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Harvest stalks: Allow the seeds to mature on the stalk before harvesting. The stalks should be completely dry.
Harvest Seeds: Rub the seeds off seed stalks. Chard "seeds" are technically berries and contain multiple seeds, but do not break berries apart - doing so may damage individual seeds.
Label and Store: Properly stored chard seeds will last up to 5 years.
Chard does best in nutrient rich and loose soil. It can be planted either in spring or fall. If planting in spring, sow outside two weeks before final frost. If sowing in fall, plant inside about 10 weeks before first frost, and transfer outdoors after four weeks.
Chard is wind-pollinated and in the same species as beets. Therefore, growers interested in saving seed need to ensure sufficient isolation or caged/bagged in order to maintain seed integrity. An isolation distance of 1/2 mile between varieties is recommended. If sufficient space is not available chard can be bagged to prevent cross-pollination. Chard will not self-pollinate, so if bagging, make sure that at least 10 plants are housed under the same bag, to ensure that they are able to pollinate each other. Bags need to be wind-proof to avoid pollination from outside. Shake plants together within bag frequently to insure pollination.
Chard is biennial, so only produces seed in the second year after sowing.
Sources: http://howtosaveseeds.com/seedsavingdetails.php#chard ; http://www.motherearthnews.com/organic-gardening/growing-swiss-chard-zmaz09amzraw.aspx
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