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Seed Saving Circle 2021

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Things are stirring in the garden/allotment at last and it’s a great time to be thinking ahead. Time to jump in and join the 2021 Seed Circle! This will be its 11th year and in that time an amazing number of seeds have been exchanged - some very lovely, many very interesting, some unusual and some just downright useful. So please do say if you’d like to be involved, whether or not you have before, and then begin to think what you might be able to set aside for seed-saving.

For those who haven’t joined in before here’s some information to help you decide if you would like to join.
The Seed Circle is open to all A4A members; it’s great to have new people join too. The group is all about setting aside a little growing space, ,and time to raise some crops for seeds, keeping the group informed as to how the season is going, then at the end of the season sharing some growing information and the all-important saved seeds with the group.

Each person decides what 2 or more crops they will grow and save seed from (we do inc. tubers, bulbs and cuttings, but just make sure they are well wrapped so they don't dampen any seeds), saving enough seed for every other member to grow a crop the following year. The group could be up to 20 people but is more often under 10. Veggies will generally need to be heritage or open pollinated so that they will come true from seed (potato seeds won’t come exactly true). If you include grown out hybrids please state this clearly.

I think most of us have found out that some vegetables are easier than others to save seed from, and everything can change with the weather. But generally peas, French beans, tomatoes, perhaps potatoes and some herbs are the easiest. Chillies, Sweet peppers, squash, courgette and lettuce will need isolating from other varieties to keep seed pure.  Parsnips, onions, leeks, beetroot, carrots, celeriac and many brassicas only go to seed the second year and need isolation from other varieties and so are more time consuming and a little trickier.

Real Seeds gave the idea for the circles. Their site gives some great seed saving tips as well as being a great seed catalogue There is also a brilliant series of shortish videos on seed saving for different veggies at:

For anyone interested, what we finally shared in 2020 can be found at Try Gallery View.
For anyone interested, what we finally shared from 2017 onwards can be found at
For anyone interested in previous years’ Seed Parcels and what we finally shared in 2016 and previously, they can be found at

And some previous threads for the Circles;
Seed Circle 2020,82679.0.html
Seed Circle 2019,82221.0.html
Seed Circle 2018,81651.0.html
Seed Circle 2017,81010.0.html

Please could a Moderator pin this? 

Count me in please!

Great! Do you have any particular plans yet?

The Früher Heinrich mangetout you donated last year, started early December in the greenhouse, are outside growing strongly, and withstood the high winds and freezing nights we had earlier this month. I have high hopes for them.
And Redventure celery seedlings are sitting happily in their modules. More promise of things to come!

Wonderful :) they are definitely hardy. Should have some blooms in April.
Celery and celeriac have germinated well, hopefully we have no problems with the latter. Hope you like the Redventure. We find it quite powerfully aromatic, though that's probably due to conditions, which were on the dry side when harvested. Not much needed for soup!

I'm giving melons a serious attempt this year, as well as moschata squash.
Also have sown some diverse lettuces just for the seed crop (Wild Garden Mix, Bronze Arrow, White Samara), and have plans to trial a few varieties of beets and carrots - though no seed from these until 2022.  This is the 2nd year for the multiplier onions so they may flower, fingers crossed.

Besides this it's the usual - tomatoes, beans, peas, and a lot of greens  - though perhaps in more ambitious (foolhardy) quantities than previous years.

count me in


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