Tomato seeds: How to preserve the seed of different varieties

Very good to everyone. In this post I am going to talk about how to collect tomato seed or seeds.

Extract and preserve the seed or tomato seeds

We can extract the seeds from the ripe tomatoes and save them so that the following spring we can use them to plant the new garden. That seed that we have collected and saved with such care will serve us to create the orchard during the following season.

Tomato seeds can be stored or preserved for a maximum of four years, which is the germination duration of tomato seeds.

Advantages of extracting and saving tomato seeds

This technique of preserving seeds is very interesting for several reasons.

First of all, if we have found a variety that is very resistant to diseases or that works well for us in our garden, we can save the seeds to sow them the following year and continue enjoying our favorite tomatoes.

tomato seeds

In addition, if we have produced so much tomato that we do not have enough friends/relatives to give away so much tomato, we can take advantage of leftover or very ripe tomatoes in various ways. The first thing is to extract the tomato seeds and then we can use the fruits to make gazpacho or other things like the ones they told us about in the post “ 3 things to do with ripe tomatoes.

In addition, conserving or saving tomato seeds will help us save what a bag of seed would cost us in the nursery. Below is a table of tomato seed market prices according to variety, collected from an online store:

Valencian 1 350 1.35
Rome V.F. 2.5 875 1.35
Andine Cornue 2.5
Ox Heart 1 550 1.35
green zebra 2.5
Cherry 0.5 175 1.35
Marmande CR type Holland RAF 2.5 875 1.35
Margoble 2.5 876 1.35
Muchamiel two 700 1.35
Balong 0.4 140 1.35
Montserrat 1 1.35
Rio Grande 2.5 875 1.35
Three songs 1 350 1.35
cherry black 0.3 2.5
orange-queen 0.3 2.5
purple calabash 0.3 2.5
Hanging, Majorcan 1.35
cherry gold nugget 2.5

Market price of tomato seed. Source: Planetahuerto

Finally, another advantage of extracting and saving tomato seeds is that, if ours is an organic garden and free of chemicals, the seeds we obtain from the tomatoes will be organic seeds.

Steps to follow to obtain the seed or tomato seeds

Tomatoes should preferably be picked from under the plant as they are the ones that come out first and will grow larger. Likewise, they should be allowed to mature as much as possible, until we see that they can break at any time. You can also take the tomato from the bush and let it ripen in the sun.

  • We cut the tomato in half and with a small spoon we extract all the seeds with the gel that surrounds them (be careful not to remove meat from the tomato).
  • We will leave them in a glass of water for 2-3 days, little by little the density difference will make the seeds stay above the water.
  • After those 2-3 days, the surface will be covered with a white film, the result of the chemical processes that have taken place. They will be washed in a fine mesh strainer, thus they will be separated from each other and the gel and the web formed will be completely eliminated.
  • When we have all the seeds washed, we place them separately and let them dry on kitchen paper. If we have cleaned them well they should not stick to the paper.
  • Once dry, we will put them in a pot or paper bag and store them in a cool place, where the temperature is not high and dry, with low humidity. If you have different varieties of tomato, it is advisable to label each bag or bottle.
Mesh strainer to wash the seeds

First of all, I recommend a visit to these other posts: Growing tomatoes in the organic garden and How to make a seedbed, in which Lucía gives us some tips for growing our tomatoes and watering them. This ensures that we will have healthy tomatoes with good seed at the end of the harvest season.

Some varieties of tomato from which we can extract seeds

Some of the varieties of the «king of the garden» most used to cultivate and preserve seeds are the following:

Cherry tomato

Its size is like that of a cherry, hence the origin of its name. It is currently one of the most famous varieties, perhaps because it has become widespread in haute cuisine (the same thing has happened to small potatoes, which were once fed to pigs and are now a delicacy for restaurants). It is widely used in salads for its sweet flavor and as a decoration.

Cherry tomatoes

Hanging or Majorcan tomato

It has a very fleshy pulp with little water content, which is why they are used to make the famous pa amb tomaca.

Majorcan hanging tomato

Roma tomato

This tomato is very recognizable for its pear shape. It is used to make preserves, since it has few seeds and a fleshy pulp.

Roma tomato

RAF tomato or black leg

It is a highly valued variety in salads for its sweetness and fleshiness. Its name refers to its resistance to the fusarium fungus.

Raf Tomato

Margoble Tomato

The Margoble tomato is an ideal tomato for making gazpacho. It has a great yield, with a thin skin and few seeds.

Margoble Tomato

Andine Cornue

It is easy to recognize this tomato due to its pepper shape and small size. It is a very tasty and digestive variety.

Tomato Andean Cornue

I hope this post on how to preserve tomato seeds will help you, I look forward to your comments! All the best.

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