Planting fall veggies, harvesting seeds.
by Nicole Murray Greenhouse/Gardens Manager
At this point in the summer as some crops finish, we can start planting fall veggies and harvesting seeds. Some plants you can sow in August are beets, carrots, lettuce, kale, collards and Swiss chard, mustard greens or sweet peas. When rotating crops be sure to replenish the soil with a bit of compost and research what is best to plant next. I also like to let the soil rest for a day or two before I plant in it again. I'm not sure this is absolutely necessary, it's just something I like to do. Remay cloth placed on the newly seeded beds will help keep the soil moist in the hot summer months.
Saving seeds from the garden is natures gift to future generations of plants. The best types of seed to save are from heirlooms, old fashioned varieties and open pollinated plants. The plants from these seeds will grow to look like their parents, where as seeds from hybrid plants do not. The easiest plants to save seeds from are cucumbers, beans, peas, tomato, watermelons and melons. These plants self-pollinate and the seeds are easy to process and store. Harvesting seed is pretty simple. Just wait until the seed head dries and turns brown, then cut it off just before it opens and you lose all your seeds.
Other seeds need to be removed from the ripe fruit, rinsed and dried for a couple of weeks. If you don't dry your seeds completely mould can grow and ruin your harvest. Once the seeds are dry you can store them in an air tight container until ready to plant. Don't forget to have a close look at some of the seeds, they are all so different and beautiful!