The Q&A Archives: Seed Storage

Question: I have a very small vegetable garden and cannot use all the seeds that come in one packet. Will seeds keep from year to year?

Answer: Generally, its best to store seeds in airtight containers (baby food jars are great!) in a cool, dark place where the temperature doesn't fluctuate very much - a shelf in the basement is a good choice. Be sure to label and date the jars, to prevent future mysteries!If these are seeds you've collected, make sure they are completely dry, or they may mold in storage. As seeds age, their germination rate drops. Some seeds remain viable for many years, and others really aren't worth saving. Some catalogs will even tell you how long you can expect seed to remain viable when stored under optimal conditions. Most vegetable seeds remain reliably viable for 2-3 years.

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