Monday, December 29, 2014

Let us collect lettuce seeds

I really used to lament over our hot dry Perth summers. Last year we had no summer crops because we were away for seven weeks and as we gardeners know, a good food garden needs daily attention so we just didn't bother. But this summer, so far has been fantastic. We have had a bumper tomato crop, heaps if apples, bananas, boysenberries, lettuce and lots of other veggies.

Our new wicking bed is crankin' and will hopefully keep us in greens for a while to come. But of course, as seasons flow, some crops finish.

One patch of lettuce bolted a couple of months ago and now it's time to collect the seed. If you're new to seed collecting, lettuce is a great one to start with. I've been saving these seeds, which I originally got from our good friend Ben, for several years. They are red cos lettuces.

So first if all you need to do is resist picking from your best lettuce plants. Just let three or four go to seed. They look like this with fluffy seed heads when they are ready to collect.

Once they flower, seed and dry you just take the seeds. So simple. I just roll the seed head in my fingers to loosed the seeds and let them fall into a container.

And there they are, all ready for my next crop which will be in a few weeks time. I'm really trying to keep the greens rolling this summer. I have to remember how lucky we are in Perth - with care, we can grow most veggies most of the year round.

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