Seed storage seems like it should be simple, but it’s actually more involved than you might think. After all, you don’t want your seeds to germinate while they’re in storage. With proper storage, though, a good collection of heirloom seeds could help you grow a full garden, complete with all of the fruits and vegetables for your cooking needs.
Put Them in the Fridge and Leave Them There
First of all, seeds do best when they’re stored in cooler temperatures. 40 degrees – the temperature of most refrigerators – is perfect for keeping seeds fresh and avoiding early germination, mold, and other problems. After you put your seeds in the fridge, though, don’t take them out and move them around a lot. Fluctuating temperatures are bad for seeds, as are freezing temperatures, so keep them away from the freezer.
Keep Them in the Dark
Whether or not you choose to keep your seeds in the refrigerator, you should never store them in a fully lit room. Seeds respond to light, so keep them in opaque bags or containers, and store them in a cool, dark place.
Keep Them Dry
Moisture can lead to mold and/or germination, so you want to make sure that they stay dry. Keeping them in a mason jar is a good idea, and Mylar bags work really well for this, as well. You can then place these in a paper bag or other opaque container to keep light out. You may even want to store them with some kind of desiccant or oxygen absorber to further dry them out.
And, if you’re using your seeds in your garden each year, go ahead and rotate them, using the oldest ones first. This is a good way to ensure that you get better crops and that none of your seeds spoil while you’re storing them.
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