Storing Seeds - Knowledgebase Question

Tustin, CA
Question by Glad0525
September 20, 1998
I purchased a whole lot of your veggie seeds and now I need to know what their shelf life is. Could you send me a list? I don't know if I can buy for ten years down the line or not.


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Answer from NGA
September 20, 1998

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Properly stored seeds will last for several years. After 3-4 years, though, they may lose viability, and the germination rate will be considerably less than when the seeds were fresh. You can test germination rates each year by placing 10 seeds between damp paper towels and placing them in a plastic bag. Check in 7-10 days. The number of seeds that sprout will be the percentage of germination you can expect when planting that year. To store seeds, place them in an airtight container and put them in a cool, dark area, such as a basement or back of a seldom-used closet. If you eliminate light, moisture and heat, your seeds should remain viable for several years.

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