Harvesting and storing your favorite flower seeds from your garden, or from the garden of a friend, is easy and cost effective. Almost any flower--annual, perennial or wildflower--has seeds that you can harvest, prepare and store to be used the following year.
Allow some of the flower heads to go to seed and form seed heads, or pods, on the plants you intend to harvest seeds from. Let these seed heads and pods naturally develop and dry on the plants, so the seeds will mature.
Clip the dried seed head or pod from the plants before it breaks open. This should be done on a dry, sunny day, preferably in the afternoon. Have a jar or envelope handy that you can hold under the seed head as you clip it off, to catch any loose seeds. Use a different jar or envelope for each variety or color of flower and label them.
Break open the seed heads or pods carefully and remove all the seeds. Do each flower variety separately so you do not accidentally mix flower seeds.
Spread the loose seeds on a baking sheet that you have covered with baking paper. Place the seed-filled pans in a dry, warm spot, away from wind, so the seeds can dry completely. The seeds need to be absolutely dry before storage to ensure that they will not mold or rot over the winter.
Shake the dried seeds and debris through a sieve to eliminate any chaff or pods from the seeds you are saving.
Store the labeled seed envelopes in a cool, dry, dark location until you are ready to plant them the following year.