This circle of life thing is really cool…
Following on from the How to Grow Broccoli post (which looked at the life-cycle of the broccoli plant, resulting produce, and return to the soil), this one is all about how to get the seeds from the mature plant, including how to dry and store those seeds for next season’s planting.
If left to its own devices, the broccoli plant will produce a large volume of seed pods. I will normally leave one plant in the ground just for this purpose – push it out of the way so other things can go into the ground.
When the majority of the pods have dried up and turned brown, cut whole bunches off the plant. Leave them to dry further, then get the pods into paper bags.
You will get from 8 to 10+ seeds per pod, and as can be seen in these photos, there are many, many pods.
After a few weeks in a paper bag, seeds will spill out of the pods all by themselves. Store the bag in a cool dry spot.
Steps to Saving Your Own Broccoli Seeds
- Grow a broccoli plant!
- When the edible bits are done with, push it down to grow something else, but keep the roots in the soil
- Let it keep growing until the pods develop and eventually go brown
- Cut off the pod branches and hang them somewhere cool and dry for a week
- Put the pods into a paper bag and leave in a cool dry place
- Store until ready to plant out, but not more than 2 full years
- Broccoli may reduce cancer risk! (drlisroy.com)
- Sunflowers Ready to Bloom in the Garden (niebruggestudio.com)
- Update: Pacific Cod and Purple Broccoli (eatrecyclerepeat.wordpress.com)