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Saving seeds from tomatoes with the fermentation process.

Saving seeds from tomatoes is improved by using the fermentation method. Fermentation is what happens as an overripe softens and eventually breaks down into a gooey mess. The advantage is three fold:
1. the little capsule around each seed breaks down
2. the goods seeds separate from lighter empty ones
3. most importantly, the fermenting organism destroy harmful fungi that could rot the sprouting seed.
Select the most perfect tomato vine and let the best tomato ripen on the vine until dead ripe. Since Tomato are strongly self pollinating, you can save the seed from only a few or even one plant with out incurring genetic dwindling.
Equipment:
1. Select your best tomatoes
2. a clean knife
3. a clear glass or plastic jar or cup
4. felt tip type marker.
5. labels or masking tape
Procedure:
1. Remove the stem from each fruit and turn it over so the bottom is facing up.
2. Then take your knife and make a small cut in the bottom of the tomato.
3. Squeeze the insides of the tomato into a clean clear container.
4. Get all the seeds and pulp into the container.
5. Label the container with the type of tomato and the date that you started the fermentation.
6. Depending on the juiciness of the tomato, you may need to add a little water to give the whole mix a nice soupy consistency.
7. After a couple days, you should notice a white froth developing on the top of the mixture which means that fermentation is well under way.
8. Once the froth has developed, give it a stir once a day to encourage the seeds to separate from the pulp.
9. After fermentation has gone for several days, fill the container all the way to the brim, with water.
10. Then stir gently and wait about 10 seconds for the viable seeds to settle on the bottom.
11. Then pour out the top half of the liquid and the floating seeds on top which are bad.
12. Then fill it up to the top again, stir, wait until the seeds settle then pour out half the liquid.
13. Repeat this until the water is clear, the pulp is gone and you can clearly see the clean seeds in the bottom of the cup.
14. At that point, carefully pour out almost all the water, then dump the seeds out onto some wide container like a dinner plates.
15. Wick off the excess water from the plate with a paper towel and then spread the seeds into a thin layer.
16. Dry out of direct sunlight until completely dry.
17. Break up the cake of tomato seeds by rubbing the cake between your fingers to separate the seeds from each other.
18. Package them up in labeled envelopes with type, date grown and other information.
19. If seeds have 10 or, preferably, 8% moisture or less, they may be placed in a freezer to maximize viability.
 
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