Gardeners’ World names 10 plants you can save seed from – ‘get new plants for free’

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Collecting seeds from your own plants is a great way to save money and get “new plants for free”. To do this, Gardeners’ World has shared 10 plants you can check and save seed from. You will need to check your plants regularly to know when they’re ready to harvest.

Gardeners’ World recommends collecting seeds on a dry day when the seeds aren’t moist or dewy.

When the seeds are ready, grab some scissors, old envelopes or paper bags – avoid plastic as this can encourage damp.

The seeds will need to be completely dry before you store them.

Ensure you label the envelopes and paper bags with the plant name and date of collection.

These are the plants you can collect seeds from:

Aquilegia

A beautiful plant with delicate red/purple and white flowers.

From June to August, the seed pods turn brown and begin to open.

You can sow the seeds from aquilegia now but also save them for spring.

Make sure you use them within a year.

Astrantia

This stunning perennial plant has vibrant purple-pink heads.

Between August and September, you will see the seeds starting to fall onto the bracts below.

Sow the seeds straight away as they need to be exposed to the cold.

However, you can also use them in spring.

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Cosmos

These delicate white flowers will look beautiful in any garden.

From September to October, the seeds will turn black and loosen from the cluster when rubbed.

You can sow the seeds in spring but they will last two to three years.

Daylily

In July, the pods of these bright yellow flowers burst to reveal black and shiny seeds.

Sow the seeds in spring and store them for one year only.

Musk mallow

You can get these seeds from July to August when the seed cases are papery in texture and the seeds are black.

Sow them from March to April and ensure to use them in a few years.

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Orlaya

A beautiful plant with a delicate white flower, this will last through the winter.

The seeds will begin to turn brown from July to September and will need to be sowed straight away otherwise they lose their viability.

Pimpinella

From August to September, the seeds will begin to turn brown before shrivelling.

Sow the fresh seeds straight away if possible or store for one season only.

Scabious

Between August and October, the seeded will change colour and individual seeds will begin to be released.

Sow the seeds in the following spring for gorgeous pink flowers in the summer.

You can also store these seeds for several years.

Trilliums

In July, the seed pods will begin to burst.

Clean the seeds and sow immediately.

These seeds germinate best when distributed by slugs and snails.

Zinnias

From September to October, leave a few flowers on the plant to dry then rib the cluster to release the seeds.

Sow the seeds in the spring either indoors or outdoors.

These seeds will usually last a year or two.

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