In our very first valleys. magazine back in the spring, we teamed up with Roger Crookes to share tips on how to grow flowers from seeds that you can pick up from the shop, garden centre or online.
We hope that if you followed Roger’s advice, you had a successful Summer with lots of lovely flowers to add some colour to your home.
Now that Summer is over, we’re excited to share how you can use the flowers that you’ve grown to collect seeds that you can use again next year, for free!
When to collect and store seeds?
The best time to collect seeds is about 2 months after the plant has stopped flowering and before the weather gets too wet and frosty.
How to collect your seeds:
Seeds come in lots of different ‘natural packaging’. According to the RHS, some of the most common types include:
- Berries (e.g. holly)
- Capsules (e.g. poppy)
- Nuts (e.g. hazel)
- Pods (e.g. sweet peas)
- Winged seed (e.g. Acer, sycamore)
Sometimes the seed heads change colour when they ripen from green to brown, black or red. Once this happens, wait for a dry day then pick the seed heads.
Lay the seed heads out somewhere warm and dry like a windowsill. Drying them means it’s easier to get the seeds out. If they don’t open themselves, gently crush the seed heads to release the seed.
After extracting the seed, clean off any surrounding material attached to them and place in an envelope in an air tight container (old food containers/Tupperware) until it’s time to sow them again. Using an envelope is great as you can write the type of flower on the front, so you don’t lose track of what’s in there.