Why I collected seeds off of my driveway
I just collected Heavenly Blue Morning Glory (HBMG) seeds off of my driveway for a few simple reasons:
- That was where the best blooming HBMG plant of the year had dropped its seeds.
- That plant was a volunteer from a other previously volunteered HBMG plants, so I know it will thrive in my environment.
- The seeds were dry and obviously mature, since they were falling off of the plant.
Experiments in vining with the HBMG
As I wrote in The Curse of the Heavenly Blue Morning Glory, these are some of my favorite flowers and I plant them every year. I have experimented with letting them vine in various places, such as a row of sunflowers or along a driveway fence.
This year I managed to position a vine on a trellis so that it grew high up into my 60 year old sycamore tree. Unfortunately, the vine didn’t flower much and not until the end of August, but it was still fun to have that touch of jungle connecting the pumpkin patch to the shady grass.
The most reliable place for me to grow HBMG that flowers well has been the 3 by 3 foot brick planter box. This is at the base of our front walkway lamppost and gets full sun all day. It is basically a small, square raised bed, about 2 feet high. This planter box also seems to protect the young HBMG seedlings from critters. I put a small trellis in there and the vine grows up it some before it cascades down.
Seed collecting at its easiest
An unexpected benefit has been that the seeds are dropped on the cement driveway and along the brick edge of the planter. I don’t have to pay special attention to the timing. I just notice one day what look like elongated peppercorns scattered around the planter.
If I wanted a lot of them, I suppose I could sweep them up with a broom and dust pan, then sift out the debris. As it is, I hand picked a few tablespoons of seeds quickly, pretty much avoiding the debris. The seeds looked and felt dry, so I put them in a regular envelope and labeled it. If there still is a touch of moisture in them, the paper envelope with let them dry the rest of the way.
I’m going to ask for some of these seed saving envelopes for Christmas. They look much more convenient for storage than regular letter envelopes, which seeds tend to spill out of rather easily.
Why go to the trouble to save seeds?
When seed saving is this easy, it is definitely worth the time. Sure, a packet of seeds only costs a couple of dollars, but saving a few kinds of easily savable seeds can save me a motivating amount.
Besides that, it makes me happy to already have seeds in hand for next spring. It lifts my spirits to contemplate the beautiful flowers hiding in those seeds until next spring. I understand why the cool fall temperatures are a relief after summer heat, but no one says, “Hope falls eternal.” Indeed, seeds are a symbol that hope is in the spring.