The Art of saving seeds
This season we embarked on a series of new practices as a direct result of conditions presented by Mother Nature. Chief among them was our use of a hot house to grow some varieties of heirloom tomatoes. We selected about 2 dozen varieties to grow under cover as a method to increase the odds of survival as well as to extend the season.
Our experiment has born fruit and as a result we have managed to harvest tomatoes that simply did not make it in the field for a variety of reasons. (Free range pecking chickens, rain, drought, weeds, frost) Some of the tomatoes are stunners and simply draw us to them. Many disappear into the mouths of the schoolhouse gang, but some are carefully dissected to harvest the seeds to be fermented and saved for next season.
Schoolhouse Farms has habitually saved tomato seeds as a practice. The practice began years ago when a particular variety of tomato became unaffordable in the market at a cost of $2 a seed due to a serious lack of available seeds. Suffice it to say we purchased seeds and planted them under lock and key with only 2 plants germinating. The plants were babied and raised without a single tomato being eaten that season as the fruit was purely for seed saving. The mere idea of knowing that we would have to wait yet another entire year before we would be able to enjoy our favorite tomatoes was almost unbearable.
Today we will be collecting more prime examples of our favorite heirloom tomatoes for seed collection to ensure Schoolhouse Farms will have something wonderful to plant next season!