Do you save the seeds from your homesteading garden or crops from year to year? Seed saving can be a boon for the homesteader and market grower alike, allowing you to save money and have control over your own crops.
Remember, you can't save seeds from hybrid varieties. For most plants, you can simply remove the seeds and allow them to air dry indoors or in your barn. Leave bean, pea and soybean pods on the plant until "rattle dry" (you hear them rattle or rustle). Allow the pods to dry further at room temperature, then remove the beans inside.
With melons, cukes, squash and pumpkins, it's important to have the varieties and even the types grown separate from each other - otherwise the seeds you save will grow some pretty wacky plants next year! Flowers and herbs are much easier to save; just wait till they have gone to seed and the heads have turned brown and dry, then collect them.
What seeds are you saving this year? Did you have a variety that was particularly successful? Come share in our Small Farm Forums. Learn more about seed saving from the International Seed Saving Institute.