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harvesting arugula seeds early?

Posted by tomatobob_va7 z7 VA (My Page) on
Sat, May 30, 09 at 14:59

Because of limited space, I want to harvest some arugula seeds from plants that do not meet Trudi's standards in the FAQs. Right now the plants have 4-6 still-green seed pods on each stem, and lots more blossoms on each plant. Can I pull up plants, roots and all, let them dry out in sheltered place, and still get viable seeds from the green pods? I know the blossoms probably won't produce. Thanks for any advice you can give.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: harvesting arugula seeds early?

In order to get seed the blossom has to mature fully. Then fade, then the seed must ripen on the plant. So if your pulling your plant before the bloom has even matured then no your seeds will not be viable you wont even have a seed since the seed forms after the bloom starts to die. Heres a link that may help.

Here is a link that might be useful: Seed Saving

RE: harvesting arugula seeds early?

Thanks for the response, Country Carolyn. I understand that immature, unfertilized flowers will not produce seeds. However, in my original post I noted that 4-6 seed pods [still green] had formed along the stem. These seed pods are below the flowers and the produce of previous flowers. I'm sorry if that was not clear.

I'm wondering if those green pods will dry into viable seeds if the plant is cut or pulled up by the roots. What do you think? I appreciate your advice. Robert

RE: harvesting arugula seeds early?

See I am not familar with your plant at all. From what I have learned about seeds though it needs to be on the plant long enough for it to be ripe. Some seeds come from the flowers some put off seed pods. The link I posted earlier explains all about ripening of the seed pods. It explains it way better than I can attempt to explain it. From what I gather if they are still green when you pull up your plant then I would say no they wouldnt be viable. I think that link states that when the seed pod is about to bust open on its on thats when the seeds will be valuable, On a living plant. The link I provided was a great link for anyone wanting to know how to save seeds, it also explains how someone can pollinate their own plants in order for the best seed production. I hope that helps you.

Here is a link that might be useful: Saving Seeds

RE: harvesting arugula seeds early?

I have a ton of this stuff it grew like crazy. I just picked off all the seed pods. I have a big pot of them if anybody wants any send me the postage, I really don't know what to do with them. It was about 30% of that pot in the picture by the time I pulled them all and picked all the bulging seeds off. I think they are more like bean pods and less like the bursting kind. They range from around a quarter inch to an inch and most are bulging. I don't think they burst from what I saw they just get dry and then the wind smacks them around against each other because they grow so tall. I've got babies springing up around everywhere so I don't really need all these seeds because there are enough babies popping up growing in other places that I am transplanting them into where the old ones were.

Here is a link that might be useful: arugula seeds beginning of harvest

RE: harvesting arugula seeds early?

Can you email me an address. I am interested in the seeds and would be happy to send postage to receive some. I am so new to this and just accidentally found this site when searching for answers on a couple of the herbs that I have. I am hoping to gather a variety of seeds to plan a much larger herb garden next year. Thanks. :)

RE: harvesting arugula seeds early?

You've got the right idea, tomatobob. Ideally, the pods should completely (or ALMOST completely) dry on the plant, but if this isn't an option, what you described is your next best bet. This is, in fact, a common way to harvest seed crops where the seed doesn't ALL mature at the same time (which is most of the dry-seeded crops).

What we do is dig up the plants (roots, dirt & all), and lay them out on a tarp under a shade structure (where there is still good airflow). The plants are laid out facing the same direction so that the seed pods are on the tarp, and the roots can be covered from the air and light. This allows the seeds to continue to 'grow' and mature for at least a few extra days.

All of this said, you will get the best possible seed by allowing the plants to go to fruition in the ground :0).

good luck!

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