Re: [gardeners] recognizing seeds

Bill Loke (
Sun, 10 Jan 1999 12:43:20 -0500

Recognizing seeds. I had people who don't recognize the plant that provides
their eating.
My main gripe now is that all these seed companies have gone to seed counts.
The problem is the packet sizes are not uniform so it gets very difficult to
determine best buys for the same varieties. I sat down this morning and
built a database to store seed counts per ounce or gram for ,initially the
seeds that interest me, and then to build outwards from all these catalogs I
receive. Give me something to do until I can get back on the land. :-) (Bill & Chris Loke)[Z4/5 on a good day]
The Lokeation, RR#1, Kars, Ontario K0A 2E0
Elderberries have more fun than younger berries!
-----Original Message-----
From: margaret lauterbach <>
To: <>
Date: Sunday, January 10, 1999 10:31 AM
Subject: [gardeners] recognizing seeds

>Folks, please learn to recognize seeds by their appearance.  I know there
>are some that so closely resemble another plant that it is difficult to
>distinguish, but you should be able to distinguish a watermelon seed from a
>bean.  A friend of many years went to Egypt in October, and asked what I'd
>like for her to bring me.  I told her cucumber seeds.  When she returned,
>jubilant that she had gotten me what I wanted, she mailed me a packet.  I
>called to ask her what the plastic bags therein contained.
>One,said she, was true saffron.  The real thing.  Well, I'm sorry to tell
>you this, but this is dried safflower blossoms.  I hope you didn't pay a
>lot for it.  It's okay, I do use safflower blossoms for saffron.  You just
>have to use a lot more than the recipe calls for...
>She was dubious about my identification, but she continued.  And the brown
>stuff are your cucumber seeds!  No, it's not, I said.  It's EGYPTIAN
>cucumbers, says she.  Nope, sorry.  It's a bag of poorly cleaned seeds for
>some kind of umbellifera.  Caraway?  carrot?  "Well, just plant some of the
>seeds and see what comes up."  Okay, but I'll guarantee you that it won't
>be cucumbers.
>She said cucumbers were served at every meal.  Didn't she wonder at the
>little white seeds in the cucumber?  Nope.  She is a retired high school
>teacher, and the rest of her party were teachers.  Others bought "cucumber
>seeds" and "true saffron" too.  Sigh.  Margaret L