One of the easiest, least expensive and most rewarding ways to start a fruit garden is by harvesting your own seeds. Harvest seeds from disease-free fruit toward the end of the growing season, then plant them the following year.
Cut the fruit in half with a sharp knife, then pull out the seeds with your fingers, tweezers or tongs. If necessary, mash the fruit on a cutting board to extract all of the seeds.
Place the seeds in a shallow bowl filled with fresh water at room temperature.
Agitate the seeds with your fingers in the water until the seeds are clean. Strain the seeds from the bowl onto a clean, dry plate.
Place a paper towel on the plate and sprinkle the seeds onto it. Put the plate in a warm, low-humidity area for the seeds to dry. You can also spread them on a baking sheet in a gas oven with just the pilot light on. The seeds are dry when you cannot bend them.
Place the dried seeds in small envelopes, pill containers, film canisters, baby food jars or resealable plastic bags. Store the seeds in a cool, dry area away from bright lighting. Label the containers to ensure proper seed identification for planting in the spring.