Most allotment rows are 30 ft. long, so of your peas you would need to have
3 ft. at one end of the row. Runner beans are usually a little more
prolific, so one-twentieth of each row is usually enough to save for next
One good lettuce plant should give you all the seed you will
need. Mark and label the best plant you have. Don't choose one that has
"bolted" or run to seed instead of making a good large heart. It may produce
offspring that will do the same thing next year and then you would get very
few lettuces worth cutting. If the heart is very hard and firm, make a cut
with a knife in the shape of a cross on the heart. Don't cut too deeply, but
just through the first three or four layers of leaves. This will make it
easy for the flower head to push its way up. That is all you need to do for
If you spring planted any of last season's onions and left
leeks in the ground for seed, they will be coming into flower now. See that
the stems, which are very brittle, are tied securely to stakes, but
otherwise there is nothing to do to them until the end of September, for
onions, and/or mid-October, for leeks. A later Guide* will tell you how to
harvest the seed.
When your marrows are bearing fruits, pick out one good-sized
fruit and scratch the word "seed" on it with a pencil. When your tomatoes
are carrying good trusses of fruits, pick out a good, shapely truss, mark it
with a piece of raffia and watch this Guide for further advice.
The plants that you have selected for seed saving should be
inspected carefully to see that they do not develop disease in any way.
Leave the pods or fruits to ripen as long as possible. But with lettuces, as
soon as you see little tufts of fluff forming on the seed heads, pick them
and put them in a shallow cardboard box or a seed-box with a sheet of paper
on the bottom. You may have to look at your lettuce plant every day when it
is nearing the ripening stage, as a sudden heavy downpour of rain may wash
all the seeds on to the ground, if they have reached the fluffy stage. In
rainy periods it is best to pull the lettuce plant up, when nearing the
harvest stage; put it in a newspaper and finish the ripening in a warm room.
Wt. T4397/8638 125M 6/45