Saving Zinnia Seeds
Missouri weather this November has been typically mercurial only more extremely so. Mornings with record lows, then afternoon temperatures are sunny and warm. Or one day it's no warmer than in the mid 20s and the forecast for the next day is in the mid 50s, as it is for this Thanksgiving.
As I was filing up the bird feeders with sunflower seeds this morning, wearing a winter jacket and gloves, I decided not to wait until it was warmer to collect a few seeds of my favorite annuals, zinnias. I planted these late again this year so they didn't bloom until early September but when they did, it was a wonderful addition of color to my fall garden.
Of all of the available annuals, zinnias are by far my favorite annuals to plant. They grow quickly in almost any soil, are hardy in most conditions and offer a wide range of bright colored flowers that are favorites of both butterflies and bees.
I found one of my zinnia patches tucked away to the side of one of my walking paths, the plants themselves already nipped by cold temperatures. I had my garden tool set with me so it was easy enough to cut off the seed heads to dry out for a couple of days in a paper-towel lined basket before storing in a marked paper bag in a dry cabinet for next year.
Do they all sprout again? No, but enough do get a start that it's worth saving a few. Besides, just having the seeds saved reminds me to plant them earlier and to be thankful for everything my garden gives me every year.