For beans or other plants that produce seed pods, collect seeds when the pods are very dry.
For onions or plants that produce scapes (buds), let them mature on the plant. Pick scapes and place in a bowl until completely dry. Crumble out the seeds.
For soft-flesh or hollow-center fruits (e.g. chilis, tomatoes, squashes, melons, papayas), remove seeds from well ripe fruits. Place both flesh and seeds in a bowl of water for 1-2 days to allow the flesh to separate or dissolve. Strain and dry seeds on newspaper or cloth.
For herbs and greens, collect seeds when ripe and dry. Pull out entire plant with stem and root. Hang in a paper bag upside down in cool dry place.
For eggplants or other firm flesh fruits, let fruit overripen on plant; slice along sides; hang or lay out to dry. When dried thoroughly the flesh crumbles easily. Separate seeds from flesh by blowing away the crumbled flesh.
Label seeds to identify what they are, when/where they were saved, and any distinguishing characteristics.
HOW TO SAVE SEEDS
_ Only from non-genetically modified and non-hybrid plants. Hybrid seeds will not grow true-to-type plants.
_ Seeds from the healthiest plants with desirable characteristics (hardiness, flavor, drought tolerance, etc.)
_ Seeds from healthy sections of the plant without diseases, insects or their eggs.
_ Beans - collect seeds when seedpods are very dry.
_ Herbs and greens - collect seeds when ripe and dry. Pull out entire plant with stem and root. Hang in a paper bag upside down in cool dry place.
_ For fruits pick when well ripe. For chilis, collect seeds when the fruits' outside skin is soft. Remove seeds from fruit and dry on paper.
_ Seeds must be cleaned & dried for storage.
_ Label seeds to identify what they are, when/where they were saved, and any distinguishing characteristics.
_ Store seeds in a cool, dark, dry place protected from rodents + insects.
[ DOWNLOAD THESE TIPS
MORE FREE RESOURCES
_ The Family Seed Saving Book
_ Seed Saver Exchange
- The Kohala Center