How to Save Lambsquarters Seed

October 31, 2012 by  
Filed under Blog, Leafy Greens, Preservation

Lambsquarters is known as "tree spinach" as well as "fat hen". I have quite a few large lambsquarters plants that are filled with seeds out in my garden. I would like to harvest the seeds to add to my chicken forage seed mix. Lambsquarters is a great “weed” that is often overlooked for its benefits as a salad plant for people, and for a nice addition to your chicken’s diet.


1. Wait until the leaves of your lambsquarters plant are browning and falling off, and the seeds are mostly black, not green.

Gardening For BeginnersGrow Your Own Food 

Black ready to dry                                                                 Too Green


2. Cut the plant off at the base and place in a warm dry place to dry further. Or you can simply brush the seeds off into a container with your hand. Then place the seeds in a single layer in a warm dry place to dry out some more.


3. I hang them up in my greenhouse to dry. I will leave them there for about a week.

Growing Garlic

Lambsquarters Drying


4. Take your hand and brush seeds off lambsquarters branches into a container. Sift the seeds with a sifter. I just use a metal colander with small holes, because the seed is very small.


Heirloom Seeds

Lambsquarters seed, sifted and dried


5. Store in a cool, dark, dry place. I store my seeds in envelopes. I place the envelopes in zip-lock bags to keep air out. I then place the zip-lock bags in a plastic bin that keeps light out. I put the bin in my basement where the temperature is cool and constant.

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2 Comments on "How to Save Lambsquarters Seed"

  1. Ingrid on Mon, 11th Apr 2016 2:15 am 

    Great info, glad I’m not the only one harvesting lambsquaters! We’ve been growing them as a crop with lots of nutrients for the first time this year and I’ve never seen such productive Orach plants, but being our first time harvesting deliberately it was good to read your tutorial to find out exactly when they’re ready to go! Thanks very muchly! Ingrid

  2. Phil Williams on Mon, 11th Apr 2016 11:24 am 

    Thanks Ingrid! I’m glad you found the information helpful.

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