Fruit seed

Seed embedded in soft fruit should be left on the plant and not harvested until the fruit is somewhat overripe. Tomatoes, squash, cucumbers and eggplant are treated in this way too. When the fruits are taken indoors the seeds should be scraped out and soaked a day or more in water. Like berries they will start to ferment. When it has fermented a little the pulp may be loosened by rubbing it between the hands. Then lift the seeds and dry them on sheets of paper.

All seed should be thoroughly dry before it is stored. Drying should be done in a warm room that has good ventilation. As it dries stir the seed occasionally to prevent mould. Most seeds are best stored in glass jars. Storage in the dark is preferable to storage in the light. Onions, leeks, parsnips and corn seeds are only viable for a year. Beans, peas, cabbage up to three years and melon seeds will still germinate and produce up to seven years after harvesting.

38 ORGANIC GARDENING in tropical climates Seeds for your region

Some plants, vegetables, fruit trees and ornamentals seem to prefer certain areas. Check around your area and see which plants are doing well in neighbourhood gardens and orchards. Persisting with a plant that is difficult to grow in your area will put it under stress and it mightn't thrive as it should. Choose plants that grow easily and commonly in your own area and you will have effortless gardening and a great deal of success.

SECTION TWO

TROPICAL ORGANIC GROWING

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