Starting and storing seeds, bleg

Ok, so my broccoli seeds arrived today, my herbs should be arriving tomorrow (the rest is going to be plants).  Normally I’d not even consider being able to plant outside till the end of April at the earliest, probably not till mid-May or later being much more likely.  This year?  Who knows.  So, should I just go ahead and just start them?  The broccoli package says to start them up to 6 weeks ahead…..

 

Next question, seeds have expiration dates but I know of people who have used seeds the next year or to with reasonable success, so….whats the best way to store them?  Obviously they need to be kept dry…….

4 Comments

  1. Ping from bluesun:

    We’ve always just stored seeds in a cardboard box out in the garage. Not sure how that would work for long term, though. Just fine for a few years.

  2. Ping from Ruth:

    don’t need long term as such, but I’ve got way more seeds than I’m going to use this year for sure (cause they don’t sell them in packets of 20 lol).

  3. Ping from Mrs. S.:

    Seeds are generally packaged for sale and use within a year, but they can be planted within 2 or 3 years with reasonable success if stored in a cool, dry place. Beyond the 3 or 4 year mark, the germination rates seem to drop off quite dramatically. I have some seeds found when cleaning mom’s porch last summer that go back 10 years. I threw them in the ground (very thickly) in the little greenhouse. Maybe they’ll sprout, maybe not; we’ll see. It kinda depends on the type of seed. Maybe the ones with hard, thick shells stand up better than ones with papery shells that humidity can soak into like squash, cucumbers, etc., but I’m no expert.

    I vaguely remember seeing a tv program about professional horticulture places that keep heirloom seeds for research going to the extreme of vacuum sealing the seeds and storing them in extremely cold freezers (not the kind with automatic defrost cycles) or liquid nitrogen. Even then, they have to pull them out of cold storage every few years and replant to keep the varieties alive.

  4. Ping from Ruth:

    after wandering through google, the general consensis is to make sure they’re dry, place them in a water tight container and stuff them in the freezer. I’ve got lots of canning jars, and lids that have been sealed once that I saved for occasional use for when I just needed a jar, so that I can do….