials some of the catalogues enthuse about, and just grow and sell sensible, useable veg.  :garden:
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Mad Goatwoman of Madeley

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Telford
Re: Seeds
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2015, 08:41:11 pm »
Garden Organic has its Heritage Seed Library as well. For an annual membership fee, you are given six or seven packets of seeds; the first are your choice and the last is a lucky dip. They also have a list of people who have seeds to give away/swap and lots of information on seed saving. It's a good way to get started.

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Seeds
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2015, 10:11:50 pm »
I use both Organic garden catalogue (but not a member of heritage library) and Real Seeds, but have looked at seed saving and found that it is just too much effort (time manly) for me to go and do that. Leaving plants in their beds until the following year (almost all brassicas only flower in year 2 for example) just doesn't work in my garden, and having "tents" above individual tomato/chilli/pepper plants is also not possible. For actually very little money I just buy seeds most years...

Cross pollination is just too much of a problem...

Bex

  • Joined Aug 2014
  • Wales
Re: Seeds
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2015, 01:56:43 am »
Anke - yes, it does seem a lot of extra work but hopefully I'll have plenty of room wherever I buy and as I said, I'm becoming a bit of a prepper, so I'm planning for after the apocolypse when I can't order seeds online!  :innocent:
Little bugs have lesser bugs upon their backs to bite 'em. And lesser bugs have lesser bugs and so ad infinitum!

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Seeds
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2015, 09:57:30 am »
Anke - yes, it does seem a lot of extra work but hopefully I'll have plenty of room wherever I buy and as I said, I'm becoming a bit of a prepper, so I'm planning for after the apocolypse when I can't order seeds online!  :innocent:


...and for when it becomes too expensive for the seed companies to maintain your favourite plants (such as Pentland Brig kale) or the EU gets its wish and you can only buy varieties which are used in the rest of the union, no local varieties at all.  I know their efforts have been stopped for now, but it will come back.

I think it is worth saving certain seeds and it's easier with some types than others.  Tomatoes are easy and they last for several years, so you don't have to save them every year.  A single variety of brassica is easy enough to save, and those seeds too last for a few years.  Beans and peas are very easy.

I am in my third year of keeping back the fattest garlic cloves to plant, in order to get a garlic which grows well here.
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Greenerlife

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Leafy Surrey
Re: Seeds
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2015, 10:52:57 am »
My Mum is in her 6th or 7th year of saving tomato seeds from a single tomato that she bought in France, which was enormous (weighed over a kilo) and delicious.  Never been able to grow them that big but they keep the taste characteristics for sure!

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Seeds
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2015, 11:12:14 am »
Well I am growing at least 5 varieties of tomatoes, the same number of chillies/peppers (all in the polytunnel, quite tightly packed in), two varieties of kale plus PSB in the same bed, and my rotation of beds just doesn't work if I need to leave plants in individual beds.

It all depends what your priorities in smallholding are - we try to be as self-sufficient as possible and manage pretty well with veg (not all - no point growing main crop tatties, onions and carrots), quite a bit of fruit, diary (except butter) and all meat.

I am afraid life is just too short to do everything...


Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Seeds
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2015, 11:57:02 am »
Wouldn't it be horrible if we all did things the same way  :o   There's room for us all, and no-one need feel guilty because they don't do something 'expected' of a smallholder.  For example, I have no dairy animals at all, because endless milking, then using the result, isn't for me.  I don't feel guilty at all  ;D
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

 

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