Seed Processing Status & Beans, Peppers

Though we’ve had several light frost events starting the last week of September, this past week has brought several hard freezes (<30°F) – cold enough to freeze out the backyard high tunnel.  Ahead of this I harvested the rest of the peppers, including:

ISLETA – (brown, thin-skinned, mild):

Pepper, Isleta 11-21-2013 C rev

NEPALESE – (red, uniquely lobed, just a touch of heat):

Pepper, Nepalese 11-21-2013 C rev

And many more – seeds from a total of about 110 varieties of peppers saved in 2013.

Also planted at least 49 varieties of legumes, mostly beans, including all but two varieties on Slow Food USA’s Ark of Taste list.  Unfortunately, I’ll have seeds of perhaps 15 varieties; the record heat and insufficient watering system resulted in crop failure for most legumes.  Here’s one that did produce well:


Bean, Cherokee Trail of Tears 11-25-2013 A rev

Tomato seeds?  In the home stretch, but it’s a long one.  Still have 13 boxes of bagged tomatoes keeping cool in the garage awaiting Stage 2 (weighing, labeling, cutting) of processing:

Tomato seed processing Nov 2013 C

Capacity, in terms of space and containers, for Stage 3 (fermentation) about 9 boxes at a time:

Tomato seed processing Nov 2013 A

Stage 4, seed separation, is becoming more challenging with cold weather:

Seed saving 8-30-2011 Z01

Stage 5, seed drying, is taking up every square inch of available shelf space and floor space:

Tomato Seed Saving 9-20-2011 B

Stage 6, packaging & sorting, is about 60% completed for 2013 seeds:

Tomato seed saving 10-17-2011 B

Stage 7, data entry and uploading to website, is, regrettably, 0% completed at this point.  However, lists of tomato seeds which are probably available now are posted at:

                            Tomato Seeds Inventory

At least 25 varieties of lettuce seeds are available, along with chard, ground cherries, and many more.  Lists to follow soon, but processing tomatoes for seeds will occupy most of my time for the next week or so.

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