Showing posts with label collecting seeds. Show all posts
Showing posts with label collecting seeds. Show all posts

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Harvesting Sunflower Seeds. Sweet Irrigation/Rain From Heaven.

We had a sweet portion of rain fall last night, after a warm windy dusty day. I placed three buckets out to collect rain and had 1.5 cm in each this morning. Not a lot but more than the past rains recently! It was good enough to wet the vege patch and the pots. I am sure the veges and herbs and fruit trees were grateful for it. The coming of the rain last evening was made even more exciting as it happened the same time when I was reading the book 'Plants without Poison' by a Tasmanian farmer and writer, Paul Healy in which he says, rain, especially the slow-falling and fine type, absorbs nitrogen as it falls onto the plants. The plants got a feast from heavenly irrigation! God, thanks for sending rain!!! This morning, I was inspecting the garden as usual and found that the small sunflower's seeds have been half-ransacked. When God says he provides for the birds of the air, he really does! :) Through gardeners like me! The opened husks are lying on the ground and on the ledge of the fence next to the sunflower. I did not wrap up this sunflower and sure enough, the birds were here for a feast. Nevermind, I have lots seeds to spare.
This is the small sunflower with almost half the seeds stolen. The seeds are those under the yellow 'florets'. I fed the florets and shrivelled petals to my worms.
I decided to cut down all the three heads. This is one of the huge ones with full head of seeds.
Samuel and I were busy wriggling and digging out the seeds. Marco was on standby to chew the left overs. He even chewed the whole stem (4cm thick) which I pulled out from the ground. It was tough but his teeth were tougher!
Some of the seeds from the small sunflower. Two large ones awaiting to be worked on. It is not easy work. The birds are seriously better candidates doing this job. Also the sunflowers have since became habitats for many ants when they were growing and I had to wait for the residents to crawl off.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Collecting Seeds of Thai Basil

Refering to the thai basil ( which was not very successfully propagated from stem cutting and had many flower stalks. I have decided to leave it to flower and see if I can gather any seeds :

The thai basil which produced very little leaves and kept bolting to seeds

Well I did. After many weeks, the white 'seeds' in the flowers have turned 'dark brown/black' (if you click the picture below, look into the leaflets around the middle of the stalk, you are able to see two seeds) :

Click on this picture to enlarge it. You can see two seeds encased within the sepals? leaflets?. There are actually four seeds altogether encased together.
I managed to collect a good deal of dried thai basil seeds. This is just the beginning :). If completely dry and ready, seeds should fall out easily when leaflets are opened, brushed with finger and turned upside down. If not ready, they will still be a little sticky and best left to dry completely before seed collection.
Some of the thai basil seeds collected.
"All that mankind needs for good health and healing is provided by God in nature...the challenge of Science is to find it." - Paracelcus, the father of Pharmcology, 1493 - 1541