Q and A: planting early trees and saving tomato seeds — 3 Comments

  1. The only problem I’ve had with germination is once when I didn’t get them dry fast enough, and they all started sprouting then and there!

  2. Ellendra,

    Thanks for your input on using the blender. I kind of wondered about that but read it in a reputable seed-saving book. So much for that!
    The reason you ferment the tomato gel is to prevent disease spread and to neutralize the anti-sprouting gel that surrounds the seeds. Have you had good luck with your Oxyclean seeds germinating after storage?

  3. “I’ve heard that some seed savers use a blender to whiz whole tomatoes and then ferment the juice/slop/seeds (which are not supposed to be damaged.”

    Their blenders must be slower than mine. Mine purees the seeds too quickly to save them. I tried with a standing mixer, but that just threw tomato bits all over the room. I saw a hand-cranked ice crusher that might do the trick, but the one I saw had some damage to it so I didn’t buy it.

    For tomato seeds, I use Oxyclean instead of fermenting them. About half a teaspoon of Oxyclean to 2-3 cups of tomato “slop”. Let soak for an hour, stirring every 10 minutes, then rinse. It cleans the seeds nicely, without the smelliness of fermenting them. Last fall I tried it with squash seeds, and while it didn’t do much for the strings, there was a lot less chaff after the seeds dried.