Whether you purchase your seeds from the farmer’s market, the nursery or the grocery store, you may be paying more than you need to for your garden. While there can be benefits to purchasing seeds, such as crop variation and ease in the process, you may be overlooking the larger benefits in saving seeds yourself. If you aren’t sure, here are some reasons to save your garden seeds for next year.
Plant Your Favorites
The simplest reason to save your own seed is for the sake of knowing what you grow. There are so many types of tomatoes out there with varying degrees of sweetness, size, and color. How they grow to your preference will determine how likely you are to enjoy the harvest. If you grew an heirloom that you just loved the taste of and found to slice beautifully into a dinner salad, you can ensure a second season of that same tomato.
Know What You Grow
Perhaps more importantly, you can also know how this seed was produced. If you are growing your food organically, you can go into your next season knowing exactly what you put into the soil. You’ll know that crop you have stored the seed from, which is important for organic gardening.
Avoid Relying on Big Business
For most people, their personal, primary reason for saving seeds is that it eliminates any reliance on companies and organizations. You grow your own food for this reason to begin with, right? Autonomy in food production is crucial in any society where money and policy may influence what ends up on your plate.
Not all seeds purchased in stores are bad, but regulations allow for chemicals that we may not want in or around our food. By saving your own seeds, you get to make these decisions for yourself.
Share Your Seeds for More Variety
You may ask yourself how to grow new things if you are only saving seeds that you then replant for the following season. The answer to this is to partake in your community. If you grew some great garlic and your neighbor down the street grew some great sunflowers, share your resources.
Not only does this allow you and your community more variety, but it will provide the opportunity for you to share your knowledge in how to grow for the best harvest. Saving and sharing seeds will give you a better selection while enhancing the food system of your community.
Saving garden seeds is easy to do and doesn’t take a lot of time or effort, either. You’ll save money, grow your favorites and even share and trade for new varieties. You can save flower, plant, herb and vegetable seeds for next year this summer.