Seeds Good From Last Year? - Knowledgebase Question

Acton, MA
Question by mrizo
March 30, 2001
I have seeds (alot) from last year, unopened. They were kept dry in my garage over the winter. Probably got as low as 40 degrees in there. Are the seeds still good?


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Answer from NGA
March 30, 2001

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It is possible that most of them are still good although they would have been better stored in a jar or similarly closed container in the refrigerator where the temperature stays constant and humidity is controlled. It also depends on what kinds of seeds you kept since some seeds are more long lived than others. You could check to see how many of them are viable by testing samples. To test, wrap some seeds in a dampened paper towel and wrap that in plastic wrap to maintain humidity. Set the packet in a warm location out of direct sun. Check often for germination. This will give you an idea of the viability of the seeds and will help you judge how many to plant as well as which ones need to be replaced entirely.

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