Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Seed storage

Here is a simple way of storing seeds:

- Store the seeds in a glass bottle with a lid that fits tightly.

- Put the seeds in small envelopes or paper bags and write the type of seed
and the date on them

- Cut a round piece of cardboard which will fit in the bottle

- Make a few holes in the cardboard

- First put a few pieces of dry charcoal in the bottle; put the cardboard
on top of the charcoal and the bags/envelopes on top of the cardboard

- Close the bottle tightly and store in cupboard in a cool, dry place.

To treat the seeds with fungicide you can use the following method:

- Put 4 cups (abt 1kg or 2#) of seed, such as beans, in a paper bag or
plastic bag.

- Measure off a small quantity of fungicide (about 2 grams)

- Use less fungicide if you use less seeds.

- Pour the fungicide into the bag with seeds and fasten the bag

- Shake it well so all the seeds come in contact with the fungicide.

- Then store the seeds as explained above.

Hot water treatment can also be used to kill diseases on or in the seeds.
It takes effort but for those who cannot get seeds it is wise to know how to
clean your own seeds.

For instance, do the following with tomato, onion and cabbage seeds:

- Warm up a pot of water on a stove and keep it warm (as to not burn your
hand) or keep it between 52-54 degrees C. (125-129 degrees F).

- Put the seeds in a bag of cloth

- Put the bag with seeds in the water

- Stir continuously with a spoon and keep the water temperature constant at
the above temperatures for abt ½ an hour.

- If the water temperature drops too quickly, keep a kettle of boiling
water close by and add some hot water (first remove the bag) and put the bag
back in.

- Once finished, put the seeds onto a clean paper and leave in the shade to

- Treat the seeds with a fungicide as explained above and plant or store it
(as described above).

Alternatively; buy larger packets of good quality heirloom seed that are
properly sealed and save by doing so. Small seed packets are really sold at
a premium if you compare them!

Heirloom seeds can be stored for a long time.


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