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After you have harvested the seeds, break them off of the brown flower petals and spread them on paper towels indoors for a few days. Separate the trash from the seeds by pouring the seeds from one cup to another in front of an electric fan. You can use a thermos to keep the water hot. I placed a sheet of paper next to my dish of seeds and carefully picked each one out. Colleen Vanderlinden is a freelance writer and the author of Edible Gardening for the Midwest. Zinnia. Use garden snips to cut completely dried flower heads from healthy zinnia plants. Read our, The Spruce uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. Zinnia seeds look like little arrow heads or like flat sunflowers. Trying to harvest a flower too early will result in immature seeds that won't germinate.Once the zinnia flowers are dry, cut or pull them off the plant. Growing Profusion Series Zinnia Flowers from Seeds. When deciding which ones to save, give preference to such heirloom, open-pollinated types as 'Cut and Come Again,' 'Granny’s Bouquet' and 'Green Envy,' since hybrid varieties like 'Blue Point' won’t come true from seed. Once done sifting to find the seeds go ahead and compost the material left over. For best results, aim to use your seeds within three to five years. There are different shapes of roundness, length or thickness depending on the flower variety. Instead, bag or cage several flower buds before they bloom to prevent accidental cross-pollination. Once done sifting to find the seeds go ahead and compost the material left over. Once you are sure they are completely dry, seal them up in paper coin envelopes or small zip-top plastic bags, labeling each packet with the zinnia type and the year they were harvested. Depending on type, zinnias’ flowers are varied and range from round, double, pom-pom, cactus-shaped and can vary in size from 1 to 7 inches, while the plants grow from 4 inches to 4 feet tall. If you had to harvest seeds from mildewed plants, submerge them for a half hour in water that has been heated to 125 degrees Fahrenheit just before you plant them, to kill the fungus. © Copyright 2020 Hearst Communications, Inc. Place a paper plate on the area, and label the variety name directly on the plate with a marker. Each seed will look like that. Seeds from hybrid plants typically do not come true to the parent plant, so if you love a specific attribute of the zinnia, such as its double flowers or special colorings, you might be disappointed by the offspring of hybrid zinnias. They are formed at the center of the head, at the end of the petals. This will help to prevent them from rotting or molding in storage. Zinnia seeds are easy to direct seed into the garden, but may also be transplanted. Moisture is important in early weeks, but make sure it doesn’t get soggy. Then, place the seed envelope in a lidded glass jar, and store it in a cool, dry place out of direct sun. Remove the flower heads by snipping them off the plant with sterilized pruners. Zinnias (Zinnia elegans) are fast-growing, easy-care annuals that provide plenty of color from summer through fall. Keep the varieties separate. Ravishing flowers look like crimson velvet laced with gold! The Spruce uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. By using The Spruce, you accept our, Wait for the Zinnia Flowers to Dry Before Harvesting, How to Save Lettuce Seeds From Your Garden, How to Save Tomato Seeds to Grow Next Year, Seed Saving - Quick Tips for Saving Your Garden Favorites, How to Save Cucumber Seeds From Your Garden, Heirloom, Open-Pollinated, and Hybrid Seeds, How to Save Beans to Plant in Next Year's Garden. Julie Thompson-Adolf is a master gardener and author with 13+ years of experience with year-round organic gardening, seed starting and saving, growing heirloom plants, perennials, and annuals, and sustainable and urban farming. If some of your plants are infected with mildew -- a grayish, powdery-looking mold on the leaves -- collect seeds from the ones that aren't, as they are obviously more disease-resistant. You can even see a few seeds with the pink petals still attached. join our gardening community on fb for more tips and tricks! For outdoor sowing, plant immediately after final frost date. If you have multiple zinnia varieties, use separate envelopes for their seeds unless you don't mind mixing them in your garden. Bernd Blossey, a professor in the department of natural resources at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., said he received a few calls from worried recipients of the seed packets. Her articles or photos have also appeared in such publications as Birds & Blooms, Horticulture and Backwoods Home. Large dahlia-flowered blooms are very double, two-toned in gold and red. that are 1/4" long. From reading other posts, zinnia seeds should look like relatively large arrowheads (~1/4" wide) and should be dark in appearance. The seeds are small and arrow-shaped. The green seeds are not fully ripened and I doubt they will mature at this point. Aim to save seeds from plants that display qualities you enjoy, such as an ideal bloom color or optimal plant height. Some might still be attached to the base of a petal. In addition, when rabbits attack zinnia plants, they … You should see seeds clinging to the ends of those petals. The seeds look like fuzzy or furry tiny arrowheads. However, seed saving requires a little planning if you want to make sure that your open-pollinated seeds remain pure, since zinnias can be cross-pollinated by insects from different varieties. Spread some paper towels over a clean, flat surface where you can work to gather the seeds. You will have to put up with some unsightliness as you wait for the flowers to dry on your plants, but that's how you allow the seeds to ripen. Place the packets inside a screw-top glass jar in your refrigerator until spring. If that’s the case, gently pull off the seed. You also might have enough seeds that you could consider giving away some as gifts. Take a dry zinnia flower, and "flail" the seed head--hit it gently to release the seeds, or pull it apart or rub it between your fingers over the paper plate to release the seeds. The seeds of zinnia’s have a unique arrow shape. Nothing completes a country bouquet like great zinnias. You can even see a few seeds with the pink petals still attached. Moreover, if you have a large garden bed, you can opt to save seeds from plants away from the edge of the bed, so the drying flowers are less noticeable. Zinnias (Zinnia spp.) Make sure to select plants that are healthy--powdery mildew can transfer to seeds, so don't save seeds from plants with disease. Aim to save seeds from plants that display qualities you enjoy, such as an ideal bloom color or optimal plant height. Each seed is attached to the base of a petal. The full-sized plants are just a bit compact, and the generous yield of blooms makes this an especially good variety for cut flowers. Be sure that when you put you seeds away, for storage, that you mark that container that they are in with the "seed name" and "date of harvesting". See the seed on the bottom center of the photo? This may take up to a week, depending on the seed head and moisture level. A former master gardener with a Bachelor of Arts in writing from Houghton College, Audrey Stallsmith has had three gardening-related mysteries published by WaterBrook Press, a division of Random House. See more ideas about zinnias, zinnia flowers, plants. It’s best to sow zinnia seeds outdoors in early spring or summer, depending on your location, rather than starting them indoors, as they may produce single rather than double blooms if their roots are disturbed. Removing spent flowers allows the plant to branch out and produce more blooms. For most of us, though, that's not feasible. They should sprout in five to seven days. The Zinnia seed should be black on one end. The good news is for an average-size garden, you will generally only need a few blooms' worth of seeds to have enough to plant the next year. 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Uses cookies to provide you with a long vase life, zinnias are open-pollinated plants hybrids! Cutting flowers compact, and the generous yield of blooms makes this an especially good variety for cut flowers,. Zinnias to be some as gifts are also a few days are double!

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