Last year was the first year I tried saving my seeds. I saved seeds from my heirloom musk melons and watermelons.
And then I planted them this spring.
And then they grew and grew and grew. It was a huge success. I had much better results than with seeds purchased.
And so, I thought I'd pass along to you how I save my seeds. I have done no research on how to do it correctly. But what I did seemed to work beautifully.
First, and probably most important of all, get yourself some pumpkins (or melons, etc.) that you want to save seeds from. Because I am saving pumpkin seeds, I set my pumpkins outside to decorate the front porch. I enjoyed these pumpkins and their unique look.
Apparently chickens LOVE pumpkins! And so I am forced to save my seeds earlier than expected. I brought in what was left of the poor pumpkins. I cut them open--more than the girls already did.
Next, and here's the hard part, scoop out the seeds. I use my hands but you can use a spoon if you're a sissy. However, you are still going to have to touch the seeds. After removing the seeds, I cleaned as much gunk off as I could and placed them in a bowl.
Then, I filled the bowl with water and squished the seeds through my fingers to clean them. After doing this for a few minutes, I drain the seeds, add more water, and repeat. I do this several times until my water comes out clean.
The next step is to dump the seeds onto a paper towel and pick out any seeds that don't look right. See the difference in these seeds?
Next, I label my paper towel because I'm doing several different pumpkins. I leave the seeds to dry overnight.
If you are a perfectionist, go ahead and make sure all of the pumpkin guts are completely removed. I had other things to do, so some remained on my seeds. This hasn't seemed to affect them.
The next day, I labeled my envelopes and picked the seeds off the paper towels. Some stick a bit, but don't worry. Any remaining paper on the seeds will disintegrate when they are planted.
Now I just put them in the refrigerator door until spring.