Want to know how to save pumpkin seeds for planting? Here is an 8-step simple guide to show you how to do it the right way!
We see pumpkins everywhere, especially during the latter end of the year’s seasons, and nearly all households will have a pumpkin in their house by October. Whether that’s for carving jack o lanterns, your famous Thanksgiving pumpkin pie, or just for general eating, Pumpkins are a family vegetable.
As there are so many uses for pumpkins and they work their way into our lives somehow by the month of October, you may have considered growing your own pumpkin patch – there’s certainly enough seeds! We love encouraging people to grow their own vegetables to promote environmentalism and encourage suburban agriculture.
Next Halloween, or Thanksgiving, surprise your whole family and neighbours by giving them a pumpkin and saving money while helping the environment and doing good.
If you want to create a pumpkin patch, why not use the seeds from this year’s pumpkin that were going to be discarded, you can re-use these for growing, if you know what you’re looking for. We’ve explained what you need to know to find the right pumpkin seeds for planting, read on to find out!
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Place your seeds in a seed germination kit for a higher germination rate and better yields!
Heirloom Or Hybrid?
One of the main things to be able to recognise when looking at your seeds is whether they are an heirloom variety or whether they have been hybridized. This sounds like a pretty high-level botany skill, but it’s actually pretty simple.
Heirloom seeds come from heirloom plants, the genetics of which are saved and protected so that they can continue to produce big and hearty yields for the purpose of eating and selling.
Essentially, if you have heirloom seeds the plant that grows from that seed will be dependably similar to the plant you got the seeds from. This gives you the most desirable and dependable results for growing pumpkins to eat.
Store your seeds in photo storage organizers which you can label clearly and store your seeds in an orderly manner!
On the other hand, hybrid seeds mean the mother plant you have obtained the seeds from has been cross-pollinated, naturally, of course, with another plant and this means that the child plant produced from those seeds will be different to its mother plant.
Simply, that plump and orange pumpkin you bought and made into a jack o lantern could hold seeds that will produce a much different plant.
Consider using organic, Non-GMO, Open-pollinated seeds for healthy vegetables from seeds to harvest!
Unfortunately, there is no full-proof way to identify if a seed is open-pollinated (heirloom) or cross-pollinated (hybrid).
The best way to figure this out is to do some botanical investigation yourself. If you got your pumpkin from a local farmer or a farmers market, you can just ask who you bought it from and they can tell you if the seeds will be heirloom or not. If you have bought your seeds from the grocery store it can be much harder to tell.
Whereas if these seeds will come from a pumpkin you have already grown, again it can be hard to tell but, you should have a look at what is growing around the pumpkin, and if it was in its own private soil. If other things are growing around it such as squash for zucchini then it could be cross-pollinated.
If you want to buy heirloom seeds directly you could go to a seed bank or a seed exchange, or ask someone you know who grows heirloom pumpkins themselves. Or the best way to find out is just to plant them and deal with the consequences by eating whatever you grow.
To prevent this level of investigation in the future, if you successfully grow pumpkins this year, save the seeds from three of your best pumpkins and they should produce heirloom children if they haven’t been cross-pollinated.
How To Save Pumpkin Seeds For Planting : The Method
Okay, so you have a goopy seedy mess that is the guts of a disembowelled pumpkin – spooky. This is what you need to do to get the most seeds and prepare them for planting.
- Rinse the pulp from the seeds. Do this in a colander or something that will catch the seeds and let the pulp run through. The pulp will make your seeds wet, moisture and seeds don’t agree until they are planted in the ground. Wet seeds mean mouldy seeds which aren’t good.
- Now you have the seeds separated from the pulp, place them on a lined baking tray, or something similarly flat and spread them out flat.
- Leave the seeds in the open air, away from little children and pets, for a few days.
- Keep an eye on the seeds and monitor them for mould. Mouldy seeds will have to be discarded. Catch them quickly or they could infect the other seeds. Turn the seeds over regularly so they dry evenly.
- After a few days, depending on the climate of your house, the seeds will be dry. Make sure the seeds are completely bone dry before going any further.
- Once the seeds are totally dry, place them in an envelope or paper bag, seeds like to breathe so something like plastic wont work well. Paper is a reliable classic.
- Label the seeds: the type of plant, the species of that plant, when you harvested the seeds, how big the pumpkin was, etc. This means that when it comes round to planting them you will know what to compare it to.
- Store the seeds in a cool and dry place, many people opt for the fridge for safekeeping, this will preserve them until you are ready to plant them the following season – plant them in early June (depending on your environment) when there is no risk of frost.
This should hopefully answer your question on how to save pumpkin seeds for planting!
Note- If you want to make your green fingers happier and your life easier, you can use this affordable 83 pieces ultimate gardening set to help you repot like a pro!
What Else Can I Do With Pumpkin Seeds?
Undoubtedly, you will probably have way more seeds than you actually want. But do not fear, there are many uses for pumpkin seeds beyond growing, mostly cooking related. If you roast your pumpkin seeds, they taste great.
You can use these roasted pumpkin seeds in numerous culinary applications such as putting them in cookies, using them to make pesto, as a crust for meat or fish, to add on top of pasta, or garnish the soup. The applications are endless, and you could even go as far as to make pumpkin butter.
Place your seeds in a herb drying rack for better air circulation and speed drying!
Let your imagination run wild and get planting today so you can cook with your own produce.
Well, there you have it!
How to save pumpkin seeds for planting, the right way!