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Old March 25, 2017   #16
Zeedman
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Granted, I am far from a pepper guru... but my 2 c's.

I try to allow peppers grown for seed to mature fully on the plant. When this is not possible (due to frost), I pull the plant, pluck off all peppers except those beginning to change color, and hang the plant. Hopefully the peppers will draw some nutrients from the vegetation as it dries down. In my observations, such seed will have a lower storage life than seed which ripened normally, so I make a point of regrowing it within a year or two.

Even when peppers are fully ripe, I try to allow them to ripen further indoors before opening. With larger peppers (where I am saving the flesh for food use) I carefully cut a circle around the top, then slice downward from there along the ribs, and pull those sections off from the top down. Call me goofy... but I call this process 'squiding', since the placenta generally remains fairly intact, and somewhat resembles a squid with tentacles. At that point, if there are signs of mold in some of the peppers (some varieties seem more prone to this than others) then I remove & wash the seed immediately. If the variety shows no sign of mold, I may allow the seed to dry on the placenta... other pepper growers have claimed that this improved seed vigor. I prefer, though, to wash the seed before drying.

For thin-walled peppers (especially hot peppers) I usually dry the pods, then carefully crush them & separate the seeds. For smaller pods, I may even store the pods entire as seed, and just crush pods as needed when I need seed.

I have some reservations about the sink method. It seems to work - if you have plenty of seed, and are willing to accept that some (or much) of the seed discarded may be viable. I've often seen stubborn air bubbles clinging to the seed surface, which will cause false rejection of otherwise good seed. Stirring briskly with a wire whisk will break some of those bubbles loose, and increase the percentage of seed saved.

There is also the issue of hot pepper seed. Am I the only one to have noticed what happens when you add water to hot pepper seed??? The first time I did that, it drove me from the room coughing my lungs out. Chemical warfare comes to mind. Best done outside, or under an exhaust fan.

For very small hot peppers, I have run them in quantity (at the lowest speed) through a thrift-store blender that I modified for seed processing, by grinding the blades dull. I would not do this with peppers which have larger seeds. (This same blender works well for any wet-processed seed, such as eggplant & ground cherries.)

For the most part, after doing as much as possible to increase seed vitality, I save seed without using the sink method. After drying, I carefully remove any obviously immature or damaged seed before storage... and when planting, I pre-sort much as Dmforcier does.
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Old April 2, 2017   #17
velikipop
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Interesting discussion. I have never noticed a lower germination rate from my own saved seeds. I agree that the peppers from which seed is saved should be ripe. I let them dry in the house for a few weeks before saving the seeds.

All of my peppers for this year, with the exception of one, had high germination rates, some were saved and others bought. The only trick I have is to give the seeds a warm bath for about two or three hours before starting them in soil. It is also important to place the starter cells on a warming mat and to place a dome over top. Initial heat and humidity increase the chances of germination.

I start my peppers in late January, especially the super hots, they take much longer to produce fruit and if it is a good warm year I will get fruit by late August or September.

Alex
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Old April 4, 2017   #18
IronPete
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Hi all;
I am pretty new to growing peppers from seeds so I have made some mistakes in the process from saving seeds through to germinating them. I did come across this video which has a novel method of germination for peppers. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDaiFGhxnRY
I am trying it at the moment. I originally started a bunch in the little greenhouse tray with the cells in it and have had it sitting on a heating pad. For the very newest seeds that worked fine. For any over 6 months old I had problems so I have now put some into baggies as per the video. Not sure how it works but I do like the fact that I can hold them up to the light and see if any are starting to grow (none are yet but its only been 5 days). Will let you know how things go when more time has passed. Thanks; Pete
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Old April 4, 2017   #19
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Absolutely nothing new in that vid, other than Pepper Joe's trying to rehabilitate itself "under new management" (which also feels like a scam). This is the classic "baggy" technique for germinating.

If you are having problems germinating seeds over 6 months old, then you have a problem processing and storing your seeds. The germination method is a secondary concern.
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Old April 4, 2017   #20
IronPete
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"If you are having problems germinating seeds over 6 months old, then you have a problem processing and storing your seeds. The germination method is a secondary concern." dmforcier

...and that would explain why I am on here doing research. I am going to try that water method when saving seeds from peppers in the future. I liked what Karen had to say about germinating seeds in the earth so I will stick with that in future. Thanks; Pete
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Old April 5, 2017   #21
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Nothing wrong with the baggy method. I use it myself.

But why do you go right back to the subject of germination method. Have you examined your storage method?
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Old April 5, 2017   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmforcier View Post
Nothing wrong with the baggy method. I use it myself.

But why do you go right back to the subject of germination method. Have you examined your storage method?
It was simply a general comment. I like the contact with the earth and watching the little plants emerge. I also like the idea that I am not helping weaker seeds to get going but am letting our friend Darwin take care of the plant selection. ;-)

As for storage I am certain I am doing that ineffectively. I keep the seeds I harvest in small, plastic bags that seal. Those I keep in bigger zip-lock bags by plant type in a plastic tupperware. The tupperware lives on the shelf. As I live in Canada its generally cold a lot of the year unlike Texas. I am open to suggestions for a better method...???

Thanks; Pete
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Old April 5, 2017   #23
dmforcier
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Darwin ro0lz!!

I think your problem is that your seeds aren't dry enough. Likely bouts of cold cause bits of condensation, too. I'm not anal about drying, but I keep my seeds in breathable container in the fridge, which as I understand it is generally drier than the room.
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Old April 5, 2017   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Father'sDaughter View Post
I started using the sink/float method a couple of years ago after someone on here posted about it. It substantially increased my germination rates, so I'd say there is some truth in the method!
ditto

Oh and I put em in a mason jar and shake the crap out of it then slowly pour off floaters. If it is kinda floating but then sinks about halfway just dump it. This way you can get nearly 100% germination. I don't save pepper seeds much anymore because in my exp they often crossed and my jalapenos would be as hot as a habanero.

Last edited by BigVanVader; April 5, 2017 at 10:50 PM.
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Old April 5, 2017   #25
greenthumbomaha
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Last year Tormato indicated pepper seeds donated to the swap needed to be isolated. Someone posted an excellent tutorial on saving (isolating) pepper seeds. Can anyone find it? Sticky would be great.

Thx, Lisa
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Old April 5, 2017   #26
AlittleSalt
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Yes, the sink float method works very well. I have no idea how I missed this thread until now.

It took me forever to find it but go here http://www.tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=32923 Post # 4.

That is how I learned how to save pepper seeds, and it works great.
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Old April 6, 2017   #27
slugworth
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I dry the peppers and save as is.
When it comes time to plant I use gloved hands to get the seeds out.(hot peppers)
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Old April 6, 2017   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenthumbomaha View Post
Last year Tormato indicated pepper seeds donated to the swap needed to be isolated. Someone posted an excellent tutorial on saving (isolating) pepper seeds. Can anyone find it? Sticky would be great.

Thx, Lisa


Was it this one? I'm considering giving the glue drop method a try this year.

http://www.tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=44210
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Old April 6, 2017   #29
greenthumbomaha
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Father'sDaughter View Post
Was it this one? I'm considering giving the glue drop method a try this year.

http://www.tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=44210
That thread contains good info but the thread I was searching for is about 2-3 years old. I think there is even a third thread from last year where people were discussing how to make isolation bags on the cheap.

I need to read them all. My sweet peppers were anything but sweet last year.

- Lisa
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Old April 6, 2017   #30
greenthumbomaha
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Robert, if that was for me it is not the thread I am looking for. I am totally 100% an expert in saving useless crossed pepper seeds. My growing partner has kids and they do not like hot.

I bought a bunch of new seeds for this year. A lot of hard work went into saving seeds from non isolated peppers. It was not just a waste of time, but many peppers were too hot for us to use. Waste of a whole season. Hopefully I can isolate a few of my new varieties.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlittleSalt View Post
Yes, the sink float method works very well. I have no idea how I missed this thread until now.

It took me forever to find it but go here http://www.tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=32923 Post # 4.

That is how I learned how to save pepper seeds, and it works great.
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