Sunday, September 5, 2010

Guest Post: Harvesting tomato seeds

This is the first year we grew our own tomatoes in our urban shady backyard.  The tomato plants came from V the Baking Barrister who donated a number of the plants to the day job folks.   At the end of May, I put my plants outside and strategically placed the pots in the sunniest spot.  Miss Lily made a few garden markers (we used the Magic Onion's method with Outdoor Modge Podge).

We have been enjoying tomatoes every day for the past 4 weeks.  Here is last evening's harvest.

V starts her plants from seed (no, she does not buy the starters at the garden centre, but from actual seeds).   She also lives in a condominium and uses the community garden. I find this extremely inspiring and I asked her to post on the topic of "saving your seeds."  This project would also be very interesting for children.  I hope you find it inspiring and informative.

Saving your Seeds

My motto is: “Gardening is the most basic form of cooking”. As quality ingredients are the source of all good meals, I dedicate a large portion of my summers to gardening.  I’ve started planting from seed during the last four years and find it a frugal way to maintain quality control over my tomato crop. According to Wikipedia, there are around 7500 varieties of tomatoes; I know the names of maybe five of them. As such, the only way I can guarantee that I have the proper seed for  a certain tomato is to save the seeds myself.

Saving tomato seeds is extremely simple. If you don't already have your own crop, the first step is to hit the farmer’s market and select a variety of tomatoes.  Do not put the tomatoes in the fridge.

 Find a sturdy piece of paper and write a description of each tomato anywhere on the page. This could include: colour, texture, flavour, yield, size, shape, etc.

Cut your tomatoes in half. Note: If you’re not as dramatic as me, just cut one of each tomato.

Dig the seeds out on to the paper in a single layer.  Once the seeds and paper have dried, the seeds will be stuck to the sheet.

Come March (yes, March!), gently peel the seed off the sheet of paper and start your seeds indoors.

Based on the yield, use and flavour of the tomatoes, I generate a new tomato seed sheet each gardening season.

V the Baking Barrister


  1. Wow! That's it? Seriously? No washing or special drying to do? I'm starring this post. I had no idea...

  2. Wow! Lovely and educational I must say post I just have to try for myself! Beautifully illustrated and intelligible!

  3. OMG! I had no idea it was this easy KJ & V! I have been enjoying fresh tomatoes from my garden this summer thanks to V. Thanks to this post, I may be enjoying them again next summer. Will keep you posted.

  4. Wow that's so interesting, we're eating so many tomatoes (shop bought) I think I'm going to give this a try. Thanks!

    (Thanks KJ for your lovely message, my mother is going from strength to strength! xox)


Thanks for stopping by. I love to hear what you think!