Recently, have you noticed a lot of happy, orange faces smiling at you? They're everywhere in October--standing proudly in front of houses, grinning from people's lawns, and shining candlelight through windows at night. No self-respecting publication or TV news (or food) show gets through autumn without discussing and depicting lavish Halloween decorations, gigantic pumpkin contest winners, and scrumptious pumpkin pie recipes to serve after the Thanksgiving turkey. Let's learn more about pumpkins. What are they? How big can they grow? What foods can we make with them? Are they nutritious? And, finally, what's actually in that can labeled "100% pure pumpkin"?
Alfalfa is a unique seed as it actually germinates better if the seed is 2 or 3 years old. Most any sample of alfalfa contains 'hard' seed and 'soft' seed. Soft seed germinates within two days while hard seed germinates in about a week. The problem is, by the time the soft seed sprouts are ready to harvest, the hard seed may not have germinated yet. As storage time draws on, the hard seed turns into soft seed. Older seed germinates closer together. Stored in good conditions, alfalfa seed should have a good percentage of germination up until it is 8 years old.