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Green seeds in my tomatoes
by Linda Ryan
Q. My tomato plant and the fruit look fine. But the seeds are green. What does this mean?
A. A tomato seed is green because it contains chlorophyll, the pigment in plants that gives them a green color. Chlorophyll is crucial in the process of photosynthesis because it allows plants to absorb energy from light. Even when inside a tomato, seeds continue to absorb light.
As seeds mature, their outer shells harden to protect the inner embryo. Tomato seeds are ripe when they're a buff, beige, or off-white color. Green seeds are likely not yet ripe. In fact, color is one factor gardeners use to determine whether or not seeds are mature enough to germinate.
A tomato is ripe for seed saving when it is ripe to eat. If a tomato is under-ripe, it will not produce viable seed. If the fruit is a bit under ripe, you may get a few good seeds.
One good way to look at seeds is by comparing them to pregnancy. Just as a baby needs time in the "cooker," so to speak, before it is ready to be born, so also a fertilized seed needs time inside a tomato to be ready to reproduce.
Good luck and happy gardening!
Your friends at Tomato Dirt
By Kathy Widenhouse, award-winning writer and owner of Tomato Dirt, a leading online source for growing tomatoes and using them.
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