So today I decided that since the Sun Gold cherry tomato I have left is starting to look rather yucky (it is mostly yellow now), I would pull the ripe tomatoes off of it and save some seeds to start when the rest of my seeds come in (I just ordered seeds yesterday). So I looked up how to save cherry tomato seeds (since tomato seeds are reported to be some of the easiest to save) and found this lovely tutorial. Then I dug out my actual camera and low and behold in the same compartment was my memory card to USB converter thing, yay! After replacing the batteries in the camera I took some shots which will hopefully be of somewhat better quality than my usual cell phone pics (though I can’t wait until I get my big camera back from the abyss that is my mother’s house, as its wide-angle lens would have been even better for this!). So here are some pictures of the process.
A picture of the tomatoes to start. These came off the tomato plants I ordered in the spring from Laurel’s Heirloom Tomato Plants. They are a hybrid, which means that they may not come true from seed, but we’ll see. If not, I have two other varieties of cherry tomato seeds on their way!
The tomato “guts” after squeezing out the innards of the above tomatoes.
The tomato skins after squeezing out the insides :).
The tomato guts plus a little bit of water, covered with plastic wrap (with a couple of air holes), ready to ferment!
I decided to put the glass on the bathroom counter to ferment, since it is warm in there and there is some light, but not direct sunlight. Of course immediately after that my cat, Marcus, decided to try to pull the glass off the counter (since I used a hair tie as a rubber band, and he has a weird obsession with hair ties), so I ended up sandwiching it behind a couple of heavy bottles of bath products. Now I just have to wait, since it needs to ferment for 3 – 5 days. Then, once there is a layer of mold (ewwww), I can rinse the seeds and separate them from the guts and leave them out to dry (most likely in my closet or somewhere else where kitties are not allowed) for about a week. By then hopefully the rest of my seeds will have arrived so I can get some transplants started. I ordered all my seeds from Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, because they are organic (one of the rules for the garden co-op where my plot is) and are especially suited to southern climates. I went with all vegetables that I am familiar with other than the long beans, because I know the co-op will have some free seeds later on in the fall so I can always try a plant or two of something new without having to actually buy a whole packet only to decide I don’t like that vegetable at all. So without further ado, I ordered (all photos are from the website unless otherwise noted):
Lemon Drop French Marigold – Marigolds are necessary because they deter pests, and since this is a dwarf variety it should stay pretty small and cute
Stickless Wonder Asparagus Bean – The aforementioned long bean. The great thing about long beans is that they are extremely heat tolerant, and are therefore one of the few vegetables that will keep producing even in the dog days of Florida summers. This one is a somewhat smaller long bean and looks pretty much like a green bean to me so hopefully it will perform like a green bean.
Contender (Buff Valentine) Bush Snap Bean – I picked this one because bush beans can be grown again in the fall, so hopefully I will have some green beans this fall, it is heat resistant, which is always important here in Florida, and is supposed to be quite tasty.
Kentucky Wonder (Old Homestead) Pole Snap Bean – I picked this one because I think I am going to be crazy and try to grow it in the fall even though pole beans usually aren’t grown in the fall, and because pole beans tend to produce for a longer period of time than bush beans (though they take longer to reach maturity). It is also one of the older varieties, from the 1800s originally, which I think is cool.
Premium Crop Hybrid Broccoli – I have never successfully produced a head of broccoli in a container, but according to other gardeners in the co-op it does really well in the fall, so I am crossing my fingers!
Danvers 126 Carrots – I love carrots, and just wanted to give an old faithful variety a shot. This one is relatively short and thick, so I am hoping it will do well.
Golden Bantam 8 Row Sweet Corn – Pretty much everyone in the co-op grows a row of corn, and I remember my grandpa talking the other day about how they used to grow Bantam corn, so I decided to pick that variety!
Golden Calwonder Sweet Pepper – Bell peppers are quite possibly my favorite vegetable and I have actually successfully grown them in pots before, so I am just hoping I have enough time to get some in this fall (I will probably later write of the frost killing them off, but fingers crossed!).
Perfection (True Heart) Sweet Pepper – No picture 😦 This is a red bell pepper that is supposed to have really great flavor.
Yellow Pear Cherry Tomato – I just love the shape of these ones. After the failure that was Hartman’s Yellow Gooseberry I am hoping that these will be tasty!
Red Pisa Date Cherry Tomato – The website says it may be the tomato that was served as dessert at Monticello, and I just couldn’t resist!
White Wonder Cucumber – No picture 😦 It is supposed to be productive in hot weather, which is always good, plus what’s the point in only growing regular green cucumbers?
Straight Eights Cucumber – No picture 😦 Supposed to have excellent flavor!
Wild Garden Lettuce Mix – 60 different varieties of lettuce seed all mixed up together so your salad is always a surprise.
Evergreen Hardy White Bunching Onion – No picture 😦 This is just a green onion, since I love my Asian foods!
Anyway, that’s all for now, but look for an enthusiastic update once I get my seeds!