A good percentage of the overseas blogs (in US of A) I follow are all talking about going through, and ordering from, seed catalogues.
Now, I've been growing vegetables seriously for the past 3 - 4 years, and the only seeds I ordered last year were my first ever planting of broad (fava) beans, heirloom tomato seeds and the Franchi Sementi purple and yellow beans. And the year before that I ordered the Franchi Sementi yellow, orange and white carrots.
I only ordered those seeds because each year I have let a couple of each of the plants in my vegetable patch go to seed, and, when they were ready to be harvested, I've dried them out thoroughly and stored them for use the next year.
I am, I reckon, an OCD seed saver. Not just lemon pips either - my seed collecting fetish has now also grown to encompass apple and naartjie (mandarin) pips too.
All other kinds of seeds from vegetables which I have grown in my garden get gathered together and put away until the next season. I can't fathom why anyone would allow a plant to go to seed, rip out the now dead plant with seeds unharvested, and then chuck it in their compost heap.
I cooked butternut in the solar oven today, and these are the seeds that one gourd gave me...
Due to our three week farm break in December/January, one of my beetroot plants went to seed...
... but that's fine, 'cos we go through a lot of onions :)
A couple of parsnips are providing me with their off-spring...
|A parsnip plant providing me with seeds for this winter|
|Potatoes sprouting at the eyes|
|Pea seeds - still in their protective pod :)|
|In front is the carrot flower-ball|
and behind you can see the
flattening process taking shape
... until that perfectly shaped flower head has flattened out completely. So flat that I can imagine butterflies use it as a dancing surface when no-one is looking.
|All they need to do now is dry out and I'll|
I have also harvested home grown aubergine, radish, corn, black pearl chilli, peas, beans, rocket, lettuce seeds. All my tomato plants this year, except for the heirloom, have grown from seed I saved from last year. And those tomato seeds originally came from shop bought organic tomatoes - thanks Woolies :)
Growing pumpkin, gem squash, zucchini and butternut from seed has thus far eluded me, but that doesn't mean I'm giving up. I never give up... :) The farm awaits you... (Actually, I have no idea how my pumpkin plants on the farm are doing - they are under irrigation, and the plants have acres to spread out LOL, so maybe...)
But, back to my original question - why does everyone overseas seem to purchase new seed every year? Are your seeds treated that their seeds aren't viable? Is your cold weather the reason that you don't have the time to allow your seeds to dry out in order to store them?
Or are you not permitted (by Montsano) to preserve your own seeds? Not that I'm trying to talk you into breaking the law, but it's far cheaper growing your vegetables from your own seeds LOL
How can there be a law against providing your own seed...? If there is, then I reckon that's a crock.