The Q&A Archives: Age of Seeds

Question: I am an enthusiastic beginner gardener and see lots of plants in the catalog that I would like to try to grow from seed. But if I purchase seeds in many different varieties, I will only have space in the garden for a few of each. Do seeds for annuals and perennials keep from year to year so I could finish unused packages in 1999 or later? <br>

Answer: If you keep your seeds in an air-tight container in a cool, dark location like a basement, they should remain viable for a number of years. If they're exposed to heat, light, or moisture, they'll deteriorate quickly. I've saved seed by just putting the original package in a mason jar, screwing the lid on tightly, and putting it in the back of the closet. Just don't forget where you've stored your seeds!

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