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Old 06-29-2012, 01:26 AM   #1
Marianna1988
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2 random questions (canning jars and seeds)

1) I went to Goodwill today to see if they had mason jars. My grocery store sells Kerr, which don't seem to have any difference besides size. But goodwill had Ball. I bought all 8 that they had (will need new lids though, of course). But I noticed that some just said "mason" while a couple others said "perfect mason" so I am wondering if there is a difference? Before I use them, I want to make sure that they'll be suitable for canning, in case one of them is meant for short term storage/dry goods.

2) I also went to get u-pick strawberries to make some more jam. Mmmm next year I would like to try strawberries again, but maybe from seed if I can. The plant I bought from Walmart just isn't holding up but I won't let that keep me from trying again. This is probably a super dumb question for all you veteran gardeners, but how do I get the seeds from teh berries? Those teeny seeds on the outside are what I assume are the seeds you plant, but I can't think of an easy way to get them off. Also related, how do you store seeds after picking/cutting them off the fruit (or vegetables and grains)? Do you wash them, dry them out, freeze them? And can I plant seeds next year from pretty much any produce I buy at the store (I generally buy organic unless money is tight or that item is unavailable, so hopefully nothing would be treated with anything or be GMO)? I heard somewhere a long time ago that produce in teh grocery store is flash frozen or heated or something so that you aren't supposed to be able to grow anything from the seeds, but that was something I never really believed is true. Mostly because the source was super conspiracy related, but also because when I was a little kid, my grandma said that I insisted on planting an orange seed because I "wanted to eat oranges everyday and pick them myself" lol, and then when I was 18 that seed had finally grown enough to produce it's first fruit. So at least as of 21 years ago, that wasn't true

Holy run on sentences. It's midnight thirty though. Too tired to go back and make it make more sense

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Old 06-29-2012, 04:43 AM   #2
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Re: 2 random questions (canning jars and seeds)

The problem with growing strawberries (or most fruits and veggies) from an actual fruit or veggie is that most fruit/veggies/plants you buy are hybrid. If your successful you won't end up with the same end product. So you don't want to plant seed from store bought produce unless you can guarantee its not hybrid. You'd be better off buying guaranteed non-hybrid seeds (you need non-hybrid if you want to use seeds from your grown produce) and going from there.

http://www.ehow.com/how_4851759_grow...ries-seed.html

Whats going on with your strawberries? We got our plants from Walmart and they are great. We cut all runners the first year and we are in the second year now-letting runners root. If they are shooting off runners they are concentrating on that and not growing the main plant or strawberries. Also did you get ever bearing or June bearing? June bearing are done and looking pretty funky.
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Old 06-29-2012, 09:03 AM   #3
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Re: 2 random questions (canning jars and seeds)

You might have gotten some older Ball jars. If they are older, you want to be careful with them. I would not pressure can with them since they may break due to microscopic scratches in the jars. You can tell the age range by the way "Ball" it written. I picked some jars that are over 100 years old at a garage sale for $1 each. That was really exciting.

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Old 06-29-2012, 09:27 AM   #4
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Re: 2 random questions (canning jars and seeds)

My strawberries (I got in May) are looking great, my friend who's neighbor I got my berry plants from (free) says to put the hulls back into the soil in the same area as you already have the growing plants. I figure it can't hurt right. Put out feelers to friends that you'd like some more strawberry plants, I have several others I know who said they just till them under as they keep getting out of control.
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Old 06-29-2012, 11:08 AM   #5
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Re: 2 random questions (canning jars and seeds)

I did some canning for a friend in exchange for Jars. (She found a shed full of jars on her property! ) Some were really old and had visible air bubbles!

I found that old jars (as long as they are free of scratches especially along the top edge) are fine for water bath canning. I would not use them for pressure canning if you are unsure. Ball and other canning jars ... the lids exchange well between brands and I've never had an issue with using different brand rings/lids. (I love older Jars and buy them if I can get them cheap. I use them for cookie/soup mixes to give as gifts! )
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Old 06-29-2012, 11:44 AM   #6
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Re: 2 random questions (canning jars and seeds)

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Originally Posted by Rdesonia View Post
I did some canning for a friend in exchange for Jars. (She found a shed full of jars on her property! ) Some were really old and had visible air bubbles!

I found that old jars (as long as they are free of scratches especially along the top edge) are fine for water bath canning. I would not use them for pressure canning if you are unsure. Ball and other canning jars ... the lids exchange well between brands and I've never had an issue with using different brand rings/lids. (I love older Jars and buy them if I can get them cheap. I use them for cookie/soup mixes to give as gifts! )
I think it would be fun to find old jars like that. I've been tempted to look around some of the old farmsteads where DH has a couple quarters and see if there's anything in the outbuildings. One of the houses a few mile from his land still has dishes on the counter and the remnants of an old towel hanging on the oven handle.

I've actually used the Blue Ball jars for some of my pie filling. They are in perfect shape so I'm not too worried about using them in water bath, but I would really hate to have one break in the PC.
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Old 06-29-2012, 12:49 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by jbug_4
The problem with growing strawberries (or most fruits and veggies) from an actual fruit or veggie is that most fruit/veggies/plants you buy are hybrid. If your successful you won't end up with the same end product. So you don't want to plant seed from store bought produce unless you can guarantee its not hybrid. You'd be better off buying guaranteed non-hybrid seeds (you need non-hybrid if you want to use seeds from your grown produce) and going from there.

http://www.ehow.com/how_4851759_grow...ries-seed.html

Whats going on with your strawberries? We got our plants from Walmart and they are great. We cut all runners the first year and we are in the second year now-letting runners root. If they are shooting off runners they are concentrating on that and not growing the main plant or strawberries. Also did you get ever bearing or June bearing? June bearing are done and looking pretty funky.
Thanks!

I have no idea if mine is a June or everbearing. The little tag didn't say, just said "strawberry." but it hasn't done anything. It only had 2 or 3 flowers, which produced super teeny berries. It's been about 2 weeks, and those berries have not grown or turned color. The whole plant is just very limp and pathetic looking, even though I water it everyday. There aren't really any dried leaves or anything, so I dont think it needs more water.

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Old 06-29-2012, 12:52 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by dmwinge
You might have gotten some older Ball jars. If they are older, you want to be careful with them. I would not pressure can with them since they may break due to microscopic scratches in the jars. You can tell the age range by the way "Ball" it written. I picked some jars that are over 100 years old at a garage sale for $1 each. That was really exciting.
Oh how cool! It looks like mine are the 1933-1960 ones. I don't have a pressure canner, but I'm glad I asked. If we invest in one, now I know. Not to use these!

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Old 06-29-2012, 02:07 PM   #9
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Re: 2 random questions (canning jars and seeds)

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Thanks!

I have no idea if mine is a June or everbearing. The little tag didn't say, just said "strawberry." but it hasn't done anything. It only had 2 or 3 flowers, which produced super teeny berries. It's been about 2 weeks, and those berries have not grown or turned color. The whole plant is just very limp and pathetic looking, even though I water it everyday. There aren't really any dried leaves or anything, so I dont think it needs more water.

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First year your not going to get much. I think with our 30 plants we got about 15 strawberries first year. 2nd and 3rd years are best then they start to peter out again in the 4th year. And if they are ever bearing you are going to get small amounts over a longer period vs. June bearing which will give you a large crop at one time. We have both- we use the everbearing for daily strawberries and June Bearing to make jams. Make sure they are weeded well- they don't like competing with weeds. You might want to add a little strawberry food. The strawberries will be small- nothing over a single bite.
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Old 06-29-2012, 07:39 PM   #10
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Re: 2 random questions (canning jars and seeds)

I didn't know that about the Ball canning jars, cool!

for the strawberries, it's one of those plants that takes forever to get going. I wouldn't save the seeds for the same reasons pp's suggested. Not sure why your strawberry isn't doing well, some varieties don't like certain climates. I would buy some bare root plants, they're already a year old and they are fairly inexpensive. I got mine from Hirt's gardens.
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