At the end of your giant pumpkin season, you may want to save your pumpkin seeds for next year. This is how you go about it.
You really want to get the seeds out of your pumpkin as soon as you can, the longer they are within a pumpkin not attached to a vine, the more chance of the seeds not being able to germinate well.
- First select your best pumpkin if you have multiple pumpkins
- Extract the seeds from the pumpkin/s by cutting a hole into it, getting messy and grabbing all the seeds out with your hands.
- Wash and rinse the seeds in soapy lukewarm water, making sure to wash them thoroughly to remove all the gunk covering them. Do not use hot water, and do not let the seeds soak in the water
- Drain the seeds with a strainer
- Spread the seeds out onto a screen or onto newspaper.
- Stir the seeds for the first two days, and turn them over as you do it. They may stick to the newspaper, replace this if needed and if all goes well a thin plastic like coating will be on the seeds, this can be easily removed once the seeds are dry.
- Allow the seeds to air dry in a cool dry area for three weeks, do not cut the time shorter even if the seeds appear dry, there is no harm in leaving them for longer.
- Store the seeds in a bag envelope or a jar with holes in the lid, an airtight container is not ideal because if the seeds have not dried out properly, they will get mold and rot.
- Mark the seeds with the date and the name/type of the pumpkin they came from
You can store them in the freezer until next planting, as the cold dark environment won’t harm them
Here are the photos of my seed removal