Garden Chick - Notes from the Garden

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Will Old Seeds Germinate?

I was cleaning out my office storage cabinet this week, and found some flower seeds that I had purchased for a project. I thought I would till up an area around my shed and scatter the seeds this spring, but I didn't want to waste the time and effort of planting the seeds if they wouldn't germinate. And why buy more seeds if these were okay. So.... to test these seeds here is what I have done.

I have taken a few seeds from each pack and placed them on a dampened paper towel. Fold the towel over them. Placed them in a zip lock bag to keep the seeds and towel damp. I labeled the bag so I would know which seeds were germinating. I placed the bags in a warm place 70 to 75 degrees, but not in direct sun. I will need to check them daily to be sure the towel is still damp, and check for germination. Depending on the seed, they may sprout in a few days or several weeks. This will work with annuals or vegetable seeds, but may not with perennial seeds.

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  • Thanks for the great info. I'm new to seeds...I just got the seed-fever by reading all these gardening blogs! But I've been wondering about this very question! Now I'll know what to try next year and even after that--and I know not to throw seeds out unnecessarily!

    By Blogger Jan, At February 18, 2009 at 7:55 PM  

  • Jan, in my newest post I show that all of the seeds germinated.

    By Blogger Unknown, At February 21, 2009 at 6:07 PM  

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