Next, place the good seeds on a paper towel and leave them there until they are thoroughly dry, which may take one to two days. I attempted to save cucumber seeds last year. Don't save seeds from vegetables or flowers labeled "hybrid." Since its my first year saving these seeds I will test the unfermented seed to see how it compares with the cleaned seed. If you love cucumbers, you can definitely save and replant these, but not until you learn a few of the basics first. You want to allow the seeds to dry completely before storing. Because cucumbers have to pollinate and, therefore, can cross-pollinate with other members of their family from time to time. When you go to remove the seeds from your cucumbers, you need to remove them at the right time. Press Esc to cancel. This gel sac needs to be fermented so it falls away from the seed. The mixture will essentially ferment over the three-day period, which does two things. Wait too late, and you leave a better chance for the seed to cross with another variety. The Practical Planter also participates in programs from ShareASale and other sites and is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies. You should select the best cucumbers for seed saving. Most of the time, the result is a lush plant that doesn't produce. Be sure all seed is dried throughly before storing. Last Spring the cuke seeds failed to germinate. Leave undisturbed for four days or longer if needed. Some seeds are easier to save than others. How to Save Cucumber Seeds? Scoop out the cucumber seed with a spoon and deposit the seed into a jar of water. They will enlarge and turn yellow. I have read many versions of saving cuke seeds. Slice your cucumber in half long ways, and scoop out the seeds. Seed saving is a HUGE subject, and the instructions for saving seeds from one species may differ from another. Only disease-free cuke seeds will produce good results. The good seeds sink and the bad ones float (being full of air). This means that seed savers need to leave a few fruits to fully mature in the garden when they want to save seeds. Choose the cucumber that is the healthiest and let it remain on the vine long past the harvesting time. The cucumber will begin oxidizing as soon as it loses its skin, and this will turn it soggy. Saved seeds from hybrid plants are often sterile and of no value. Because tomatoes and cucumbers have seeds that are coated with a gel, the first step is to remove it … Seeds from hybrid varieties produce a mixture of plant types, most of which are inferior to the parent. Store cucumber seeds in a cool, dark, and dry place in an airtight container to keep out moisture and humidity. As a general rule, you should keep the seeds in the freezer for two days, although an extra day or two won’t hurt them; ferment them in the water mixture for a minimum of three days, although you can leave them there for five days if you like; and dry them out for several days or even a few weeks. To replant the seeds so that more vegetables can grow. Label with the cucumber variety and date stored. Type above and press Enter to search. If you pick a nice healthy ripe cucumber to eat but later decide you wish to save its seeds, set the cucumber in a cool dry place to continue ripening. During this process, the pulp and the bad seeds are going to rise to the top of the water, and the good seeds will sink to the bottom. These include serpent gourds, Armenian cukes, and West Indian gherkins. When properly saved and stored, cucumber seeds can last between five to ten years. $10.99 $ 10. Step 1 – Harvest the overgrown cucumber and cut it in half lengthwise. These can be discarded. "Seed to Seed" by Suzanne Ashworth. If you're going to save seeds, you'll want only seeds from the original plant. Saving Seed of Pumpkins, Squash, Cucumbers, Melons and Gourds New gardeners often ask whether it’s alright to plant cucumbers, squash, or gourds next to each other. Hybrid cucumber seeds rarely produce tasty, healthy cukes. Fortunately, the pollen source does not affect the current season’s fruit. Spread the seeds out on a piece of paper towel or parchment paper. Please help us improve. Step 2 – Scoop out the seeds with a teaspoon. Cucumber Seed Saving and Planting Tips Cucumbers can self-seed. Lastly, seeds can transmit some diseases, so be sure that when cucumber seed saving, no disease has infected the crop that you are trying to harvest. Allow the cucumber to turn yellow (some varieties turn orange) and the peel to become soft. When times were tough, people did this to save money, but it was also a way to make sure you had the chance to grow as many veggies as possible and keep your garden going for a very long time. Most veggie seeds can be saved, and the people who saved their vegetable seeds at one time usually saved some from every growing season, which meant the following season had a head start every time and was guaranteed to grow well for the rest of the season. Allow it to turn yellow or orange and soft and then harvest the seeds the same way you would if left on the vine to mature. Some people store their seeds in a refrigerator. If you have a lot of space--like a farm--plant one variety per half-mile. This is "saving cucumber seed" by Petra Page-Mann on Vimeo, the home for high quality videos and the people who love them. Below is a rundown of gathering, treating, and storing the most commonly-saved garden vegetable seeds. Not all open-pollinated plants are heirlooms. Many cucumber varieties (like the one I tried to save seed from) are parthenocarpic, which means that the female flowers with produce fruit without being fertilized by pollen from a male flower. Tomatoes and Cucumbers. Simply take one of the seeds out and bend it in half. Seeds from hybrid plants are unreliable. Saving Cucumber Seeds (Fermenting!) The important thing to remember is to ferment them so the good seeds are at the bottom, dry them thoroughly, and place them in airtight containers in a cool, dry place. Cucumbers are self-pollinating. Just allow the cucumber to remain on the vine and fall to the ground. Seeds for saving must be fully developed on the plant or vine. 25 Creative Ways of Remembering Loved Ones at Christmas, Pictures of Different Types of Palm Trees. You want to select the healthiest cucumber plant for harvesting seeds. Place the bowl somewhere out of direct sunlight for 1-3 days. Get it as soon as Mon, Dec 14. Cut the cucumbers lengthwise to expose their seed. The seed might not be pure, as there were pickling cukes in the same field, but I think its worth a try to save the seed. When the seeds are completely dry, you can store them away until you’re ready to use them. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. It's really simple. Before saving cucumber seeds, you'll first need to make sure you are dealing with an open-pollinated or non-hybrid variety, otherwise known as an heirloom. Why did they do this? Remove the seeds from the freezer and store in a cool dry, dark place. You'll notice that the seeds are encased in a gel-like substance. The seeds are enclosed in a slippery jelly like sack to keep them from sprouting inside the moist fruit. Many varieties could be hybrids but may not be designated as such. Place a tiny bit of warm water in a bucket, then place all of the seeds in there as well Cucumber seeds take a little more effort. The Practical Planter is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Sow Right Seeds - Cucumber Seed Collection for Planting - Armenian, Pickling, Lemon, Beit Alpha Variety Pack, Non-GMO Heirloom Seeds to Plant and Grow a Home Vegetable Garden, Great Gardening Gift. You can use this same process to save seeds from tomatoes and cucumbers as well. Once you've saved your own, you won't ever need to buy seeds. Next season, plant your saved seeds one inch deep. Saving seeds from mature fruit in the middle of the season is your best bet for collecting high-quality seed. Discard the flesh, which has become bitter. Ideally, you’ll plant just one of these varieties at a time, but if you do choose to plant more than one variety, make sure they are planted a minimum of one-half mile apart. At this time, you can remove the good seeds and discard the bad seeds and the pulp. A plant that is struggling or producing malformed cucumbers isn't a good candidate for seed harvesting. If you’ve decided to save your cucumber seeds so you can replant them at a later time, you can easily choose types that are known not to pollinate. The fermentation process of the seeds serves two purposes. Happy planting! In fact, these types of seeds are often sterile. The first is to get rid of the gel sack so the seeds can dry out. Once you learn how easy it is to save and store cucumber seeds for next year's crop, you may decide to try saving other vegetable seeds. If you select too early, the plants may have not matured enough to produce good seed. If you isolate your cucumbers at planting time, it makes saving the seeds later on a lot easier, so you should do this if at all possible. In order to save seeds from cucumbers, you must let them thoroughly ripen on the vine. If you search the internet for suggestions on how you can save and store cucumber seeds, you’ll likely get some different numbers when it comes to storage and drying times. Saving Cucumber Seed: Here is Josie, aged 2, saving cucumber seed. It is best to ferment the seeds before drying to find the seeds which will germinate. First of all, since cucumber seeds can carry and transmit certain diseases, you have to make certain the seeds have none of these diseases before you plant them in the ground. To make sure the seeds are removed properly and are healthy enough to plant successfully, here are the steps you should take: The reason you’ll do this is to remove the gel coating that surrounds these types of seeds. Eggplant, cucumber, and summer squash fruit are eaten when the fruits are immature and still edible, but before the seeds are actually mature. Something else you need to look for is whether the original cukes were hybrids. Saving Cucumber Seeds Once you have chosen the plant let one of the cucumbers grow until it begins to turn yellow. Pour off the top 1/2 of the jar, losing the floating bad seed … I know a lot of people have been asking me, When is it ripe? Hi! Place the seed envelope sleeve or jar in the freezer for a couple of days to ensure any possible pests or disease that resisted the fermentation process are removed. Step 4 – Set the bowl aside and leave it in a warm space – to allow fermentation to begin. Hybrids are made to produce a certain characteristic and little else, and as such, they never reproduce a true copy of the parent plant. Let them get over-ripe, scoop out the seeds, and put in jar with water for a couple of days or so. Immediately after storing them, place them in the freezer for two days to kill off anything that is harmful to them, such as pests. At one time, people saved nearly everything, and this included seeds from vegetables grown in their gardens. The good seeds will sink to the bottom of the jar or bowl. Keep seeds out of sunlight. All Rights Reserved. You can store them in a drawer, cabinet, or plastic container. This means that the male and female flowers grow on the same vine and don't require other plants for pollination. Skim the bad seeds and pulp from the surface and discard. This means removing the seeds from the cucumbers once they are fully mature. For seed-saving purposes, cucumbers must be left on the vines until they ripen, usually when they turn bright yellow or orange. Saving seeds from cucumbers uses a similiar technique to saving seeds from … Instead, look for the plant excelling in production and quality of cucumbers. To remove the seeds, there has to be a method to your madness, so to speak. Cucumber seeds are relatively easy to save for planting next year. Remove as many seeds as possible from as many cukes as you like, Place a tiny bit of warm water in a bucket, then place all of the seeds in there as well, Leave the seeds in there for a total of three days. You want to harvest the seeds from the over-ripened cucumber as soon as you pick it. Don't wait until the end of the season when plants are at their lowest energy production. If you're going to save cucumber seeds, you need to plant an open-pollinated (bred pure) variety. My first step was to collect a few ripe fruits free of cracks or bug holes, which can serve as entry points for disease microorganisms. Slice the cucumber lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. If the fruit is yellow or orange, you’ll know it’s alright to start removing the seeds. Of course, all of these things can be difficult for the casual home gardener to do, but it isn’t impossible if you get a little outside help. The second purpose is to kill any diseases or viruses the seeds might harbor. I picked a few overripe ones just for the purpose of saving the seed. this time we are saving seeds from a cucumber! Harvest the cucumber from the vine. 99. Add a small amount of warm water, cover the bowl and let the seeds sit for three days. Again, they can remain there for up to three years, so at this point you’ll have plenty of time to go outside and replant them. Basically used same procedure I used successfully with tomatoes. They should stay on the … Finally, you should always isolate the seeds you’re planning to save and plant. To soak up any moisture, place a silica gel packet in your glass jar and replace it every six months. Ground vines should be planted about three feet apart. Cucumber seeds saved from a previous growing season are called heirloom seeds, and this is a very popular thing to do, even though some of the steps mentioned above are a little easier if you’re a commercial grower. My name is Lisa, and I’m on a mission to expand my plant knowledge. If it snaps in half, it is dry enough to move onto the next step. Keep the Seeds Dry Using a Silica Gel Packet or Raw Rice It's essential that the seeds remain dry while being stored. "The Seed Savers Handbook" Jeremy Cherfas, (Grover Books, 1996) is also good and also talks in more detail about the reasons that you might want to save your own seeds. It's easy to save and store cucumber seeds for next year's garden and beyond. There is also a good way to tell if the seeds are dry enough to store in a container. This may take a few weeks depending on your climate. Put the harvested seeds into a large bowl, and add an equal amount of water. Why? However, seed saving requires a little planning if you want to make sure that your open-pollinated seeds remain pure, since zinnias can be cross-pollinated by insects from different varieties. It should release from the vine very easily. 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