Already on ArticleSlash?

Forgot your password? Sign Up

Saving Tomato Seeds - Simple Steps Towards Next Years Tomato Crop


Visitors: 197

Saving tomato seeds from your best plants is easy to do. Seeds saved from heirloom varieties are best to use. Seeds from hybrids will not grow true to the fruits of the previous season. Heirloom tomatoes are those that are open pollinated and have not been hybridized. They have properties that can be traced back many generations. The age of the cultivar used to define “heirloom" status is open to some discussion, but is generally regarded to mean cultivars that existed before World War II due to the fact that hybrid varieties came into popular use for commercial tomato and seed production following the war.

To start choose the fruits with the most desirable traits. Cut the top of the tomato about ΒΌ way down and gently remove the seeds, save the remaining tomato and make a quick, fresh marinara sauce, stuffed tomato or add it to your salad. Tomato seeds are covered with a gelatinous coating that needs to be removed. This coating inhibits growth so that the seeds don't start sprouting inside the fruit. The best way to remove this coating is to follow nature's cue. When tomato fruits fall from the plant, they ferment as part of the decomposition process, and this removes the coating. To mimic this process you can place the seeds in a container containing water for 3-4 days.

Leave the container on your kitchen counter or someplace else warm, but out of direct sunlight. After three days, the surface of the liquid will be covered in foam from the fermentation and most seed will settle to the bottom of the container. Pour off the liquid and any floating seeds and rinse them gently. Place them on a non-porous surface to dry, out of direct sunlight. A fan can be used to hasten the drying process, but do not use a heated air source such as a hair dryer. When the seeds are thoroughly dry, place them in an airtight container and label the container with the variety name and date. Store the container in a cool, dry place. Tomato seeds are very durable and will last for several years as long as you make sure that the seeds are thoroughly dry before storing them.

Seed saving can turn into an interesting side hobby to gardening. There are many seed exchange programs where gardeners exchange the seeds that they have saved with other gardening enthusiasts. These groups help to maintain the diversity of plant life and provide a social outlet where gardeners can develop friendships with other gardeners across the country and across the world.

Neal and Cathy Klabunde are the owners of a gardening website for gardeners of all skill levels.


Article Source:

Rate this Article: 
How to Grow the Perfect Tomato
Rated 4 / 5
based on 5 votes

Related Articles:

Freezer Tomato Sauce - Extending the Tomato Season

by: Allen Wheeler (December 06, 2008) 
(Food and Drink/Recipes)

Green Tomato Pie Recipe, Have You Tried Green Tomato Pie?

by: Diane Watkins (April 12, 2007) 
(Food and Drink)

Hanging Tomato Planters - How Well Do Hanging Tomato Planters Work?

by: J Ruppel (March 03, 2008) 
(Home and Family/Gardening)

The Tomato From the New World

by: Alan Beggerow (July 18, 2008) 
(Food and Drink)

The Tomato Martini

by: Michelle Dudley (July 13, 2007) 
(Food and Drink/Wine Spirits)

Southwestern Tomato Soup

by: Cristie Will (February 01, 2007) 
(Food and Drink)

Tomato Container Garden

by: Tracy Ballisager (March 31, 2008) 
(Home and Family/Gardening)

Green Tomato Cab is First Choice

by: Lila Ivanov (September 04, 2008) 

The Real Tomato Story

by: Audrey Frederick (August 25, 2008) 
(Food and Drink)

How to Grow the Perfect Tomato

by: Abigail Isaiah (December 30, 2012) 
(Food and Drink/Salads)