Heirloom Vegetable Seed Information

Heirloom Vegetable Seed Information image by Flickr.com
Heirloom Vegetable Seed Information image by Flickr.com


Heirloom vegetables are true-to-type varieties that are passed down from one generation to another. It is not unusual to find a variety of vegetable that is 50 to 100 years old. Some varieties are even older.

Seed Sources

Heirloom vegetable seeds can be obtained from commercial seed suppliers or seed exchange groups. If you are lucky, you can obtain some seeds as hand-me-downs within your family.


Seed purity is essential when growing heirloom vegetables. This can be achieved by isolating the different varieties of the same crop by distance and time of blooming. This helps prevent cross-pollination.


Heirloom vegetable seeds are saved from year to year. You should harvest seeds from disease-free healthy plants after they have matured.


Tap the seed heads over a container to release them. Another method is to pick the seed heads and hang them upside down in a paper bag to dry.


Dry the seeds thoroughly, then store them in an airtight container. Store in a cool, dry place or in the freezer.


  • The Practical Gardener's Encyclopedia; Geoffrey Burnie; 2000
  • University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension
Keywords: heirloom vegetable, seed harvest, gardening

About this Author

Karen Carter spent three years as a technology specialist in the public school system and her writing has appeared in the "Willapa Harbor Herald" and the "Rogue College Byline." She has an Associate of Arts from Rogue Community College with a certificate in computer information systems.

Photo by: Flickr.com