The real enthusiasts note where they see beautiful plants in the spring and summer and then go there and take seeds in the fall.
Autumn is a good season to get the seeds you want to plant in the spring. Then you have something to do that keeps the cultivation interest going even during the darkest and coldest months.
Of course you can buy new seeds when it's time to plant them, but there are more fun and cheaper alternatives. One is to collect seeds from fine plants you find in nature. It is fully allowed, even if you are not in your own garden. In fact, you help the plants to spread over a much larger area and it can be valuable if you collect seeds from older cultivated plants that are not so common.
Plants found in the area are a safer card
The real enthusiasts note where they see beautiful plants in the spring and summer and then go there and take seeds in the fall. A big advantage of this approach is that the plants obviously thrive in the area. You take a slightly greater risk when you order seeds from plants that may not thrive as well with the local conditions. It is only in parks and in gardens as well as private gardens that it is not allowed to collect seeds. If you have a neighbor with exciting plants, you may be able to exchange seeds with him, if you yourself have something to contribute.
How do you know if the seeds are ready to be harvested?
Pick seeds from flowers that have been in bloom for some time and have dry seed stands that still remain at the stem. Many people make the mistake of collecting seeds a little too early. Two flowers that are extra easy to take seeds from are poppy and sunflower. Marigolds also have seeds that loosen very easily in the autumn when the flower is overblown. St. John's wort and bluebell are two other beautiful wild flowers whose seeds are easy to harvest. Collecting seeds in small paper bags is perfect, then you can write directly on the bag what it contains for seeds. Envelopes, or why not coffee filters, are also practical to use.
Tips for seed collection
We recommend that you choose a day when it is dry and sunny outside so that you can see well and avoid bringing home moist seeds that are at risk of mold. When you get home with your freshly harvested seeds, place them so they can dry. Clean away remnants of leaves and other plant parts. Do not forget to write down what the seeds are. Otherwise, it is easy to forget or confuse your seeds if you make seed collection a habit.