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BLOOM'S GARDEN TIPS: [COLLECTING SEEDS & BULBS]

Chicago Landscape Spring Garden Designs

Chicago landscaper garden service

Chicago Landscape Spring Garden Designs

Chicago Landscape Spring Garden Designs

 

 

Benefits of Annual Seeds and Bulb Collecting/Harvesting: Collecting seeds and bulbs from your flower garden not only saves money, but it promotes economical ways of producing more new plants for your garden(s) year after year. Additionally, we reduce unnecessary waste and the practice itself helps with the preservation of certain plant varieties that may no longer be available in the future or that may not be so readily available to purchase at your local garden/nursery centers.

 

  • Seed collecting can be rather rewarding and it is not as difficult as some may think. When fall approaches we begin yet another phase of cleaning up and preparing our gardens for its dormancy period. During this time of the year, I minimize deadheading on some of the beautiful annual plants so that I allow for the flowers to form seed heads that I can use for the following year (i.e. especially from plants that flowered with excellent show quality characteristics).
  • Bulb collecting for me comes from two primary annual flowering varieties that I use most during the Midwest spring/summer seasons; these are the Dahlia and Cannas that I planted. However, there’s a wide range of tropical bulbs that people plant that can also be harvested and overwintered with the same methodology.

Directions:

  • Seed Pod Recognition:  One of the very first things that you’ll need to do is familiarize yourself with what the seed pods for certain plant variety looks like. With technological advancements and popular web blogs… you can easily utilize Google and other popular search engines to filter images on the internet for specific plant varieties and what their seed pods look like. Below are images from some popular annual flowering plants that can be easily collected and stored for next season’s planting. (In order of appearance: Marigold, sweet pea, dahlia, and canna)
  • Timely Harvesting: This pertains mostly with seed collection. To ensure the seeds you collect are mature and will properly germinate the following year, you must allow the seed heads to properly develop and harvest only when the seed heads are ready. Often times the seed heads will change colors (i.e. turn brown, black, grayish, etc.) and steadily dry to a crisp to signal that this process is complete.
  • Proper Storage: Select locations or storage containers that are cool and dry to preserve the seeds/bulbs until the next growing season. With the exception of a few varieties, some people store their seeds/bulbs in the fridge (i.e. not freezer). Storage of seeds/bulbs at room temperature is also fine as long there is no constant change in temperature.

 

Seed Collecting Resources:

 

 

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