HYBRID seeds have been genetically altered, and are the majority of the seeds you will see in stores, and can buy online. They are very insect and disease resistant, and they will grow just fine if you store them in their original packets until they are needed. The problem is they are owned by the seed company, because they genetically altered them, they are patented and almost all of them have a suicide gene implanted in them, which means, if you grow that fruit or vegetable, and then try to save the seeds from that fruit or vegetable the following year, YOU WON’T get more fruit or vegetables.

NON HYBRID seeds are often called heirloom seeds. They haven’t been genetically altered, and are getting harder to find. Seed companies are trying to patent these now too. These are seeds that someone has been saving from generation and generations from long ago. There are hundreds of varieties still available, but sadly, many foods that have gone extinct, and no longer exist, because the seeds are no longer available to propagate.  Some of these heirloom fruits and vegetables may not so good at fighting pesticides and disease, however, they are far more nutritious and flavorful than what the hybrids are. And as like God intended, you can continue to save seeds from each crop and have a never ending supply of seeds for future crops.
Some of the Red Wheat varieties grown by our church are from wheat grain brought to the valley not long after Brigham Young. The LDS church does not have to buy red wheat seed every year. They are self sufficient, and save their seeds for future crops.

ONLINE HEIRLOOM SEEDS SELLERS

http://www.arkinstitute.com

http://www.heirloomseeds.com/

http://www.seedsavers.org/

http://rareseeds.com/

http://www.amishlandseeds.com/

http://www.grannysheirloomseeds.com/

http://www.victoryseeds.com/

http://www.heirloomacresseeds.com/

http://beprepared.com/  search under seeds
***I also bought a number ten can pre-packed with 15 varieties of non hybrid vegetable seeds (enough to plant ½ acre) for around $39 at the Honeyville Grain Outlet store in Salt Lake City near the airport.

FOR MORE INFORMATION about the hybrid vs non-hybrid seed problem please watch the movie
The FUTURE of FOOD,
You can see a 10 minute  introduction at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNezTsrCY0Q
or you can purchase this documentary for $23 at http://greenplanetfilms.org/product_info.php?cPath=111&products_id=329

SAVING/HARVESTING SEEDS

This information comes from the following publication.

http://www.montana.edu/wwwpb/pubs/mt9905.html

Saving seeds borne in a pod-like structure (beans, peas, crucifers, etc.)
Allow the pods to turn brown, then harvest the pods, dry them for 1–2 weeks in a warm, dry area and shell. Store the seeds in a paper bag in a cool (below 50°F), dry place. The seeds of crucifers can carry diseases that will infect your garden. After harvest, soak seeds of cabbage in 122°F water for 25 minutes. Soak the seeds of broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower at the same temperature for 18 minutes. Pay attention to the time and temperature. After soaking, dry and store the seeds in paper envelopes in a cool, dry place.

Saving seeds borne in a flowerhead (lettuce, endive, dill, etc.)Cut off the seed stalks just before all the seeds are dried; the seeds may fall off the stalk and be lost if you allow them to fully dry on the plant. Dry the harvested seed stalk, shake or rub the seeds off and store them in a paper envelope in a cool, dry place. If you notice the seeds fall off the stalks as they dry (shattering), place the entire stalk upside down in a paper bag or cover the seed heads with a nylon stocking to catch the seeds.
Saving seeds borne in fleshy fruit (tomato, cucumber, etc.) Pick fully ripe fruit of cucumber and tomato and squeeze the pulp, including the seeds, into a glass or plastic container. Add a little water and let the mixture ferment several days at room temperature, stirring occasionally. Sound, viable seeds will settle out; nonviable seeds will float. Pour off the pulp, nonviable seeds and water and spread the viable seeds in a single layer on a paper towel to dry. Store them in a paper envelope in a cool dry place. Scrape out the seeds of peppers, melons, pumpkins and squash and spread them onto a paper towel to dry. Then store them in a paper envelope as you would other seeds.
Saving herb seeds
Herbs vary in the way their seeds are produced. In general, allow herb seeds to remain on the plants until nearly dry. Some seed heads, like those of dill, shatter as soon as they are dry. Watch the early-ripening seeds; if they drop, harvest the other seed heads before they get to that point, leaving several inches of stem attached. Tie several stems together and hang them upside-down, covered with a paper bag to catch falling seed, in a warm, dry place until completely dried. Remove seeds from the heads and store them in a paper envelope in a cool, dry place. Herb seeds for flavoring, such as dill, anise and cumin, are used when dry.
Mark storage containers clearly with permanent ink, indicating the cultivar of seed and date saved. Most seeds remain viable for years if properly stored in paper envelopes in a cool place (Table 4). Test germination in February by the traditional “rag-doll” test.
Count out 100 small seeds or 25 large seeds and wrap them in moistened toweling paper. Squeeze out the extra water and place the “rag-doll” in a glass jar with the cover loosely fastened. Place the jar on a sunny window stool. Unroll the paper after a week and figure the germination; if germination is below 50 percent, either discard the seed or double the planting concentration to give the desired number of plants.

STORING SEEDS
There are several ways in which to store seeds. ONE thing to remember is they NEED oxygen, in order to sprout later! So don’t put a oxygen eater packet in your number 10 cans like you would with normal food storage. Also you can use  a few tablespoons of food grade diatomaceous earth in with the seeds in case you are worried about insect infestation.
1 – Seal them inside a #10 can.
2 – Put them into a mason jar, tighten the lid, place in a dark, cool place.
3 – Refrigerate them.
4- Store them in a ‘shoe box’, in a dark cool place.

What ever method you choose, you need to make sure that there is no moisture! Use the silica gel packets to absorb any moisture. You can usually get them from shoe stores and luggage stores if you just ask. Or you can buy them online, here’s a few sites:

http://silicagelpackets.com/

http://store.stringthis.com/ul-silicagel.html

http://www.preservesmart.com/products.htm

http://www.hartvilletool.com/product/11481

 

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